Moonsorrow was founded in late 1995 by cousins Henri and Ville Sorvali in their hometown of Helsinki, Finland. The description, "epic heathen metal", came into the picture somewhere later, but the general idea was there from the beginning: to create epic metal art with a good touch of national romanticism and a distinctively pagan approach. And as much as Moonsorrow's music may have evolved over the years, the principle is still the same.
Between 1996 and 1998 Moonsorrow recorded four demos: "Metsä" in 1997 and "Tämä ikuinen talvi" in 1998. The other two were unfortunate to disappear and/or be destroyed, and thus never released. The demos helped develop Moonsorrow a small fanbase, and "Tämä ikuinen talvi" eventually earned the band their first record contract with Plasmatica Records. Up until this point Moonsorrow had worked with a drum machine, but the inclusion of an actual drummer felt necessary resulting to Marko Tarvonen joining the band.
In February 2000 Moonsorrow entered the Tico Tico Studios, which was to become their second home, to record their debut album "Suden uni". The album was released later in June 2001 (go figure). Moonsorrow started carefully with a few live shows in 2000, and invited Mitja Harvilahti and Markus Eurén as session members. It didn't take long though when they realised that the band would be complete as a solid five-piece.
Quite shortly after the release of "Suden uni" Moonsorrow signed a new record deal with Spikefarm Records, and headed to the studio to record their second album, "Voimasta ja kunniasta", which was released also in 2001. "Voimasta ja kunniasta" showed the first hint of success, and the follow-up "Kivenkantaja" (2003) eventually reached the Finnish charts on position 16.
After "Kivenkantaja" Moonsorrow took a short break, which was finally interrupted by their first shows abroad in 2004 and the fourth album, "Verisäkeet", in early 2005. "Verisäkeet" also reached the charts, this time on position 18. The first full-size European tour took place in 2006 with Primordial.
Having renewed their contract with Spikefarm Records, Moonsorrow is currently on the verge of letting out their fifth, called "Viides luku - Hävitetty". This album sees the bold act of putting together only two songs around the 30-minute mark each. The album is set to set the world afire, followed by immense touring around Finland and Europe in the year 2007.
After increasing set of shows was performed in 2007 Moonsorrow decided to record some new tracks together with the selected cover tracks and older material updated. They had the idea of "Tulimyrsky" ("Firestorm") for years. A song that couldn't fit on the previous album concepts. Now it was right time to release it as an ep. Lasting almost 30 minutes the song has the most fierce parts the band has ever tracked. Always going their own way and not bowed for trends but towards their original roots and influences, including the Scandinavian black metal ca. 1992-1993 and their growing interest towards progressive rock of the '70's. A kind of Jethro Tull from hell was born! Lyrically the song continues the tales familiar from Voimasta ja Kunniasta. As the B-sides they re-recorded a couple of demo songs from 1997-98 and covered Metallica's classic "For Whom The Bell Tolls" and the ever-thrashing Merciless' "Back To North", giving both the needed moonsorrowish spice.
|Ville Sorvali||Lead Vocals, Backing Vocals, Bass, Choirs|
|Henri Sorvali||Lead & Rhythm Guitar, Clean Vocals, Keyboards, 6-string Acoustic, Guitar, Accordion, Mouth Harp, Recorder, Tin Whistle, Backing Vocals, Choirs|
|Mitja Harvilahti||Lead & Rhythm Guitar, Backing Vocals, Choirs|
|Markus Eurén||Keyboards, Choirs|
|Marko Tarvonen||Drums, Percussion, 12-stringed Acoustic Guitar, Backing Vocals, Choirs|