MYRHDING is another Swedish metal band of which there seem to be a never ending stream of. Check them out after you’ve read this interview. Anders Ekdahl ©2012

I get a feeling that your band name has something to do with ancient Swedish. What made you want this word as your band name?
-Yes, the name Myhrding/Myrding is another form of the word “Myling” wich means Murdered. A myling was in the Swedish folklore an unwanted and un-baptised child who was sat out to die in the forest. When the child had died it would come back for revenge and haunt the family until it would have a name and find some sort of revenge.

You’ve just released your new record. What do you expect it to do for you?
-Yes that’s correct. The album “A legacy of shadows” was recorded in 2010, but has been delayed for various reasons. We don’t have any specific expectations really… We made the album for ourselves. But if some people will buy the album and like the music it’s just a bonus.

When you release a record on a small label how much work do you have to do yourself to help promote it?
-We don’t have anything to compare with. Since this is the first label we’re working with.
But we do what we can. Today is internet a very good tool to spread the music. Some live performance would be the best, but we have not been able to perform yet. But this is one thing we are working on right now.

How hard is it to get a sound that is perfect for your music? How do you find the right kind of people to work with?
-Well, when we write the music its not so hard for us, because we do the kind of music we like and we don’t feel that we have to sound in a special way. When it comes to work as a band we didn’t have much of a choice, because there are very few in this area that listen and play this kind of music. When it comes to the studio and recording people I just had one person in mind and that was Rickard (owner of Art Decay Studio). A very good person to work with who comes with great idéas and gives a helping hand when it’s needed.

When you play black metal I get a feeling that there is a greater degree of ideology behind it. What kind of ideas do you build your music on?
-The music itself is what I wrote before: Based on what we like and find it in a motion that fits our personalities and feelings. Then the lyrics (which I and Kristoffer write) are mostly about the dark side of life, Death, agony, dreaming away from life and a sick world, Nordic history. But also our repulsion to Christianity. We also use some Nordic and mythological elements sometimes.

When does black metal stop being black metal? What is it that makes it black metal?
-We don’t really see ourselves as a pure black metal-band, more as a black metal-inspired band. But to answer the question, I would say that black metal is the Devils music and a work for his glory. Its an endless war against the weak light of God and total devotion to the death and darkness.

How hard is it to make a name for yourself in a scene that seem to be divided between the ?true? and the rest?
-No idea. And that’s not really important for us.

How much do you pay attention to being on the right side of ?true?? What is true in black metal?
-Nothing we think about, we walk the way we feel without follow any kind of “metal rules” or something like that,

What kind of live scene is there for black metal in your area? Where do you receive the best response?
-None at all. We live near the city Jönköping, which is called “The Jerusalem of Småland”. It’s a disgusting city with terribly many churches and Christianity… A thing that just gives us more fuel to the hate and more inspiration to do music.

What future is there for Myhrding?
-We are constantly in writing-mode and we have once again an album in the luggage.
Then we have plans to try to do some performance…. then we have to see what the future brings.


I’m impressed by the number of Canadian bands that I’ve come upon in 2012. Another one is ODIUM. The interview answered by vocalist Tom Emman. Anders Ekdahl ©2012

I often wonder what it is like to know that there are other bands with the same name as yours. How do you avoid being confused with the other ones?
Tom: It is fairly difficult to avoid being confused with the other bands of the same name at this point. As our band grows it becomes easier for someone searching the net for our band to come across the right pages and articles. We chose the name in 2005, when MySpace was the Social Network to be in, and Mark Zuckerberg was still changing Facebook’s diapers, bands all over the world started connecting with other bands using this new social medium. I remember building the band’s first MySpace with our original guitarist and finding all these other Odiums and saying, “Oh Shit!”. By this point we had already developed a local reputation and decided against changing our name. Confusion has ensued ever since (laughs).

How do you go about choosing a band name? What criteria do you have for the name?
Tom: First off you always want something that’s gonna catch people, but i always wanted something that would mean something to us. I first found the word “odium” in a book I was reading when i was nineteen. The word was used in the context of someone who had been left behind, being able to change their surroundings through the feeling of intense hatred. I remember at that time sitting back and thinking that that was where I was in my life. I wanted to use my anger and aggression in a way that would change my life and surroundings for the better. The intensely emotional experience of performing the vocals in Odium has provided that positive change.

