måndagen den 30:e april 2012


Peter Criss kommande bok.


















Så här ser troligtvis omslaget ut till den kommande självbiografin "Makeup to breakup". Fyndig titel.
Har egentligen inga större förhoppningar om denna. Frehleys bok visade sig ju vara en ganska medioker sak.
Utgivningsdatum är satt till 23 oktober i år.
Info på Amazon HÄR

/Niclas
Lick it up på finska, nästan...



Några galna finnar har återskapat videon till 80-talsklassikern "Lick it up".
Jämför med originalet nedan. Själva matscenen är klockren.


/Niclas

torsdagen den 26:e april 2012

Oh Henry dear Henry!



















I veckans krönika befinner sig Henry fortfarande down under och hyllar den australiensiska musikscenen.
Record buyers unite!

Henry HÄR

/Niclas

måndagen den 23:e april 2012

Intressant intervju om Guns N´Roses.



















Metal Sludge har lagt upp en mycket intressant intervju med Marc Canter, mannen bakom den fantastiska boken "Reckless road". Har du inte införskaffat boken gör du det nu omedelbums HÄR
Marc var med från början och umgås fortfarande med delar av originalbandet. I intervjun ger han sina synpunkter på allt som rör bandet, inklusive Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Läs HÄR

/Niclas
Nytt med Mad Season!


















Eminenta Grungreport rapporterar att Pearl jams Mike McCready berättat i en radiointervju att man planerar att återutge "Above" med bonusmaterial samt att det finns planer på ett helt nytt album.
12 låtar spelades in instrumentalt 1997 av McCready, Baker och Barret Martin och det är dessa låtar som man nu söker en eventuell sångare till. Baker dog 1999 och Staley gick bort 2002.
Dessutom finns det visst även planer på att ge ut ett livealbum.
Me like.

/Niclas

söndagen den 22:e april 2012


Intervju med Joe Duplantier i Gojira!





















I tisdags satt jag åter på Warners kontor för ännu en ny intervju. Den här dagen var det dags för ett av de senaste årens mest intressanta band i mitt tycke, franska Gojira.
Joe och hans bror Mario var i stan för lite promotion och jag fick åter igen nöjet att sitta ned med Joe. Vi sågs första gången för några år sedan när Gojira hängde på Unholy Alliance-paketet och då som nu var han trevligheten själv.
Det blev bl a prat om allt kring nya plattan, hans måleri och om man kan tröttna på sin egen musik.

The idea for the ”The wild child”, where did it come from and is it a wild child as a positive thing or negative?

Joe Duplantier: That´s the thing… We couldn´t call it “The wild child” because it´s hard to translate “L’enfant sauvage”. It´s not really the wild child as understood in English, because a wild child for me, has an aspect like someone out of control somehow. “L’enfant sauvage” in French… sauvage is something that is not educated or something that is like free and completely free in nature. A wild flower that goes wherever she wants and becomes something beautiful. The idea with “L’enfant sauvage” is like with a human that would grow up in nature, raised by wolves for example, without the influence from others and the influence from institutions or society in general. Without a social security number. (laughs) Not even a name. This is what you are and I am on the inside, right? How much the education and the culture, emotions and the guilt are interacting with us and it changes us and how far are we from this pure child inside? That´s the question we had on this album.

Using a French title, was that the initial idea?

JD: It sounds really good to me.

Yeah, it sounds a lot better than “Wild child”, which makes you think of WASP.

JD: Yes, so many things are related to the wild child, like songs and characters and TV-shows, whatever. With “L’enfant sauvage” there´s one big reference and it´s an old black and white movie. It´s a French movie and it´s called “L’enfant sauvage” by Francois Truffaut, but it´s something that is very common in the French language. To describe someone that is without reference and I liked that idea. To be honest, that´s how I feel most of the time. I don´t know how to deal with things, people and stuff, you know. When I´m not the singer in Gojira, I´m just someone and I don´t know exactly what I am. Now I feel comfortable doing this interview and stuff, but it´s hard to know who you are outside of your condition. It´s a lot of personal reflection on what am I? Am I free and what is freedom anyway? Maybe I think too much? (laughs)

Are you a bit of a searcher? Those questions come with age and the older you get those questions arise and the usual question is why we are here and the purpose of it all. The band, are you spiritual people or religious?

JD: No, we´re not religious for sure. None of us have received and education in that or been baptized and we don´t go to church. We´re not against it, maybe just a bit allergic. (laughs) It´s not for me definitely and I´m glad my parents didn´t force me, but we´re not against it. I mean, if it´s good for someone, then it´s good. Maybe it can prevent shit from happening…

Sure and it can also cause shit to happen.

JD: Yeah, it causes a whole lot of shit. I like to describe myself as a spiritual person in the sense that I think there is much more meaning in every little thing. I think that things are not empty. The gaps between things are not emptiness and I believe in the potential of the spirit of human beings and I like to imagine that everything is possible, you know. Those kind of things. I like to put words to this or try to put words to this and the other guys in the band feel close and we´re on the same page and that´s why we´re a band and why we´ve been together for such a long time. It´s like a family that I chose and among these guys are my real brother and it´s a very strong relationship, so I would say yes, we´re a spiritual band and when we get on stage we have an intention to do something good for the people. We talk about the energy…

That was another thing I thought about, that it´s been the four of you for a long time now which is quite unique these days.

JD: Mainly we all love what we do and we talk a lot. It´s not some mystical vibe uniting us against the challenges of life. Mostly we work on our relationships and we talk a lot and if we feel someone is sad or frustrated, we try to understand why and it works because we´re still together. We had some difficult moments with exhausting touring and some tensions and stuff, but we always overcome the tensions by talking.

I can see getting along as people, but as you are in a band, there´s always the classic break up reason with musical differences. As you become older you find different things that inspire you and you might feel like taking the music in another direction, but still you have to focus on keeping Gojira what it is. That´s gotta be pretty difficult as well?

JD: Yeah, true. Sometimes I just wonder how it is to do exactly how I feel, but I do it on the side. I record my own stuff. I have never released anything, but I´m pretty active and do my own songs and I keep in touch with what I want to do on my own, which most of the time is pretty close to what we do together. And Mario likes to be technical… I don´t know, it works for us and somehow there´s a balance.

Going back to the first album, what would you say is the biggest difference with the band and writing songs today? Is there a big difference?

JD: Yes, of course. It´s better. (laughs)

Obviously. (laughs)

JD: I was 19 and now I´m fucking 36. (laughs)

Does it become easier writing songs or does it get harder?

JD: It is harder, but I´m way more picky. If I come up with a riff and it´s good, it´s not good enough. 10 years ago it was good enough, you know. A lot of people think that bands in general become lazy and sometimes it´s true, but in our case it´s that we work more to make a song because we have more experience and we want to raise the bar higher and higher. We´re the same people, but we try to raise the bar. We make that effort to go deeper and deeper. Somehow it´s strange because the music becomes easier to understand and there are less things to understand and it´s less technical and stuff. It´s not because we want to sell more records, it´s just we take things more easy. What we played 10 years ago is not what we wanna hear anymore and we want to create more sophisticated things and more simple at the same time. It´s a very complicated balance. With this album I´m pretty happy and still I cannot grasp what we did and that´s the beauty of it. You work so much on every detail and then “Wait a minute, what is this beast?”.

Writing songs for an album, do you start off thinking “Well, we´re gonna make 10 songs and that´s it!”. When do you say stop and do you say stop, like "We´ve got enough.” Or do you ever run out of ideas and that´s what makes it 10 tracks or whatever?

JD: It´s an interesting question because it was a big thing actually. We knew that we wanted to make something a little bit shorter than usual, because we think it´s too tiring and I had this idea that we need to release a record like “Master of puppets” with eight songs. If you listen to it you want to listen again. It´s a good feeling when you´ve made it to the end of the album and your brain and your emotions can´t take it. We have a tendency to add three songs after that and it´s a little too much so I was a convinced that we needed to record like nine songs. There´s an interlude which makes it 10 and then there´s one that we wanted to put on the album so bad, but we pay a lot of attention to that. It´s not like we record a lot of songs and we put them all on. It´s like cooking. You don´t put all the salt in, you just put a little bit of it. It´s not just a bunch of songs together, it´s a piece. Sometimes we can talk for three months about how this song should be number four or five and we send e-mails to each other and we do another intro to see if it works. It´s a very precise balance. The last song on the album was almost not on the album. It was just a couple of weeks before mastering and finally we went “Well, it goes pretty well at the end.”. There´s a lot of that stuff. A lot of discussions.

