MILLENNIAL REIGN are back with a new album. What better occasion to interview them than now? Anders Ekdahl ©2018

Let’s start with your latest recording. When you look back at it now what kind of feelings do you have for it?
A: I definitely feel it’s our best album yet. Not to mention, I’ve learned so much more about the studio recording/mix process that it’s also the best production S well. Ty Sims did the final mix on it all but I plan to do all production on the next album myself.

I am fascinated by band names. What was it that made you settle on the one you have and what does it mean to you?
A: I actually heard the term Millennial Reign many years ago. It’s from the book of Revelations and is the 1000 year reign of Christ after the tribulation. When I heard the term it immediately hit me as a good name for a powermetal band. I kept it in mind until I started recording the first album.

What does it mean to you that there are people out there that actually appreciate and look forward to what you are doing?
A: Without the fans, bands are nothing. It’s extremely gratifying to know how much people enjoy music you’ve created. We’ve been very blessed to open and/or tour with so many nationals. It definitely gets your music in front of the right audience.

How important is image to the band? What impression do you want the fans to get of the band?
A: Image is very important to a metal band. There’s are just certain expectations anyone would have when they hear the music. If a band has no image it can definitely have an affect on the fan base. I would just hope our fans find our image as good as the music.

I am a huge fan of LP art work. How important is it to have the right art work for your album?
A: I think the album art is very important. You always want something that is eye catching and stands out. Jan Yrlund did a fantastic job of capturing the title image for The Great Divide. I’d like very much to have him do the next album as well.

We live in a superficial world today where you don’t exist if you are not on Youtube and Facebook. Has social media been only beneficial in socializing with the fans or is there a down side to it too?
A: Social media has most definitely been a good tool for bands. Before the internet bands were very isolated unless they were a touring national. Social media made it possible to reach more people that may never have otherwise heard of you. As far as the down side, every once in a while you get unnecessary rude comments but that’s easily dealt with.

When you play in a band does it feel like you are a part of a massive community? That you belong to something that gives meaning to your life?
A: Absolutely… music is something that is a complete part of you. Nothing else compares to the satisfaction it gives. And when there are fans who really appreciate what you do, it makes everything worth it.

When you are in the middle of it do you notice what state our beloved music scene is in? Is the scene healthy or does it suffer from some ailment?
A: I believe the scene is much better outside of the US. The rise of the alternative scene in the 90s really killed the US industry. Talent was thrown completely out the window for bands that could barely play their instruments and vocalists that all sounded exactly the same with no vocal range. It was a very dark time for me, musically. At the end of the decade when I acquired internet, it opened up a whole new world of hope. I discovered bands like Edguy, Masterplan and Avantasia. Ever since then, my musical interest has been focused outside the US and I’ve never looked back. There are a few bands carrying the traditional torch here but not many. As far as metal in general, it’s still going but the majority of it isn’t what I would ever listen to.

How much of a touring band are you guys? How hard is it to get gigs outside of your borders?
A: We don’t tour a lot per se’ but the majority of our shows are with national and international bands. We did a short tour with Stryper a year or so ago and also multiple dates with them just recently. Not to mention, other bands we’ve supported like Hammerfall, Delain, Flotsam & Jetsam, Omnium Gatherum and Joe Lynn Turner. We also have a show coming up with ACCEPT in October.

What will the future bring?
A: Getting your music in front of the right audience is always the goal. Especially a few European dates would be nice. We have yet to be invited but hopefully with the release of this album, that will change. Also, I don’t waste much time before I start thinking about the next album.

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