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Fredrik Andersson (Amon Amarth)

Interview with Fredrik Andersson from Amon Amarth
by Panagiotis Koutsompogeras at 15 October 2006, 7:49 PM

When Oden decided to find more loyal warriors to replace Bathory's place in Valhalla he managed to find the next torch bearers in the name of the Lord of the rings influenced Swedish metal semi - gods Amon Amarth.
Deeply rooted in death metal with firm beliefs in Viking mythology, Amon Amarth formed in 1992 in Tumba, Sweden, they launched their assault with fierce and menace and keep on conquering the free metal Viking world time by time. Their material with combines lots of melodies, harmonies and lyrics about Vikings and the northern gods all packed in an interesting mixture. To find more about these semi - mad Viking lovers we had to reach Asgard and question one of its berserkers. So after having drunk a couple of   Old Speckled Hen Amon Amarth's drummer Fredrik Andersson releases his anger from inside. Enjoy!

Hi, there and congratulations on your new album With Oden On Our Side . I think that the majority of metal listeners have already started to worship it.

Hey, thank you very much. So far the response has been really good for it, both from critics and fans.

How did the title of the album With Oden On Our Side  become a choice for you? I think it is very impressing and powerful.

That is in fact the whole idea. We wanted a title that described how we felt for this album, that it is in fact in our opinion our strongest album up to date and that the songs are our best so far. Already pretty early in the process we felt that the new songs came out really good and we felt we had wind in our sails, so to say, the gods with us. The title track With Oden On Our Side  was also the very first song we completed.

In what ways - musically or lyrically - do you think that your new album is different from the previous ones?

Musically it’s more diverse than for example fate of norns. We wanted to write some faster songs and when all the songs were done we had, in our opinion, the best mix. Some fast ones, some heavy ones and some in between. I would say that musically it is a mix of the whole career of Amon Amarth. Like a mix between all the previous albums, just progressed.

Your whole career and attitude heavily depends on Viking themes. I truly adore this stuff but don’t you think that maybe some people could possibly describe or characterize you as ‘old fashioned’.

Some people do, but we don’t care about that. This is our style, and is in fact the whole idea behind Amon Amarth. I don’t see people complaining about for example Cannibal Corpse’s lyrics or Bolt Thrower’s.

Does the whole cult about worshipping Oden and use Viking and Nordic tales affect your personal life too? I think that it is an excellent idea for inspiration and gaining power to solve every day’s hard or normal problems. Do you think that maybe the battles you describe could be the battles I everyday life? What is your opinion?

In fact they do. Songs like  Versus The World ,  For the stabwounds in our backs and  Fate Of Norns  are indeed written about the every day life, just in a form that describes it in a mythological way.

Apart from the new album which do you consider as your best moments in your whole career?

Hard to say really… but playing Wacken Open Air for the first time is one. Going to Island, Israel and Mexico was also special.

What musicians or band do you think that have mostly influenced you?

Bands; probably Judas Priest , Iron Maiden  and At The Gates. Musicians; Adrian Erlandsson  no doubt.

What other kind of music do you enjoy listening to? Any non metal stuff in particular?

I listen mostly to metal, rock and harder stuff but I also like  Apocalyptica  and I have some film music like for  Dracula ,  Gladiator and  Kill Bill .

Do you enjoy life on the road? By the way what is your favorite beer brand?

Yes I do no doubt. Sure it can be hard some times but in general I enjoy being on tour. Favorite beer… it varies but right now one favorite is definitely an English beer called  Old Speckled Hen .

Your unique style which mainly combines barbaric and melodic elements has established you in high ranks in the metal community. What do you think that the majority of your fans find so extraordinary in you?

I think it is because our music wakes emotions. It covers everything from furious rage to really sad stories. There was someone once who told us what he said to his friends when they asked what kind of music amon amarth was, and he told them it’s metal from the heart we liked that description.

What do you think about Christian religion in our days. Are there any active cults who worship the ancient gods like  Oden  in Sweden or the nearby countries?

Yes of course there are. We have religious freedom here so you’re allowed to follow any belief you want. And in fact only less than 50% of the population is active Christians even if the country is Christian on the paper.

What about any new covers? In the past you covered  Possessed  - would you find it interesting to cover  Bathory  or stuff in this style or would you prefer something different?

I doubt it, but who knows. We’re not really into doing covers and in most cases the original band has done the song already better. Especially in the case with  Bathory .

What do you think about the movie The 13th Warrior with Antonio Banderas? I think it is the most exceptional movie ever in the kingdom of cinema. Would you like the soundtrack of this one or possibly of one future movie to have music from you in its soundtrack?

I personally didn’t like the film very much. It’s not really historically correct and Antonio Banderas is just terrible. But I guess some scenes are pretty cool. I wouldn’t mind being part of a soundtrack for a cool film.

Do you have any other interest except music? How would you find for example it if you played a role in a movie?

No hell no, I’d never want to be part of a movie like acting or anything like that. I absolutely hate recording videos, and even photo shoots are terrible. I just want to play music, preferably on stage.

Do you enjoy using the internet or maybe find it boring up to a point?

It’s more something useful to me, e-mail, finding facts, buying stuff. I don’t really randomly browse and I do find it boring after a while to look at sites.

So what are your tour plans for the immediate future? Do you have anything in mind about playing in Greece?

We’re going to do a headliner European tour in November, then a north American tour supporting children of bodom in December. We’re also rescheduling the Scandinavian shows we had to postpone for January. We’d love to come to play in Greece, I know we got an offer by some promoter some time ago to come down, but I don’t know what happened to that. Hopefully next year.

Thank you very much indeed. May Oden trully be on our side and your side. Any closing remarks or Oden prayers for our readers?

Thank you for the questions and I hope you enjoy our new record, for those who haven’t yet - go to your record store and pick it up! Cheers and see you hopefully sometime soon at a show!


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