For all the different markets, are there gonna be bonus tracks and stuff like that?

JD: For the first time we have bonus material. We have two songs.

Written at the same time as the album?

JD: Yeah, yeah. It´s the same sound and it could be on the album but we didn´t want something too long. The people that are gonna buy the album and our diehard fans, they can take it. Add two songs and it´s no problem, so we´re gonna release a limited edition with two bonus tracks. We worked with the label on that and they asked us what we thought about the idea and stuff. We want to make the CD attractive when it comes out and that´s the business side to it. We all know how it works, so we have two bonus songs and a t-shirt because you can´t download a t-shirt. (laughs)

Not yet, but give it a couple of years.

JD: Exactly. (laughs)

The artwork for the album isn´t out yet. Are you doing that one as well? (The interview took place one day before the artwork was revealed. Editor´s note.)

JD: Yes. I´m finishing it now. I did the cover and I sent it yesterday actually. I was on a plane when I finished it. I still need to send them the rough ideas for the layout inside and all that and then we´ll have someone at Roadrunner putting it together. I need some help with that. Usually I do it myself.

Is the artwork gonna tie in with the title of the album?

JD: Oh yeah, absolutely. Of course.

Is that as much fun as writing songs?

JD: Yeah. It´s different but when I do both, there´s something that really comes together in a very nice way. Actually for this album we asked someone to do it, but it just didn´t work out. There were a lot of good ideas and stuff but for some reason it didn´t work and as soon as I started to do it I said “You know what, I´m gonna do it.”. Instead of trying to explain for hours, so I started to work on it and right away I sent it to the guys. We were far away from each other and they said “Yeah, now it works!”, so it seems like I´m condemned to do this forever.

I love the last one for “The way of all flesh”. It´s really cool and would make a great painting for the wall.

JD: Thanks!

I interviewed you when you played here with the Unholy Alliance and we talked about your art. Have you ever done a show or like an exhibition with your stuff?

JD: No never.

Would you like to do it?

JD: Why not. My stuff is completely spread over time and I don´t really know where they all are. I would love to paint more. I mainly paint when we release an album and it´s like “Ok, I need to buy some paper, a pen…”. I have to buy everything again because I become a touring musician for a couple of years and then we need to do another cover and I have to start all over again. I don´t have a lot of material.

When you paint, like working on this one for the new album, do you constantly listen to the album to get ideas and inspiration or do you need it to be all quiet?

JD: I like to listen to the album when I paint, sure. Sometimes I forget what I´m listening to because I´m so focused on the art. I might have something I like and then I redo it. It´s a lot of work. With “From Mars to Sirius” I spent one month working on it and trying out a lot of stuff and failing a lot. I lost faith and it was like “I´m not gonna make it, I´m not gonna make it!”. It´s very stressful, but I love to do it. On this one I was pretty fast actually. I did a painting and I´m happy with it. It´s cool.

As a musician, do you ever get tired of your own stuff?

JD: Yes, yes, yes.

Do you go back and listen to your older albums?

JD: Yeah, sometimes I do with the intention of being surprised and it just doesn´t work. (laughs) Like “Oh, I had a better memory of that.” And like “I put on this song and it´s gonna blow me away”, but nope. (laughs) “What have I done for all these years?”. Sometimes it´s very depressing so I just go on the website and see all the good comments and I´m like “Yes!”.

Touring wise then? I know you´re playing Metaltown in Gothenburg this summer, but is it gonna be a full blown world tour with this album?

JD: Yes. We still need to book 2013, but we´re booked till the end of 2012 so we have a lot going on. We´re going to the States and then we´re coming back to Europe. I don´t have all the details, but we´ll come back to Scandinavia for sure, finally. Finland, Norway, Denmark and here in Sweden, all have very good audiences and is a very good home for metal. For us it just makes sense to come here. When we come here it´s like “Yeah, this is right!”. I´ll bring my Flying V and it´s awesome! People get it and they understand and the interviews make sense and everything is perfect. We played a lot in the States and it was a challenge for a French band to make it there.

Freedom fries.

JD: (laughs) Yeah, Freedom fries, but we´ve had enough of that, ok. (laughs)

Well, hopefully I´m gonna be at Metaltown, so I´ll catch you live there.

JD: Great!

Thank you Joe!

/Niclas

lördagen den 21:e april 2012

Vill ha.


















Godfather Records fortsätter prångla ut extremt snygga bootlegs. Senast i raden av livepaketeringar är "The lost tapes". En 8 CD-box med livegodis från 74-82.
Jag dreglar.

Bilder och mer info HÄR

/Niclas
Ah men för helvete...



Tog mig in till city med en förhoppning om att lägga vantarna på Feistodon, men se det gick inte. Det visade sig att den inte plockats in till Svedala, om man nu ska gå efter vad Soundpollution sa och de brukar ju ha koll.
Istället belv det Soundtrack Of Our Lives på Bengans och "Blood mountain" med just Mastodon då jag faktiskt inte hade detta album på CD. SOOL´s nya låter för övrigt överjävligt bra. För något år sedan hade jag nöjet att hämta upp Ebbot i min slitna Toyota på Söder för att sedan köra till radiostudion på KTH. Väl där genomfördes en mycket trevlig intervju och sedan fick gamle Ebbot skjuts tillbaka till Söder. Ett kul minne.

/Niclas

fredagen den 20:e april 2012

P Lost styr kosan i rätt riktning.



















Just den här låten är inte med på kommande plattan, men om resten av materialet är i samma anda bådar det ju gott.

Lyssna HÄR

/Niclas
Hhhmmmmm...



















Tydligen har det nyligen cirkulerat ett rykte om en eventuell återförening med Henry Rollins, Greg Ginn och Chuck Dukowski.
Jag mailade dear Henry och fick ett snabbt svar:

"Niclas, hi. I don't think that's happening. It's nothing I would ever do. It's 2012, no looking back. Henry"

/Niclas

torsdagen den 19:e april 2012

Nya Rush!



Me like. Rush fortsätter att ge järnet och nya singeln lovar gott. Snabba fanns har uppmärksammat att klockan står på 21:12. Dessutom är 12:e september Neil Pearts födelsedag.
Hail Rush!

/Niclas
Oh Henry my Henry!











I veckans krönika hyllar the mighty Henry the mighty Iggy och minns ett speciellt möte i New Orleans.

Henry HÄR

/Niclas

tisdagen den 17:e april 2012

Vad händer?

Två lite småstressiga dagar har nästan passerat.
Igår blev det snabb färd direkt från jobbet in till Warner HQ för en intervju med nye sångaren i Gotthard, Nic Maeder. En trevlig schweizaustraliensare med kul hatt och ett stort leende på läpparna.
Idag blev det åter igen en snabb färd in till Warner HQ för lite häng med Darren som är ansvarig för Roadrunner och sedan en kul och intressant pratstund med Joe Duplantier i Gojira. Joe var exakt lika trevlig och tillmötesgående som sist vi sågs på Unholy Alliance.
Efter monsieur Duplantier blev det t-banan hem igen och en telefonare med Biff Byford. Kanske inte den bästa intervjun jag gjort och det var ett jäkla ringande fram och tillbaka innan intervjun kunde dra igång, men Biff är ju Biff.
Räknar med att ha intervjuerna uppe inom de närmsta två veckorna.

/Niclas

måndagen den 16:e april 2012

Entombed på nytt spännande äventyr.