For those of new to the band can you give us a brief rundown of the bands intentions?
Tom: We are trying to make the music that we would want to listen to. We are trying to make songs that will survive trends and last for a long time. We are avoiding trends and we’re trying to keep things as pure as possible. A lot of people have questioned in the past my vocal approach in singing and screaming because that is popular right now. A lot of people have questioned the strings you hear in the background of the choruses. These things are not done as a gimmick or some cheap desperate try at the latest trend. I believe that heavy music should always be free to any and all artistic expression. I believe heavy music was created for the very purpose of having that freedom. Odium was made to have that kind of musical freedom. We try to have a lot of diversity on every album, We are trying to play as many shows as possible and trying to reach as many people as we can. Our intentions are not unlike many other bands, to make the music we want to make and try to make it available for anyone interested in hearing it. We continue to work daily on expanding our reach.

What benefits are there to being DIY? How hard is it to reach out to the right audience?
Tom: There is really only one benefit, but one that is really important…Control. As I have already said, artistic freedom is everything to this band. I’d rather reach ten people the right way then a million the wrong way. This mentality however makes it extremely difficult to reach different audiences. The underground music media is a great way to reach people, as well as social media. The best way though is to be out there playing the shows and meeting people. Fortunately, the diversity of our sound appeals to many different audiences.

I wonder occasionally how you do to become noticed. How you go from being unknown to known?
Tom: Very simple, surround yourself with competent, hard working people and live for the band. If your aren’t playing shows you should be booking and promoting them, or writing new music. There are no breaks and rarely any second chances. Never stop pushing yourself and the people around you to strive for more.

What kind of feeling is there when you see you first review? What kind of feeling is there when you stand on a stage for the first time?
Tom: Well depends, is the review good? (laughs) I am always interested to hear other people’s opinions on our musical output but I try not to let what critics say influence what I do. We want to make music we like and not worry too much about what everyone else thinks. I think letting what other people think guide a band’s decisions could really compromises the integrity of the band so I’d like to stay away from that. Standing on stage for the first time in a new city is our first chance to make a connection with new fans. We have that half hour or how ever long our set time is to win them over. To make them feel something and leave a lasting impression. It’s the greatest rush I’ve ever known.

How do you build a following? What is the most important thing to think about when you try to build a career for the band?
Tom: Building a following is a combination of playing as many shows as possible and social networking. It is important to not only play the gig but also to make people aware that you’re doing it. With many promoters you only get one shot so you have to make sure people knows to come out. This is not the type of music that gets much support from main stream media and even if it did, we are not at a level where those resources would be available to us. There is a lot of work that must be done to raise awareness for each show but that is how you build a following. If the record is good, you’ve made sure people know to come out and you give it your all when you hit the stage, they’ll come out to support the band the next time you roll through town. Other than promoting the shows, the most important thing is to play your heart out every time. Even if there’s only twenty people out there because the people who support this band deserve everything we’ve got.

Is Canada a good place to be a metal band? How much does national borders mean in today’s electronic world?
-The great thing about today’s technology is that it’s easier than ever to share our music with anyone in the world. Getting to those countries is another story. I feel very proud to be a Canadian band. We have so many amazing groups in our country who are just starting to get noticed. Canada does not have as many really huge metal bands as say, the US…yet, but I feel very optimistic about the Canadian metal scene and its future.

Are there any benefits to being a metal band from Canada?
-I think the Canadian metal scene is growing and people are very supportive and open minded here. There seems to be a general awareness of the importance of supporting up and coming artists here. Canada is also a very beautiful country to tour in. The cities are diverse and the landscapes are incredible.

What kind of future do you envision?
-The only expectations I have are that this band will continue to make music we can stand behind and that there will always be a core fan base who will support us. We will expand our reach as far as possible and we will tour to new places in the hopes of new fans. We really believe that this new album will open some doors for us and in fact it already has. We’re the type of band that could never be satisfied with where we are. Expect to see a lot more of us in the coming years. We’ve only just begun.

