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Interview with Anders about TGCD

Discussion in 'Katatonia' started by °scarlet°, Feb 4, 2006.

  1. °scarlet°

    °scarlet° i breathe to memories

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  2. insidethefall

    insidethefall somewhere nowhere

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    thanks, very good read!
     
  3. Verwuestung

    Verwuestung I am Damo Suzuki

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    ahthankyouverymuch
     
  4. jptk

    jptk Member

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    awesome
     
  5. Discouraged+One

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    good....goooooooooood.
     
  6. ether

    ether °°§°°

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    grazie davvero interessante!!!

    I miss so much a kata concert in Italy, it´s so nice when they play there! The audience is really warm and there´s a special feeling there.
    I really hope there will be soon some dates and hopefully I can come back a couple of days to see them in my country!
     
  7. Olivarus

    Olivarus New Metal Member

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    Fantastic read!

    Thanks very much, i love how the interviewer gets the same answer for three of his questions! Made it all the more entertaining! #

    I really hope the guys tour in England........
     
  8. Cis

    Cis Member

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    Nice interview, thanks for posting it!
    I like the idea of a third guitar player, could be cool in some songs. But don`t forget to turn the bass loud enough then, already with 2 guitars it was quite hard to hear Mattias on some gigs.
    Or why not a second bass? Katatonia going Big Band, ha :D
    Though no keyboard player, I agree with that.
     
  9. Aprilhäxan

    Aprilhäxan pagan queen

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    And here is another one, just in case if some of you didn't read it, from Blistering.com
    Too lazy to post a link, sorry:p

    By: David E. Gehlke
    Let this be known right off the bat: Katatonia are metal’s most deadly weapon.

    Sure, that may seem like a rash, fan-boy type statement, especially for those who think metal’s resurgence comes in the form of any one of those cookie-cutter, dime-a-dozen, “hey ma, like my eyeliner?” metalcore bands. Shadows Fall? Nah, wait until Atlantic Records grows impatient with only 200,000 units sold then we’ll see what happens. Lamb Of God? Good band, but ‘pure’ American Metal belongs to Pantera, and we know they’re never coming back. How about Opeth? Brilliant band, maybe too cerebral and uncanny for the boneheaded masses and even some of our ‘core brethren.

    So why Katatonia? Let us first point to their 7-album catalog that contains countless earthly gems of dark, heart-felt, potent metal, which is long on lyrical content and depth. From the first forays into depressive doom metal with Dance Of December Souls to the mesmerizing beauty of Brave Murder Day, onto the subtle, chilling tones of Discouraged Ones, over to the catchy, impatient mastery of Tonight’s Decision, leading into Last Fair Deal Gone Down’s melodic grace, which set the stage for the album of the decade, Viva Emptiness. Now we’re here, at The Great Cold Distance, the album that should be leading the metal charge into the second-half of the decade.

    For anyone with any semblance of a pulse, The Great Cold Distance should send shivers down the spine. This is not metal for the light-hearted, nor this is background music. From top to bottom, The Great Cold Distance is graced with song after song of Jonas Renske’s graceful, yet subdued vocals merged with Anders Nyrstrom’s flowing, eerie guitar work. Captured in a dark, foreboding soundscape, many of the songs here eclipse some of Katatonia’s most desperate work heard on Discouraged Ones and Brave Murder Day.

    Calling from his home in Sweden, Nystrom laid the down the law on several matters ranging from label problems, all the way to his disgust for Opeth comparisons.

    Blistering.com: With Viva Emptiness, do you think it opened up any new doors for the band? Did it introduce you to a larger audience?
    Anders: Yeah, I think so. I don’t know if I’m going to call it more accessible or not, but its also a little contradictory because that album is lot more aggressive than our previous albums, but at the same time, it was more accessible.

    Blistering.com: I remember reading somewhere that prior to the writing of that album, you guys were mad that Creed was writing heavier songs than you. Is that something that fueled you?
    Anders: (laughs). You’re sitting watching TV and hearing Creed being heavier than you, it’s really like, “wow man, we have to do something about that right now.”

    Blistering.com: You’ve been on Peaceville for the last couple of albums. Do you feel its still the right label for the band?
    Anders: Actually, I’m going to be honest with this one. Our record contract is going to expire with the next album and I think we’re going to leave the label. We have zero promotion going on in the States for us right now. It’s been like that for ages and I feel we could do so much better in the States. We need a label that can stand behind us and push us and right now, we don’t even have a label that backs us. That’s the main reason I think its time to leave Peaceville and step up the ladder.

    Blistering.com: You did some US dates in ’04. How did they go?
    Anders: We only have played there twice in our career. The first time was the Milwaukee Metal Fest (in 1999), but we screwed up on our own accord by not having our own equipment and not doing a soundcheck. The other one was for the Brave Words fest a few years ago. It was pretty good although the festival itself was pretty power metal oriented. I saw a video from it and saw people leaving with a weird expression on their face like, “what’s this? This isn’t power metal!” They were stroking their mallets then leaving the hall…

    Blistering.com: It’s becoming more difficult to categorize Katatonia. Can you offer up any help?
    Anders: Preferably, I’d rather have you hit the ‘play’ button and here you go, but in terms of words, I would say we’re focusing on dark things in general. Both lyrically and conceptually, we’re pretty dark. And its also very heavy, not has heavy as the most extreme metal bands, but we focus a lot on atmosphere too.

    Blistering.com: So I’m going to assume the band is much heavier live than on record…
    Anders: From Viva… on we’ve really focused getting everything together for adjusting things to be good live and going down heavy. We still play songs from Brave Murder Day; we haven’t touched the songs from the albums before that (1992’s Dance Of December Souls), we haven’t played anything off that since 1996.