Saxat från musikern Thomas von Waschefeldts hemsida:

"Har i dagarna fått ett synnerligen fint uppdrag!
Mina ungdoms stora hjältar Entombed, vilka jag fortfarande håller som ett av mina absoluta favoritband, skall i November göra ett samarbete med Nordiska Kammarorkestern. Detta samarbete yttrar sig i att Nordiska Kammarorkestern, tillsammans med Entombed, skall framföra hela deras andra skiva 'Clandestine'. Mitt jobb blir att arrangera och orkestrera hela den oheliga best som 'Clandestine' är och detta är i sanning en stor fröjd! Hurra för mig och hurra för sann svensk dödsmetall av allra bästa sort!"

Thomas är anställd vid Piteå musikhögskola som doktorand inom musikpedagogik.

/Niclas

söndagen den 15:e april 2012

Watain!



Idag kom Watain äntligen iväg till USA för turnén med Behemoth, In Solitude och The Devil´s Blood.
Ovan är första trailern från neras kommande film. Personligen har jag lite svårt att ta sådant här på allvar och hade de inte kunnat hitta någon med en bättre berättarröst, men detta till trots verkar ju filmen ändå helt klart intressant.

/Niclas

fredagen den 13:e april 2012

Intervju med Ryan Roxie från Alice Cooper/Casablanca del 2!





















Här är del 2 av den långa intervju jag gjorde med Ryan om hans återförening med Alice Cooper.

The first time around, how did you get wind of that Alice Cooper was looking for a guitar player?

RR: Well, I think every single gig I´ve ever gotten has come from some band or someone that I´ve been playing with before. That´s why I always say “Definitely remain friends with the guys in the band you´re in, because you never know what´s gonna happen down the road and how they might be able to open doors for you.”.
That´s exactly what happened with the Alice Cooper story. Years before, I played in a band called Candy with Gilby Clarke. That led into me eventually playing guitar for Gilby´s solo band while he was in Guns ´N Roses. There was some talk from the Alice camp of how they might like to have Gilby and myself play guitar for him. Unfortunately Gilby had commitments with his solo record but he gave me his blessings and his support and said “You know what Ryan, you gotta go for this!”. I went down and auditioned with the blessings of Gilby and a few other people and because of fate, luck or whatever...I did good enough to get the job. (laughes)

What do you remember from that audition? What songs did you play?

RR: I remember everything about it. For one, Alice was actually there, unlike a certain unnamed but ultimately insane singer I auditioned for, who didn´t even show up (laughes) . Eric Singer played the drums, Bob Daisley played the bass and we jammed on three different songs. “Billion dollar babies”, “I´m 18” and “Poison”.
It was the pre chorus of “Poison” that I think got me the gig. It got me the gig because even though I´d learned the technical widdely widdely stuff, I was listening to the other guys that were auditioning through the wall and every single one of them was sort of having problems with that pre chorus. The song itself was co-written by Desmond Child and it has a lot of intricate modulations in it. All of the guitar players were sort of stumbling over the part and I just said to myself “You know what, don´t concentrate on that widdely widdely stuff and just play those chords and you nail that part and you have a good shot at getting this gig.”. That´s what I did....... or maybe I just had a good hair day (laughs), I don´t know, but that ONE moment lead on to a 10 year adventure. And now, even longer!

During those albums, what was it like writing songs with Alice Cooper?

RR: To sit in the same room with riff ideas that you have come up with, probably in some hotel room or walking around on the streets and you think they sound ok, but then when you sit in the room and Alice starts putting his voice to it ,you start going “Yeah!”. All of a sudden it´s an Alice Cooper song!
All the individual ideas that we had I thought were cool, but they didn´t get that 'super coolness' until Alice came in and put his voice on them. The minute Alice puts his voice to it, it becomes an Alice Cooper song. He really puts his stamp on it.

How does Alice write songs? Does he play guitar?

RR: Well, I think he relies a lot on his own experience from all the musicians he´s been with over the years. He´s a musical guy in the sense that he knows what he wants to hear in his head. We had ideas but he always changed them around enough to suit his voice and when his lyrics would come in and really transform the song into an 'Alice Cooper' song. There was never a tense situation and that´s why the albums that we made together and especially the ones that I was able to write on with him, sound like they do.... we would be sitting down in the lounge of the studio or whatever and he could just say “You know what? Today we´re gonna write a song about a trucker who likes to dress up in women’s clothing.”.

I love that song!

RR: (laughs) “The ballad of Jesse Jane” is the title he would say and then continue with the story of the song “He´s gonna go into a McDonalds…” and then the story got weirder and weirder. When I originally wrote that riff I thought it was gonna be like a cool Stone Temple Pilots esoteric type of song…..it ended up becoming really esoteric but in a tongue in cheek way, so I was very proud of it.

That song is so much Alice Cooper. It´s the essence of Alice Cooper and such a great song.

RR: If I could ever convince him to dust some of those songs off that we recorded for 'The Eyes' and 'Dirty Diamonds' albums...it would be super fun. That´s the thing though, when you get to be at Alice´s status, he´s got so many songs in his catalog. When he does a new record, he´d like to play them all, but because of his history… even if he only plays one 'hit' off of each of the albums he´s ever done, it´s still too long of a set.

Of all the tours you did with Alice, is there one that stands out?

RR: The one that completely sort of did it for me and the one that fulfilled all my expectations and dreams was when Alice Cooper went on the road with Cheap Trick. If anybody knows anything about me they realize that Cheap Trick is my Beatles. I have as much influence of Cheap Trick as I have of The Beatles, and for us to co-headline a tour and share the stage with Cheap Trick was my childhood dream. I did homework every single day growing up listening to Cheap Trick´s “ at Budokan”, “Heaven tonight”, and “In color” … T
Cheap Trick records basically formed what I feel are great songs. If you listen to an album like “Heaven tonight” or even the first Cheap Trick record, those are the days when bands made albums of 10 great songs, not an album of a single here and there and a bunch ofr album tracks, That´s all I wanted to do with my own career- make albums that you enjoy listening to from beginning to end.

Another thing I didn´t know is that you play guitar on that Tal Bachman track.

RR: Yeah, “She´s so high”. That´s me ripping off George Harrison.

How did you end up doing that?

RR: Again, knowing people who know people and using the contacts....not abusing them.... One of the co-producers of the first solo record I did, which was called “Dad´s porno mag” was Mark Schulman. Mark plays drums for a bunch of different bands like Simple Minds and Pink and he´s like a monster drummer. He was co-producing the album andI had to get him to mix the album. I said “Man, I wanna put this out, can you please finish what you´re doing?” and he said “I´m really busy with this project and it´s getting a lot of attention from labels and it´s this guy from Canada. He´s trying to form a band and I´m helping him out with it. As asoon as I get his band sorted out, I´ll start working on your album.”.
I said “Alright, that´s good. I´ll play guitar for him.”. (laughs) And he said “What?”. “Yeah, why not? If it´s gonna make you finish the record faster, I´ll go down there and audition for him and I know I´ll get the gig.”. It´s so funny that I had this confidence about it,but I knew that if I could get this gig, my record would get put out quicker. I went down and I got the gig and ended up playing guitar on most of the album. We ended up living in Hawaii for basically six months recording an album with Bob Rock and that´s the album you hear.

So you´re on the entire album?

RR: I´m on 10 of the 12 tracks, but none credited. It was a little bit of a sour taste in my mouth for many years. I´m proud of the album but because my name´s not on it, I never really talk about it… My name didn´t get on it because by the time he finished mastering the album , I had gone back to touring with Alice Cooper. I needed to make a living as a musician and it´s not easy to just hang around and not take the opportunity of work when it´s there. I think his ego was a little bit hurt by that and both me and his manager at the time, a nice guy named Jeff who had basically funded so much of the project on credit card, we boht got nixed off the record as well. I think it ended up being a bit of a sour taste in everybody´s mouths for a few years.
To be honest with you, five years ago I found out that here in Scandinavia, a Norwegian artist covered the song 'She's so high' and it became a hit single 'again'. I said “You know what, it´s so stupid. I´m very proud of the album and the song, so why hold a grudge?”. So I reached out to him and e-mailed him and said “Let’s let this pass. This is why I couldn´t do your tour....”. He e-mailed me back and said “You know, I was feeling this way at the time and I was a little bit hurt by this…” we actually, buried the hatchet and 'shook hands' through e-mails and social media , so everything´s cool now.

