HOW DID YOU GET INTERESTED IN MUSCLE CARS?
“When I was a kid, my favourite TV show was Knight Rider, and KITT was my favourite car in the world. Ever since then, I was like, ‘I have to get one at some point.’ Once I started making a little bit of money out of music, I was saving up and I finally got one, a Pontiac Firebird. It was burgundy, it wasn’t black, but still good enough for me. That was my first.”
What others do you have?
“Another movie car, from a favourite movie of mine – from The Blues Brothers, the Bluesmobile, the ’74 Dodge Monaco, with a 7.3 litre V8. I had to get that one too. I still have that one. I’ve had it for 13 years now and I still use it, from March to November – I don’t drive it in winters. Those are in Helsinki. I live part-time in Los Angeles, and there I have a ’57 Plymouth Belvedere – which, funnily enough, is from another movie, Stephen King’s Christine. It’s the car that kills everybody.”
What makes that style of car so cool?
** “I love the way they look. They look so mean! All of those cars – especially the old-school ones – they look like they’re going to fucking kill you. They got that mean face, with the grille and everything. It’s the size of them; they’re huge, so therefore they’ve got to have a huge engine. The sound of the V8 is one of my favourite sounds in the world. When I go cruising around – which I do a lot – that’s a form of therapy for me. Let’s say I’m done with a day in the studio, I’ll take one of my cars out and go out cruising forever, with the windows rolled down, listening to the V8. Do a couple of burnouts and I’m good to go. I’m that guy!”
Which of your cars is your favourite?
“It’s got to be the Dodge Monaco. It’s like a family member for me. But I also have an ’87 Chevy Monte Carlo, which is a totally ridiculous drug dealer car. It’s super loud, super obnoxious, illegally tinted windows, it’s white… I love that thing. I’ve got to be the only metal guy in the world driving around in that thing! But the Dodge Monaco is definitely my favourite.”
Are cars designed for the American freeway comfortable during the Finnish winter?
“Actually they are, believe it or not! I drove the Firebird all year long and that was really good. As long as you get a proper set of snow tyres, you’re good to go. You’ve got to be careful so you’re not going to spin sideways unwillingly, but you get used to it.”
What’s the ultimate muscle car?
“Either the ’68 or ’69 Dodge Charger, aka General Lee from Dukes Of Hazzard. That one’s just so mean. One day I’ve got to get one, for sure. It’s huge, and I love the hidden headlights behind the black grille. It looks very threatening. I’d probably get one without the Confederate flag, though!”
On a scale of one to 10, just how metal are American muscle cars?
“Ten! They’re loud, they’re mean, they’re fast – and they’re rad!”
Bodom’s new album, I Worship Chaos, is out now via Nuclear Blast. They are currently touring the UK