If you like true heavy metal you will most likely have come upon the name of THE GATES OF SLUMBER at some point. If not you are one of the unlucky ones that have missed out on this great band. Anders Ekdahl ©2013
THE GATES OF SLUMBER have been around for a while now. How would you say that you success has been so far?
-Well, Success is a very extremely loose term. There really isn’t any success in this genre of music. There is only what it is you want to do and what kind of music you create. Success can come from creating something that you are truly happy with not with how many people buy your albums or show up at your shows. But with that definition, I’m extremely happy with the music we are and have created and the artistic direction in which we are moving in. I really look forward to see what we will do next. I am pretty stoked on what it is we do now and have done in the past and there is no other style of music I would rather play and do than what I am doing today.
You are what I would call trad metal. What is that has made you sound the way you sound?
-Well, I personally wouldn’t call us Traditional Metal, We are just who we are. We create what we create as it is form our heart and soul and it is our attempt to create our version of music that is the same as those who came before us. Everything worth a shit has already been done and we are not attempting to recreate the wheel. We just create our own little color spectrum in our own little sub basement of the Metal community.
If you look back on your collective work what is the red line through it? How do you view the albums back to back?
-The Red line if you were, is we stay true to ourselves and write what it is we want to write. There are times that people told us that we need to do this or that for our next album to continue on whatever momentum that we created with that previous album but we have never allowed critics, reviewers or music business people dictate to us what it is we want to create. Our records are the sum collective effort our energy and soul wrenching life experience sheered off into a sliver of musical expression.
Everybody seems to hail you as a great band. How much of the praise do you actually see in reality? Do you notice an increase in interest if your album gets a good review in Decibel or Terrorizer?
-Well, it is nice to read, see or hear people complement the work that we have poured our heart and soul into. It feels good it is cool to be recognize. However, we don’t rely on those reviews to dictate what it is we do. We create what we create because it is an extension of who we are as people and as musicians. I feel that if any band is around for any length of time, eventually they will get attention by the rags out there. Look at Manilla Road, they have been together as long as Metallica and yet now they are finally getting their just deserve reward. Not because they changed musically and now after all these years they are musically acceptable, but that they have been around so long, people just have to take notice. We haven’t been around as long as they have been however we have out stayed many of the bands that was kicking around when we started who have and since gone by the way side. Warhorse is an example. We just continue to do what we do because it is who we are and just because we are active and we wont go away that we now get attention because people have to take notice. It doesn’t mean we are doing anything different than what we did ten years ago. Fucken Hell, we still play songs that we wrote ten years ago
How hard do you have to work to keep a band’s name alive? How does keeping the band going interact with you having to make a living?
-Shit, there is no making a living playing this music. In fact I have personally destroyed myself in what this world deems as important and what society judges everyone by. I don’t play music to make a living. I play it as an outlet and extension of my day to day life and a reflection of this shit world and reality that I live in. We keep this band’s name alive by the simple fact that we just keep creating and playing shows. There is no grand plan or some Masonic design happening behind the curtain to allow this band to be set up in some world over throw with music like Wyld Stallons!
We’ve seen some of your albums being re-released. When that happens do you see an increase in interest for the older stuff or are people just interested in the stuff that is fresh?
-Well a lot of that is happening because our earlier albums came out on labels that are now defunct or that they have moved on and are doing releases that are current and don’t have the capital to keep older releases that happen years ago in print. I personal hate the fact that someone that might buy a newer album of ours and then want to hear an older album have to troll through Ebay and pay outrageous amounts of money on a record that 8 years ago was $7.99 It is not fair to them and just simply not cool.
What are you working on now? When will we see a new album hitting the stores?
-We are in the process now of writing our next album for Rise Above and hopefully it will be recorded by the end of this summer or early fall. The Material we are working on is basically the next obvious step from both The Wretch and Stormcrow. It is simply put, extremely bleak and truthfully heavy.
For a band like THE GATES OF SLUMBER how hard has the download scene affected you? What are your feelings on digital V/S physical?
-Well, I think those who live solely off of digital release, they are missing out on what it is to be a true music fan as there is so much more that goes into a release than a compressed file off of the internet. The Illegal downloads affected us, we are not immune to it, it affects everyone both good and bad. I would lie if I said when I was a kid I didn’t tape albums of of friends of mine that bought them because I couldn’t afford to purchase the tape myself and illegal downloads are the same thing, just on a more massive scale. At the end of the day, if someone gets one of our albums vs borrowing it from a friend, illegally downloading it or purchasing out right, and they enjoy the album from beginning to end and get something out of it musically and emotionally then by all means congrats to them. I mean, Richard Wagner isn’t getting any dough from me when I buy a CD of his music being played by the London Phil-harmonic orchestra although I get a lot of emotional and personal enjoyment out of the release.
When you get to see your music being released on LP (vinyl) what kind of feelings does it bring out? How much real does vinyl feel?
-Oh, a vinyl release? It brings back feeling I got when I use to wake up on Xmas morning as a little child. It is by far one of my favorite aspects of playing music and one of the greatest rewards I’ve receive on creating and recording my art. It is the one selfish aspect of being in a band that I have. To be able to see all of our albums release on vinyl format plus other random releases getting the same treatment by far blows my mind away. I still find myself blown away by the idea that someone would want want put out an 12″ for us let alone a versions of our albums that come with such a deluxe treatment with the different layouts we have had. It is truly one of the greatest aspects of writing and creating this music. No doubt.
What else is there in the future for you guys?
-On the horizon is 12″ EP release called RIDERS OF DOOM that Church Within Records in Germany is going to be putting out later this summer and in connection with that a tour of Europe with Acid King and EyeHateGod, then recording our next album for Rise Above/Metal Blade for hopefully an early winter release of this year and then we play the game all over again. We will wait and see what tours are ahead of us and what opportunities that might arrive. We will take the future one dat at a time, Good days with Bad days, sick days with well days… So Come DOOM with us!
To close I would alike to invite all those who are interested in TGoS to check out our website, there you can watch videos, listen to TGoS tunes, get Merch, look at old flyers and posters of yesteryear gone past. I know I personally enjoy sites that bands have put up in the past to view what it is they have done and what have you. So check out the site if you have nothing going on!