With so many cool bands out there to check out I offer you some minor guidance by introducing you to BLODHEMN. Anders Ekdahl ©2018
What fascinates me is how you can still come up with new combinations of chords to make new songs and sounds that have not been heard before. What is it that fascinates you into coming up with new songs and albums?
-Thank you! I am driven by the urge to make something that is unique and adds to the flora of todays music. It’s very important for me not be “just another black metal band” but to continue build a signature sound and concept that hopfully stands out.
How is this new recording different from the previous? How do you take your sound one step further?
-There has never been any great changing of course between the albums but I have without a doubt evolved as a musician and songwriter from album to album and that natural progression is something that adds to the sound. “Mot Ein Evig Ruin” I think is the angriest and most ferocious Blodhemn album to date. Also a big factor was that I recorded everything except the drum tracks in my own studio. This gave me the time and opportunity to get experiment and find the best ways to express the songs. For example I used a lot of time to get the vocals sounding wild and fierce and I’m very satisfied with the result.
When you write songs about the topics you do what kind of reactions do you get? How important is it to have a message in your lyrics? What kind of topics do each song deal with? Is there a red thread to the songs?
-Some of my lyrics are very direct but most of them are “loose” and describes a setting or event rather than being very spesific. I like to write in such a way because it opens the mind of the listener when he/she has to visualize and conect the dots in their own head. The end picture might not be the same for every listener. I like that. In that way it’s easier for the listener to get a personal relations to the songs.
There is no red thread through out the albums, but there are lyrical themes that return and a lot of referances and themes that is continued from the previous albums.
Whenever I think of you I cannot help wandering off to different bands. What bands/sounds do you indentify with?
-No bands in particular, but I have to say that in general I identify and respect bands that dare to pursue their own sound and break the norms and rules.
How did you go about choosing art work for this new album? What was important to have in it?
-I wanted somthing minimalistic and iconic rather than something large and flamboyant. It’s more direct and to the point. It’s very important to have good artwork. A first impression is hard to turn so if you have a shitty cover the listener has conciuously or unconsiously probably already labeled the album as shit even before listening to it.
I like to add referances to the earlier works and the broken bottle concept originates from the “Holmengraa” album. Used in both the promo pictures and as a sound sample in the track “Djevelen i Menneskeform”. A sample from the same bottle breaking session was also used to conclude the intro track “Ruin” on the new album.
Something that scares me a bit is this I hear from more and more bands that they aren’t that bothered with art work anymore because people today download rather than buy physical. To me the whole point is to have art work that matches the music. I don’t know how many times I’ve been disappointed by weak art work to an otherwise cool album. What’s your opinion on this subject?
-I think artwork is very important and I do agree with you that it should have referances to the music and lyrical themes. The artwork will almost certinaly be the basis for merch concepts and digital branding, so it will be the first thing potential new fans will see. And then again it’s very important to make a good first impression not to be pre-judged.
How do you come up with song titles? What do they have to have to fit the songs?
-Usually I write the lyrics and the music first and then when it’s all done I try to find a appropriate title for to represent the song as a whole.
I use Spotify and Deezer but only as compliment to buying CDS (it’s easier to just have your phone or pad when you’re out) but I fear that soon music as we know it will be dead and buried. What are your worries as a band?
-None. I will continue as long as I feel like it regardless of album sales and popularity, but yeah I see your point. I think that in such a matter the state of things look brighter now than in a long time. Streaming and digital listening is well established but still there is still increasing sales of physical formats, especially vinyl. I don’t think nor hope that Blodhemn will ever be driven by money.
How much of a live band are you? How important is playing live?
-Well, when we are on stage we’re a lot of live-band. Hehe. We try to play some gigs every now and then but we don’t go out of our way just to play live as much as possible. It’s of course important to play live to promote and get out there but the main motivation for me is that I like playing live and the rush it offers.
What lies in the future?
-Playing some live-shows and eventually start writing for a new album, I guess.