Samer Elnahhal delivers his new funky industrial space metal melodies in his brand new album “Supernova Kill Road”. After departing from Lordi in 2019, where he played bass as “OX” for almost 14 years, he has been recording his album of funky industrial space metal, while he is also busy tapping that bass for Down South Junkies. We had an opportunity to do an exclusive interview with Samer – scroll down, to get to know him!
Keeping a secret is not an easy thing, and Lordi members are also known for wearing monster masks and keeping their real identity a secret. “Keeping the secret was not that hard for me cause I don’t like to babble too much about anything anyway” – he told us. “I don’t like attention so much. So I made it easily through that time when the press cared. And when they stopped caring, that was the most comfortable and best time for me in the band.”
“Playing with different people and especially playing live, is the best rehearsing you can get.
You learn from everyone and every situation, and slowly become yourself and find your own style. My advice is to step out of your home and play live and play with many different people. So the answer to the question is that all that experience has a lot to do with everything.”
Back in 2008, Samer was also featured (with other Lordi members) in a horror film, called Dark Floors – The Lordi Motion Picture. “It was fun and nice to experience that too” – he replied. “No, I don’t think I will be an actor, I suck too much in it. And there sure is a detail that I remember. After 3 long days in mask when I was finally ready and showered and changed clothes and all, I stepped outside from my hotel lobby ready to go eat and get a beer, then my phone rang. It was the director telling me I gotta put the mask back on and come to the set, we need to retake one shot.“
His father was Egyptian (he died when Samer was only 7 years old), but his mother is Finnish, so he has lived most of his life in Finland. When he was only 7-8 years old, Samer decided that he wanted to become a musician and to take up the bass. “As I get older, I feel the Egyptian side in me more and more, even though I’ve never lived there. And yes, I try to add little details here and there that sound a little bit Arabic and mix it with everything else. The scales I naturally choose to use, tend to have a little bit of that Arabic or eastern feeling in them.“
“First I wanted to play drums. I made drumsticks in school and I beat the shit out of all the cans and buckets that I could find at home.
Still to this day I sometimes think I’d be a drummer if I would’ve gotten drums. But I got the acoustic guitar and I started playing guitar. Then at 13, I wanted to join this one band, and they already had two guitar players but no bass player. They told me if I play bass I can join. So I joined the band and started playing bass. At that moment I felt that I had found my true instrument. It was bass.”
Samer is on the lead of his solo album playing the bass, as well as rhythm guitar, while collaborating with several special guest lead singers such as Niki Rock (Barbe-q-barbies, Niki’s Project), Henry Lee Roots (Spiha, Down South Junkies), Mica (Hellcity 13), Tommi Mikael, Mike Kuparinen and Simire. With influences from his heroes like Rob Zombie and Alice Cooper spiced with vibes from Sin City movies and Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Barsoom books, you get your soundtrack for crazy bar hopping around the galaxy! Also, it’s not a secret that Nikki Sixx his idol. “Mötley Crüe is my favorite band and I really love Nikki’s way of keeping it simple but playing really good stuff exactly where it’s needed. He has a very good taste and style in bass playing. Believe me, I’ve studied and analyzed his playing a lot. Also, his lyrics are the best. I haven’t met him but I once stood like 3 meters away when he walked past. Just couldn’t get myself to go and talk to him, I just stood there thinking should I go or not, and then it was too late.”
“Supernova Kill Road” was out digitally on July 24th while on August 5th the first physical copies in a CD format arrived, while the album is available for streaming through all official pages. The vinyl edition is due in September. But exactly when did he decide that he want to make a solo album? “This had been on my mind for a long time. Maybe 20 years. Now I was finally ready to do it. I just wanted to use all my riffs and lyrics from the past and seal that chapter. Even though I had to re-write most of it, but still…” He also added, that he has been working on the album one year exactly.
“The working went easily actually. Because these are people I know and I knew that they would do a great job in a small amount of time. They’re professional musicians who deliver. Of course, the schedules might be a bit tricky with so many people. The singers gave their final golden touch with their own personal styles and great voices. And the recording engineer, Joonas Siikavirta brought a lot with the effects and sounds to the songs.” If you listen to the album you can hear that the main focus is on the bass (of course), and it adds a very special spice to it. “One thing that I wanted to do, was to bring the guitar to the same level with all other instruments, so it could be that also” – he added. “That’s why I wanted to play guitar myself. Except for solos.“
“Writing vocal melodies, I wasn’t sure if I can do that at all when I started” – he mentioned when we asked about his biggest challenges. “But when I got to work with them, the melodies just started coming out of me.” And what about the next material? “I have already been getting some ideas and started writing songs. So yes, I think I will do it again. I can’t stop anymore cause I got used to the process and I like it. But it’s not gonna happen very soon. Right now I think I wanna do it the same way as I did this one, but we’ll see how it goes.”
Interview by Péter Tepliczky
Written by Afrodite Szeleczky