Musicscan: Let's just briefly talk about your plans in 2012. What are the most important aims and plans for Tracedawn to support the release of Lizard Dusk?
Tracedawn: We're planning to do a bunch of gigs here in Finland first and hopefully head for a European tour later this year. We're also waiting to play at the festivals this summer.
Musicscan: How big is the interest in Tracedawn being back with a new album? Do you get lots of requests from your fans and press people? What are they asking or telling you these days? Are there unexpected questions, or something that is different compared to when you released your previous records?
Tracedawn: The whole process of making the album took almost 1,5 years partly because we parted ways with our former singer Antti. So for a while a lot of people didn't know what was going on. Some even thought that the band didn't exist anymore. But now it seems that there's a lot of interest in Tracedawn and I think that the fact that Niko joined the band brought us a few new listeners. So now we feel more vital than ever and we can't wait to get on the gigs with the new line-up.
Musicscan: As high expectations sometimes lead to disappointments: do you somehow worry at this point waiting for the actual street date?
Tracedawn: No, not at all. We got great feedback with our first single "Breed Insane" and now we're just anxiously waiting to get the whole record released. And I think all of us are really excited of playing some of the new songs live.
Musicscan: I think I am not wrong claiming that the music of Tracedawn can be easily filed under modern crossover metal. Would you agree to that? How would you explain that Scandinavian metal in between death, thrash, power and prog is so popular, when it is played with a modern and catchy edge to it?
Tracedawn: I guess you could call us modern crossover metal. I can't really explain why this kind of Scandinavian metal cocktail is so popular today. Metal music is evolving all the time and this kind of stuff seems to be hip right now. I'm just happy we're not doing anything retro.
Musicscan: As a musician, why do you think the marriage of heavy metal and melodic/catchy elements is so popular with listeners?
Tracedawn: I think the marriage of heavy stuff and catchy elements is popular because it just makes sense. It adds a nice versatility and it also enables the band to do a lot of really perverse stuff in their songs. So you can get creative. And to me it's always nice to hear a vocal melody here and there even though most of the stuff is based on the growl thing.
Musicscan: Do you sometimes feel the urge to write a gentle pop song but then dismiss this idea again, because you think it does not fit the Tracedawn aesthetic?
Tracedawn: Gentle pop stuff might not be the what we're looking for but we do have some slightly softer elements involved on the new record. You can't go top speed all the time. There a song called "Nothing And Nowhere" on the new album that, to me, doesn't sound like anything we've done before. It's even got a slight jazzy vibe in it.
Musicscan: If you compare the visions you have had of Lizard Dusk before the record was produced and compare it to your own impressions listening to the songs now – is there a difference?
Tracedawn: We had quite accurate song demos before we started recording the actual album so I think we had a clear vision of what the record was going to sound like. And we're all really pleased with the results.
Musicscan: Is it a challenge to you to continually write and record new songs and records? Or it is more challenging for you guys to play live?
Tracedawn: I think we all really dig doing both, but I guess at the moment it's a bit more challenging to play live because we've got a new line-up and album full of songs that we haven't performed live before.
Musicscan: Was it different writing Lizard Dusk, now that you have become more skilled with your instruments and all aspects of writing and recording?
Tracedawn: I think some of the new songs are a clearly more simple than a lot of the stuff we've done in the past. So I think we didn't want to go too prog this time. To me "Lizard Dusk" is more of a kick-ass rock album although still some of the songs are a real pain-in-the-ass to play because of the challenging riffs and shit.
Musicscan: And what's to say about the impact your new singer Niko has had on the way Lizard Dusk turned out?
Tracedawn: Niko is responsible for half of the lyrics on the record. He's got a great sense of rhythm and an amazing sound and I think the way he and Tuomas shared the vocal parts on the record sounds really cool. And it also works well live.
Musicscan: What did you guys do differently on Lizard Dusk by choice that you hadn't done previously to keep things progressing?
Tracedawn: We recorded the whole album by ourselves and the whole thing was produced by Tuomas. I think it was quite clear from the start that this time we're going to do all this by ourselves.
Musicscan: What aspects would you mention if you were asked which aspects you like most on Lizard Dusk? Why especially these aspects?
Tracedawn: I like the catchiness of the songs. Lot of the riffs are simple and melodic and there's some huge choruses on the record too. And I also dig the versatililty of the songs so that there might be dramatic changes of mood within a song. To me it always makes the music more interesting when there happens something you didn't really expect.
Musicscan: What do you feel you accomplished after finishing your work on Lizard Dusk? Do you feel that this new record is a pretty good representation of your band sounding as of right now? And do you feel that Tracedawn has already found its own sound, or is it still evolving?
Tracedawn: I think all the Tracedawn records so far sound quite different from each other. So I think our style is evolving all the time. But right now we're really glad to sound the way we do on the new CD.
Musicscan: Would you agree to say Tracedawn is still an underrated band on the European mainland? How do you feel about your standing across the whole of Europe?
Tracedawn: I think a lot of our fans come from Mid-Europe rather than Scandinavia. So I think we have a good chance of succeeding in Europe but we really need to get on a tour again to remind people of who we are.