With a new album dropping on Halloween ALASTOR are very much in the now right now. Anders Ekdahl ©2018
A band name says more than thousand words, or does it? How important is a band name to get people interested in your music?
– Well I’d definitely consider it as an important part of the whole picture. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of decent bands out there with shitty names and just as many shitty bands with good names. Before people have heard your music it’s pretty much all about creating an interest for anyone to do so, and by naming your stoner doom ripoff band anything containing words such as wizard/weed/bong/goat/mountain/smoke -whatever isn’t really doing it for me. Sorry not sorry. /DG
When you finish a recording and then sit back and relax, what kind of feelings do you get? Are you glad it is finished? Does the anxiety grow, not knowing if everybody will like it?
– I suppose it’s different from time to time, but generally I think it’s more of an anxiety thing for all of us, even if I feel that this time I kind of more look forward to hear the bad reviews from those who expected a new Black Magic. I think we simply will put out a genuine polka album next time just to piss on peoples bonfires. /DG
What is it like to be in a studio recording your music? What kind of feelings and thoughts race through your heads?
– It’s about 20% fun and laughs and 80% struggling to keep your sanity from going off a cliff. /LF
– We’ve sincerely learned from the last time that you can do this thing right or wrong, and due to the weight the whole session put on all of us and the stress we put on each other, we’ll do it different next time. But after all we managed to put together an album we’re pretty happy with so I guess it was worth the hassle. Glad our label didn’t get fed up with us and gave us the good old boot, hah. /DG
Today I get a feeling that the promotion of a band lands a lot on the bands themselves so how does one promote oneself the best possible way in order to reach as many as possible?
– I think the best way for a new band to promote themselves is to learn early to shut the hell up. The sooner you realize that noone gives a crap about your insta-whatever it’s called studio diary, what kind of beer you drink at your rehearsal place or that gig at your mamas friends garage, the better. Less is always more. Fuck you, Yngwie! /DG
Today we have all these different sub-genres in metal. How important is that you can be tagged in one of these? Why isn’t metal enough as a tag?
– Not important what so ever. We can be whatever you want us to be. Personally I don’t even think there’s much metal in what we do. /DG
– Labels are boring. Personally I feel that they only exist to try and limit the artist by putting up rules and limits for how she or he can and should express themselves.
When people ask what we label ourselves as I just answer ”slow rock”. Or ”shit”, depend on my mood and level of intoxication. /LF
What importance is there in being part of local/national/international scene? Does playing in a band make you feel like you are a part of something bigger? I know it does to me knowing that in some slight way I was a part of the Swedish death metal scene in the 90s.
– I’m gonna try to answer this without pissing every other “stoner” or “doom” -band in sweden off, but there is a distinct sound to the scene here, I’d say. Sure, there are a gem or two that stands out, but being a part of a community here (or anywhere else, for the matter) and playing the same clubs three times a month isn’t anything we aim for. /DG
– Of course Alastor are part of a scene to some extent but I don’t think that much about it. Just because we might play similar music to some other random band does not mean I’m your ”bro”, fuck that. Im not trying to be a buzzkill, there are lots of people within the underground movement who deserves a medal for the work they put into their art but their are lots of assholes as well. I believe that idolization of a scene or group helps these kind of people to hide behind a wall. *Yeah I heard that guy did this and that but he’s in a cool band so Im gonna look past it”. That kind of mentality helps the spreading of sexism, racism and overall idiocy within the scene. No Im not fun at parties.
I do feel part of something bigger though, when I start thinking about people on the other side of the world listening to our music and writing to us wanting us to come and play in their countries. /LF
Ever since I first got into metal the art work has been a main motivator in buying a record. What part does art work for album covers play in the world of the band?
– I would say almost as big part as the music itself. And that goes for everything visually concerning a band. Simple as that. For example, I know nothing about wine so if I was to get some, I’d get the bottle with the most interesting label. I might just get lucky and if I did, I’d get the same next time. You get the picture. /DG
How important is having a label to back you up today when you can just release your music on any sort of platform online? With the ability to upload your music as soon as you’ve written it the freedom to create has become greater but are there any negative consequences to music being too readily available to fans now that every Tom, John and Harry can upload their stuff?
– I’d say that depends on how far you want to take your music. If the goal with the music is the creation itself a label might not be necessary. However a label might help you get the music out to an audience and to get you out of the rehearsal space. Not to say that artists can’t do that by themselves but it is a pretty time consuming work, trying to create a network with promoters and clubs at the same time as trying to get new fans. That’s what a label (hopefully) can help you out with.
I think the digitalization and overall more easy access to producing and recording music has both positive and negative consequences . I like the idea that more people can express themselves through music without being a wizard at recording or having lots of money to be able to afford time in an expensive studio.
At the same time I think we as listeners have gotten spoiled with on demand music at any time of the day. I think the easy access takes away a bit of the magic that music used to have, at least for me. Growing up all I had was a home stereo to be able to listen to music. Listening to a record back then was more of a ritual than it is now. I could go a whole day just wanting to come home to be able to listen to my Maiden records. I rarely experience that feeling nowadays. /LF
What is a gig with you like? What kind of shows do you prefer to play?
– A gig with Alastor is a loud, dark and intense experience. Or at least I hope it is haha. We try to go for intensity and raw power to quote the Stooges. So far we’ve only played smaller venues but thats how I like it. ”Small and intimate”, thats the name of our not yet written album by the way. / LF
What lies in the future?
– Slave To The Grave (the new album) drops on Riding Easy on the 31st of October. Other than that, writing new songs and play new places. And listening to Pink Floyd of course. / LF