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H.I.M. - Biography
|last update : 26-11-2009 08:44|
|The Beginning of the end,of our beloved singer
Ville felt the power of music in him at a very young age. His father, Kari Valo, had left his career in the music fields but his son continued his dream few years later. The love Ville's father had for The Agents (a Finnish folk band) made Ville love music, as sometimes with a little guitar he used to imitate Gene Simmons from KISS and make up his face like him. At school, he is already friend with Mige and Linde. Soon Ville decides to give up school. His parents (Kari & Anita) understand the desire and the visible love for music of their son; they urge him to work with what he loves.
Ville begins to play bass and drums in various local bands, while he is working at his father's sex shop.
It is all tears,as we reach the top
Ville leaves the part of the bass to Mige and with hesitance, he takes the vocals, while the guitar part is Linde. The drummer Patka comes from the provincial town Lappeenranta and His Infernal Majesty begin their career.
Their first appearance is at Teatro at 19 of December 1995 (Mige's birthday), supporting the eccentric Fin Kauko Rfyhkd. They don't receive positive comments and soon they return back to acoustic songs from Rauli Badding Somerjoki, KISS, Depeche Mode and mostly Type O' Negative, and only with few of their own songs,His Infernal Majesty play one more gig. At the keyboards is Zoltan Pluto.
Wicked Game,between His Infernal Majesty and HIM
Seppo Vesterinen, ex-manager of Hanoi Rocks, discovers HIM at Helsinki. When the contract comes with BMG for the first EP, Ville makes his own songs after of many-not easily found today- demos.
The EP is released at autumn of 1996 with the title "666 ways To Love-Prologue". At the cover is a photo of Ville's mother, Anita, at a young age. The band wins the audience and positive comments with "Wicked Game" by Chris Isaak.
Ville is starting to realize that the name His Infernal Majesty has not any meaning. BMG does not like the "unsuitable" contain and the comments about Satan. Ville decides to through away His Infernal Majesty and today he speaks of a different band. HIM has no more any relation with His Infernal Majesty. Even today Ville laughs, saying that the name could not be written at the side of a CD and that the change was a necessity.
Autumn of 1997, is released the first official album of HIM. "Greatest Lovesongs Volume 666". HIM are still close to the Type O' Negative style, but the band ends up slowly to a beautiful, romantic mix of ideas and symbols about life, love and death, with a new sound.
In the album, we have again "Wicked Game", while "Don't Fear the Reaper" by blue Oyster Cult steals our hearts. With Ville sings Linde's ex-girlfriend and Ville's flirt from high school, June.
Resurrection,The undead of our hearts
Ville starts to build the image of the group. Infected by glam bands and with the help and support of Seppo and BMG, the image of HIM changes. Along with it's members. From the band leaves Antto and his place is taken by Zoltan, while the place of Jahana at drums is taken by Gas.
Before the released of their second album, "Razorblade Romance", which opened the gates to Europe, the album is recorded 3 times, while in some them the sound of the drums is electronic. The single "Join Me" comes at 1999, becomes No1 in Finland, Austria, Germany and Switzerland, and is the first song of rock music from Scandinavia that takes the first place in other countries exempt Finland. HIM has made it!
"Razorblade Romance" is released with pink cover and Ville brings out a new persona, posing at the cameras with '80s glam style and soon becomes an idol and sex symbol, while people compare him with Jim Morrison and Elvis Presley.
The album has not the darkness of the first one and brings a new, mainstream sound for HIM. After, we have the singles " Right Here in My Arms", "Poison Girl" and "Gone with Sin".
Love Metal,the love of the metal lovers
Ville says "People had difficulties when it comes to describe our music. When you hear U2 or Metallica, you just say I hear U2, Metallica,We described the sound of HIM as Love Metal, we made a new kind of music for us, for this reason!" HIM start to have their own audience, approach it with an absolute dark romantic style, lost in hearts, black color and lyrics that are speaking about lost love, death and life.
2000 arrives and HIM take a place at the Greek top 10 and fill Rodon Theater at their first and unique concert in Greece, and later their album becomes gold and 2 times platinum!
The Scandinavian Blues,from Ville to us
Juska decided to leave the group because of his studies. He plays for the last time with HIM at Tavastia Club, few hours before 2001,Burton comes back and permanent after 7 years.
"Deep Shadows and Brilliant Highlights", third album for HIM, takes some time to be released. BMG's intervention is big, the sound is much more "colder" than HIM wanted to release and the first comments are not good. The album is released at August 2001. It was an album absolutely different,it had an absolutely different style, an absolutely different image that we were not used to. HIM release at July 2001 the single "Pretending". The,"Scandinavian blues" of Ville soon conquer the HIM--and not only--lovers.