What was it like working with Bob Rock?

RR: That was actually an experience as well. It´s so interesting to work with people that have made such iconic records. He´s made some of the biggest sounding records (Metallica Black Album) and he has a certain way and a certain technique of doing it, which is totally different than other producers like Tony Visconti that I´ve worked with earlier in my career. It was such a good experience from the sense to go with their work method and achieve the end result because at the end of the day, the end result was a good sounding record.
Bob Rock was bit more meticulous then Tony Visconti or Jack Douglas whom I've made albums with before...... Let me tell you, it wasn´t a cake walk with Bob. You had to play literally a lot of takes and even after the 50th time I thought I got it right, Bob still pushed me to play it a couple of more times. But as I said, at the end of the day I was very pleased with the final mix. No matter how many times he pushed me, it was worth it. I trust his judgment on that. You have to. When someone has that many platinum records on the wall and you don´t, you trust the guy.

Finally, this TV-show of yours that you´re working on, “All excess with Ryan Roxie”?

RR: This is a project I´m going to do my best to release during the course of next year. I´ve already built up a big catalog of interviews with rockers during last year's festival season in Sweden. When friends would come into town I'd say, “Hey, you wanna sit in front of the camera for five minutes and talk a little bit?”.
Basically I want to do an interview type show that takes the person, the subject, the rock n roller outside of their comfort zone, maybe just walking around the streets in Stockholm or hanging out somewhere where they´re not used to hanging out.... Just talk to them and talk to them a little bit more one on one. Different than my TV-show (The Big Rock Show) where it was more of a studio variety show. This is more of an on location interview show. Hopefully a little bit deeper because of the similar experiences that I share with them.
What I´m looking for in interviews is just “weird”, interesting and inspiring things to talk about. Hopefully we´ll be able to accomplish that.
Like I said, I did a great interview with Alice when he came into town last time and he revealed so many cool things about his career, like who gave him his nickname 'The Coop'. It was actually Groucho Marx who gave him that nickname. Cool stuff like that.

Are you aiming for TV or the web?

RR: I think the interviews are not gonna be long enough to be a full show with just one person. The best thing in the world would be to be a segment on a bigger show.
Eddie Trunk and his buddies have a great rock show called “That Metal Show”. It would be so cool if every once in awhile he could say, “Hey, let´s check in with Roxie and All Excess and see what he´s up to!” …..I´d do one of my little snippet interviews. Something like that would be really cool, so we´ll see what happens. But between me and you and the rest of the world, I can´t wait to get up there on that stage with Alice and the rest of the band....that's better than any TV show I can think of. (laughs)

Is there one song that you enjoy playing live more than others?

RR: Absolutely! The opening riff to “School´s out”. Every single hand in the audience rises up and starts clapping and fuck it, I just wish I had written that riff! (laughs)

Cool. A final thing here. Ever thought about writing a book? You´ve got to have tons of rock and roll debauchery and rock and roll stories?

RR: I´ve got all that and I´ve lived to tell about it, but guess what? It still ain´t as good as “The Dirt”. (laughs) After “The Dirt” was written, why bother? All the rest is just other guys trying to make a buck or two off the genre.
For me, to be honest with you, if I´m gonna write a book, I wanted it to be inspiring in a way. I want it to be like “Hey, this guy has done this and that, but he´s still come out ok and thankful, and....happy.”
If I write a book, I want it to be more that than people going “Oh, that´s so disgusting! I can´t believe he did that..I gotta read more”. Yeah, I´ve done all those disgusting things, but like the quote in one of my favorite movies called Amadeus.... “I´m a vulgar man, but my music is not.”.
I´ve done decadent things in my life, but hopefully I´ve also done things that would inspire younger kids to have that same dream that I had. If I was ever to write a book I´d like younger people to be inspired by what I say, not just entertained by how much of this or that I consumed.

One more thing. Are you now secretly wishing that all this will turn into making another album with Alice?

RR: Why wish secretly? (laughs) Of course I want to. Every time you can make an album with a guy that is a household name, it´s kinda cool. I´ve been able to do that a couple of times. I´ve had a lot of really good experiences with Alice Cooper so of course I would love to do it. At the same time I´m very content and very proud of the records I´ve been able to make with our “unknown” bands, which is Roxie 77 and Casablanca. I´m really proud of those albums as well. There´s a lot of heart and effort that goes into it. Put it like this, I´m just happy when I can put the songs and ideas down with a bunch of great guys and girls and then go out and be able to perform them live. That´s a treat.
It´s more about having an idea and turning that idea into a reality..... then repeat the cycle. If you do that more than a few times, that becomes a career, and if you have a career long enough, that becomes something you actually can look back at and say “That´s what I have done in life.” ….I´m still trying to do that. (laughs)

I´m really happy for you Ryan.

RR: Nick, it´s always great talking to you because you can say five words to my 100. (laughs)

The way it should be. Have a good night and I´ll talk to you later!

RR: Thanks buddy!

/Niclas
Konsertrecension!














Casablanca

Debaser Slussen, Stockholm 120412

Jag måste säga att Casablanca förtjänar en betydligt större publik än det 100-talet människor som sökt sig till Debaser denna afton i mitten av april. Jag tror faktiskt att det är få svenska band som just nu kan mäta sig med det otroligt tighta set som bandet framför.
De flesta av debutplattans låtar dras igenom och min personliga favorit "Deliberately wasted" kommer relativt tidigt. Där, i just den låten, inser jag att Anders Ljung besitter en sjuhelsikes pipa även live. Han har kraft i rösten så det räcker och blir över.
Hela bandet är "tighter than a snake´s ass", om man säger så, och visar att man är ett förbannat bra liveband. Åter igen förundras jag över hur Josephine Forsman kan slå så kraftfullt på trummorna med tanke på hennes fysik. Sveriges Bonham?
Sista låten blir en ny skapelse med titeln "I want you" och det är frågan om det inte är kvällens starkaste? Riktigt tunga riff och en mycket bra refräng gör att jag redan nu längtar efter skiva nummer två. Något som kan bli verklighet kanske redan i år, om man ska tro Ryan Roxie.
Jag vandrar tillbaka mot Slussens tunnelbana med en enda tanke i huvudet, Casablanca förtjänar ett ordentligt genombrott mer än något annat band just nu.

Betyg: 4/5

/Niclas

torsdagen den 12:e april 2012

Grohl i farten igen.













Från Butch Vigs Twitter:

"The last 24 hours have been surreal! Had a great gig at the El Rey last night, and spent today recording with Dave, Krist and special guest!"

Vad månde det bli av detta samarbete?

/Niclas
Oh dear Henry!



















I veckans krönika har Henry ett litet break från vägarna och passar då på att snöa in på japanska rockmusik i alla dess former och erkänner att han är "A complete and total Boris slut!".

Henry HÄR

/Niclas
Ny bok om Metallica!


















Det börjar väl nästan råda inflation i Metallicaböcker och frågan är väl vad Neil Daniels kan tillföra som redan inte berättats flertalet gånger om? Dock är dett ett djävulskt snyggt omslag.
Daniels har tidigare skrivit flera intressanta böcker, senast om Journey.

Pressutskick:

"This is the first and only book to look at the massive impact of Metallica’s first four
albums on the international metal scene. This book shows the birth and rise of the
monster known as Metallica and will link the band – and the American metal scene
– with the famed ‘New Wave of British Heavy Metal’ movement in the UK and
metal originators such as Black Sabbath and Judas Priest.
Metallica’s early success was built on strong live performances and fierce
thrash metal riffs. The group would eventually become the biggest American metal
band in the world and the legacy of those first four albums – Kill ‘Em All, Ride The
Lightning, Master Of Puppets plus …And Justice For All – lives on to this day.
American thrash metal produced four major bands – Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth
and Anthrax – dubbed the Big Four, but Metallica are the kings. This book tells the
story of how that remarkable global triumph started, complete with examples of
very early memorabilia and exclusive interviews from people who saw those early
gigs and can provide eye-witness accounts of this incredible story.

