Ajattara est. 1996

Back in 1996, I was a lonely boy who was a singer in a pretty famous band called Amorphis. I did listen to bands like Venom, ‘Slayer, Possessed, Bathory and Black Sabbath, Motörhead,  AC/DC, Nirvana and hardcore in general, meaning bands like The Exploited, Carnivore, Suicidal Tendencies, D.R.I, Discharge, etc. I’m a great fan of grindcore too, meaning, Carcass, Napalm Death, Filty Cristians, Unohdettu Tulevaisuus (crust punk) and such. There is also many other bands and music styles and genres influencing me during the years, like the industrial scene with Ministry, NIN, Throbbing Gristle, Craftwerk, Killing joke… to just name a few!

So, I got this passion for extreme culture and thus the story of AJATTARA begins. I was touring a lot with Amorphis and the new wave of black metal was at it’s highest position of all times. We got many new black metal bands as a support and trough the musicians in these bands, I got to know a lot of Norwegian bands like Darkthrone, Burzum, Mayhem, Troll, Dimmu Borgir, Ulver and many others. There also were great bands from Sweden, for example Marduk and Dissection, who brough me huge inspiration and when I had a moment to think of what I really wanted to do, I came out with an idea of a black metal band, the sole reason being that it’s the music I most love and I adore it’s deep atmosphere, the philosophical aspects within the lyrics and most of all; the POWER and the FORCE of the darkside.

I had a little set up to compose music in my flat back then, including a Fostecs 4-tracker, a korg X3 workstation and a guitar. With this set up, I made a few demos and played them to my friends and got a good respond along the lines of” keep doing that shit, it’s fucking awesome!”.

In 1998, I met Pekka Sauvolainen and he became the Malakias. Now, Ajattara was two guys with a hell of an attitude and we both were heavy stoners. I had been smoking already for three decades, but never ever was it as much as the hasish we smoked during the recording of the first released demo of Ajattara called “Helvetissä on Syntisen Taivas” in 1998. We didn’t send it anywhere and just kept hanging on a sofa with a bong and listening to it over and over again, on repeat. Of course there were some friends who are always ready to burn a cd out of 6 new spychedelic black metal hits and of course, it was okay. So, this is the way it started to spread around and one beautiful summer morning, I got a phone call from a record company called Spikefarm that was a part of bigger label under the name of Spinefarm. They had heard the demo”Helvetissä on syntisen taivas” in 1998 somewhere, somehow, and it’s still to this day a mystery of how our demo ended up in their hands.  All in all, the a most important thing in all of this is that they wanted to make a record out of it. We signed a deal and in 2001 the first album “ITSE” was released.

I was not too excited to do any shows with my new project, but as soon as the first album”ITSE” was released, everyone that was into our music wanted to see us live and this was a huge beginning of what is still known as the main thing of Ajattara; live shows!

Here is a little snippet of the history of Ajattara written by Ruoja Suruntuoja, himself. Hope you enjoyed this one as muc as I did and there is a lot more to come as the story of Ajattara continues!


Rowan Rafferty
Managing Director / Agent / Promoter

tel: +358 (0)50 585 7300
e-mail: rowan(at)nem.fi
assistant: carolin (at)nem.fi