EXPLODING HEAD SYNDROME

For a long time there was none but like with the ketchup effect all of a sudden there are a hell of aload of new Norwegian metal bands to explore. EXPLODING HEAD SYNDROME interview answered by Eirik (vocalist)). Anders Ekdahl ©2017

We all come into music with our own baggage. We want different things from the music. What is this band really all about? What do you want with your music?
– It’s honestly just about creating something we like, and hoping someone else likes it too. If we can do that without losing too much money it’s a plus. I believe it’s easier to play in a band that is never going to make a lot of money, compared to having to deal with a lot of business. We can just put that part away and play music.

Is there a difference in people’s attitude towards you if you don’t come from a cool place like LA or NY or London?
– There’s an upside to coming from a smaller place; there aren’t a million other bands that do the same as you do. And it can maybe be seen as exotic to be from Norway compared to a big city in the US or UK, so I don’t think it’s a disadvantage.

When you release an album that get pretty good feedback, how do you follow up on that? How important is identification from album to album to you?
– Our first album, Disciples of Reason, got good reviews and it just helped us to continue along the same path. You can sometimes have a little bit of self doubt as to what your doing, if it’s relevant at all. So for us to get good feedback just helped us continue doing what we were doing. Our latest album, World Crashes Down, got even better reviews and it will definitely be a little bit difficult to take it a step further from this.It’s important to us to continue in the same style, but we also don’t wanna do the exact same thing on every album. Time will show where we go from here.

What is the biggest challenge in the creation of an album, to write the songs or to come up digitally or is physical still cooler with really good songs?
-Morten writes most of the music. Sometimes the songs are completely finished, other times we work on them together. Some songs are done in one rehersal, other can take months to finish. I write the lyrics, and can use a long time to finish them. For us it is a must to release an album physical. Our goal with World Crashes Down was to make an album that comes together as a whole, not just ten seperate songs. We took money from our own pockets to print up vinyls because that’s the ultimate way to enjoy an album.

I saw Dave Grohl’s documentary about Sound City and it made me wonder what it is about analogue recording that you don’t get with digital? Have you ever recorded analogue?
-I think the music gets a bit more authentic when you go analogue, and I have huge respect for bands that do it the old school way. It makes digital recordings feel a little like cheating. We have never done analogue. It would be cool to do it at one point, but it demands more from a band and would for sure be more dificult than digital recording.

How do you view your sound? Would you say that you have a sound that is all your own and that I’d recognize it instantly?
-We like to think we’ve made a sound that is our own. We describe it as mix between hardcore, punk and rock ‘n’ roll with some metal elements in there. I can’t think of another band that does the same thing, but it’s difficult to judge when you’re so close to it.

How important are the lyrics and what message do you want to purvey?
-When I listen to music myself the lyrics are very important. They can make a good song great or they can make the same song bad. I spend a lot of time with the lyrics, but it’s a difficult art to master. There is no spesific message we want to get across, but it is important to me that the lyrics are personal, at least partially. I want to communicate something that is real and I believe people can feel it if it is.

What part does art work for album covers play in the world of the band?
-Like I said, we wanted to make an album that came together as a whole and the artwork is an important part of that. It can be the difference between people giving your album a shot or skipping it.

When you play live do you notice a degree of greater recognition from the fans with each new time you pass through town?
-To a certain extent, but it’s a very slow process. We still have to do gigs in front of 10 people, so we’re not quite where we want to be.

What do you see in the future?
-We’ll play some gigs and we’ll probably start working on the next album this fall. But there’s no deadline and it could be longer. The future for this band is probably gonna be a lot like the present; we’re gonna spend our time and money to play music and have fun. Sometimes for 10 people, sometimes for 100.

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