THE AUTHOR: Neil Daniels has written about classic rock and heavy metal for a
wide range of magazines, fanzines and websites. He has written books on Judas
Priest, Robert Plant, Bon Jovi, Linkin Park and Journey.

1. First book to specfically explore the early years of Metallica.
2. Exclusive and original interviews with key players – both musicians, friends
    and journalists – who were eye-witnesses to this phenomenon.
3. In-depth insights into Metallica’s groundbreaking first four albums.
4. An in-depth exploration of the San Fran Bay Area thrash scene of the 1980s.
5. Interviews with Metallica’s ‘New Wave of British Heavy Metal’ heroes."

/Niclas
Get ready to rumble!














Wacken Metal Battle – finalisterna klara!

Nu är de 5 finalisterna klara för Wacken Metal Battle 2012, tävlingen där vinnaren får spela på Europas största metal festival, Wacken Open Air i Tyskland. Svenska finalen avgörs den 10 maj på Göta Källare i Stockholm. The Murder Of My Sweet är huvudband under kvällen medan juryn sammanträder.
Wacken Metal Battle startade när Wacken Open Air festivalen i Tyskland ville ge nya osignade band chansen att få spela för en stor publik. Wacken Metal Battles har pågått runt om i världen sedan år 2004. I år medverkar 30 länder, inkluderat större delen av Europa, men också Kina, Indien, Ryssland och Brasilien. Vinnarna i respektive land får spela på WET Stage på Wacken Open Air festivalen i augusti 2012.

Banden i bokstavsordning:

Stockholm: Ascend www.ascend-online.com
Helsingborg: Chine www.chineofficial.com
Stockholm: Dethember www.facebook.com/dethemberband
Stockholm: Frantic Amber www.franticamber.com
Borlänge: Tempory www.tempory.se

På plats kommer en proffsjury bestående av musikjournalister, metalmusiker samt beslutsfattare inom musikindustrin att utse det vinnande bandet. 1:a pris är att får spela på WET Stage på Wacken Open Air i augusti 2012. Dessutom får det vinnande bandet något som alla metalband behöver, en backdrop med sin logga på i formatet 4 x 2 meter från Bandshop så att vinnarna kan representera Sverige på bästa sätt.

Wacken Metal Battle Sweden 2012

Datum: 10 maj

Kl. 19.00

Plats: Göta Källare, Medborgarplatsen, på Södermalm i Stockholm.

Biljetterna kommer att kosta 100:-.

För mer information: http://www.metal-battle.com/countries/sweden/

/Niclas
Exklusiv intervju med Ryan Roxie i
Alice Cooper/Casablanca!


















Ryan Roxie spelade med the mighty Alice Cooper åren 96-06. Sedan flera år tillbaka bor han i Stockholm och har nu senast levererat Casablancas debutplatta till kritikernas stora förtjusning.
I onsdags blev det officiellt att han återvänder till Alice Cooper och medverkar bl a på den stora USA-turnén med Iron Maiden.
Jag fick möjlighet att ringa upp Ryan och prata om allt som just nu händer i hans liv. Faktum är att intervjun blev så lång att jag valt att dela upp den i två delar. Andra delen kommer upp imorgon.


So, how did all this come about? Was it Alice Cooper reaching out to you or did you call him since Steve Hunter's departured?

Ryan Roxie: Well, the thing that´s been really cool about the Alice Cooper organization is that the relationship I´ve had with them since I moved to Sweden has always been one of support. I had to leave the tour in early 2006 because it came to a point where I really needed to see my kids grow up. I talked to so many rock and rollers who hadn´t had that opportunity. The biggest influence on me making this decision was Eddie Ojeda from Twisted Sister. We were touring together at the time after my son had been born and Eddie just said point blank, “I didn´t see my daughter grow up as much as I would have liked to and now she´s 18 years old. All through her formative years, I was touring and I would´ve liked to see a lot more of those years.”.
I didn´t have the luxury of being able to bring the kids out on the road at the time. It was nothing but support from Alice Cooper and his camp and they basically said to me, “We understand, family comes first.”
Every time I talk about Alice Cooper, it's most definitely positive… he´s taught me so much more about music than just playing songs. I respect him and look up to him. So when he came here last summer and he played Gröna Lund and Getaway Festival I was just coming off season one of the “Big Rock Show” (Ryan Roxie´s web TV-show now changing it's name to All Excess with Ryan Roxie.) I was starting to compile interviews for the show I will be releasing called “All Exccess” . I just asked Alice if I could get an exclusive interview and he gave me one of the coolest one on one talks we've ever had. I haven´released it yet, but lookout for it later in the year.
We sat down and we talked about some stuff that I think you´ve probably never heard in interviews before and during the whole course of it, I just felt this “Yeah man, nothing´s really changed. We still have this great chemistry whether it´s off stage or on stage.” And at the end of the interview he said “Hey Roxie, you wanna come up on stage and play the encore?” and I said “It would be an honor. It´s so good for me to be seen with you, especially here in Sweden.”.
You know that name Alice, I wear it proudly on my shoulders and I try to not use it too much, but hey, it´s Alice Cooper! If you´ve got that ace up your sleeve, you gotta use it. (laughs)....So I went up and did both encores at Gröna Lund and Getaway and it just felt good. When they left I just had this feeling like “Ryan, you gotta put it out there dude!”, so before he left I said “Hey Coop, I really appreciate you having me up on stage and anytime there´s an opportunity where I can get up on stage full time, you gimme a call! And he said “You know I will.” And the call came, the opportunity came and I couldn´t be more fucking stoked. I´m as excited or even possibly more excited than I was the first time I got together with him, because I know this is sort of a second chance for me to get back up there and really appreciate all the things that I might not have appreciated the first time around.

Even though you put it out there and the way it´s been with Alice Cooper, was it still a hard decision to make? I´m thinking about your kids and stuff like that and also your band Casablanca.

RR: Fast forward from the time when I stopped playing in 2006 to 2012. That´s a good six years in there. During that time I had some of the most rewarding and hardest experiences that I could think of. Both musically and personally. Best experiences and worst experiences to be honest with you. For one, I got divorced from my wife.... but luckily we remain civil and in a good situation when it comes to the kids.
Also, I played in a lot of musical projects, some you might have heard of and others that better be forgotten. (laughs) At the same time I kept doing Roxie 77 which was my own outlet, my own sort of therapy and my own group of great guys.
I think that my two main Swedish bands that I play with (R77 and Casablanca) have pretty much the coolest band members of all time. For example, I just got back from rehearsals just before doing this interview, and my son said “You know daddy, the guys in your band are all really nice. Even Josephine.”. (laughs) There´s been nothing but support regarding the upcoming Alice tour and I think (and hope) that they see the advantages of what the Alice gig will bring for both Casablanca and Roxie 77. There´s gonna be a little more international focus put on the bands just in the sense that I´m gonna be playing in front of a more international audience.
I´ve always said that the sum of Casablanca should be greater than its parts. It should be a band that stands on its own because of the songs. If Casablanca are playing shows and I can´t make those shows, the people we´re talking about to fill in are really great quality players. Casablanca will be a power house band with or without me. Both Roxie 77 and Casablanca already have plans of going into the studio and recording more music before the end of the year anyway. I don´t like to sit around and take vacations, unless they involve playing or recording. If the work is there, I´ll do it. And let´s be honest, if you know the songs and you can have a little bit of time to do your homework and rehearse them, it doesn´t take that long to make a rock and roll record. We´re writing songs that are very guitar driven, in your face, like the bands I admired growing up, they made two albums a year, so I don´t find it impossible to do all these things.

There´s a short Casablanca tour coming up. Are you gonna do any of those dates?

RR: Absolutely! The tour for Alice starts until June....so there is a window of opportunity to still play some dates.

