TIMO TOLKKI (Avalon, Revolution Renaissance, Symfonia, Stratovarius) came out from complete media silence with an announcement that he is going to release his 3rd Avalon album titled “Return To Eden” through Frontiers on June 2019. Some weeks ago a first video from the album was released and it introduced us a new and refreshed Tolkki and the song “Promises” has been praised all around. You can watch the video below:
Tolkki has been very active again in his personal Facebook and few days ago he surprised his fans by giving them a chance to ask him anything and he would answer their questions. And in a very short time he had received hundreds of questions from his fans asking about things they wanted to know. Here are some questions and answers gathered. We won’t release the names who asked what but if you can access Tolkki’s Facebook profile you can check them out yourself.
Tell your memories about Brazil.. it was a pleasure see you playing here!!
Timo: I remember when we came to Brazil for the first time with Strato.We were so excited. I remember the beaches of Recife, the countless Caipirinhas and the wonderful amazing audience.
Hi Timo. I was listening to Elements (the song) earlier. In the last part, you make Kotipelto sing the line « that’s what we are made of », pretty high notes, then one level higher, and finally one level higher ! Fantastic but barely human ! He recently said in an interview that he didn’t understand why you would write such very high vocal lines for him. What’s your view on that?
Timo: Well we struggled a bit with TK but he pulled it very good. I like high vocals and Elements was really the peak in the evolution of Stratovarius.
Hi mr. Tolkki, what rig did you use on the album Visions? Thanks
Timo: I used Mesa Boogie quad preamp and 2 x 75w simulclass power amp miked with Shure SM 57 and Marshall cabinets and ESP guitars.
I hope you are ok, would you make a tour with Avalon songs??
Timo: Yes there is a plan to do a tour later this year.
Will you create another masterpiece like Strato golden era? I really love the music you compose on that time.
Timo: The new Avalon is quite close to that era!
What do you feel that your purpose of the music that you create? What do you want the next generation to learn from you?
Timo: My music reflects my soul. I hope people can learn kindness and love through it. Im a gentle soul and I want bring a message of peace and love through music.
What guitars and amps did you use to record Hymn to Life…
Timo: I used Fender Stratocaster and Fender combo amp.
How did you pulled that fantastic Halford-Grade scream on ‘Shattered’ (Dreamspace) and did you lose vocal range afterwards? That was killer.
Timo: I just had it man. I was willing to experiment with my voice. When I got older I naturally lost some of that range.
Is there any chance of a future project with Timo Kotipelto?
Timo: I really hope so!
Timo Tolkki, YOU are soul of Stratovarius, go reunite with them like Helloween and Iron Maiden did (without firing anybody) and record new material and tour the world until the end of days! Cheers from Argentina!
Timo: I hear you man. Cheers back to Argentina!
Did you have a practice routine to develop technique when you were learning to play? And did you have one to maintain your chops in shape during the Strato days? Thanks a lot for giving us the chance to ask some questions… and thanks a lot for so many years of great and inspiring music, Timo
Timo: Your welcome. I used to practice seven hours a day but I don’t do that anymore. You sort of have it in you.
What happened to your guitar that had the Visions logo?
Timo: I gave it away!
How many purple ESP custom guitars (with the french lily) did you have back in 2003?
Timo: I think four.
Do you remember when you smashed in front of my face your beautiful purple ESP guitar at the end of your show in Eurometal 99′ in Madrid? Epic.
Timo: Yes I do. I was pissed off because I couldn’t get a good sound on that gig.
What do you think about the last Stratovarius albums without you? Do you have a favourite song from those albums?
Timo: I don’t know all of them, I know some. I like Unbreakable a lot.
What advice would you give to an underground composer who’s living an art blocking for years?
Timo: Gotta wait until you get that spark again
Have you ever think on doing a live dvd of your hits with guest musicians?… just anytime you need it, create a kickstarter project and fans will support you no matter what you need.
Timo: Good idea! Have to think about this more.
I would love to know which DAW you use the most, and also what are some of your favorite plugins for mixing generally, or instrument specific if you want to tell. Gonna graduate soon from audio engineering school so tips from you are greatly appreciated.
Timo: I use Pro Tools and Logic. I like some Waves plugins and especially UAD plugins are very good.
Can you tell me how you felt when you saw the first Stratovarius album hit the shelves? Proud, anxious, happy? Cheers from Montréal, hope to see you back with the Strato guys someday!
Timo: It was a dream come true!