Mr. Lordi of the Finnish hard rock band LORDI, whose members never appear without their elaborate ghoulish skeleton and zombie masks and makeup, was asked in a new interview with Czech Republic’s Backstage TV if it’s hard for him and his bandmates to maintain their anonymity after all these years. The 49-year-old musician, whose real name is Tomi Petteri Putaansuu, said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “[It’s] really fucking easy, actually. It’s not difficult at all anymore. Here’s the thing: the mainstream media is not interested in us anymore, which is a fucking good thing. Because after Eurovision for a couple of years, that was a fucking pain in the ass. But it’s not difficult for me at all. Not one tiny bit, because I have never been on social media my whole life — not one second. I’ve never been on Facebook or fucking, what are these fucking Twitters and shit, you know, Instagrams. I’m not there and I won’t be there. I hate that whole thing. So easy for me. [Laughs]”
LORDI caused a sensation by winning the 2006 Eurovision with “Hard Rock Hallelujah”, which in turn made the band’s third release, “The Arockalypse”, a hit throughout Europe. On the back of their Eurovision win, they scored a lucrative series of promotions including LORDI-branded cola, boiled sweets and credit cards; and played live at the MTV European Music Awards. A square was renamed in LORDI‘s honor in the Lapland city of Rovaniemi; a LORDI-themed postage stamp was issued in Finland and the group starred in its first film, called “Dark Floors”.
With their monster-movie stage persona, LORDI seemed a most unlikely choice to represent their country in the Eurovision Song Contest. So you can imagine how many people were shocked when the group not only claimed top honors, but also earned the most points in the venerable event’s history.
In the days following LORDI‘s Eurovision win, Reuters reported that nearly 200,000 Finns signed an online petition to express their dismay after tabloid magazines published pictures of the bandmembers out of their trademark monster suits.
Even though Mr. Lordi and his bandmates had asked media not to run pictures of them out of character, two Finnish tabloid magazines went ahead, sparking an online backlash from the group’s fans.
Back in 2017, Mr. Lordi admitted to MariskalRock that he was initially comfortable about LORDI‘s connection to Eurovision. “There was a time a couple of years ago — well, more than a couple — when I really, really, really hated that everybody’s always asking about the goddamn Eurovision; there was a time,” he said. “Nowadays I have come to terms with it. It’s, like, okay, I’m actually proud that we are part of Eurovision history and I am proud that Eurovision is part of this band’s history. I mean, it is a big part of our awareness. Because the awareness of the band would be so different, it would be so much smaller, without that one TV show ten years ago.”
He continued: “I absolutely don’t regret that — absolutely not. Because I have nothing bad to say about Eurovision itself, but the problem that we have had in the years is the people who actually don’t know anything else except for the fact that we were on Eurovision. And that is a big stamp to get out of — it’s like a fucking tattoo, you have a fucking tattoo on your forehead that says ‘Eurovision.’ And that is something that really, really, really drove me nuts some years ago; I was really struggling with that.
“I have come to terms with it — it’s all right; I mean, it’s cool,” he said. “I am proud of it. And every May, when there’s a new Eurovision, I know that my phone will start ringing and people will ask my opinions and then we get requests: ‘Do you wanna come to this country’s semifinals? Do you wanna come here?’ And for years we said, ‘No, we don’t wanna. We don’t want to.’ But now, we’re, like, ‘Fuck it! Let’s do it. What the hell?’ I mean, c’mon, it’s all fun, and it’s part of our history, and the Eurovision, they really want us to come there, because, let’s face it, we are one of those winners that people still remember.”
LORDI released its eighteenth studio album, “Screem Writers Guild”, in March via Atomic Fire Records.
Photo credit: Eero Kokko (courtesy of Atomic Fire Records)
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