Yeah, June 8th

RR: Exactly. Obviously the very last Casablanca shows I´ll most probably be in rehearsals with Alice already, but we have runs coming up all through April and some shows in May as well that I will be able to do. The thing is, you never know in this world what could happen. Like I said, I never shut the door on Alice because I was hoping that door could open up again someday and it appears to have opened and I´m never shutting the door on Casablanca or Roxie 77. I enjoy being in that role in those particular bands, all equally. But just to be honest with you, the tour bus on an Alice Cooper tour is so much fucking better. (laughs)..... It would be scary if it wasn´t. (laughs)

Those dates that you won´t make with Casablanca, who´s gonna step in? I saw a picture where Nicke Borg from Backyard Babies was jamming with you guys. Is that a plan, to have him step in?

RR: Nicke? You know… actually I think Nicke is really busy with his own band Homeland right now , but some of the names that they´ve been circling around, aren´t too far from that. Who knows, maybe I come back to a band where there´s three guitar players? To be honest with you, in my world that wouldn´t be bad at all, because I´m going to a band that´s gonna have three guitar players. There´s gonna be Tommy Henriksen on guitar, myself on guitar and then there´s Orianthi. It´s a bit coincidental that I´m gonna have the opportunity to play in the Alice Cooper band which has an up and coming female guitar player, whereas I´m coming from is a band that has one of Swedens biggest up and coming female drummers. Obviously you know everything about Josephine. You´re her number one stalker, aren´t you?

Absolutely! I just posted the interview with her and I got a lot of feedback on that one and all positive. Another thing with Casablanca is that I´ve read a lot of reviews of the album and they´re all good.

RR: I´m really, really happy about that because I´ve never been in a band that´s gotten good reviews. (laughs)
In that sense it kinda scares me, because do good reviews translate into sales? At the end of the day, and I said this on stage when we did a little acoustic show at Bengans (a Stockholm record store), “I really wanna thank all the people in the press who have given us such favorable reviews, but at the end of the day it comes down to playing in a room with 75 people and having those 75 people think it´s cool. If you people think it´s cool, then the reviews can be validated. “
It helps to have respect from review critics, but it doesn't help if you don't get the respect and admiration from the fans… you have to earn every fan at this point. One positive article isn´t gonna win over a person. They might get interested in the band, but you have to win them over to the live show and it´s most important that I win over as many people as I can that we play for. That´s my goal. If I can get 8 out of 10 people to like my band when I play live, that´s just as good as getting 8 out of 10 in Sweden Rock Magazine.

Right. You were just in New York. Did that have anything to do with Alice Cooper?

RR: (laughs) No, I was actually playing guitar… I was hired to play guitar for an up and coming artist out of Gothenburg. It was amazing. The artist is called 'Kifle' and he´s really got really cool songs and vibe. We went up to upstate New York to record at this place called Waterfront Studios with the producer Henry Hirsch who produced all the big Lenny Kravitz records....Talk about a throw back, old school recording session that fucking kicked ass. To go into that session… I´m not shitting you, I had ONE track per song that I could play on guitar. I had ONE punch in the whole session. This producer was so much about the 'vibe' and he wanted us to play the songs from the top to the bottom like the old school way, because we recorded it on two inch tape and we had this mixing board that was in Abbey Road Studios. Everything about the equipment was analog, vintage. Look out for this guy, because he´s gonna be good!
I played a style of guitar playing that I know I´m capable of, but maybe a lot of people that 'kinda' know about me, they might go “Wow! He´s branching out, playing something different.”. No, I have a lot of soulful type of records in my Spotify playlists. This is what this type of music is. Guitar driven, soulful, rock and really vibey.

Cool. The Alice Cooper thing, how does that work these days? Do you have to sign a lot of contracts and get an attorney to look it over? How does it work?

RR: No, the thing with Alice Cooper and that organization is that it´s very old school in the sense that a lot of trust is put in and a lot of deals are made with a handshake. Alice's manager Shep Gordon… let´s put it this way, does not like to write long e-mails. (laughs) E-mails should be the least amount of words possible and I think anyone that´s really kinda successful has that sort of philosophy. This is a little messed up for me because I like to talk, talk, talk, but I´m trying to get better at e-mails being more economical in my word choice..
Basically, Shep sent a message that said “This is when the tour runs from. This date to that date. Are you available?”. And basically I responded with “Yes, available.” (Or maybe it was HELL YES ;). Then it was like 'Ok, now I'm on the availability list..' But the coolest thing about the whole process was an e-mail from Bob Ezrin. One of my all time favorite producers...all the cool Alice Cooper records, all the cool KISS records, fucking Pink Floyd´s “The Wall”! Bob's email basically stated, “We talked about it, me, Alice and Shep and we think you´re the guy...Congrats.”.
I just had a smile on my face from ear to ear when I got that e-mail. It was such a great feeling to be asked to be part of this year´s tour and even a greater feeling who I was being asked by.

Good for you!

RR: Yeah, I´ve never told anyone that story, but it was one of those moments. I´m so blessed and thankful, but I´m always a little bit “Don´t believe it till you´re on the fucking tourbus!”. For me, I´m gonna be playing and doing all of these shows and I´ll believe it when we get on that stage and hit that first note with Iron Maiden. Then it will be another experience when we get to come over here to Sweden to play with Alice Cooper in my new country. One other cool thing about the experience is that Roxie 77 is booked on that festival too. (Skogsröjet)

Playing with Iron Maiden in the US means major arenas and a lot of people.

RR: I can hardly wait. I´m so focused on it and that´s what I said I wanted to do last year at Sweden Rock. I made a commitment to myself that no matter what band it was, no matter what situation, I was gonna be touring on a bigger level.
At last year’s Sweden Rock Festival, all the guys in Buckcherry, the guys in Rob Zombie, the guys in Ozzy´s band were all coming into Sweden Rock, but then they were all leaving the next day to play another festival show in Germany or whatever! It wasn´t that I was sad or depressed, it was just that I got the inspiration and I wanted to be that guy going on to the next show as well.... so I played it in my head that by next year I was going to be either playing Sweden Rock or be on tour.
I´m convinced that things can happen like that if you really, really put it out there. Throughout the last eight months I´ve been thinking about that, but I was so focused that it wasn´t a complete out of the blue thing because it´s something that I wanted. I use this term and I don´t know where I picked it up from, but it´s called “Ask, believe, receive!”. You have to ask for it first and then you have to actually believe it´s gonna happen and then you actually have to let it happen, so those are the words that I just kept saying to myself a lot.

The tour that you´ve signed up for ends in August, but has there already been talk about making the tour longer or to go somewhere else?

RR: When Alice goes on tour it usually lasts for a while, but I don´t know what he´s got up his sleeve this year. There are some special surprises somewhere around August, but that´s the thing, I´ve been told to just “chill out, things will work themselves out”. For me it´s win/win. If he stays out on the road, then I'm out on stage doing what I love to do....if not, then I´ll get to spend more time with my two kids Lennon and Natashia Grace..
I´ll make it work either way, but obviously for me, I wanna be on stage as much as possible. All the careers and fake careers that I´ve had whether it´s trying to be a TV host or being the guy that can go around and talk about the greatest guitars in the world (Gibson), nothing makes me happier than being up on stage. I´ve learned that in Sweden it´s very difficult to just do ONE thing bandwise and make a living out of it. I´ve done a lot of things associated with music, but I also realize the one thing that makes me the most happy, is when I can get a guitar strapped around me and someone says “Go out there and make those people jump up and down!”. I know I´m good at that.

When do rehearsals start?

RR: We´re talking … late May. First off we´re gonna have guitar rehearsals. We have three guitar players and we´re gonna try to make the most of it. Instead of us playing the same thing, there will obviously be things worked out where we can really use the addition of the third guitar. Sometimes it might be harmonies and sometimes backing up a chord part that needs to be heavier. I´m looking forward to it.

Where are the rehearsals gonna take place?

RR: When we meet for guitar rehearsals that´s gonna be in LA. The tour actually starts in Biloxi, so there´s gonna be some pre production and that´s when we get out the stage. Basically it´s gonna be trying to find a place on stage where Alice doesn´t take a whip to you or stab you. You have to watch out so you don´t get a sword in your throat or something. (laughs) I heard that Tommy the guitar player got stabbed last tour and the sword actually went through the first layer of his leather coat....ouch!

