Interview With Bjorn Jansson

One of Sweden's new hopefuls have recently released their debut album for Finnish Label 'Lion Music', this been 'Tears Of Anger' with their stunning debut titled 'Still Alive'. This is without a great debut album which I highly recommend, specially if you are a fans of such bands as 'Lions Share', 'Dream Theater', 'Minds Eye' & 'Yngwie' and 'Fates Warning' etc.... The bands features 2 brothers, vocalist Bjorn Jansson & Benny Jansson on guitar. Joining them are 2 members of 'Minds Eye', another classic Prog Metal act, these been Daniel Flores (drums) & Johan Niemann (bass). Progressive Metal is now becoming popular every day since Dream Theater broke the Prog Metal scene into a frenzy. I recently sent voclaist Bjorn about this new and exciting band to hit the Prog Metal scene. Here is what he had to say. Thanx for the interview Bjorn!!. 

I was reading you're biography and it said that you & your brother were in another band called ‘Mind Crime’, who released some albums, could you please tell me more about these releases? What style of Metal music was it and how many recorded did you record?

"I guess you could call Mindcrime an early version of Tears Of Anger we did almost the same kind of metal a mix with AOR,, the album was recorded but never released I'm afraid they were supposed to be a license deal with Montezuma Records and Black Mark Record, I don't have any good answer what went wrong in the deal." 

I’ve never heard of Lionheart records before, could you tell me a little bit about them and how u hooked up with them for Mind Crime? What's bands do they have and do they still exist? 

"Well, Lionheart is a Swedish Pop Schlager record company, Benny and I know one of the owner but we never had any deal with Mind Crime on Lions music it was Benny's band Two Rocks who released 1 Album on Lionheart." 

You also recorded in the mid 90’s some material which was licensed through Black Mark, what band was that for and how did that deal come about? That recording featured ex Yngwie and now Hammerfall drummer Anders Johansson, why did it not see the light of day? What went wrong??

"The answer to this basically the same as question #1, we had a deal with Montezuma records who did a license deal with Black Mark,, and Anders Johansson did the drums on the record that unfortunately never got released. I think it was money problems from Montezuma and Black Mark did back out from the deal?"

After some problems in the mid 90’s you decided to work with other bands in Europe, can you please name some of them and did you record anything with them? If so who were they with?

"It was mostly Swedish artist I think Erika is the most famous one?"

Bjorn could you please tell me when you formed the band was formed and was it you and you're brother who formed the band?

"Benny and I did a promo CD in 2000 we got some great response but never got any record deal, after Benny did his 3rd solo album on Lion music we ask Lion music if they were interested in a Metal band and we did a few demo songs and the deal was on." 

So how did you hook up with Daniel & Johan from ‘Minds Eye’? Did you know them for a long time before they were approached to record this project or is it a band?

"We've known Daniel and Johan a longtime we have shared the same rehearsal studio during the years since we live in the same city ,, so it was easy choice to ask them to join up with us." 

What are Minds Eye doing right now? Also what do you think of their music?

"I think Minds Eye is put on ice, I think their music was great, maybe a bit too progressive for my taste, I'm more of an old AOR fan."

Who else did you approach to record the album? Also are you happy with Daniel & Johan’s performance on the record? Will you use them again for the next album?

"Actually Daniel and Johan was our first choice since they are such great guys and amazing musician's,, and Yes I'm very impressed on their performance and we would be proud to have them on our next album as well."

So why the name ‘Tears Of Anger’ for the band? Does it sum up the music u are creating? What other names did you have in mind?

"We didn't want to name the band Mind Crime since everyone seems to refer to Queensrych, so Benny made a logo and convinced me that Tears of Anger was a cool name :) I actually think it's a cool name since it's aggressive but not too aggressive kind of how we're playing."

Was the music in the early stages the same as it is now? If not how was it different?

"Yes it was almost the same kind of music but with slightly less progressive influence"

Did you record any demos, if so how many and what trax where on them?

"Yes we did a demo, which included 6 songs I can't remember the titles I'm afraid"

Where they for sale to the public? If so how many did you sell?


Who are the bands influences? Also do they reflect within you're music?

"Speaking for myself, I enjoy bands like Kings X, Dio, Coverdale, Jörn Lande and Symphony X and a lot of AOR singers like John Elefant, Bill Champlin to name a few, I'm not sure you could say it really reflect our music? But then again,, in some way I'm sure it does."

Is the music you are playing still popular in Sweden?

"No it's not,, too bad, it's mostly mainstream Pop music that's popular in Sweden."

So how did the deal with Lion Music come about and who else did you approach?

"Benny did his 3rd solo album with Lion music,, It became only natural to ask Lion music if they were interested in a Hardrock/metal band ,, we recorded 5 demo songs and the deal was on,, we did not approach any other company."

Are you happy with them and how long is the deal for?

"We're happy with Lion music you could always ask for more promotion budget and so on but I think we have a really good relation with Lion music,, the deal is for 2 more albums."

Ok now could you tell me if the songs are wrote as a team effort and if so how does it take to get the songs together?

"The song writing was Benny did some riff or verse/bridge/chorus without any vocals (mostly) and then I make some vocal melody then we team-up and decide if the song or idea was good enough? If it was then I write the lyrics and do the real vocal tracks,, we actually did drums and bass tracks as the last phase of recording process."

Are you happy with the end results or do you think it could of sounded better?

"It took about 2 month to record I think? We did record in 3 different small studios Benny and I both have home semi pro-studios and the drums were recorded at sheep valley studios nearby were we live. The result is fine consider the almost none existing budget,, no matter where you record it could always sound better."

What songs stand out 4 you and why? Do you have any songs you don’t like and why?

"My personal favorite songs are The Awakening, Sword of Sorrow, Moment of Truth and Kings Call,, I don't dislike any song or they wouldn't be on the album."

Did you have any producers in mind besides you and you're brother dong the production?

"No, not really, I don't see that we gonna get that kind of budget to hire some well known producer, John Mutt Lang would be cool though."

How would you best describe you're music? And who would you say you sound like?

"I would say that we play melodic metal,, I can really say that we sound like any other band of course there is influences here and there but it hard to pin point that we sound exactly like another band because of the mix of our song writing."

Have you wrote any new material for the next album? If so what's the titles and how does the music differ from that of the debut album?

"Yes we're writing new material right now. I can say any titles yet nor how it will differ since we're only testing ideas right now."

Has the band played many gigs, if so who with & where?

"No we haven't played any gigs so far,, we recently signed a deal with M-Production as our booking agency."

Have you been offered to play Prog Power or any other cool festivals?

"We were too late for Sweden Rock festival this year they had already booked all the bands when our CD was released so the answer is no."

Does any other band member have any side projects besides Minds Eye?

"Yes Benny and Daniel has Xsavior and I do the vocals with Bob Katsionis 'Imagenary' which will be release any time soon."

Well Bjorn, thanx for taking you're time out, do you have anything to ad?

"Thank you! the only thing to add is Keep on rocking!!!!!"