Interview conducted September 02 2007
Interview published January 18 2008
Degradead has recently finished
recording their debut album in IF Studios - as the first band ever. This
has created quite a buzz around the five young guys from Huddinge outside
of Stockholm, who with their music managed to impress members from In
Flames so much that they decided to produce Degradead's first album. Metal
Covenant couldn't afford to miss the opportunity to sit down with Kenneth
Helgesson (drums) and Michel Bärzén
(bass) from the band that everybody will most likely talk about in a few
Niklas: Have you had a good time so far
on this event?
Michel: It's been really fun. We've been seeing
a lot o people, like booking agencies and record companies and such.
It's the first time we're here on Swedish Metal Expo, so it's been
Can you tell our readers who don't know about Degradead who you guys are?
Kenneth: I would describe us as a metal band
that plays death/thrash, with a lot of melodies. It's fast, hard and
heavy at the same time. We have been around since 2004 with the members
that are in the band now.
Niklas: For a long time your band name was
Septima, but you were recently forced to change that due to right issues.
How did it feel to give that up?
Kenneth: It was really tough, actually. Many
people had started to know about Septima over the years. So it was
tough in a way, but at the same time it was a boost for us, to start
anew with everything. It has been both negative and positive, but
mostly positive, I think. And the fans haven't had much trouble to
gather that we have just changed our band name.
Niklas: You have just finished recording
your debut album in Gothenburg - In Flames' new studio to be precise.
You were the first band ever to record there. How was it possible to begin
Niklas: Take us through the whole recording
process. How was it working with the legends in In Flames?
Michel: It was really exciting, because they
had so many suggestions and ideas that we had never thought of. It
was cool to get an insight in how they work. It's great because IF
Studios consists of three smaller studios, so three of us could record
at the same time, each with an own member of In Flames that helped
us. (Kenneth:) It's great because initially
all of us had firm ideas about how the songs should sound, and after
spending some time there we started hearing the songs with new ears.
(Michel:) We also tuned our guitars down to
C, which made a huge different to our sound. All in all, it was a
Niklas: Is there a big difference between
the songs as they are now from when you only had demo versions of them?
Have you added and removed much?
Michel: We have done both. The greatest difference
is the singing, I think. It's much clearer than before, and there
are more background vocals and such. (Kenneth:)
In one song we even decided to add another chorus, because we felt
that we needed one. We never really saw it this way before, because
we have always felt that when we have written a song - it is done.
Not anymore though.
Niklas: If you were to pick one song from
the album that you feel extra pleased with, which one would it be?
Michel: For me that would have to be Genetic
Waste, hands down. (Kenneth:) I love
that one too, probably because that's the newest song. But I also
have to mention Burned, which has always been very thrashy and fast,
but it has grown extremely much in the studio. That's easily one of
Was it hard choosing among your material to find the ten songs that finally
were recorded for the album?
Kenneth: It was really difficult at first when
we had to write down a list for the songs to record, but at the same
time it felt like the five of us agreed on which songs to choose.
It's a bit scary since this is our first album and it means a lot
of pressure, but I'm happy they way it went.
Niklas: In just a few hours you are going
to perform here on Swedish Metal Expo. How would you describe yourself
as a live act?
Niklas: There are many new Swedish bands
inspired by the Gothenburg-sound these days, like for example Avatar and
Sonic Syndicate that performed here yesterday. How do you think Degradead
stand out from the rest?
Kenneth: We in the band practically only listen
to hard rock, and I've never heard a band that sounds like us. I know
that this is what all bands say, but it's actually true. Sure, we
have bits of Gothenburg-metal in us, but that's definitely not all
there is. We have our own ideas in our sound as well, and I really
think that we stand out.
Niklas: If you could only recommend one
single Degradead-song to people who have never heard you - which one would
Niklas: What will Degradead be doing during
the upcoming months?
Niklas: Any last words to the fans?
also: review of the
gig the same night »»