You better check up on your life insurance!

RR: (laughs) Well, I´ve made it this far along. I´ve lived in fucking New York and Los Angeles during the 80´s and 90´s so… but I´ll check it out. (laughs)

Of the people in the band now, I know you´ve played with Chuck before, but have you played with any of the other guys?

RR: I haven't toured with the others besides Alice and Chuck. As for Orianthi, I´ve heard such good things about from everybody that say she´s a really an amazing player! Tommy I´ve known for years but never toured with, and Glen, I´ve been watching his tapes and stuff and he´s just a monster on the drums, so it´ll be great.
I really want to just be able to 'contribute'..... and that´s my role. I´m looking at myself like someone that can come in and really be a part of a band that hopefully when people walk away from a live show, they go, “Wow, Alice has had a lot of bands the last couple of decades, but this one was one of the most entertaining!” That´s my goal.
My idea is to play these songs the way they were recorded so when it comes time for me to play the 70´s albums, play it with the same tone like the 70´s Alice band had.... when it comes time to play the 80´s stuff, play it like that. Obviously you wanna have your own take on it, but at the same time, don´t take away from what the song originally stood for. That´s what the people are coming for and that´s what I´m gonna give 'em.

Do you think you´ll have any way of suggesting songs to play or is he just going with a setlist that he knows?

RR: The thing is, I think as the tour goes on, there might be openings to suggest songs and stuff, but right now I think Alice is really focusing on what he wants to have on the setlist, so when we get down there for rehearsals we´re gonna run it and probably decide if it feels right...if it does, we are ready to immediately roll..... At this point, Alicd knows which songs suit his voice and make him strong in the set and which ones he can relax a little bit on. Alice is like a heavy weight boxer, and during the course of the whole performance you gotta find places to relax a little bit so you finish strong..... I think he´s got a very strong setlist all figured out.

/Niclas

onsdagen den 11:e april 2012

Måste ses!



Utan tvekan en film som kommer att röra en till tårar och få en att inse vad som är viktigt i livet.

Mer om filmen HÄR

/Niclas

tisdagen den 10:e april 2012

Feistodon bonanza 120421!

















Ett givet köp på Record Store Day.
Lite snack om splitsjuan på Rolling Stone.

"It's really cool," Kelliher says of Feist's cover. "It's very haunting the way that she sings, 'I cut off my tongue.' This dainty girl singing these brutal lyrics. It kind of sent chills up my spine when I heard it."

Rolling Stone HÄR

/Niclas
Första återföreningsgiget med ATDI.














Bandets första spelning sedan de imploderade 2001 genomfördes i måndags.
Rolling Stone recar. Nu håller vi tummarna för ett Sverigegig.

ATDI HÄR

/Niclas
Hail Richard Teeter, hail The Dictators!



Gamle trummisen Richard Teeter har dött. Han blev 61.
Gå nu ut och köp upp hela katalogen med The Dictators! Du blir inte besviken.

/Niclas

söndagen den 8:e april 2012

KISS Tiger Stadium 1996!



Bootlegversion av hela giget. Tydligen en version som inte cirkulerat så mycket.
Enjoy!

/Niclas

lördagen den 7:e april 2012

Oh Henry my Henry!


Henry befinner sig i tjusiga Aspen, Colorado. Han ser skidåkning live för första gången, hyllar skandinavisk luft och blir glad över att Dolly Parton väljer buss framför hotell.

Henry HÄR

/Niclas

fredagen den 6:e april 2012

Intervju med Herman Li och Marc Hudson i Dragonforce!






För en tid sedan mötte jag upp Herman och Marc på Scandic mitt emot T-centralen i Stockholm.
Två trevliga snubbar och det blev snack om nya plattan, Marcs inträde i bandet och en hel del annat.


Do you consider this album more different than the previous ones? How do you look at it?

Herman Li: I think it´s definitely a different type of dynamics than the last album. I mean, we definitely touch on different kind of musical ways that we haven´t done before. The speed is obviously still there, but we´ve expanded our boundaries on this album. We´ve actually broken our own rules book as we said we would never do certain things in Dragonforce, and we actually did.

What would you say was the major difference recording this album now, compared to when you recorded the first Dragonforce album? Does it get easier or harder or more technical or is it just the same?

HL: Oh, it´s totally different now. The game has totally changed. Now I think we did about
90 % of the production or recording in my studio instead of being split 50/50 in the past, like on our last album and on our first album it was even less. I´ve learned so much about production and on how we record and how to do things. It´s not even close. It´s like a demo band versus a real experienced band.

These days with the technology it´s a lot of cut and paste. Like with the vocals, you can take a word from that take and another from that take and put it all together. Is there a lot of that?

HL: I think what´s different on this album… I´ll take you back to the last album where we actually wrote the songs, went straight into the studio, recorded the songs, came out and learned the songs and went on tour. This time it was kind of reversed. We wrote the songs, we played the songs together like jamming out and find what works as a band together, before recording the songs. It´s a very different process. In the pass we were fucking obsessive, checking the computer and making sure it was perfect, perfect, perfect. This time it was a fucking metal band. We recorded, it sounded great and I didn´t even look at the screen. That was a take and that´s where we were able to transfer the live, organic energy on this album that wasn´t on the last album.

Marc, you´ve come in as the new singer. Did you come in thinking “Oh, I´ve got all these cool ideas!” or did you have a lot more laidback approach?

Marc Hudson: To be honest I think I was neither of those two things. I didn´t come in confident thinking I´ve got all of this stuff and show Dragonforce I´m the shit, it wasn´t like that. But I wasn´t laidback either. I was more eager to please them and on a personal level as well, so like a quiet confidence if you will. I know that I can sing certain stuff, but I was no way cocky in anyway because these guys have been doing it for years and years and my experience is so small. I have a lot to offer but they had to kind of explore my voice with me and through each song. A high note here and an alternative here. It´s like I had the ability but I didn´t fully show it until the album recording got into the swing of it.

Were you a huge Dragonforce fan before you joined the band?

MH: Well, I wouldn´t say I was a huge Dragonforce fan, because I´m not a huge fan of many people really. There´s like one or two bands that I really am a huge fan of, but yeah, I´ve got all of their albums from “Valley of the damned” and I remember buying it when I was 15 years old. So yeah, got all the albums and went to see them in my hometown Oxford a few times like in 2005 and 2006, something like that. I was familiar with all their songs, which is a bonus and it made learning them a little bit easier and I was a big fan of their live shows and was hanging around after the show to get a signature. (laughs)

Auditioning singers, I guess there´s a lot of stuff that has to work? It´s not just you being a great singer, there´s the personal side to it as well and working in a group with five other guys. How much emphasis did you put on that when you were auditioning Marc? What was it besides his voice that made you feel that he was the one?

HL: Well, from Marc´s first video that he sent in, we liked it and we contacted him to sing another song. “Ok, he can sing this one and that one. Now, let´s send him a harder one.”. So the first song we sent was “Fury of the storm”, before we even bothered meeting up with him. After he sang that one it was “Oh, that´s good, not bad.”, because that´s a really difficult song, especially in its original key. Then we met to see how much he could drink and to see if he could be a partner in crime on tour as well. Even though most singers have to be very professional and they can´t drink that much.

MH: It´s the most boring job. (laughs) Every singer I´ve met so far say the one thing, “Stay off the drinking till afterwards!”.

HL: So we got to meet him and talk and chat for a few hours and that was cool and then we put him in the rehearsal room with us to see how he would perform. So after he´d done that, we did five songs twice and that was good but it still wasn´t over so went to see his band play and how his live performance was, like if it was awkward or if he did some strange things while singing. Then after that, there was another test. He had to go to my home studio to sing some new songs and see how fast he could learn those new songs and how he would sing them and see if he got pissed off when we started pushing him in the studio. “You have to sing this again! No, the melody goes this way, why don´t you try this!” and just see what kind of ideas he would bring to the song. After all that we were able to confirm him as the new singer. We worked with other singers too and talking to other guys, so it was about eight months, right?

