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Johan Edlund (Tiamat)

Interview with Johan Edlund from Tiamat
by Harry Papadopoulos at 13 May 2008, 1:40 AM

Just a few days before Dimitris K reviewed the new TIAMAT album Amanethes and I had the opportunity to talk with the main man behind the band Johan Edlund and had a nice conversation about the band, internet and football. You can read the most essential parts of that talk right bellow. See you on tour Johan.

Hello Johan How are you.

I’m fine, thanks, and you?

Oh, I’m fine too. Where are you calling from? Are you in Thessaloniki?

Yes, right now I am in Thessaloniki.

It’s been quite a long time, four years to be more exact,  since your previous album Pray. Except the live DVD The Church of Tiamat, what else did you do in that period?

Yes, we worked for a long time on that DVD, to collect the material and so on, we toured a lot and played in many festivals and we also have a new record deal, so it took me sometime for the negotiations. Of course have some time off as well, since some guys from the band have kids and all of us had to relax a little bit.

So Johan. A new album for TIAMAT, a new record label. Is this a new start for the band?

I hope so (laughs)!I feels like a new beginning. It’s good to do a new album and not just live albums or compilations. We are in a new record company which is very exiting, So I hope it is a new start.

Unfortunately Nuclear Blast didn’t send the url in order to listen to the album, so it’s up to you to give the METAL TEMPLE readers, and me personally, some feedback about the album, since I don’t have a clew about it.

Oh, I see. That’s bad. Well first of all, the album was recorded here in Thessaloniki in my home studio except the drums that were recorded in Sweden. The mixing took place in Woodhouse studios. Oh, and some guitar parts were recorded in Studio Q.

So as far as the music direction of the band and Amanethes, is it on the same road as the last albums like Pray for example, or it’s like you previous releases like Clouds?

It is more diversity from our last couple of albums. Has lot’s of atmospheric parts, but some heavier parts too. It goes for very atmospheric to quite extreme. We have some of our heaviest songs in this album that we ever compose.

Are we going to listen to brutal vocals from you again in that album?

Yes! We wanted to do many things in that album, that’s why it’s so long too. Even though I believe the album sounds fresh, we kept our identity and, when you are listening to the album, you’ll say that it is a TIAMAT album.

Is all the music and lyrics yours or the other members of the band wrote anything?

Well, 99.9% was written be me. I collaborated with Anders (bass) in only one song. But this is happening mostly because we are living away from each other and, apart from the band, we have different lives. For example, the other guys have families and every day jobs.

Since I don’t know anything about the new album, how about telling us some things from the past? Like, how come and you changed the name of the band from TREBLINKA to TIAMAT?

Well, TREBLINKA was, let’s say, a different band. And to tell you the truth that was an extremely bad name and I don’t want to do anything with it. Actually the other guys in that band, played a show in Sweden two months ago. They asked me if I wanted to play and answered them that I don’t want to do something like that. And really that band has nothing to do with me or TIAMAT.

Just after Clouds, an album that many of your fans believe is one of your best ones, alongside with Wildhoney and A Deeper Kind Of Slumber, in my opinion, you made a turn as far as the music concerns, having a more gothic style. How come and you decided that kind of change?

Well, I didn’t decided that turn. I’m writing songs that sound interesting at that particular moment. I don’t care much about what style of music it is. I want to have the freedom to write stuff that I enjoy. I follow my hart and that’s what really matters.

Are you listening to lots of genres of music?

Yes. But as metal concerned, I’m listening more to the old stuff, records and bands that I grew up with, like VENOM, POSSESSED, CELTIC FROST

What are your influences in order to write dark music?

Well, I don’t know really. When I’m composing a song it’s usually the dark things I want to express. If I’m in a happy mood, I’d prefer to watch a football game or go to the cinema. It’s more important for me to write about the dark side of life.

Another change you made is your record company. How come and you left from Century Media and joined forces with Nuclear Blast?

Well the contract with Century Media ended, so we were talking with different companies, but in the end the proposal of Nuclear Blast was the best one, so here we are.

Any plans for a tour?

Yes. First we are going to play to a lot of festivals during the summer and we’ll start our European tour in autumn. We will play for sure in Greece, but I don’t know if it’s going to happen in that tour or just after that, for one or two shows.

It’s been quite a long time that you a living in Thessaloniki? How did you make that choice? Most Greek musicians want to leave Greece and you came from Sweden!

To be honest I believe it’s much netter here, the lifestyle the weather, everything is better. The only reason that I can think about musicians leaving Greece, is that it’s easier to find a record company there and contacts that might help you in the future. But TIAMAT already have all that.

Are you a football fans? I’m asking you because I saw your blog in myspace saying about the match between PAOK and Olympiakos.

Yes I’m enjoying football. I like watching PAOK’s games but the team of my heart is Hammarby.

Since we have a little time left, I would like to hear you opinion about myspace and downloading.

As for myspace, I think it’s a bit overwhelming in a way. It’s hard to spot some good bands in that mess and many people is acting like they are truw friends of you. Ob the other hand, I really like it when I’m receiving messages form old friends and schoolmates, that haven’t heard from them for years. As for downloading, this is how it is. And the cd’s are very expensive. They should have 8 euros and not 16 or 20. We had tape trading in the past, so downloading is similar to that. But fans will always buy your albums anyway.

Thank you very much for the interview Johan. I hope that I will like the album when your company decides to send it! Even though I’m going to buy it anyway.

Thank you Harry. Have a nice afternoon, take care.


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