So, I’ve been sitting on this part of the interview with Johannes Eckerstrom of Avatar for awhile now, trying to figure out what to do with it. Sadly, my digital recorder took a dive while transcribing this interview. Actually, I think it crapped out while doing the interview, I just didn’t know it. After much debate, I am going to release it. There isn’t much here, but it’s what I have left of the entire interview.
Personally, I didn’t think it was fair to the artist to hang on to part of the talk because the rest of it became a garbled mess. So, without further ado, and without any fanfare, here is what I was able to transcribe from part two.
Here we have part 2 of my interview with Johannes Eckerström of Avatar. Enjoy!
I saw the album in Best Buy when it came in. The cover caught my attention so I hopped on YouTube and checked out the video for Hail the Apocalypse. I really dig that video. A big chunk of my friends don’t like metal, don’t understand it, but I tell them to check out that video. Even if they have to turn the volume down. It’s just a great video. Bloody Angel is a great video, too. They talk about music videos meaning nothing in the US, but those videos caught my attention.
I appreciate you saying that because we do those video’s ourselves and treat them as seriously as we treat songs. The ideas come from the band and are produced by the band and a tiny team that we work with. We just make a point out of treating everything related to the band as art and not just putting it into somebody else’s hands. We want everything to fit and communicate the same stuff. I appreciate you saying that.
So you said earlier that the culture shock wasn’t so shocking this time around?
The thing is, we are huge South Park fans. . .
I really hope you didn’t come into the US and hope to find it like that *laughing*. . .
But it was exactly like South Park. They are making a satire of the world around them and that happens to be the United States. We thought it was exaggerated, but when we got here we were like, no, no that’s spot on. That was not a joke. Things that we thought were jokes were real. The first time through, you only get skin deep, you know? The next two rounds we started flipping around a bit more on our initial picture of the States. Like the people and the culture here. So, it’s cool now.
How is the metal scene here different than in Europe? Gene Simmons recently said that rock was dead.
That’s so stupid. It’s the business model that’s went to the grave. That’s all it is. It’s a non-issue and more people should talk about North Korea.
The nations of Europe are older than the United States. It’s very different from country to country. Sweden is more than a thousand years old at this point. Our culture has grown over a long period of time in the north of Europe, where we are from. It’s very metal. Think of all these bands you like, many of them will turn out to be from Sweden. If not, they’re from Norway and Finland. Volbeat and King Diamond are from Denmark. That’s the Nordic countries for you. We also encourage the kids to play music. Especially with Sweden, it’s not just metal music.
Lots of chart topping. When Lady Gaga has a hit, you can thank a Swede for writing that song. Such as Bad Romance. All the ’90’s were written by Swedish pop producer Max Martin wrote for Brittney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Poison, I think, Backstreet Boys, all that stuff. When you hear it, thank a Swede. Or blame a Swede.
The point being, we are a country where you are encouraged to play music. Your parents think it’s cool, your friends think it’s cool, the state thinks it’s cool. It’s not the same in other parts of Europe.