Author Topic: What If? (Alternate timeline)  (Read 633 times)

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Offline Daedalus

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What If? (Alternate timeline)
« on: December 28, 2017, 10:06:27 AM »
On my way into work today a thought popped into my head, "What if Ville Valo did not go down his dark path of excess in 2006/7?". How would this have altered HIM's history? The first, and most obvious thought to my mind is that Venus Doom would not have happened. Without Venus Doom, what would have come after Dark Light? Here's where things get interesting.

Venus Doom was a commercial failure in the U.S. It was not the followup to Dark Light that either new fans or the label were looking for. This was due to various things, including poor promotion by Warner and a drastically darker, heavier album than Dark Light. So what if Ville didn't write Venus Doom? What would have come?

The first clue is that 'Disarm Me' was originally written for Dark Light, but didn't end up being recorded until Screamworks. I would surmise that this would have ended up on Dark Light's direct followup in this timeline. We also have 'Shatter Me with Hope' (Sword of Democles) version, which presents a heavier "what if" to Screamworks' fast, clean production.

I propose that instead of Venus Doom, we would have received an album that was perhaps something with a little more 'bite' to it than Screamworks, but not so heavy as to push back on mainstream sales. Additionally, Screamworks was, for the most part, written as a love letter to Kat Von D. That relationship was based around how "damaged" they both were around this time, but if Ville never sank to his deep lows, they may not have found the common ground that the relationship was grounded on. This may have lead to a timeline in which HIM continued to grow in the US market, instead of fall of a cliff.

With a continued rise in the US, HIM may have become a formidable mainstream success in 2007. So then what comes in 2010 instead of Screamworks? I have my ideas, but I'll leave that open for ya'll...
It's the end of the road, hold me. It's the end of the road and we're free...

Offline SIRJARVIS01

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2017, 12:09:23 PM »
additional detail: what IF HIM never fired Andy Wallace during Dark Light's production OR hired him for the album following Dark Light, as by then they would've been more comfortable with the American Market by that time. By 2007 or maybe sooner, the industry would've given them more investment and I can see more DVDs, Box sets, etc. I feel Ville would've been much happier with the success. He said during a 2010 interview he pictured they'd be "much bigger by 2010"

they could've also gotten bigger much faster if DSABH was released the way it was intended
« Last Edit: December 28, 2017, 12:11:55 PM by SIRJARVIS01 »

Offline 666WTLOnVinylFTW

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2017, 10:34:31 PM »
I, too, wonder what the results would've been if Andy Wallace produced Dark Light. We know that the band was very aware of the risk of alienating their current fanbase by making an album that was too “American” and mainstream sounding. Still, even with Tim Palmer at the helm, many ending up feeling just that way after the album's release. Who knows if they truly thought that or if they were just upset that their favorite band was now more well known and not their little secret anymore, thus making it not cool to listen to them anymore. Venus Doom came about as a result of Dark Light to bring back or at least appease those fans who were upset about the lack of heaviness on the album. It's interesting to think about all the “what ifs” if Dark Light came out differently and what would've followed.

In my personal opinion, as far as success goes, as talented as we all know the guys are, I think they were doing the right thing at the right time and that is what propelled them as far as far as they got in the US. Had their particular style of music not been so insanely popular at the time they were breaking through, I think things would've been much, much different. They certainly received a lot of help along the way, which isn't a knock on them whatsoever.

Offline SIRJARVIS01

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2017, 11:07:28 PM »
Andy Wallace at the time, had a giant resume that spoke for itself (a well known American producer) However, that doesn't mean he was the only producer capable of working with HIM at the time. I feel like John Fryer wouldve been a hell of a choice.

Offline 666WTLOnVinylFTW

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #4 on: December 28, 2017, 11:22:14 PM »
No matter who produced it, I don't think anything could've stopped Dark Light from being the commercial success that it was being the follow-up to such an amazingly strong album in Love Metal and their American debut. The course of history, though, if Wallace, or Fryer, or someone else was in charge is certainly interesting to think about. Who knows what would've happened. I wish this were Star Trek so we could go through a wormhole and see.

