Joviac's Viljami Goes into Chatter on Music, Formation, and More!

Progressive metal band JOVIAC has memorable ideas to satisfy the masses for years to come. In fact, they have released two full-length album's, along with focusing on themselves since forming just not that long ago either. The band goes into much more chatter about all of this and more.

1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.

I founded Joviac in 2017 after burying my previous band that disbanded due to personal differences about a year earlier. Music has been the most important form of self expression and self actualization for me since I was a teen, so I just needed a new vessel for it. It made sense to start from scratch with a new name and with a new mentality based on everything I had learned up until that point.
Joviac began as more of a project. I did everything except play bass on the debut album. I felt it was easier to get the ball rolling and things moving forward if I had something to show to people.
Antti Varjanne was already with me back then playing bass on the first album, but it was with the addition of Rudy Fabritius (drums) and Janne Korpela (live-guitar 2017-2019) when the project really became a real “band”. Even though there have been changes here and there, and the live-guitar duties are now handled by Joona Niemi, it's really the symbiosis of us three core members that make up Joviac. Everyone brings something unique to the table and I never take for granted that I'm able to do this with such talented people and on top of that we're also extremely close friends. We're kind of like brothers really, or at least that's the way I feel!

2. What’s the origin of the band’s name?

When I was trying to come up with the name, I wanted something to signify that the band was an honest and personal musical depiction of myself. I'm the songwriter in the band and all the songs come from a very personal place and I wanted the name to be a representation of that, if at least to myself. My full name is Viljami Jupiter Wenttola, and no, it's not an artist name. “Jove” is an age-old English word for the Roman god “Jupiter” and so I just changed the ending of the word. It's just mainly to remind myself to stay true to my own goals when making music, to keep making music for myself.

3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

Joviac is based out of Tampere, Finland, with the exception of Rudy who lives in Helsinki. Tampere is known in Finland as a rock'n roll city, and is playfully referred to as “manse” or “Manchester”. It's historically a working man's town and it shows in the music scene here.  While it's true that Finland is totally a metal country (more metal bands per capita than anywhere else in the world), it poses some challenges even though we refer to ourselves as a “progressive metal” band. Finland's a small country and the kind of metal that has broken through or made it big is basically what you hear on the radio on a very small loop. It's tough to stand out. We're doing our best though, and for the small time that we've been a band (about 3 years) we've gone forward so much, it's just tough to stay patient sometimes. There are however some brothers in arms here that share our passion for progressive music! I would totally urge anyone to check out our friends Everwave and External whom we will be sharing the stage with next week!

4. How would you describe your style?

We call ourselves progressive metal, but like I guess 90% of artists out there, I feel like it leaves a lot unsaid. What I'm going for most of the time is a marriage between progressive metal and other styles like pop. I'd like to think that we are a very genuine and honest representation of progressive metal wrapped up in an accessible package. I like to borrow the freedom and complexity from the prog side and try to marry it with memorable hooks and snappy choruses from the pop side. You should tell me if we've succeeded!

5. What have you released so far and what can someone expect from your works?

We've released two full-length albums and as of today 10.9.2020 we've released two stand-alone singles! We just came out with a new one, “Misplaced” today and we're very excited to see how it will be received. It was recorded as part of the “Here And Now” (2nd album) sessions but I felt that it didn't quite fit in with the rest of the material. It's definitely not a B-Side or anything like that, it stands on its own two feet as a soulful and deeply personal song with a simple, in-your-face kind of rock attitude.

As for our full-length albums, for a long time I felt like our debut was more like a glorified demo, a means to an end, but I went back and listened to it after a looooong hiatus recently and I was actually quite proud of it. I guess it's a good thing when an artist feels like his newest works blow the old ones out of the water. We've gone forward with everything we've put out, we've gone deeper, more personal, more expressive, heavier, lighter, softer, harder, we've gotten more complex but without sacrificing the catchy side...

I think if we just remember why we do what we do and keep going on the road we've been walking for about three years, we'll have a brilliant career behind us when we look at it from a rocking chair in a nursery home. If we make it that far that is!

6. Do you have any new music in the works?

I've been trying to use the Corona downtime as efficiently as possible, actually to the point of almost burning out during the summer. I came close to going over the edge in terms of psychological well being, I'm just glad I had the sense to pull the emergency brake when I did. I was hell-bent on writing our new full length album this summer, I gave myself a deadline and stressed myself out trying to live up to my own foolish expectations. Now I've luckily gotten past it and inspiration is starting to flow again. I keep having to relearn the same lesson again and again: I can't manufacture inspiration or command it, I can only give it the best possible circumstances and see where it takes me. In all the chaos of the “Corona Summer 2020” some promising material did surface though, and we're looking at recording some of it this winter. I have no idea what the scale will be yet, singles? EP? Album? All I do know is that we're definitely keeping ourselves busy creatively. I'll let you know once I find out!

7. How about playing shows and touring, have anything planned out?

When the first wave of Corona hit in the spring of 2020, everything in Finland except for grocery stores, pharmacists and essential services like that got shut down. Luckily Finns are really good (up to a fault) at isolating themselves so Corona all but got wiped out of the country for June and July. Numbers started to increase very slowly again during August though, and now in mid September they're still quite low, but definitely on the rise. There's a lot of uncertainty and everybody's talking about the second wave coming so it makes events difficult to plan out. There is a silver lining though! We were able to secure two shows and we are incredibly excited to climb on stage again. Tomorrow 11.9. we're playing Helsinki's Tiivistämö and it will also be our first streamed show, and 18.9. we're FINALLY playing our record release show here in Tampere which was postponed from the spring! We can't wait. On the grand scheme of things though, the one goal that I've always had is to build Joviac into an internationally touring entity and once circumstances are right, we'll definitely be hitting stages in other countries too!

8. What plans do you have for the future as a band?

Basically just more of the same! To keep writing the best music that we can, recording it, releasing it and playing it for the people that want to see and hear it! I think I answered this question more in detail already in the earlier questions, oops!

9. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

You can find everything related to Joviac at our website: There you can find links to all of our social media accounts, you can buy physical albums, shirts and read the news blog that I try to update when I remember. I'm very absent minded though...

10. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

You don't have to like us, but if you gave our music a chance, I truly thank you. That's all I can ask for as an artist, for a chance. Thank you so much for this interview! I hope you and your loved ones are safe.

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