    Blistering.com: There’s a lot more dynamics on The Great Cold Distance than before. Are still heading for more soft/loud arrangements?
    Anders: We’re always working on the dynamics and that’s what keeps its interesting. You can always improve on those aspects and you can always make it heavier although it’s a clichй saying it. I think that’s a good, expandable part of it.
    Blistering.com: Your patented guitar harmony layering technique that you used frequently on your past albums is not really prevelant here. Have you run out of ideas in that format?
    Anders: Actually, I have a lot of those ideas in me, but they often collide with Jonas’ vocals. When I do those lead melodies, they are pretty strong hooks, so you’re taking away some of the potential for Jonas’ clean vocals to expand. If I threw those in, it would be considered more like a solo and I’m not interested in doing solos. Also, I think its more interesting for myself to be more riff-oriented these days than just standing there, playing those leads.

    Blistering.com: When you came up with that technique, did you have any idea how many bands would copy that later? (Prime suspects include: Rapture, Slumber, Daylight Dies, and Noumena)
    Anders: No, I had no idea. I had thought this concept was bloody great. Just having these leads be over a wall of guitars in the back was great. We aren’t doing that much these days, but when I see other bands doing it, I think its great and I feel honored because most of them admit where its coming from.

    Blistering.com: As with most Katatonia albums, there are several standout tracks on the new album, this time being ‘Soil Song’, ‘July’, and ‘My Twin’. What stands out for you?
    Anders: That’s so hard. Its changes from day-to-day and I haven’t listened to the album a whole lot since we recorded it in the summer. I’ve had this absence from it so I could get the excitement back from when we wrote the songs. I though to myself that I should wait until the final thing comes out and sit down like a fan on the sofa and read the lyrics and have it cranked and see what I think.

    Blistering.com: This is the third album in a row with the same lineup. What’s going on with that?
    Anders: Finally we have good band chemistry. It took us 7-8 years to get this way. We had a mess, such a mess in finding persons to function with and have in the studio, all the way to understanding the concept of Katatonia and have similar kinds of experience with that function, too. We don’t want to have a couple of people just here to play music then have some journalists ask about the ‘darkness thing’ and they’d go, “what?”

    Blistering.com: Katatonia has been around for over decade. What is there left to explore?
    Anders: Musically, there’s a lot more to explore, definitely. If I would say this now, people would say we stole this idea from Opeth, but we’ve always been thinking of doing a complete softer album, so we could do that too. People would think we ripped off their Damnation album, so it’s a bit awkward.

    Blistering.com: Something that has always bothered me is how people compare Katatonia to Opeth, but the only connection is that you are close friends with them and Mikael sang on the Brave Murder Day album.
    Anders: That’s it exactly! We’re always getting compared them in every review, every fucking time! All it is, is that we’re best friends and we’ve toured together a lot. I don’t know what people are trying to build up with that. Its such a limiting way of doing that and if you put on the two albums, put on the new Opeth and put on the new Katatonia, you’ll definitely hear its not the same fucking band doing that (sighs).

    Blistering.com: When you released the Brave Yester Days compilation two years ago, there is a hidden gem in the form of the song, ‘Quiet World’. Why did that get left off Discouraged Ones?
    Anders: That’s interesting, I think Jonas wanted it off the album actually, not because I did the lyrics or anything, he just wanted it off the album. Then, he came up with a very good reason and that was, he wanted to make the mini-cd (the Saw You Drown EP, released in 1998) more interesting. Having the b-sides on that mini-cd made it more exclusive.

    Blistering.com: When Jonas lost his voice in the mid-90’s and you went off and did Diabolical Masquerade, did you ever envision you’d be at this point in your career?
    Anders: I thought about that earlier today. If you played the new album for me 10 years ago, it would be a big shock. I had no clue what was going to happen, but I’m very happy we managed to get everything back on track.

    Blistering.com: Is it true that during the recording of your first demo, Jonas was having a bad day on the drums and (producer) Dan Swano made him slow everything down?
    Anders: Totally true. Its one of those things that you believe it’s a fate-thing going on. If Jonas didn’t have that bad day and Swano didn’t sit down and say, “what do you think about this?” who knows where we’d be today?

    Blistering.com: Will you ever get the inspiration again to do another Diabolical Masquerade album? You really left on a high note with 2001’s (godly) Death’s Design.
    Anders: That’s one of the reasons why I couldn’t do the follow-up. Personally, I felt so much pressure to do a follow up. Its great having a challenge of doing a new album, that’s what fuels you, but I think there was no way I was going to top the last one. When you don’t have the motivation to do something, you’re just going to fall down. I will not release an album that’s better than that album. That wasn’t one of those albums that was where you have 8 tracks to listen to. It was beyond that. It was let’s fuck things up and do something weird.

    Blistering.com: Finally, what are your plans for 2006?
    Anders: Probably a few dates here and there in the States. I don’t have high hopes for a full tour, though. We scored a new agent in Europe, so there will be at least 2 full tours and of course the summer festivals, so 2006 looks like a good year for Katatonia.
     
  10. Psy

    Psy New Metal Member

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  11. Sitronade

    Sitronade New Metal Member

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    Thank you all for posting links...

    I hope they visit Montenegro or Norway... =)
     
  12. Asra

    Asra Music Lover

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    Quiet World is indeed a GODLY song. It's one of my favorite Katatonia songs ever... it's just a shame that it's so hard to find.

    Thanks for posting the links to these. Fascinating stuff.
     

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