Offline SIRJARVIS01

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2017, 12:56:25 AM »
No matter who produced it, I don't think anything could've stopped Dark Light from being the commercial success that it was being the follow-up to such an amazingly strong album in Love Metal and their American debut. The course of history, though, if Wallace, or Fryer, or someone else was in charge is certainly interesting to think about. Who knows what would've happened. I wish this were Star Trek so we could go through a wormhole and see.

I can imagine the label paying a lot more attention and appreciating the talent on their hands. Perhaps instead of Digital versatile doom at the orpheum,  they would've filmed their first US 2005 tour. Along with having more well known acts touring with them. Maybe the band would've released much more music during the 10 year gap from 2007 to now. I feel everything else after dark light would've had a vinnfox relics kind of sound. I can almost be 100 percent sure there's enough unreleased material to make a few new albums  Maybe Linde getting deals with guitar center like some other guitarists do. Or Ville releasing a book for venting purposes?
« Last Edit: December 29, 2017, 02:10:08 AM by SIRJARVIS01 »

Offline GoneWithTheSin2018

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2018, 02:08:33 PM »
Ville definitely needs to do a book. Of his writings, poems, odds and ends, scans of his paintings...

Offline Harker

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Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2018, 05:51:36 PM »
On my way into work today a thought popped into my head, "What if Ville Valo did not go down his dark path of excess in 2006/7?". How would this have altered HIM's history?

Ville had dark paths before. What if Linde didn't prevent him to jump of a balcony in 2000 ;)

Better question is: What if Bam hadn't listen to HIM? (Not to start it all again, and I know (some) American fans will see it differently, but Bam... But with hindsight, without Bam the band would have announced a breakup way earlier.)
LM would have sound less American, not to talk about DL. I think they would have switched earlier to a heavier-sound (Venus Doom-like) and become a more heavy-sounding metal band. Less mainstream, but in the end more constant and sustainable. And in the end their albums would have been sold better. (Was it Screamworks with officially only 1 record sold in Japan?) Because let's face it, they fact that the last albums didn't sell that well is part of the cause they stopped (lack of trust of record companies) or at least they didn't record a new album. Or that we will ever get a LM Archive 2 or another 'gift' to fans.

In the end the dark paths and rough relationship of Ville gave us some of the best songs and albums - our martyr who suffered for us ;)

Offline HIMLivesOn

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2018, 07:31:33 PM »
On my way into work today a thought popped into my head, "What if Ville Valo did not go down his dark path of excess in 2006/7?". How would this have altered HIM's history?
What if Linde didn't prevent him to jump of a balcony in 2000 ;)


Just joined the forums after being a fan for over 13 years. Did that actually happen? Can you tell me a story behind it?

Offline Daedalus

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Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #9 on: January 01, 2018, 08:11:33 PM »
On my way into work today a thought popped into my head, "What if Ville Valo did not go down his dark path of excess in 2006/7?". How would this have altered HIM's history?
What if Linde didn't prevent him to jump of a balcony in 2000 ;)


Just joined the forums after being a fan for over 13 years. Did that actually happen? Can you tell me a story behind it?

From Synnin Viemaa

“I just didn’t realize myself how exhausted I was, Ville admits. – Tiina opened our eyes when she insisted that they do something to these guys. It was Dresden or maybe Chemnitz where there was a fucking tall hotel and we stayed on the thirteenth floor. I went totally insane and almost jumped off the balcony. Linde and Silke pulled me back to safety. People from the hotel staff came to bitch at us, and I almost punched the hotel manager.”
It's the end of the road, hold me. It's the end of the road and we're free...

Offline Jay

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #10 on: January 01, 2018, 09:56:49 PM »
Possibly another ?what if? is the 2003 tour with Ozzy that ended up being cancelled. Granted they were known in Europe already, but it could have given them more mainstream exposure.

