In an interview with Magenta Musik at this year’s Wacken Open Air festival in Wacken, Germany, former HIM frontman Ville Valo was asked which personality traits he values the most in the people around him, particularly when it comes to the people that he is sharing the stage with. The 46-year-old Finnish-born singer, who has spent the last three and a half years pursuing a solo career a solo career under the VV moniker, responded (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “I think we’re still going through this honeymoon phase. The (VV) band is pretty new and we only started touring earlier this year, so we’re still beginning to know each other, which is, I find, very endearing. So it’s not yet come to the level of knowing in the dark bus by the smell of a fart who it is, because that eventually happens, because you can’t avoid it.”
He continued: “A lot of times being in a band and touring is way closer than having a relationship with a girlfriend or so forth. It’s because you’re smelly and you’re sweaty and you’re tired and you’re all those things that you try to avoid in your normal life — all that stuff gets seen on a tour bus. So it’s quite special. You get really close to people. But I think in general patience is a virtue, especially when in a rock band.”
Valo played his first solo concert in the U.S. under the VV banner on March 31 at TLA (Theatre For The Living Arts) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Joining Ville on stage as part of his backing band are Mikko Virta on guitar, Risto Rikala on drums, Sampo Sundström on guitar and Juho Vehmanen on bass.
VV‘s debut album, “Neon Noir”, was made available on January 13 via Heartagram Records, distributed by UMG/Spinefarm.
In April 2022, Valo released the first single from “Neon Noir”, a song called “Loveletting”, which marked his first new music in over two years, following the release of the three-track “Gothica Fennica Vol. 1” EP, also released under the VV banner, in March 2020.
Like “Neon Noir”, “Gothica Fennica Vol. 1” bore a strong musical resemblance to HIM and featured the tracks “Salute The Sanguine”, “Run Away From The Sun” and “Saturnine Saturnalia”.
Next month, Valo will join forces with BLACK VEIL BRIDES for a North American co-headlining tour. The trek will kick off on September 10 in Louisville, Kentucky and wrap up just over a month later on October 20 in Riverside, California.
HIM completed a farewell tour in 2017, closing the final chapter on the band’s 26-year career.
Formed in 1991 by Valo, guitarist Mikko “Linde” Lindström and bassist Mikko “Migé” Paananen, HIM offered the world a new take on the metal genre, which became known as “love metal” (also the title of their fourth album).