"All About The Album" - If you'd like to feature your band/album, email: urban
ECLIPSE- The Swedish hard rock band and their latest studio album "Armageddonize". - "Now I'm living for the first time. I will never walk away. Now I'm living, living like I'm dying everyday". Listening to "Armageddonize" and its power ballad where the above mentioned quote is taken from, the much needed break and breather from the massive overkill of sonic melodic hard rock on display. Nope. It's really NOT about softies and slow numbers since there's plenty of uplifting monster guitar tracks on the record and merely the one ballad (but what a great ballad!!). Find out more about the album and the band. Here's lead vocalist/guitarist: Erik Mårtensson
Your latest album is entitled 'Armageddonize' can you explain the meaning behind this.
It sounds hard rock, ballsy and has that 80's vibe we all love. Magnus came up with the title Armageddon and it was so boring and then I said "What about Armageddonize"? We all thought it was great and that was it.
How much attention do you pay fans/friends -regarding the kind of record they expect from you?
To be honest we didn't think of it at all. From Are You Ready To Rock we always do the songs we want to hear and if it's good enough for us it's probably good enough for our fans. I don't mean that we don't care about our fans but we must write from the heart and love what we do. We must convince ourselves first if we wanna convince our friends.
How long did this CD take to make from start to finish?
Just under three months from the start of the recordings until we delivered the final masters to our label. We had some fragments of songs beforehand but almost everything was written very fast and spontaneous. No time for second thoughts.
What kind of sound, production-wise, did you have in mind prior to recording?
I didn't want to change too much from Bleed & Scream as I wanted to continue with the same formula. But as we went along I started to change quite a few things here and I think this album sounds much better than the previous one. I've mixed so many albums since B&S so I've become better at the craft. But it's still a classic set up. Cranked Marshall's, Screaming vocals and pounding drums!
Any experimental miking and/or recording techniques on your record?
Not really. I usually stick with what's working. It's better to focus on the creative and musical side than on techniques. But it's of course important to get it right from the start and get the sounds you want on each instrument already at the recording stage. Otherwise it's impossible to get a great sounding album.
What's the secret behind a good production and sound?
Good songs, good arrangements and performances. And also getting a lot of energy on "tape" that's really important. But just as I said, getting each sound right already at recording and don't think that it will be fixed later in the mix or mastering. Only amateurs think it works that way and they are more than you can imagine. If you wanna have the guitar sound like Malcolm Young (AC/DC) and it doesn't sound like that when you mike your amp. Well, it's because it doesn't sound as good and it won't be fixed later. It's gotta be there from the start.
What kind of equipment are you using in the studio? Are you 'up-to-date' or old school?
I'm pretty up to date I would say. I do analogue processing on the way in but after it's been recorded digitally it stays there. I've sold all my analogue gear in favor for digital plug ins as they sounds fantastic nowadays and they keep getting better at an incredible speed. It's the future. Period. But I have an SSL Nucleus "console" so I still have the mixing desk feel while mixing. Makes you listen more than looking and it really speeds up the workflow.
Are there any 'crazy' behind the scenes anecdotes from these sessions that you can share?
This time the only crazy thing was the pace we had while writing and recording the album. And that also incoperates doing videos, coming up with album titles, artwork etc etc... But one absolutely crazy thing happen during the recordings and that was that my dad unexpectedly passed away just at the age of 67 so that really influenced the whole album a lot. Both the melodies and the lyrics of course.
Any overall theme of mood that you were trying to capture while writing these songs?
We always try to write songs with integrity even if they're catchy. Stay true to what we want and not what others want. We also write pretty minor key songs but with classic riffs combined with a lot of melodies. Songs that will stand the test of time. The lyrical themes are usually quite dark and this time a lot of the themes were of course influenced by the events that happened during the recordings.
Tell us something about "Blood Enemies". What is the meaning behind the dark title?
Just that example is probably the worst one you could pick, ha, ha, ha. It's not a deep lyrical theme but it was words that fitted the song like a glove. We thought the song had a very Nordic melody theme and we wanted to have an almost Viking kind of lyric to it. I love the song and it sounds great live.
Have you always been the 'melodic hard rock' kid or do you have the 'disco' past?
Ha, ha, ha! Well we all have our musical history. I have a three year older brother that listened a lot to hard rock so as long as I can remember I've always listened to hard rock. I grew up listening to Motley Crue, WASP, Whitesnake and AC/DC. the same bands I still think are among the best today. But having that said, when I was around 6-7 years old I bought my first album and it was the Swedish euro-vision artist Herrey's album "Gyllene Skor". I thought it was OK back then but the second album I bought was "The Last Command" with WASP so I came out of my "disco" years pretty fast :)
How would you describe the live scene in Sweden? Can you find venues to play
There are a lot of bands but not as many places to play live at I'm afraid. Having that said we're doing six or seven dates in Sweden starting March 5th in Stockholm.
Who are your influences and heroes/heroins?? (music-wise)
The bands I mentioned before. The first time I really heard the guitar, (I mean like could hear the individual instrument), I must have been around nine. I was in our living room and put on the album "Flick Of The Switch" which I had borrowed from a class mate. And that was the moment I knew that I wanted to play guitar and kind of the start of it. Asides from that I really enjoy a lot of music and styles and if it's a good song then it's a good song no matter the genre. But of course if it has a distorted guitar it kind of helps!
If there's anything you'd like to add, say, please do
We're doing a full and first European tour with Eclipse this year and we really can't wait to go out there and play this album live for all the fans. Starting in Sweden, UK, Spain, Italy, Norway, Finland, Germany, Czech Republic, Poland, Austria, Switzerland and even more to be announces soon. Thanks for having this interview with me.
Interview by: Urban "Wally" Wallstrom, (c) 2015 RockUnited.Com - Contact or simply send your answers to above address.
(c) 2015 RockUnited.Com - Contact or simply send your answers to above address.