Vocalist/guitarist Alexi Laiho of Finnish metallers CHILDREN OF BODOM was interviewed on this past weekend's (February 3-5) edition of Full Metal Jackie's nationally syndicated radio show. You can now listen to the chat using the audio player below.
To see a full list of stations carrying the program and when it airs, go to FullMetalJackieRadio.com.
A few excerpts from the question-and-answer session follow.
Full Metal Jackie: The 15th-anniversary tour is now underway. When you look back on your entire career for an anniversary tour, what stands out most that you never realized before?
Alexi: Well, there's a lot of things that happened, a lot of things that I never really stopped to think about during these last 15 years. Obviously, the first time we got the record contract, that was kind of like the biggest deal in my life, and certain little things like the first time we went to Japan and the first headlining tour in the U.S. and a bunch of little things that might not sound like a big deal. I could go on and on.
Full Metal Jackie: Do you feel like it sort of happened quickly in terms of your level of success here and notoriety and showing up on Guitar World magazine and things like that?
Alexi: Yeah, absolutely. Like I said, I really haven't had that much time to stop and think about everything that's happened but sometimes you're like, "Wait a minute, did I just do that? Was I just on the cover of Guitar World with Zakk Wylde and Steve Vai? Really, me?" I mean, that's pretty awesome right?
Full Metal Jackie: Were you giddy that day when that photo shoot happened? I kind of remembered seeing behind-the-scenes photos, I can't even imagine as a fan of those guys what it must have been like for you.
Alexi: Well, I was trying not to, I think I did a pretty good job, too. [Laughs] The thing is that those two dudes are definitely like my ultimate guitar heroes and the guys that I grew up listening to when I was a kid and I still do. Both of them were really cool and we just hung out it was really comfortable to hang out with them.
Full Metal Jackie: Does being made more aware of your entire history, being this is a 15th-anniversary tour, does it make you rethink the direction of what the band does next?
Alexi: Usually I really try not to think about stuff like that. I like to keep it spontaneous and before I start writing music, I don't really sit down and think about what we should sound like. I just grab the guitar and see what happens. That's always been the method that's worked for me anyway.
Full Metal Jackie: Tell me about something you did recently, you were part of a Finnish cooking show?
Alexi: [Laughs] Yeah, that's very true, I know it sounds pretty messed up, but it was a lot of fun. Basically the whole concept of the show is that this guy who is a famous chef in Finland he visits Finns who live outside of Finland somewhat famous or known people. He came out to L.A. to see me and he taught me how to cook and we hung out and we had cocktails and stuff like that. I don't know how to cook, I can make us some sandwiches, but that's it. [Laughs] He taught me some stuff so it was definitely a lot of fun.
Full Metal Jackie: Will we in the states get a chance to see that at some point or is this Finnish only?
Alexi: It's only in Finland.
Full Metal Jackie: You guys have always been known to do some crazy cover tunes, which crack me up. Every time I do a metal cover special, I play the Britney Spears cover, because I can't get enough of it, it's so good. Tell me what a bunch of Finnish guys like about a 1985 electro-pop song by Eddie Murphy, no less to want to cover "Party All the Time".
Alexi: That was another moment of not knowing what to do, after you cover Britney and what-not, there's no way you can top that, but I think we actually kind of did. Somebody came up with the idea of covering that Eddie Murphy song because, for some reason, during that recording session, that song was always around and we would drink and hang out and that was on the party CD or mix CD and someone came up with the beautiful idea of covering that song and we were like, "What, dude? What the hell, we'll see if we can pull it off." I think it turned out pretty good, I mean, as long as you have a sense of humor; otherwise you're just going to hate it.
Full Metal Jackie: What is going on in terms of plans for the next BODOM album? Is there some kind of a timeline or are you guys working or writing anything so far?
Alexi: Right now we're in between tours, but we're going to keep going until next fall, so we're going to do this U.S. tour and then we got a bunch of European festivals throughout the summer, and as far as I know, I think we're going to start writing new stuff sometime this autumn. I already have written something, but basically, I really don't write while I'm touring, it's just kind of the wrong kind of environment for me writing. When you're surrounded by psycho drunks just screaming 24/7 [laughs].
Full Metal Jackie: Are you talking about us or your bandmates?
Alexi: [Laughs] Of course not you, just the bandmates. [Laughs]