Welcome to St Demonius - Christer Andersson speak out.
Sweden has it's fair share of some of the finest musicians in the world, too many to mention but most are guitar wizards. Tad Morose are one of the bands that have been around since 91 when guitarist Christer 'Krunt' Andersson former what is now one of the best underground Power/ Progressive metal bands from Sweden. The band 1st released their debut 'Leaving the past Behind' in 93 through Black Mark records in Germany. This debut album was a great debut which reminded me of Crimson Glory, Black Sabbath (Dio/ Martin era) meets Savatage. The band later on recorded their 2nd album 'Sender of Thoughts' in 95 also released on Black Mark.
Another 6 albums were released until the band released their current album 'St Demonius', which came out last year in 2015 through Despotz Records. I managed to chat with Christer, a long time friend to find out more about this album and what the band has been up too since we last did an interview which was almost like 13yrs ago. Here is what he had to say, in the meantime check out the new album it's a great dark and interesting album,
Looking back at the bands previous albums, which is you're favourite and why?
"Well Jase I'd hate to disappoint you but I have to say that I like the current one the most and you always try to do the best you can and for some reason you can always like the new one the most. I think that with each album you get to become a better musician and you also get to know the people around you more too and better at writing songs. Out of the older albums I think that Century Media is has to be 'Modus Vivendi' is the bets selling out of the previous albums for sure, and for the Black Mark albums I am not sure which is the best album. I think that no band gets enough promotion from their labels."
Do you ever see anything of you're old members, I know Urban is doing 'Serious Black' and Anders is in 'Wolf', what about the rest of the old members?
"Well we sometimes see Daniel as he lives not too far from where we live, so sometimes we bump into each other. He is a really nice guy and great guitarist, he has a band called 'Trail of Murder'. I haven't seen Fredrik our old keyboardist in some time but I think he plays in a progressive metal band called 'Morifade'. I spoke to Urban a few weeks ago on Skype, there is no bad blood between us at all."
So where did you meet the current members of the band? It's been so long since we did an interview and Peter has stayed true to you since 94, that's a good friendship there on it's own.
"Well yeah Peter has been with the band since 94, he's a great guy and a great drummer. Tommy our bass I have known for years as we played in high school bands together, so he is no stranger really. I have known Ronnie for about 20yrs and as for Kenny I have known him since his old band when they recorded their album here in Bollnas his band was called 'Citadel' and he also played with Swedish band 'Torch'".
How long as the current line-up been together now?
"Well I think Ronnie & Tommy in 2908 and Kenny in 2011 & he lives a pretty far distance from the band so we don't get to rehearse much with him sadly. It would be easier if we all lived near to each other."
How do you compare Ronnies voice to that or Urban and Kristians?
"I think Kristian's voice was more Blues inspired whereas Urban was more technical and hit the high notes. Ronnie is pretty much like Urban, he can hit the high notes and I haven't heard him sing out of tune yet, I think he is a little rawer with his voice."
Do you still get compared to the likes of Savatage meets Black Sabbath (Dio/ Martin era)?
"Yes I think we still do, there is nothing we can do about it. It is a really good thing to hear that as I love both bands.
How do you see you're music as a progression from each album?
"I think we keep on getting better with the song writing we write more interesting songs. I think we are writing better now."
Why did you change the logo from the old one to the new one? The older one is way better and I am sure the fans would think the same.
"I was never in charge of the logo, the old one was just a standard thing and it has changed because some older members might of thought we needed a change so it has been changed a few times. Bands like Iron maiden never change their logos and I think a lot of bands shouldn't do that. (Ed: I really think you should go back to the old logo for the next CD). I think it's kind of boring so I no what you mean."
How long did it take to record the 'Revenant' album?
"Well it took forever to record because we lost some files, had to re-record them again and change some parts of the songs, so it did take some time to record. I think it took about 2-3yrs to sort it out. We could of done it in a few weeks, but we all have jobs, families so with the problems we had it too longer than we expected."
What songs from that album do you like and why?