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REGARDLESS OF ME might be Italian but that shouldn’t be held against them. This is one hell of a band and if you haven’t checked them out just yet do so after you’ve read this interview. Anders Ekdahl ©2012

Does being Italian bring with it a burden that is hard to carry or can you benefit from it?
-Well, it’s hard to be a metal musician here in Italy, you know, this is the reason why we use to play in Europe every time, but we’re still here, to rock your fuckin’ world!

You are not the most well known band on the international metal scene. How would you like to describe your sound?
-Well, we just play metal. We love Iron Maiden, Meshuggah, Massive Attack and so many bands, the only thing I could tell is that we play Modern Melodic Metal, we’re willing to experiment different sounds, every time we record a new album

When you release albums on labels outside of Italy does that bring with it an interest from metal fans that you would not have received had you been on an Italian label?
-Well we have so many fans here in Italy, but, the problem is that there’s a bad metal culture in Italy for Italian metal bands…….this is the reason why we choose a label outside Italy

Your album has been out some time now. What kind of response have you had to it so far?
-Well about selling we’re so satisfied, ‘cause this album is completely different from the first one, much more strong and metal.

In hindsight how pleased are you with the end result of it?
-We’re so happy about it, it’s a cool album and you’ll never be disappointed in listening to it

Can you ever let go of something that is out and about? How irritating is it to discover small errors and knowing that you can’t change it?
-Absolutely not, the best thing is that the album is a real album… know, we’re not a machines!

How much of a live band is Regardless Of Me? What kind of live scene is there in Italy for a band like yours?
-Well as I told you before it’s not simple. This is the reason why we use to play outside Italy, especially in UK and Germany, their music metal culture is so cool and strong. Here in Italy most of the band play covers….I hate that fucking shit….they’re not musicians

What ways are there to promote a band? What’s the best way?
-The best way is to have so many money to spend….you know, music market is a bad thing, the only way you have is to try to find a big label who can spend a thousand euro for the promotion, online, in magazines etc…

How much are you ready to sacrifice to get what you want for the band?
-Well this a nice question…! We’re 34 years old in the band….so, we got a job, we got a’s hard to be a musician, but we’re still here to rock your fucking world

What future plans do you have for the band?
-Well we will play in 2 big festivals this summer, supporting Garbage, Meshuggah, Amaranthe…it’s a great event for us, we’re on the main stage this year. The more you try to be a great band the more you’ll get what you deserve.
After this summer we’ll start recording new album, the third


SYLVAN REALM are new to me but their black metal tinged music intrigued me enough to want to interview them/him. Anders Ekdahl ©2012

Could you please explain to me why it is that I haven’t heard of Sylvan Realm before now?
-What’s important is that now you have, and now your life will never be the same! haha I just couldn’t help myself… in all honesty no one really knows Sylvan Realm the band is very underground and un heard of in general. I create music for myself as a divine communication with the cosmos and personal projection out into the universe… a sonic temple if you will. I haven’t done anything in terms of promotion of the band up until recently I decided to break the silence.

The album title “The Lodge Of Transcendence” made me think sweat lodge and spiritual journeys. What is behind the title?
-Well you got the half of it my friend, a spiritual journey indeed. I had been obsessed with the Twin Peaks series by David Lynch while I was writing the album and in the series there are two lodges the white lodge and the black lodge. Both hidden realms with in nature, they end up finding the black lodge in the series but never do find the white lodge that deals with enlightenment and transcendence so I decided to make my own white lodge if you will.

How does the art work to the album fit with the title?
-The art work are all places I have been while living out in the Rocky Mountains of Montana. I would seek out far away isolated landscapes and abandoned ghost towns from the days of the old west and had some deep awakenings out in those places. I am a photographer so I generally had my camera handy and took pictures of how I would see the places I would seek through my mind’s eye. The general idea is out far away in the realm of nature is a lodge were one can seek to transcend.

Is Sylvan Realm a journey into the nether regions of mankind’s psyche? What is it that you want to achieve with the band?
-Not necessarily mankind’s psyche, but rather a sonic temple and cosmic communication of energy projected out into the universe. Every time I play guitar this is what I do, for music and creating music is my sonic temple.

