Come in, sit back and let´s unmask Mortiis and reveal what´s hidden behind his mask.
How are you? How are you dealing with this situation?
I’m OK here. I was lucky in the sense that I completed a US tour about 2 weeks before everyone started the lockdown, so it didn’t affect me. However we will have to see how it affects the announced European tour with Mayhem, that should mainly be happening in October. Worst case I guess we will re-schedule, but it would of course be a pity if we have to delay it.
My day job is in the health sector, so again I was lucky, as there’s no way they’re going to start shutting down my type of work place, so I have been able to go to work and get a normal salary the entire time.
How do you spend these days when we cannot go out? Everything´s closed.
Norway has been gradually reopening, and there was never any restrictions against physically going out, but the streets were dead for a while. I had to go to Oslo about 5-6 weeks ago to deal with something important, and it was like driving in a ghost city, it was like an episode of The walking Dead without the zombies. Really weird. But, I have gone back to creating music, now that there’s really no shows or trips to prepare for...in the past that took up a huge portion of my life and energy.
Will the world change after this crisis? What is your own opinion on this all?
Well I can’t imagine things will return to normal for a long time. I’m not an analyst, but everything affects everything else, so once those dominos start falling, it’s going to keep falling. A lot of industries and businesses aren’t magically going to go back to normal operations after severe lack of income, and that means a lot of people won’t have jobs to go back to...the chain reaction is probably going to go very deep and affect a lot of people for years.
Will it affect the music as well? Concerts and things like this? What would you say?
For a while for sure...I mean who knows...I think people are sick of the restrictions, the invisible prison as I call it, and would love nothing more than to go to shows and be social again...it’s down to the restrictions first of all, secondly, what will people’s economy be like? If you lose your income, you may not want to spend money on going to shows... I hope this isn’t the case, maybe people WILL be going to shows simply because they need something positive in their lives, as opposed to sitting at home developing depressions and so on...
What are your plans in the close future?
Right now, just keep working on music, and once restrictions are lifted, we’ll start booking shows.
Are there any projects of yours you would like to do again, I mean live or record one more time? Something like Era One you´ve done..
As always there’s a ton of stuff like that I wanna do. I am working on music that can be described as Era 1, or a continuation of that sound, I’m also working on a project with Stephan Groth from Apoptygma Berzerk, that should be very interesting.
What are you working on in this right moment? Is there anything your fans can be looking forward to?
Ah I guess I already answered that one above, but yes there are several things I am working on. I’ll just pick up one project, and work on that for a while, then take a break from it, and work on something else for a while, I don’t really know, right now, which one will be completed first, I’m just all over the place right now, haha!
I´ve noticed you decided to sell your stage outfits from your past projects. Was is successful?
Yeah. They were just sitting in the attic, doing nothing. The money is of course invested right back into Mortiis. They sold the same day I think.
What is the worst and the best experience of your life?
Hard question...I think the worst was around 2015-2016 when I was at war with everyone, including my own brain. I was in a horrible place, and managed by a horrible Manager that got me into a horrible deal with a horrible record company, so that was a shitty time, especially since it made what I think is my best album (The Great Deceiver) suffer a lot for it.
The best time...another hard one, but it felt great, around 2017, maybe the end of 2017, when I realised I felt really good about going back to my roots, musically, and aesthetically, and that there was an interest for it.
What are the memories of your last visit in Slovakia, during your Era One show in Banska Bystrica?
Getting insanely drunk after the show, with the owner, passing out dead drunk at the hotel and almost missing my plane back home, haha! The show was cool too!
Which era of your career is the one you particularly appreciate?
There are elements of all of them that I really like...I like the atmosphere, mystery and imagery of the Era 1 / current stuff. I like the aggression, naked honesty and energy we had on stage from the post- Era 1 times...
Can your fans expect an official live recording of some of your shows one day?
Well I am going to put out some live recordings from the 90‘ ies a bit later on...they were recorded with shitty video cameras and so on, so the sound is not good, but for hrd core fans, I think it will be interesting to hear historically. As for recording current shows, I don’t have plans, but who knows...
What does a normal day of Mortiis look like?
Boring. Haha! I get up around 6.30-7.30, depending on the situation. Help out a bit getting the kids ready for school. Then I normally sit down and work on music, or do „office“ stuff relating to music for a few hours. Then I’ll try to do some house work, or garden work, there’s always a ton of stuff that needs to be done around, or outside, the house. Maybe run some errands. And usually that’s the way the day will pass until it’s maybe 1-2 in the morning. Just switching between working on music, chores, comunication (email, messenger) maybe drive the kids to some activitiy they are doing...I usually forget to eat, so my breakfast is normally around 3 PM, haha! Many rounds from my studio to to the kitchen to get coffee! I probably drink 10 cups a day. If it’s a day I have to go to work, which is a lot, I usually go straight to work around 7 AM, or 2 PM, depending on whether it’s a day or evening shift. If I work a nightshift, I leave around 10 PM, and work till 8 AM. Sometimes I’ll do combos, where I go straight from an evening shift to a nightshoft. This week I probably worked about 70 hours doing combos like that. I use my iphone a lot for getting „office“ work done in that case. I bring my laptop to work for nightshifts, as sometimes I can maybe get an hour or two of music work in...
Thank you for your time to answer my questions. Is there anything you would like to say to your fans in Slovakia?
Stay safe, hope to see you on tour sooner than later. Feel free to check out www.mortiiswebstore.com for merch, vinyls, CDs. Etc – that’s a great way to support artists right now.