Ville is transformed to that melancholic poet that many fans think he is. He laughs when we remind him the image people have about him.
"I'm not that miserable" he is joking. Despite the fact that he suffers by asthma (just like poor Vampiraki), he continues smoking without limits, reaching four packets per day. The end of his relationship with Suzanna had an impact on him.
Then we have the singles "In Joy and Sorrow" and "Heartache Every Moment/Close to the Flame" until January 2002. HIM try a spreading to U.K. market. The result is a little promotion, good critics, but really few sales. The time has not come yet,
HIM visit Greece, this time the gum of OAKA. The tiredness of the group and a cold Ville had, make the concert not very good and the complains of the fans are many.
When Love And Death Embrace, just below Ville's navel.
Looking at the cover of "Deep Shadows and Brilliant Highlights" we can see that face of Ville we said before. The change of the artwork of the CD right before its release and the photography, mark out the contrast of the feelings. "The dark and the bright is our contrast", says Ville "the bad and the good, that anyone has into his heart". This balance of powers is being symbolized by heartagram, the absolute symbol of the band, that Ville himself made. It is something like the yin and the yang, again like the balance of life, of love with death.
Our Diabolical Rapture,HIM rule the world
Summer 2001 and HIM play only at Provonssirock, Finnish festival. The success is huge and soon the European tour of 2001 begins and our friends play even for an audience of 10.000 people!
The band need time to rest at the first months of 2002 and Ville starts writing new songs, while he is dreaming a career for HIM at U.S.
With the help of Jimmy Pop (member of Bloodhound Gang) and the Jimmy Franks Recording Company, HIM release "Join Me" and "Razorblade Romance" in limited editions at October 2002. Soon HIM are,baptized HER only for U.S., because of another American band but soon--and with the proper money equivalent--everything comes to an end at March 2003. Meanwhile, Ville meet Bam Margera, skater and member of the MTV show "Jackass". This acquaintance will be very useful for HIM.
Margera uses five of their songs at the soundtrack of "Jackass: The movie", while HIM are releasing their last enchainment with BMG, the "Single Collection" which contains 10 singles.
Our dear love-metal gods release at October 2002 their first biography, too, a book by a Fin friend of the group Juho Juntunen with the title "Gone with the Sin" (Syinnin Viemää) that includes stories and unique photos from the first years of HIM up to 2002.
Ville sees the dream of the band near to become reality. HIM open a new page in U.K. at 2003, mostly because of the help of Bam Margera, making HIM famous to an other kind of audience, absolutely different, the audience of the skaters.
At six of March the same year, our guitarist Linde becomes daddy of a beautiful, little girl, Olivia. HIM continue their career but Linde's fatherhood takes him away from the band.
Close to the flame,and our HIM close to immortality
16 of September 2002, HIM start recording the new album, "Love Metal", at Finnvox studio. "Love Metal", fourth album for HIM, was an awesome and kicking ass album, with a loud sound--something that Ville had promised—and songs that won one more "generation" of HIM-fans and in Greece. Above all their powerful presence at their concert at Lycabbetus Theater at July 2003, but also the unique gift from the fans to the band (an acoustic guitar signed by over than 700 fans). "Love Metal" made clear its "title" and the kind of music HIM represent, winning more fans and those who were a bit "suspicious" with the image of Ville Valo, but also the value of HIM as a band. HIM shouted "Buried Alive by Love" as the first video of "Love Metal", with director the fan and now friend of Ville, Bam Margera, with Juliette Lewis and Ville at an old theater in Los Angeles. The second video, "Funeral of Hearts", is shouted at January 2003 with director Stefan Lindfors, in scene with wild horses and wolves, like a surrealistic tale. "Funeral of Hearts" is the first single of "Love Metal" and is released at 21 of March 2003. "Love Metal" was the only album after three others before that has not Ville at the cover but the symbol of the group, the heartagram, which is now in a circle, for emphasis. The singles are in the same colors with the only change the symbols on the covers.
HIM knowing such a success in Europe want to put their spells on the other side of the Atlantic and Ville's dream for a tour there seems closer then ever. "Razorblade Romance" opens the gates to go there, while in the same time the release of "And Love Said No: Greatest Hits 1997-2004" seals the career of HIM in BMG and they release two new songs. The classic "Solitary Man" by Neil Diamond, but also the very, very sensitive "And love Said No", a song with a great meaning to Ville. Bam directs two more videos, the new songs of the Best Of. Ville is for him a friend but also an idol. "Solitary Man" brings the band to a powerful and great interpretation, as the video of "And Love Said No" is based upon an idea more atmospheric, dark than the others, it will be ready soon, and it will kick ass!