My main songwriting instrument is the guitar and I come up with a lot of riffs, melodies and chord progressions when I’m just playing around with the instrument. Usually I’ll come up with some idea (riff, chord progression, melody or rhythmic idea), then I try and feel out where it would fit in a song, is it an intro, verse, chorus, bridge or a stand-alone thing? Once I have an idea of where to put that idea, I record it and try to come up with the adjacent song parts and just build from there. My songwriting process is deeply dependent on technology as I record everything into demos. Once I have a full song demo ready, I’ll send it to Antti (bass) and Rudy (drums) so they can arrange my demo bass and demo programmed drum tracks to better fit their own hands and playing styles.
I have a (bad) habit of writing songs as instrumentals first and sort of slapping on vocals at the last phase. I’m constantly trying to fix that as I feel like it would benefit the songs to have the vocals with me in my mind at each phase of songwriting as its own instrument and not just as an afterthought to be shoved in there for good measure at the end. I do love writing vocals and lyrics though!
I have a history with anxiety and depression, also my life has been greatly affected by mental illness in my family. It seems to be a subject matter that comes most naturally to me when I’m writing lyrics. It does make sense, nothing else has quite impacted my life and my growth as a person in the same way. Also I think there’s still too much stigma around the subject, so if I can help someone else speak freely about mental illness, I would be very happy. Most of my lyrics to do with mental illness are about overcoming those hurdles though, I’m an optimist at heart even though sometimes I find it hard to be one.
I also follow news and global politics to a fair extent. It’s a double edged sword, though. I feel an endless curiosity about the way of the world but it also gives me a lot of anxiety and often times I feel like I have to vent. It bleeds into my lyrics frequently as well.