Triosphere interview with Ida Haukland
Norway’s progressive power metal quartet, Triosphere is set to release its third studio album, The Heart of the Matter, this winter. The album will mark the band’s 10-year anniversary, and combines the best elements of its first two albums, Onwards (2006) and The Road Less Traveled (2010). The result is the band’s most inspired album to date, helping to solidify the Triosphere signature sound.
Triosphere was founded in 2004 by vocalist/bassist Ida Haukland and guitarist Marius Silver Bergesen along with original drummer, Ørjan Aare Jørgensen. Rhythm guitarist T.O. Byberg would round out the line-up in time for the release of Onwards. This line-up would record all three albums, before Kenneth Tårneby took over drumming duties for Jørgensen in early 2014.
Haukland recently made the 2014 Top 15 Female Hard Rock and Metal Bassists list for Metalholic Magazine. Ida spoke with Metalholic about her path to becoming a bassist:
“I was 16-years-old and had begun playing guitar and started my first band. I lived in a small town up north, so most young musicians knew about each other, especially any girl playing an instrument, as you could count the total number on less than one hand. One night some friends and I had sneaked in to a rock club with an 18-years age limit, trying to go unnoticed. Two guys, old enough to actually be allowed in the club, came up to me. I thought, ‘Crap, I’m getting kicked out,” but no; they played in a metal band and were looking for a bassist. They figured that since I already played the guitar, I could figure out the bass as well. I don’t know if it was sheer relief over being spared the humiliation of being kicked out that made me say ‘YES’ straight away, (laughs), but that was actually the beginning of a lifelong ‘love affair’ with the bass guitar! I kept playing guitar too in a couple of other bands until I moved down to Trondheim and met Marius (composer and guitarist in Triosphere), and it’s been all about the bass since then.”
Ida (pronounced Eeda) admits that when she first heard her brother playing hard rock albums like Metallica and Guns N’ Roses, she was not a fan of the music, calling it too noisy. Ironically she would later find a passion for Norwegian black metal bands before eventually meeting Bergesen and forming Triosphere, a band steeped in melodic and progressive power metal.
Haukland talked about her influences:
“I have to say that when it comes anything related to music and myself, my greatest influence have always been the people I’ve had – and have – the pleasure and honor of playing with. Since the first time I picked up the bass, I’ve been fortunate to play with awesome and talented people, always making the music we love and inspiring each other to reach higher as individuals and as a band. So the way I play today is first and foremost a result of the people I play with.
“That being said; the first time a bass guitar really caught my attention, was when I accidentally heard the bass-solo in ‘Maxwell Murder’ by Rancid. I had not begun playing in a band at that time, but remember being flabbergasted by it. Later on, Les Claypool amused me quite a bit, together with Primus, and my jaw dropped pretty hard when I heard Billy Sheehan with Steve Vai and David Lee Roth in “Shy Boy” (and then it of course kept dropping to really anything Sheehan plays), and of course Geddy Lee [Rush].”
Unlike most musicians, Haukland is loyal to her equipment:
“I’ve only owned one bass my whole life; a black Washburn MB5-series 5-string. I began playing bass on a borrowed Rickenbacker knock-off in the autumn of 1996, and that New Year’s Eve I finally had saved up enough money to run by the local music-store before it closed that day, and buy this awesome, black, second-hand 5-string I’d had my eyes on. And that’s the one I still play on. I guess most wonder why the hell I have not bought myself a more decent bass through the years, but I still play on that cheap thing. But you know; this bass has become like a pair of good, old jeans that just FIT; it’s been a core-part of the way I’ve developed as a bassist and I know it’s every respond like the back of my hand. In addition, I really love its sound.”
Ida admits she finally picked up a found a second bass last year: which is a duplicate of her longstanding original: “It’s 100% identical one to my old Washburn.”
You can listen to the full interview below as Ida talks about The Heart of the Matter, her duet with Tom S. England of Evergrey, and much more.