"I like 'Beneath the veil of crying souls' we did a video for this song & is a good one, I also like 'Babylon' there good songs, I also like 'Spirit World' too as there fun to play on guitar."
How does the band write songs? Is there just one member who writes the music and Ronnie who does the lyrics?
"Well it's basically a band thing, Ronnie and myself come up with the basic ideas and then re re arrange them in rehearsals."
Moving on now let's talk about the current album 'St Demonius', who came up with the title for the album?
"Well I think Ronnie came up with the title and we didn't really have any other names. I think we played around with the name... something like St Ammonias."
I see the album cover is very much like 'Them' by King Diamond, did that cover inspire you? Who did the artwork have they worked with the band before?
(laughing) "Yeah I think we moved next door to grandma haha The artwork was done by the same artist who did the last album 'Revenant', her name is Isis Sousa."
So how long did it take to record the current album 'St Demonius'?
"Well it didn't take as long as the last one, I think it was done in a couple of months. I also think been with a newer line-up you learn what you can and cannot do and get to know each other. The drums where recorded at Ronnies studios, my guitars were done at my studio and the same goes for the rest of the band. So we send them to each other and then meet up to sort out the whole album and mixing. We then listen too the parts and discus if the parts are good enough or need re-doing and it take a lot of time. It's not like it use to be when you went into the studio for 4 wks and after that the album was done, things have changed in the music world in recent years. The modern technology does help in a way and it is not the bets way of doing things, not like when you were in the studio with the band and recording together, that was way better and I miss that."
How did you get on Despot Records? I've never heard of them until I heard Fatal Smile. Do they look after the band well?
"Yes they do, there a small Swedish label that actually get their albums out, they have just opened an office in the UK and New York too. As a musician you can never be totally happy with you're label as any musician can tell you they hope that their label could do more for them. It all boils down to money I guess."
I guess you have done more than just one video for the new album, which songs were they for?
"Yes we did, we did one for 'Forlorn' and 'Your own Demise'
Has the current album selling well?
"I think so but we have not got a proper statement from the label and I keep hassling them for one. Our deal is for 1 deal with 1 option and we will see how things go."
Did you record and produce and mix the album yourselves again?
"Yes we did and Ronnie did a lot with a friend who mixed the album, his name is Johan Lofgren, it came out really well."
How well did the album receive from the press & how do the fans like the new Tad Morose style metal compared the the older style and line up?
"The old fans like the new line and new albums, some people tell me they miss the Progressive elements and some say they prefer Urban's vocals to Ronnie's, that is there own opinion really."
Have you thought of mixing the Progressive elements with the newer style to see if that will work better on the next album?
"We never think of that in terms and we just do what we want to do and if it turns out the way it does. We don't set out to say we are going to do this, we never know what the next album will be like, it's still Tad Morose and I guess we have a darker approach now."
Do you have any new songs wrote for the next album?
"We do have some ideas which we are working on, not completely finished yet. We have no titles either there just rough ideas. It depends on which label will release and we hope to have it out by end of 2016."
Any plans for a live DVD? You have enough CD's out now to record one.
"Well we do get asked this a lot in interviews, we will do one but when is another thing, time will tell. I know that our previous label Century Media will re-release our older albums on LP starting in February 2016 with 'Undead'. so that will be cool. An Italian company are pressing the albums which will be a number copy."
If you have the chance to go back with Century Media would you?
"It depends on what the deal would be. We have thought about doing our own label, but in the long run it would be very hard so I would rather we were signed to a label, less hassle."
Have you ever thought of having Tony Martin guesting on the next record? He would be awesome to have on the next record, he does a lot of guest appearance on records these days.
"That would be a great idea indeed. That would be something to thing about, thank's Jase."
Any plans for touring this year?
"Yes we have one n April in Norway and one in may a festival with Doro and Saxon on the bill here is Sweden. So there going to be fun. That is the only 2 we have booked so far.
Well Christer thanx for the interview, let's not leaving the next interview for so long. Do you have anything too say before we finish?
"Yes thank you to our fans for their loyal support, keep supporting us. Thanks for the interview Jase and I hope we meet soon, it's been too long."