Do you feel that there has to be an aura of mystique to a band for it to be interesting? I mean what would Marilyn Manson be without the madman aspect.
-Mystique is my middle name hahaha! Generally I gravitate towards mysterious bands, however there are plenty of straight forward bands that I also enjoy. I think it’s important to be authentic as a band and person in general. So many bands are gimmicky, sure gimmicks may sell records… but that is not what Sylvan Realm is about. I don’t try to create mystique nor does Sylvan Realm have anything to keep hidden. I believe it’s more so the fact that the band is very unheard of and
works with such esoteric subject matter. Lastly there is the fact that Sylvan Realm is not a band in the conventional sense, but rather a spiritual journey through musical output.

I get a distinct feeling that you are somewhat of an anomaly on the US metal scene. Where do you feel you fit in? Do you want to fit in?
-Why anomaly is my last name hahaha! I don’t have any connections with the American scene or any scene for that matter. And by now I think it’s no mystery that I don’t fit in!

When you release an album on your own what kind of channels are there to get it heard? How much does radio plays mean to get your band heard?
-I know at least in America that the days of radio are dead. I use to be a DJ for a metal radio show for two years so trust me I know. However for Europe and the rest of the world it may be a different cup
of tea. I generally just use the necessary evil of social network sites to get the music out there and do a lot of trades with indie metal labels.

How much help are the social media in spreading the band’s name and what does it actually mean in terms of real exposure?
-Really just a necessary evil in my opinion, it is what it is nothing less nothing more.

How tough is it really to get yourself heard and to build a fan base in today’s fierce competition? How fickle are today’s metal audience?
-Good question, but I don’t have an answer for you.

What would you like the future to contain for Sylvan Realm?


Did you read the first interview I did with TITANS EVE? If not here’s a new chance to catch up with this Canadian band again. Interview answered by Kyle Gamblin – guitarist. Anders Ekdahl c2012

Would you consider the time that has passed between your previous album and this new one to be have been a successful period of time? What is success to you guys?
-Yes, for us success is reaching new fans and spreading our music on any level. We toured and reached a great amount of people between our first album and now. Seeing people excited about us after a show is success to us.

How much pressure have you felt to come up with an album that surpasses the old one? How hard has it been to come up with something better?
-There was a lot of pressure to one up from our last album. Luckily we knew what we had to do to achieve that, and it came naturally to us.

How do you know that this one is better than the previous one? What sort of criteria do you have for bettering yourself?
-We write music we like first and foremost. We loved what we did for the first album, but as time changes and we progress, we’re very happy with our new album. Better songs, bigger hooks, and better solo’s. Pretty straight forward for us. We believe we achieved that.

I know that you guys tour a lot in North America but how are you going to take that touring to the rest of the world on the back of this new album?
-We’re first going to do a very proper and extensive tour of Canada. After that, we plan to reach Europe somehow. Right now we’re just focusing on delivering a killer tour for Canada.

When you go on tour as often as you seem to do, do you notice an increase in interest for the band or are you still playing to the already converted?
-Every town gets better every time we hit it. We start to recognize faces, whether it’s one person or a group of people, it’s great to see.

Something I often wonder is how you avoid standing still and how you take it one step further?
-Standing still is not what we do. Like any job or profession, we know what to improve on, whether it’s song writing or our live show. We’re very serious about what we do so improvement is part of our band ethic.

You previous album had a pretty ambitious concept behind it. Is there something similar going on with this new album?
-Yes, the new album is loosely based on a complete ‘Life Apocalypse’. Where everything has fallen apart and you’re life’s hanging on a thread, and having the strength to get out of it.

How do you write lyrics that are interesting both to you as a band and to an audience?
-We write lyrics that strongly register with us emotionally. On this album we touched on themes about complete hopelessness and death. Also we wrote about surviving inner disaster. People can identify with that.

Is it easy being a band that is as hard working as your and still survive as human beings? How far can you take it before the band becomes a burden on your everyday life and you have to make a choice?
-It’s not easy for any band these days to achieve even a small amount of success. It does take its toll on a person, but the alternative of not playing is something we couldn’t do. We’ll always be pushing forward as a band. Any way we can.