Offline vampireheart616

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2018, 12:39:19 AM »
Also the no sleep til Halloween tour with HIM,papa roach, lostprophets and kill Hannah they cancelled to work on Venus doom, I recall villa saying along the lines of son we don't play the same songs, which hadn't changed much since Venus doom
Today tomorrow seems so far away and the wait in vain

Offline SIRJARVIS01

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2018, 01:58:10 AM »
Also the no sleep til Halloween tour with HIM,papa roach, lostprophets and kill Hannah they cancelled to work on Venus doom, I recall villa saying along the lines of son we don't play the same songs, which hadn't changed much since Venus doom


they cancelled the October 2006 tour so they could keep the material "fresh and new" but you are right, they didn't change the setlist from then so drastic. Back then, they made it seem like they had album upon album to work on and UL Vol. 1 and 2 were just "thrown out there". Even during the orpheum DVD interview he said he wanted to kind of start anew because of the sobriety. The timeline after VD was all over the place. for me, they peaked during the Dark Light era. Not to say the other albums after that were bad, but there was no "era" with the albums (Excluding VD) if anyone can catch my drift

Offline Daedalus

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Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #13 on: January 02, 2018, 10:35:59 AM »
Yeah, after VD/DVD, shit just sorta happened.
It's the end of the road, hold me. It's the end of the road and we're free...

Offline vampireheart616

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2018, 12:49:36 PM »
And the short US tears on tape tour that was canceled because of villes health issues in  California with the smoke, wish the tour started in NY then it most likely would have happened
Today tomorrow seems so far away and the wait in vain

Offline SIRJARVIS01

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #15 on: January 02, 2018, 02:22:22 PM »
And the short US tears on tape tour that was canceled because of villes health issues in  California with the smoke, wish the tour started in NY then it most likely would have happened

Yeah maybe gas wouldn't have left the band if the Tears On Tape tour didn't get cancelled in May.  I honestly think the guys were frustrated that they couldn't really get steady momentum after leaving Warner Brothers they probably felt cheated because honestly I can imagine how much it would leap of faith they took trusting an American record label

Offline SIRJARVIS01

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #16 on: January 02, 2018, 03:25:47 PM »
Okay here's my recap on what I think would have happened.
The reason why I think the 2007 era is more memorable and implanted in my head then the one in the year 2000 is simply because that seemed the one time that Ville was dead out of options.  He tried to quit drinking on his own then he relapsed there's definitely no shame in that everybody suffers in their own way and who knows what kind of pressure he was under. He's a very modest individual but I can also tell he's very prideful which is probably why it took him forever to admit he even had a problem. I remember around that time that he had a lot of issues with his fiance. I can also Imagine the stress that took a toll on him because he wanted to keep the momentum of dark light alive.  If he wouldn't have been suffering with alcoholism then perhaps there wouldn't have been such a huge gap between Venus doom and ScreamWorks. The album's would have definitely been more consistent as I feel by that time they would have found a production company that understood their capacity and where they came from. I also feel as I mentioned before if they had more financial support they probably would have had a much smoother transition into the US market.  They are one of those bands that have a certain kind of following in one country and a different kind of following in another. I can speculate that because for a while I realized that they would drastically change their setlist varying from country to Country when they were touring the US they would leave more Rarities out of the setlist I can imagine because they had people watching them in a way where they felt pressured to succeed I remember going back to the 2010 show at The Wiltern in Los Angeles and they said that they felt pressure because that's when they're being watched by the people in the record label to make sure that they're doing their job in promoting whatever they're supposed to be promoting.  The reason why I say they have a certain kind of following is because it wasn't until the last tour where I noticed all kinds of fans getting together Under One Roof and how much tension there seem to be between people in the crowd you'd see a certain group of people that seem just happy to be there versus another group of people that just seemed bitter about the whole tour in the whole experience. The were also a bunch of people that were on drugs and drinking and just treating it like it was the last gig of their lives which was in my opinion awesome. I think that after 2005 they seem to get a little lost and that is what deeply saddens me the most to know that the band that I loved never got the support that they truly deserved
« Last Edit: January 02, 2018, 03:33:05 PM by SIRJARVIS01 »

Offline six6sixways2love

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #17 on: January 03, 2018, 02:50:21 PM »
Warner Bros in the US was a gift and a curse. Alot more exposure. Keep in mind, Passion's Killing floor was on the Transformer's soundtrack. The band opened for Linkin Park/MCR/TBS in '07. That was huge for them. At the same time, I'm sure it was exhausting the amount of forced promotion and whatnot.

