- Interview by David, 26 November 2005
Mikael Stanne, singer in Dark Tranquillity,
has been the perhaps most recurrent interviewee on Metal Covenant. But
when I met him at Växjö Metal Festival I took the opportunity
to ask some more questions.
You're going on a quite intensive tour now in December
- Yeah, starting on Monday in England. So we will
just go home for a few hours after this gig and then on to catch the flight.
It will be a headline tour so we will be able to play a bit longer and
offer a few surprises in the set. At the same time all the bands [also
including Chimaira and Hatesphere] will be treated as equals. It will
last for four weeks, until Christmas.
read somewhere that you don't really like long, intensive touring
- It's very bad for your health and destructive
for your body, haha
But we have done longer tours, six to seven
weeks, so it will be okay. Actually it feels very relaxed this time. Everything
will be taken care of by the crew. And we don't have to do promotion or
anything like that between the concerts.
Did you ever think that you could have reached even further as a band
with more touring?
- Not really, it's now we feel that we really have
something to offer, so it's now we want to present ourselves for the world.
We also have a great management now, so it's all falling into place. Maybe
we have some more work to do on the American market. Anyway we will play
live as much as possible from now on.
What can we expect from you on this tour?
- We will experiment more with the set and play
some older, maybe unexpected songs, some longer songs and some slower
ones. We will probably change the set slightly form night to night. Some
fans follow you on tour and see many gigs in a row, so we want to give
them something unique. At the same time there will always be those who
miss a song they've heard that we played the night before. We will do
a couple of songs from Character that we didn't play this summer and something
from Projector that we haven't played for a while.
- That's one of them, yeah, one of my favorites.
Maybe not tonight though, I don't remember
Well, you have to put it in then! Speaking of Character, how has it been
- Very well, it has sold almost the double compared
to Damage Done. Part of the explanation is that we got much better promotion
this time. Our greatest markets are in Germany, Italy, Japan, France and
Spain. Sweden and USA are good as well.
How do you feel about the label 'Gothenburg Death Metal'?
- We don't think about it really. What is it? High
quality and more melodic? But it is interesting to see that we have got
some American followers. It is always flattering with appreciation for
what you do. There seems to be a second wave around now. But it can also
be a restraining factor for new bands from the Gothenburg area. They automatically
get a label that they perhaps don't want.
One can get the impression that all of the bands who started this wave
know each other, is that so?
- Actually, yes it's close to the truth. Many of
us grow up in the same blocks, we started to play at the same time, inspired
each other and exchanged members between us. It was really exciting during
those first years when everything went on underground. Those who showed
up for the gigs were those in the closest circle and we had a lot of fun.
I saw that you were enjoying Masterplan at Gates Of Metal this summer
- Yes, they are great, and Jorn Lande is a great
source of inspiration for me. Well, this show may not have been the best,
But Lande's style of singing is quite far from your own
- Yeah, but there is so much else to learn from:
expressions, feelings and stage personality. Those things are crossing
You played a 45-minute set at Metaltown and 1hour and 15 minutes at Gates
Of Metal the weekend after, how come?
- It was simply the way the arrangers wanted it.
Also the Swedish radio P3 taped the gig at Gates Of Metal so they probably
wanted a longer set which they could edit before sending it. It would
be up soon I think. The biggest difference is that when you do a longer
set you cannot hold the same intensity as when you do a short one. Gates
Of Metal must be the best festival in Sweden now when 1000 Decibel is
closed down. It has just the right size.
Do you have any clear idea about how your next album will sound like?
- It's impossible to say. We have written a couple
of songs, but how it will sound in the end is too early to decide. It
usually doesn't appear until when we've entered the studio.