What do you expect to get out of it all this time round?
-We expect to reach and connect with more people. That’s ultimately our goal. The more people that we connect with, the more successful we will be. We’re the strongest we’ve ever been and we are excited to see what people think about ‘Life Apocalypse’


My metal albums by bands from Cyprus are easy counted. WINTERS VERGE is my first, if memory serves me right. Anders Ekdahl ©2012

Cyprus is not the most common metal country. What is it like to be a metal band on Cyprus?
– Good afternoon, I am Miguel. Being a metal band in Cyprus is like trying to sell expensive watches to poor people. You’d better be sure you’re doing it out of love, because doing it for money is pointless! There are plenty of famous bands who come and play in Cyprus these days, but for local bands the highest they can hope for is to be an opening act for someone. That is why we started looking outside Cyprus to move ahead.

Can we speak of a metal scene on Cyprus? I guess not many international bands play shows there?
-Actually, you’re wrong there. Over the past three years I could name about 15 very famous bands who have come to Cyprus to play… there are some good promoters bringing acts over which is great to see. Stratovarius, Arch Enemy, Iced Earth, Sepultura, Rotting Christ, Children of Bodom, Mystic Prophecy… plenty of bands!

What kind of reactions do you get from the national fans and media? Are they proud of you being from Cyprus?
-Most people do seem to be very happy for us. They seem to be proud that a Cypriot band has been signed to a well-known label and gone on tour with popular bands in Europe. I mean, there are some people who don’t support what we do – either they don’t like our music which is fair enough, or they seem to have some sort of problem with our (very relative) success, which is somewhat confusing; especially if they used to support us but now don’t. But they can seriously just go and fuck themselves. We don’t need them. For the most part, people have been supportive which is always special to see… it’s our home, after all. This is where it all began.

You are on your third album but you still seem like a well kept secret. What have you done in the past to promote the band?
-We were on tour with Stratovarius 2 years ago in Eastern Europe. That was huge exposure for the band, especially as almost everyone at the shows really seemed to dig our stuff and appeared to have a good time, rocking out while we were playing. I mean, if we sucked that wouldn’t have happened, right? We made a lot of new fans on that tour and it highlights the importance of getting out there on the road and doing live shows. There really is no substitute.

When you have two albums already to your name how do you take it one step further when it is time for a new album?
-We look for things we didn’t do on the last album. Maybe a type of sound, or a type of music or dynamic we didn’t try last time around. We want to keep some things the same; after all, we have to have our own soul and style, but at the same time we need to evolve. We need to move and not stay stagnant. That’s what we tried with this album: to introduce stuff that wasn’t in the others, like heavier, Pantera-type riffs and more intense breakdowns.

When you write songs does it feel like you’ve found your style? Is there a flow to the song writing process?
-When we write a song we just do what comes natural to us. We might think ‘ok let’s write a heavy and fast song’ but that’s not some sort of concrete rule – it’s just a guideline. Maybe the heavy and fast song will end up being a symphonic epic, and that’s one of the best things about being in this band, there’s an inherent unpredictability as to what sort of songs will appear. ‘Paper is Blank’, for example, started out as a melodic mid-tempo song, and ended up as a really fast, traditional power metal song. One of the reasons this sort of thing happens is that everyone is involved in the songwriting process – someone has an idea, it gets passed around, and then when it comes to actually playing it each of us adds or takes away or modifies according to our own individual styles. I feel it gives a depth and complexity to our music which is really important to what we do.

How much say do you have in picking art work and the lay-out? Does the art work have to correlate with the music?
-Absolutely. Artwork has an undeniable psychological link to the music – I grew up listening to CDs and reading through the booklets as I did so. Even now when I hear ‘Fear of the Dark’ by Iron Maiden
at the back of my mind there’s a picture of Eddie crawling out of a tree. Same goes for when I listen to ‘In the Nightside Eclipse’ by Emperor, I get visions of the dark forests and mountains of Norway. While all this might not hold as true today as it did 10 or even 5 years ago, it’s still important – it’s something that our subsequent merchandise and stage shows might reflect, as well as the ever-present ‘eye-in-the-mind’ deal for listeners. It would be pretty cool if people listening to our music imagined angels and demons battling in the sky. What we usually do is tell the graphic designer what we want, and they pass us their own interpretation. The record label of course has to agree with it, but Massacre have let us get on with our own thing.

