With a new album out now you might want to check out Danish Vanir. I now I will starting with this interview. Anders Ekdahl ©2012
I like the grander side of folk metal, the epic side. What is it that is so appealing about folk metal that you want to play it?
-Folk metal brings a lot of oppertunities to the metal genre, you have very few limits to the music. It’s music that makes you want to drink a beer or two, so what’s not to like.
What part has the Danish folklore played in shaping Vanir to be the band you are today?
-Danish folklore is a great interest to some of our bandmembers, mostly to those who work on our lyrics, so it has been a great part of Vanir. We are as much a viking metal band as we are a folk metal band.
But most of our songs are written from norse mythology or inspired by it.
If I remember correctly the Danish Vikings differed quite a lot from the Swedish. They were more of a stay at home kind of people. What part of the ancient Danish history can you use to make it interesting in a metal context?
-Denmark actually ruled over Sweden and Norway for a long time. Forkbeard was king of Denmark and Norway, he also conquered England in 1013. Not to forget that it was the Danes who stopped Charlamagnes campaing to convert the northern tribes. There’s a lot of ancient history to be inspired by.
When you have national bands in pretty much the same sub-genre that make it out into the great wide world, how much of an inspiration is that?
-It’s always great to see the boys from the hood doing great abroad. And it always make you wanna go too!
Being a Danish metal band how much do you look to Sweden for inspiration/admiration?
-We find inspiration in a lot of different metalgenres, but to name one from Sweden it would be Amon Amarth. We also have some good friends in Yggdrasil, a swedish black/folk band and we hope to make our way into Sweden during the fall and our upcoming album “Onwards Into Battle” is recorded and produced at Berno Studios in Malmö. So we are very fond of Sweden actually. The folk aspects of Vanir is mostly inspired by Irish, Scottish, swedish, Danish and Norwegian folk music.
Whatever happened to the Danish metal scene in the 90s/00s? it was such a great scene in the 80s?
-Well, most of us were born in the 80s. So we don’t know much about the danish metal scene in 80s/90s from personal experience. But we still have a great metal audience, and that’s the important part.
Sadly one of the best metal nightclubs in dk, The Rock, closed last fall.
I haven’t followed the folk metal scene too closely but I get as much as it’s pretty big in Germany? What is it with Germans and the ancient times? They have all the medieval festivals and stuff?
-We haven’t had the pleasure of playing in Germany yet. But I’m sure we’ll get there soon! We have a lot of medieval festivals in Denmark too.
How important is it to have a distinctive image? Is singing in Danish a part of an image?
-It was more of a coincidence that “Særimners Kød” were in Danish, than an actually question of image. Our new album contains both lyrics in Danish and in English. We don’t really go for a distinctive image per se, because everything in Vanir is based on how we are as persons. We love a good party, we love some metal and then we just added Viking because Vikings is on one hand, our heritage and on the other hand it’s just a really cool theme.
When you play live how do you get the right ambience to the audience? Is the music enough on stage?
-When we hit the stage, we do everything in our power to get the audience to party with us, sing along, moshing, headbanging, dancing and all the good stuff. Fortunately our audience loves to party as much as we do! Maybe the music is enough, but we have never tried to stand still at our concerts. We can’t even stand still at bandpractice, so it’s impossible on stage.
What do you plan for the future of Vanir?
-We have just released our new album “Onwards Into Battle”, and the feedback from fans all over the world has been great. So the plan is to get out on the stages and meet them!