In 2009, Risto Tuominen got interested in a band that was being established by Janne ‘Gekko’ Granfors: a grunge-type of band with Krister Stenbom on the lead vocals, Tuomas Pelli on drums, and Gekko on guitar. They were after a bass player, but since Risto came along, Gekko took the bass guitar. A hard rock band ‘Villa Sucka’ was formed. They wrote songs actively and recorded an EP during the spring of 2010. In the same year, Risto got recruited to a melodic rock/AOR band ‘Human Temple’. Gekko soon followed him. In those times, Jori ‘Jorge’ Tojander was the keyboard player of Human Temple.
As Human Temple was having a break, Risto decided to start recording his solo album in 2012. During the past years, he had written some songs that were never published. Risto asked Jorge, Gekko and Kalle Saarinen, all from Human Temple, to help him with the record. Also, Tuomas got an enquiry whether he could join. Initially the idea was to record already written songs just for his own sake, with good quality. But things got more and more ambitious… Risto came up with a thought of ‘Wake the Nations’ project band. Janne Hurme (Human Temple) and Petri Kitti (Violent Code) permitted him to record two of their songs as well, and so the album became to form an entity of its own.
Featuring many singers across the globe, ‘Sign of Heart’ was born in January 2015. The album got its way to the top-50 of the official Finnish chart in the first week after release. The band did not have a fixed front man and they were not supposed to tour anyways. But as a one-time-occasion, they played at album release party, it became evident that WTN would continue playing for live audience. Soon Krister joined the band and WTN hit bigger stages. Live performance in DBTL festival 2015 was a turning point: WTN opened for Sunrise Avenue and got some international interest after their show. Ever since, the band have been playing numerous gigs: for instance, they have toured Germany numerous times and supported Swedish metal act Dynazty during their ‘Titanic Mass’ tour in Finland.
In 2019, Wake the Nations released ‘Heartrock’ through a German label AOR Heaven. It continued the AOR/melodic rock route set by the first album, but was more refined and solid. Erik Mårtensson (Eclipse, W.E.T.) mixed and mastered Heartrock and his awesome work is present from track one to the very last beat of the release. The album was received very well by the audience, especially within the German fanbase.
After 2019, Jori quit the band. Obviously it was a big loss for WTN, but there were no disagreements whatsoever and Jori always remains a good friend of the band. It was decided WTN continues as a 4-piece music machine and will not seek for another keyboard player for now.
Generally, the year 2020 was very difficult for the music business, namely the live shows. WTN used the time to plan and pre-produce the next album – so stay on alert!