When you’ve been doing this for 8 years does it feel like you are where you want to be in your career?
-In one respect, we’ve achieved more than we could’ve imagined. We’ve had some incredible opportunities come our way and we have tried to make the most of them. While we want more (and if we didn’t want more then there would be something wrong with us), we feel we’ve done reasonably well for ourselves. But the desire and hunger remains to move onwards and upwards.

How frustrating is it to feel like you are standing still, not getting anywhere when you know that you have the goods just because you don’t have the right kind of backing?
-At the end of the day, you have to go out and grab opportunities and make things happen. We’ve all made huge sacrifices in trying to get the band moving ahead, and I don’t see that changing. That’s the nature of the business now – with record labels struggling to stay in the black, bands do have to increasingly fend for themselves and go out there and do the most that they can with what they have. It’s not easy, but nobody said it would be. If you’re in the music industry for a relaxed time, you chose the wrong business!

What would a perfect future look like for Winters Verge?
-More touring, more albums, more fans. We want to play everywhere in the world, we want to travel to Asia, North & South America, all over Europe, and give the music we make to as many people as we can. We want to record an album with a full symphony orchestra. We want to make epic 2-part albums. We want to headline festivals. All art is communication, and music is the most powerful form of communication of all – we want to do that as much as we can. Will we achieve all those dreams? Well, why not? To eternal victory will metal go!

BORGNE “Royaume des Ombres”

“Royaume des Ombres”
(Sepulchral Prod.)
I don’t know how many times you can mention that the Swiss are best known for watches and chocolate before it gets old but metal isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. Borgne is the first band from outside of Quebec to be signed to Sepulchral which must mean that they are special in more ways than one. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. I like old Burzum. I have nothing left for the bastard but I like what he created back in the early days. My experience with Sepulchral so far has been that they deal in the same kind of lo-fi black metal that Burzum did. Borgne seem no exception to that rule. This is minimalistic in all its charm. No fancy extravagant arrangements. Just plain black metal done in a very enticing way. Cool. Anders Ekdahl


(Sepulchral Prod.)
Brume d’Automome is another of these Quebecois bands that deal in primitive and raw black metal. Having never been to the Quebec area I have no idea what it is like outside of the cities but judging from the black metal that is created there I’d say that nature seem harsh and unfriendly. This is not music with smooth edges. It is more like sharpened knives and sleeping with one eye open kind of music. If you don’t watch your back it will stab you to death. I like that harsh edge it brings with it. There is something to the cold sound this kind of black metal produces that bring a warm feeling to my heart. I really like this. This is the kind of music I’d take with me on a hike through deep dark forests. Anders Ekdahl

DARKEND “Grand Guignol – Book 1”

“Grand Guignol – Book 1”
(Crash and Burn)
From out of nowhere came this album my way. Don’t know a thing about them. Hopefully I’ll be fully enlightened by the end of this album. I get a sense that there is a theme/concept to this but since I don’t have the lyrics I can’t tell. Musically I get flashes to a more extreme Cradle Of Filth. There is that same dramatic feel to this as there is to COF’s music. It kinda sweeps over you like a velvet blanket laced with razors. Looks nice but cuts deep. There is a charm to this kind of black metal. It just requires your full attention to not be lost on you. This isn’t the kind of music you do your dishes to, unless your hubby/wifey has cheated on you. This works as the perfect soundtrack to act out to. Let yourself be true to you and dance around like an insane person and scare your neighbours as you listen to this. Anders Ekdahl

DEADLY REMAINS “Severing Humanity”

“Severing Humanity”
When you mention California you think sun and sandy beaches. Life guards that runs up and down with bouncing breasts. Or do you? Is it just me that have been Baywatched? Deadly Remains are not something you’d like to meet at the beach. This is a monster of a death metal album. It is full on blast from the first note. I like it! There is something to being bludgeoned from start to finish. It’s like fighting a bear over who’s the toughest bastard in the woods. If you win you’ll be one lucky son of a gun. If you lose, who cares? I feel the same way about this album. There is no way this is going to defeat me. I’m gonna win over this one. If you like your death metal served raw rather than well cooked then this is gonna be your kind of dinner. Cool stuff indeed. Anders Ekdahl