Although I try to keep up I still can’t keep track of all Swedish metal bands. Could you please introduce yourself shortly to me?
-Yes, sure! Nonexist was formed in 2000 when I had just signed with WAR-music, a label here in Sweden, with Andromeda. I had made some demos of songs more in the death/thrashmetal vein which interested WAR as well. So I signed a contract without having any members, just the songs, pretty weird!
Then Liiva had just left Arch Enemy and moved back to the same town as the WAR-boss Wez lived and they knew each other since the time Arch Enemy was on Wrong Again Rec. which was Wez’s old label. So Liiva was asked if he wanted to join Nonexist and he did! Then the label also contacted drummer Matte Modin – then in Defleshed and Dark Funeral – who played on our debutalbum “Deus Deceptor” which was recorded in Abyss studios in November 2001 and released about six months later. Then the band fell into inactivity since we were all busy with our other bands.
I continued to write Nonexist-songs though during the years to come and in 2011 the band was resurrected as I wrote the album “From My Cold Dead Hands” and Liiva got back on the mic. We signed with Pivotal Rockordings for a digital release of the album and then also with Abyss Rec. and Trooper Entertainment – for Japan – for physical release.
In the studio we do the band as a duo with me and Liiva. Live we have Linus Abrahamson from Andromeda on bass and Joakim Strandberg-Nilsson and Johan Aldgård on drums and guitar, both of them play in Faithful Darkness.
Ever since the 80s Swedish metal has been treasured but now Sweden is leading the pack. Does that fact help you in getting the band noticed?
-Hmm, maybe? I don’t know for sure though.
What would you say has been the single most important factor in NONEXIST sound the way you do?
-Our original mix of influences. Plus Liiva’s majestic, unique voice pf course!
When you have a record to promote what is it that you expect it to do? What kind of expectations do you have and what is realistic to expect it to do?
-Since Nonexist has been away from the scene for a long time we don’t have that big expectations right now. We’re building the band up again and album number three is already in the making, halfway through approximately!
How pleased are you with your latest recorded work? How does this compare to your other material?
-We are very pleased indeed! I think compared to the first album there is more diversity and even more brutality. We have expanded our style by adding some clean vocals, some blackmetal influences and more blast-beats. Also I think the production is better on “From My Cold Dead Hands” – it’s more clear and sharp.
With so many bands, not only Swedish, around and so many social media sites how do you know which one to go for when you‘re promoting your band?
-Facebook mainly and youtube!
How should you rate the interest you get from social media sites? What does it mean in the real world if you gets thousands of thousands likes?
-It does give some kind of indication of your popularity but of course it doesn’t give you the whole picture.
The live scene seems to be more and more about big package tours or festivals. How do you as band get to play live? How important is playing live today?
-It’s hard yes. We’ve had some offers to do tours as the opening act but had to turn them down because they cost too much money. That’s really sad… I think it’s more important than ever to play live and spread your name and do merchandise sales which is almost the only income left in the music business.
Is having an image a great way of setting yourself apart from all the other bands?
-Yes, that could attract fans for sure. I’ve always shunned those kinds of bands though, like Kiss for example, where the music comes second. But sure – it can enhance the overall impression of the band and also –
the music. Like a great stage show for example.
If you were to predict the future for NONEXIST what would it look like?
-A new album every other year, tours, glory and booze!