"All About The Album" - If you'd like to feature your band/album, email: urban
HOUSTON - the Swedish AOR band has just released their second album of original material, and it's been getting rave reviews from the melodic press. We liked it too, and thought that they should be interrogated about it. And cheese, of course. Drummer Freddie answered our questions.
1. How has the reaction to your latest CD been?
Freddie: First of all, thank you for having us! The reaction's been really
good, almost better so far, than the previous albums. But you never know
when a bad review's gonna turn up...
2.How long did this CD take to make from start to finish, recording-wise?
From song writing to hear it's taken about a year. The recording and
production has taken a little less, maybe ten months.
3.What kind of 'sound', production wise, did you have in the back of your
mind, prior to entering the studio?
A little bigger than the first album, a little more modern, but not too much
of today's "hit the ceiling mixes and masters".
4.What kind of input did the producer have during the process?
Ricky Delin, our keyboard player and producer had pretty much all the
production input. I tend to write most of the songs together with him, then
he puts his his own mark on the production.
5.And are you pleased with the final outcome? (sound - production wise)
Very much, yes. I think that we couldn't have a much better job anywhere
else with these songs.
6.Did the producer use any (weird) experimental miking and/or recording
Not that I know of. Then again, we have a pretty special writing process I
can tell you about. We write a couple of chords to a chorus and perhaps a
verse, then we take turns in going into the vocals booth and sing a lot of
rubbish words to the melodies we hear inside our heads. After that, we take
the best of the lot and write the rest of the words to it. A very effective
way of "singing your heart out"!
7.How did you go on about capturing your 'live sound' in the studio, or
perhaps you didn't?
For us it's the other way around, it always begins in the studio. We then
try to get as much out live as possible. It can be hard sometimes, because
you have your perfect version already recorded, sort of like a painting
already finished. The blueprint.
8.Please inform us about your favourite songs and lyrical highlights and
For me it's "Talk to Me" on this record. It's a very true song with a very
real lyric, having to do with missing your loved ones, even though they are
still with you. At least that's my interpretation.
9.Any overall theme of mood that you're trying to capture while writing
Well, one important theme for me is a spiritual one. There isn't much
spirituality in Sweden, that I know of, a part from religion (which isn't
very spiritual over here, to be honest). To have your body and mind come
together and work as one is important to me. I think that comes across in
10.Did the record company interfere with anything on your "sound" and songs?
Nothing at all. A very nice thing if you are a band like us and you already
know what you are supposed to do.
11.Are there any 'crazy' behind the scenes anecdotes from these sessions
that you can share with us?
Sorry to dissapoint you here - I guess we are just too boring people to come
up with any crazy stuff, we are too much into the work at hand.
12. Is Houston going to perform these songs live and if so, who's going to
be in the band?
We are not sure right now, but we have had some interesting offers.
Hopefully we will know more soon. As for the live band I think we will ask
the same people that play on the album.
13. You have a quest vocalist on the album, Minnah Karlsson who sings a duet
with Hank on one of the songs. Where did you find her?
Minnah was found through Ricky's contacts - she sang with some really
special people live, and Tommy Denander and Ricky became great fans of her,
which of course by now we all are.
14. I will ask you about the band's name, and this will be a complicated
a) How did you come up with it?
Well, all the American bands of the mid 70's that had anything to do with
what we call AOR or melodic rock seemed to be named after cities or states.
So to honor them we chose a name that would evoce that period and that
music, and at the same time make you associate with space-like album covers.
b) It sounds very
similar to the finnish word "juusto" (cheese), that doesn't have anything to
do with it, does it? :)
That depends on what kind of person you are, I guess, and how you interpret
15. If there's anything you'd like to add, say, please do:
Thanks a bunch for having us and thank you to all out there supporting
Interview questions by Urban "Wally" Wallstrom and Kimmo Toivonen
Photos from Rock'nGrowl
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