by Ryan Starr
As most of us are aware, folk and Viking metal have blown up recently. Because of that I’ve done many features for this site with various folk bands. To continue the trend I wanted to interview the very first band that got me into the Viking metal genre, and since their latest album just came out, now is the perfect time to do it. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Thyrfing.
Answers by Patrik Lindgren (guitars)
Greetings, and thanks for doing this. I’m a huge fan. As a matter of fact, you were my first introduction into Viking metal. You made a huge impact on my tastes in metal.
You’re welcome. I’m glad to hear that.
Obviously, Thyrfing has changed since your debut came out. What inspired your change in sound over the years?
It mostly comes from ourselves I’d say – the music we listen to, our states of mind as persons and simply the music that we want to create ourselves in the Thyrfing context. It’s hard to really pinpoint sources of inspiration, there are many indeed.
What is the reaction to your new album Hels Vite and Jens Rydén being your new vocalist?
The feedback from Europe has been nothing but great – both when it comes to the album itself and Jens’ performance. And as the album is now getting officially released in the US, we are of course very eager to see how the reception is going to be over there.
Do you think that your change in style has influenced the rest of the Viking/pagan metal scene?
That is hard to say. It would be a little presumptuous to assume that other bands are taking action due to us, but on the other hand it seems like our older material had some influence on some current bands. So I don’t think it’s a long shot that we will have some impact in the long run.
Will newer material be even darker than the last three albums?
Impossible to say right now, but mostly likely it will be quite in the same style.
Is there a desire to go back to the older, more “jolly” sound? Perhaps just for a song or two?
Not at the moment, and I can’t really see it happening in the near future either. This is something that belongs to our past. Nothing that we are embarrassed about or anything, but simply not the kind of music we are interested in creating today.
What do you think of this new folk metal trend?
It seems like it’s some kind of buzz going on at the moment and if this leads to that more people are checking out Thyrfing
– fine with me. It also somewhat improves the situation for gigs and festivals for us. As with most subgenres and styles, there are both good and less good acts – you have to be selective just as with any kind of music.
Do you think it’s missing the point by taking a more “Disney” approach?
Ha-ha...well, maybe. There are both a merry and more mellow side of the folk music in the world, so I guess this also reflects when combining it with metal music. We have used the more melodic and up-tempo themes too, so I don’t think I should be bashing anyone else about it, now just because we are making slower music now.
Since Thyrfing’s birth, you have only made one appearance in the US, Heathen Crusade; any particular reason?
There are many practical issues to land a gig in the US, and also we have not been able to do longer tours, and the offers for single US shows or shorter tours doesn’t come along very often for a European band.
Any hope for a US tour or more Festival dates in the US? Perhaps on a future Paganfest tour?
There is always a chance, so we are constantly hoping for the future. But there are no concrete plans or offers at the moment.
Any other touring or support for the Hels Vite?
We will do a few festivals and selected club gigs in Europe, but no longer tours are planned for now. Check out our MySpace for a fully up-to-date festival schedule.
Thanks for taking the time to do this and we in the US hope to see more from you in the future!
Yes, we hope to see you too! Thanks for the interview and support.
Official Thyrfing Website
Official Thyrfing MySpace
Official Regain Records Website