ÅSKVÄDER is a really cool band name and an even cooler bands. Check them out. Anders Ekdahl ©2019
Was it hard to come up with a name? What does the name mean to you? How important is it to have the right name?
-Not in particular, took us some months to come up with it but we had a solid idea of what type of name we were looking for so once it popped up in my mind the decision to use it was instant. Åskväder means Thunderstorm in Swedish and it represents the feeling we get from playing the music and also in general interprets the lyrical content and vibe that we represent. The idea was to keep it short, one word and in Swedish.
Who would say have laid the foundation for the kind of sound you have? Who are your heroes musically and what have they meant to you personally and to the sound of your band?
-I would say that the main influences of the song writing comes from my musical background. I was fed a lot of good music as a kid from my older brother. It was AC/DC, Kiss, Black Sabbath but also The Beatles, Rolling Stones and of course newer stuff like The Hellacopters. As he is 12 years older it started really early, I got to join him and his friends while listening to these amazing bands as soon as I could walk more or less. My personal heroes are Tony Iommi, Nicke Andersson and Strängen. But the influences in how I write music and play the guitar comes from a lot of different genres. So for the sound I would say that influences can come from everything from speed metal to jazz, as long as it is good!
When you play slow do you have to think differently arranging the music than if you play faster and vice versa?
-Yes, I would say that the slow tunes are the harder ones to arrange. The music needs to breathe to make it groovy and it is always harder to play less and make it sound good than to play a lot. In our case I think the slow tunes has a bit less guitar work in them and it is always hard to play fewer notes…
Will your music work in a live environment? What kind of stage environment would best suit your music; a big stage or a small club?
-Yes it surely does, we tried to capture our live sound on the album, to make it sound as close to how we do sound live as possible. We have been playing in Sweden and Germany so far, mostly clubs but also a couple of festivals. Personally I enjoy playing at clubs but the music works on both type of stages.
It is very hard to be 100% satisfied. Everybody seems to be disappointed with something they have released. Is there something that you in hindsight would have done differently on this your latest recording?
-Hmm, interesting question. I was not very happy with a solo that I played on Give In, but this was replaced by a solo that Robert Perhsson played while mixing it so it came out really good! No one got to hear the crappy one fortunately except for the band.. Otherwise I am actually really happy and proud about the record.
Promotion can be a bitch. Even today with all different platforms it can be hard to reach out to all those that might be interested in your music? What alleys have you used to get people familiarized with your band?
-Yes, this is a tough one. Our record label The Sign actually handles most of this work, in a brilliant way I must say. We usually use Instagram and Facebook to keep in touch with our fans. Otherwise it is through gigs and word of mouth that the music is spread.
To me art work can be the difference between bust or success. What to you is a great front cover? What should a cover have to make it great?
-Yeah, this is really important. I would say the art work can be made in many different ways. For me it needs to represent the music or the feeling of the record and it needs to look cool. There are a lot of different roads to go down here and it is really hard to know if you succeed. Most people seem to like ours so the idea apparently was good!
Do you feel that you are part of a national scene? Is a local/national scene important for the development of new bands?
-We are still a pretty unknown band but in Sweden we are a part of the national rock scene which is pretty small. The bands here are really working together and trying to help each other out and the fans are few but devoted! It is really important as a new band with the local scene, especially when you get help from your colleagues in the business with arranging gigs and getting contacts. The networking part of being a musician I believe is of great importance.
I could just be me but I got the feeling that the live scene is not what it used to be. Could be that more and more people use the net to discover bands instead of going out and supporting new bands live. What is you experience with the live scene?
-This is my opinion as well. But as mentioned in the previous question the crowd that go and watch bands like us are really devoted, they buy merch and come to the gigs. Still people in general are going to less gigs and that is of course a problem. It has become even tougher in these times with the pandemic.
What does the future hold?
-Due to the current situation with Covid we cannot play live, therefore we are currently writing songs for the next album. We have some really good demos done so I am truly looking forward to that. Also we have plans for tours in Sweden, Germany and Spain in the fall but everything is really unsure right now, we have to wait and see!
Thanks a lot for interviewing us!