THE CROWN are back and in full force. It is an honour to have them featured on battlehelm.com Answers from Marko. Anders Ekdahl ©2021
Do you feel that is has gone the way you intended when you formed back in the days?
-I did not believe I would still playing at all these years later. It has gone way past expectation. Those days you perhaps dreamed about selling your own 7” vinyl single in the local record store. We did not know anything of what the future had in store.
How do you feel about your latest recording? Did it come out the way you expected it to?
-I feel really good about it, it is close to a perfect bullseye album in my opinion. It actually came out more or less like I expected, maybe even better. A Royal Destroyer indeed!
How did you find your sound in the beginning and how have you expanded on it?
-Well we all start by imitation, but it is hard to imitate really good bands so you end up with your own brand of noise. I think we kind of found our sound on the Hell Is here album in 1998, when we combined the burning intensity of our Death and Black Metal with more punk rock and thrash.
Is having a message in the lyrics important to you? What kind of topics do you deal with?
-I think that the whole experience of music and lyrics should come together. But no, not really a message. This is supposed to be art, where you can make up your own mind what it means to you, I don’t want to force any message upon the listener, its up to everyone to think for themselves.
How important is the cover art work for you? Can a really cool cover still sell an album in this day and age of digital download?
-I like really cool album covers, I think it means a lot to the whole experience of an album. When you think of an album you think of the music but also of the album cover.
I sure have bought albums just because of a cool album art,but it maybe doesn’t work that way anymore.
I hope that album art will still survive in the digital age, I think we need some visuals to connect to the music.
What is success to you and is it something you’d like to achieve?
-Good question! I think for me it is about honour and to be respected for who you are. But of course I would love to sell out big shows and play infront of thousands of screaming fans everytime you make a show and sell platina albums and make tons of money. The ultimate success is to become a legend I believe.
Today the competition is harder. You got plenty of digital platforms for new talent to display their music. How do you do to really stand out in a world where everything but the music is blind to the listener?
-I don’t know anything more than making good music. But there are probably lots of tricks you can do in the digital age, buying your own likes and streams and so on to make it appear that you are more succesful and then more people will follow. But as I said I focus only on the music. Perhaps I’m old fashioned in that way.
What is your local scene like? How important is a national scene for a band to be able to break out and make it international?
-There are some very succesful bands coming out of of the Gothenburg scene. As we are from Trollhättan we were never really part of that scene but we did play shows with bands like At The Gates, In Flames and Dark Tranquillity in the mid 90’s and of course it was very important that we got a deal with that local record label Black Sun Records that existed due to the local Metal scene. I think swedish and Scandinavian Metal have good reputation and maybe it is easier for us in that way. I don’t know I have nothing to compare it to.
Rock and metal has come a long way since the early 70s but still some people’s attitudes towards it seem to be left in the stone-age. Is this something you experience today?
-I don’t really know what you mean? That it is looked down upon? Yeah we don’t get any coverage at all from the mainstream media, they are busy covering celebrities and that sort of stuff.
What does the future hold for you?
-Who knows? I would like to do some more masterpiece albums, I feel that we have a good thing going on in the band and that we still have some more awesome albums in us. Maybe we can be a strange late bloomer? I like to think that Cobra Speed Venom was a sort of new start, and that Royal Destroyer was the perfect follow up album. Maybe if we can make a perfect row of another 2-3 albums that would be such a great thing. I mean, most Metal bands have their whole career defined in 4-5 albums, like Metallica and Slayer and then they can live from that legacy set in stone , no matter what albums they release they only grow in size. I believe only Black Sabbath released their legendary first run of six perfect albums in a row, but that is unheard of since.