MH: Yeah, I think it was eight months from when I sent the first video to when you phoned me up and said I got the job.

As I understand it, all the songs for the album were already written when Marc entered.

HL: Well, the basic frame work. While we were doing the auditions we were still writing them. After he joined the band and we could integrate his voice… and to be honest, it´s never written until the album is over, so when we realized what more he could sing and how his voice was different, we had to make certain changes in the songs to get the best out of his voice.

If there´s new stuff written and you´re supposed to sing on it and give your take on it, is there like a guide voice to listen to or one of the other guys singing? How does it work?

MH: Well, first I was given the songs with a vocal line on guitar and then the lyrics which were just guide lyrics and not final. Sometimes I listened to it and it was like “I can´t still make out how it´s supposed to be.”, so Sam would do the guide vocals on top. This was only the first two songs, so I had Sam mumbling into a microphone with the words.

HL: Yeah, in my kitchen. We did it in France. It was quite psycho. (laughs)

MH: Yeah, so I had it on my Ipod on repeat so I was listening to Sam just mumbling and I was going “Oh man, this is hard work.”. (laughs) Eventually when I came into the studio, I actually tried it out and went “Oh, so that´s what it´s supposed to be.”. That´s how I learned some of the first songs.

Cool! There´s ten songs on the album or nine, since there´s an acoustic version of a song too. How much was written and do you usually write an abundance of songs and pick from those? I guess there´s gonna be some bonus tracks too.

HL: On this one we wrote… I guess ten. There´s one that is a Japanese bonus, but that one was written 12 years ago. We don´t write that many songs. We don´t wanna dilute the making process and we don´t wanna write like 20 songs. The songs are so complex in Dragonforce. So many melodies and so much that needs to be put in and so many instruments that we just can´t write that many songs. We write the songs and make sure they are great or they won´t be on the album.

Could you see yourselves doing like what Van Halen did on their new record with a lot of demos that were written in the seventies? Pick old ideas and turn them into new songs or is it always a fresh start?

MH: That´s a bit what the bonus track is. Before Herman and Sam was doing this side project Shadow Warriors.

HL: We took a demo we recoded. Some fans heard it and liked it so we turned it into a bonus track. Some ideas get left over from the past, end up being used, but mainly the majority, like
95 % are all fresh written because what happens is you reflect us now as musicians. Not the past. I think it´s important that we put out music that reflects a current snapshot. Not that I´m saying that you can´t take an old idea and turn it into something great, but we don´t have anything left over. (laughs)

The artwork then? I read on the net actually, that a lot of people thought the artwork was really simple compared to the previous albums. What was the idea for the artwork on this album?

HL: We wanted to make a contrast to the last album which was very complicated. I really like the last album cover and I think it´s really intelligent. The guy who did it is a well known fucking famous artist. He´s all about the shapes. It´s a new chapter with the band right now. I wouldn´t say we´re reinventing ourselves or anything like that, it´s just continuation and that´s why we kept it kind of simple.

How are you gonna pick songs for the next tour? Do you change it around? Do you dig deep and pick stuff you haven´t played for years?

HL: Well, we´ve got new songs. (laughs)

MH: This time Herman and Sam are going through all of the old songs to find out which ones my voice is best suited for and also at the same time, get the ones that the band likes and make sure we rehearse them. I don´t know how many new songs, but we have a list of songs for the new tour. There´s brand new stuff and old stuff is there and it´s gonna be good.

How do you choose what to play from the new stuff? Is it like a giant band meeting and everyone gets a vote?

MH: It´s definitely not that. (laughs) It´s more like an e-mail that went around.

HL: I think Sam, me and Fred… I told Sam to write that e-mail after talking to me and talking to Sam and not talking to Fred… (laughs) and we pretty much agreed on it. Something that would add dynamics to the setlist that we didn´t have on the previous tours. This time there has to be things that break up the tempo, so the dynamics of the new show will be different.

This new label of yours, Electric Generation Recordings, are the reasons for it pure financially or what´s the idea behind it?

HL: As we all know now, the labels are disappearing and getting swallowed up and we just don´t wanna have this album coming out and suddenly the label disappear and then you can´t do a tour, there´s no promotion, fans can´t get hold of it. We´ve always been in control of our destiny because we write our own music, do our own production and the live show and all that, we plan it ourselves. We don´t pay some guy to do it, so this is just the natural way again to make sure that the album gets there. We go and do promotion and interviews.

Creating your own label, will that mean more work for you?

HL: Well, we got more work than we actually expected. (laughs). There was a lot of work and a lot of planning ahead and we had to make the album and talk to our manager to make sure everything was balanced. Yeah, it´s definitely more work but that´s here in Europe. In the US and Canada it´s still Roadrunner and they do a great job.

There are a lot more artists doing what you´ve done now and turning it into more of a DIY attitude. Give it a few more years and it feels like there will be no labels or just two in charge of everything. It´s a weird situation. Kids today just download stuff to their phone and when I was a kid and I still do it today, there was the artwork and the liner notes, the thank you list, the producer´s name and all that. That whole thing gets lost these days.

HL: Yeah, and of course we´re releasing the album on vinyl. Unfortunately all the new technology is supposed to make the music sound better, but it became worse somehow, at leat to my ears as I´ve been listening to music in different ways. It sounds like shit on the Ipod with the compression and vinyl sounds really warm and nice so we release it on vinyl so people who wants to hear music will appreciate it.

Yeah, it´s pretty cool that sales for vinyl is going up every year. But it´s still that if no one buys your record there´s no label that will be able to give you the money to go on tour or whatever, so it is weird. No matter what people say, an album is a piece of art that you put your blood, sweat and tears into. It´s gotta feel weird for people to just take it and not pay for it.

HL: What´s interesting is that when we were mixing the album and we were deciding on the song list, I was thinking “Does it even fucking matter that I´m thinking of a song list?”. Do people care these days? Maybe they just wanna hear two songs. But I´m happy the way we did the song list and maybe someone will really appreciate all the work that went into it.

Yeah, people are downloading just songs and I remember reading last year about Tommy Lee saying that there was no point in recording a new Crüe album because people just want songs and other artists have said the same. They´ll record one song and release it and then another and not do albums anymore. That´s weird as well since the whole experience of listening to a whole album is to listen from beginning to end. Another thing. Being six members in a band, if you have to vote for anything it would be easier if you were five. With six you could end up with three against three.

HL: I don´t think it really works that way to be honest. I think everyone in the band do what they´re good at. So certain things that you´re not good at, you wouldn´t interfere. On this album everyone worked hard with what they´re best at. I think that´s one of the big changes on this album, there was more effort from everybody. I´m not saying I did everything before, but Sam and I always did the most of the albums, beginning to the end. Now we were able to get everybody to do their best.

I read that John Petrucci from Dream Theater is a big influence on you. Have you listened a lot to him?

HL: Yeah definitely!

What is it about his playing?

HL: I was really into “Images and words” when that album came out. I had it on tape and I don´t know how many times I listened to it and I´ve still got the tape. Dream Theater back then showed me a different side of music that I´d never heard before. I mean, I had a few Rush albums, but they weren´t taking it in that kind of way, so I learned how to play fast. Actually from watching the video to “Pull me under”. That made a difference to me.

You then Marc, are there any favorite vocalists?

MH: Yeah definitely! I don´t like to put it down to just one person because there are so many I can think of. Michael Kiske from Helloween…

I´m actually talking to him tomorrow.

MH: No way. Say hi from me! (laughs)

HL: “Who the fuck is this guy?”. (laughs)

MH: Michele Luppi from Vision Devine, Sebastian Bach, Bruce Dickinson. I just kind of like the high range vocalists.

Touring wise then? Where are you gonna go first?

HL: We´re gonna go to America first and then we´ll go to other continents and make our way back to Europe after the summer. We´ll be in Sweden around October.

Too bad you´re gonna miss out on the summer here.

HL: To be honest, Sweden is always one of the most fun countries we play in. We´ve always had a blast and I´ve got friends here.

Ok, thank you guys!

HL: Thank you!

/Niclas