Honestly, the biggest thing IMO, is their lack of social media. I'm sure some of you work in fields where this plays a big factor. I can't understate enough how crucial that is to any band's survival these days. Even in your off-time, if you're not posting, that means people aren't talking about you. And if they're not talking about you, you're forgotten.

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Offline Eric616

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Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #18 on: January 03, 2018, 06:04:31 PM »
I personally think Bleed Well, from a business standpoint, should’ve been the first single off the album, because it was the catchiest.

I adore the Venus Doom album from start to finish, and personally find it to be the best work HIM ever put out. It’s a damn shame the general public didn’t enjoy it as much as I did.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2018, 06:06:35 PM by Eric616 »

Offline SIRJARVIS01

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #19 on: January 03, 2018, 07:26:10 PM »
The thing about them is they were constantly between a rock and a hard place during almost every album except for love metal and RR...either the songs were catchy but didn't have enough production behind them or the other way around. It was the only weak point HIM ever had, in my opinion. 

Offline Paratisii

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #20 on: January 04, 2018, 01:09:28 PM »
I adore the Venus Doom album from start to finish, and personally find it to be the best work HIM ever put out. It’s a damn shame the general public didn’t enjoy it as much as I did.

VD is my favorite album of all time. I wish we could've heard Cyanide Sun live.

Offline GoneWithTheSin2018

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #21 on: January 04, 2018, 10:07:24 PM »

Honestly, the biggest thing IMO, is their lack of social media. I'm sure some of you work in fields where this plays a big factor. I can't understate enough how crucial that is to any band's survival these days. Even in your off-time, if you're not posting, that means people aren't talking about you. And if they're not talking about you, you're forgotten.

This is one of my biggest gripes with the band - frustrating as someone who does social media as a part of their job. HIM completely missed the boat with social media. The fact that their Instagram only has about 20k followers (less when the Farewell tour began) is sad. I'm puzzled at the Facebook name change to "Heartagram" after the tour ended. The band is still called HIM.

I was neck deep in FB comments from earlier this year on their page, and someone who claimed to be a part of the band's support said that they asked the band many times to participate on social and they said no. No clue if that comment has any merit, so take it with a grain of salt. But it's not hard to believe.

If die hard fans like me found out about their breakup and final tour via Metal Injection (off a random Google search of the band) then how are casual fans supposed to find out? It seems those who did the most promo for this tour were venues and the fans spreading the word.

You'd think they'd employ a few die hard fans who make forums like this one, do graphics, fan videos, translate interviews, etc. do so some promotion. I was on the street team when they were with Warner - I guess things kind of just stopped at some point.

Their lack of interest in social media has absolutely hurt them, despite selling out this tour.

Offline Alex

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Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #22 on: January 05, 2018, 03:40:53 AM »
I think they'll use the FB page for the future projects, so the name cant stay HIM. Heartagram will lead Ville in his future project...as always and always will be. The HIM chapter is closed.

Offline Jay

Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #23 on: January 05, 2018, 11:26:56 AM »
Yeah, like someone else said earlier, "HIM" is dead, but the Heartagram is still marketable.  In my opinion, it's still one of the best and most badass symbols. 

How many of us have some version of the Heartagram as a tattoo?  It'll always be a part of us, like it'll be a part of them.

(I prefer the OG version, without the circle around it.)

Not to mention, their official site has always been heartagram.com, not himband or himwhatever.com 

Offline Kaysa

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Re: What If? (Alternate timeline)
« Reply #24 on: January 05, 2018, 12:13:57 PM »
I agree that their lack of social media presence hurt them a lot. But I also assume that they were aware of that and still didn't do more simply because they didn't want to. It's never only the question of what would probably be best but also of what you're willing to do. I'm sure they knew what basically no social media meant for HIM but they accepted the consequences and that was it.

I know many fans are understandably disappointed and that's alright. But it was their decision to make and we... just gotta live with it

So as not to derail the topic: 'What if they'd had more social media presence?'
They'd probably have been uncomfortable with it
idk I'm not very good at this xD
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