Battle Beast’s Noora Louhimo: “The new album was the rebirth of this band and we are meant to be together”
Finland’s Battle Beast have recently released their self-titled album (a follow-up to their debut “Steel”) with new singer Noora Louhimo on Nuclear Blast Records to a very positive reaction. Fans of classic 80s era metal heroics will find plenty to like on “Battle Beast” with amazing musical performances mixing with some pretty memorable songs overall. I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Noora about joining the band and more; read on….
Legendary Rock Interviews: Thanks for talking with us Noora. This is the second album from the band but the first to feature your singing. How different do you think your style of singing is compared to the bands original singer Nitte ?
Noora: Well, at first I would say I have a fresh touch for this style of music, Second, I’d say I sing different styles so I’ve got lot to give and new ideas coming up all the time about how to use my voice and how to play with it. As much as I wanna sound like a female singer with “balls”, I wanna sound feminine and sexy at the same time.
LRI: Were you aware of the band’s first album prior to joining and do you enjoy performing that albums material at live shows?
Noora: I’d heard some of the songs from the radio but when I got in the band I actually had to learn all the songs. Some of the songs like “Iron Hand” and “Show Me How To Die” I love to sing but of course I enjoy more singing the songs I’ve recorded originally because they feel much more personal.
LRI: The new album is self titled and could almost be seen as a rebirth for the band, have the fans been supportive of you during this time?
Noora: They have been more supportive that we could ever dream of and new fans just keep coming! And you are totally right the new album was the rebirth of this band. I could say that “we are meant to be together”.
LRI: Other than you being new to the band did the band do anything else differently while recording the new self-titled album?
Noora: We started recording the new album almost right away I got in the band.They had already started recording the new album before I got in the band so I learned the songs during the recordings. So just month before the tour with Sonata arctica I had to learn how to sing in heavy metal-style, what to sing and started recording the new album.
LRI: I love your vocals. There are very few vocalists who are capable of reminding me of Rob Halford but you do on this album. Are there any particular singers who influenced you growing up or other styles of music you enjoyed beyond metal?
Noora: I started listening metal music since I was 16 and that “fire” started actually with “Guns and Roses”. When I heard “Welcome to the Jungle” I knew there was no coming back. Then there came Dio, Judas Priest, W.A.S.P. and of course Iron Maiden. Back then I thought Bruce Dickinson is the best male singer in the world. I’ve got so many influences from different genres, for example Whitney Houston was the first whose singing got me really developing my strong sound. Then there was Janis Joplin who’s the reason for my rasp. Blackie Lawless and Rob Halford have been really good influences in screaming.
LRI: Finland is a small country but has historically had a lot of hard rock and metal bands that have risen to worldwide attention. Were there a lot of other bands that played the same scene as you and is the music scene in Finland pretty supportive?
Noora: Actually, I think there is no other band like us, not yet. Finland has been very supportive and actually our new album “Battle Beast” just got announced as a nominee for the best metal album of the year 2013 for the Finnish music award EMMA.
LRI: It’s cool that Battle Beast is on a lot of big festival shows this year! How do the European audiences respond to BattleBeast and are you looking forward to seeing American audiences?
Noora: Oh, you have no idea! We can’t wait to get in front of our European and American audience. The shows and meeting fans have always been the best part besides doing good music.
LRI: A lead singer’s job is to entertain and be the face of the band and female singers can sometimes get even more attention, are you comfortable with and do you understand people focusing attention on your appearance?
Noora: Of course I understand and it’s totally fine. I love attention and entertaining but I still want to make people understand there’s six persons in this band and I’m just one of them. I don’t like the sentence “Noora and the boys”, I prefer “Battle Beast”.
LRI: You guys made a video for one of my favorite tracks on the album, the song “Black Ninja”. Was that song a lot of fun for you to sing and did you enjoy the video shoot?
Noora: It was so much fun! And I love the song: there’s softness, power and roughness.
LRI: Thanks again for talking with us Noora. One great thing about the new album is that there is so much variety on it, everything from really heavy songs to more melodic stuff. Is that one of the things you enjoy most about singing for Battle Beast?
Noora: Exactly! I want to use my voice in as many multifaceted ways as possible.
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Battle Beast home page: http://www.battlebeast.fi/