Norwegian metallers SUSPERIA have teamed up with former DIMMU BORGIR keyboardist Mustis (real name: Øyvind Mustaparta) to compete to represent their country in the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest.
Commented SUSPERIA frontman Athera (real name: Pål Mathiesen): "We are not afraid to lose credibility. A competition needs variation. We know how good our music is, with great melodies, energy and hooks in the songs. With this in mind, we want to let the big masses discover our music, and enjoy our hidden treasures."
SUSPERIA has released five albums and one EP, and has toured extensively in Europe. In addition, they were the first Norwegian metal band crack the Top 20 on the official single chart in Norway with their "Devil May Care" EP. Musically, they have evolved from playing what people used to define as black metal to pursuing a more traditional heavy metal/hard rock direction with clean vocals. "It is natural to develop and have new approaches," Athera states.
SUSPERIA was formed in 1999 and has had the same lineup throughout its existence. With the reintroduction of Mustis — who actually played synth on a SUSPERIA demo recording back in 1999 — a new aspect has been added to the band's sound. They are currently discussing a potential collaboration for a new album as well.
Commented Mustis: "It has been very inspiring to gather with SUSPERIA. Since Elvorn and I established our first band already in 1995 as kids, then meeting Memnock and knowing Tjodalv from my early days in DIMMU BORGIR, it felt very natural to sit down and start to be creative again together with my old friends.
"I don't think keyboard is for just any kind of metal band or band in general, but SUSPERIA have the open mind for this and the right elements for sure, and we agree that it can come something really good out of this.
"We made a killer song together that's going to be performed at the Norwegian Eurovision!!
"I really can't wait to perform again with a band that in a very dynamic way lift each other's instruments and Athera's amazing vocals all together."
Athera is currently busy with CHROME DIVISION (also featuring DIMMU BORGIR frontman Shagrath [a.k.a. Stian Thoresen] on guitar), which is planning to release a new album early next year, while Cyrus (real name: Terje Andersen) is touring with DIMMU BORGIR as the group's session bassist. Despite this, the SUSPERIA guys promise to give the Eurovison Song Contest the highest priority.
Photo credit: Fredrik Arff/NRK