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Enforcer - Interview mit Olof Wikstrand - über Haifische, die den 80er Sound fraßen! - Interview Enforcer - Olof Wikstrand - Sharks ate 80s sound

 Sandra: You just recently released the album ‘From Beyond’, did you already get any feedback on what people think about it?

Olof: Well, right now we have lots of feedback, now that it’s been out for two weeks but before that not really. But so far actually the fans seem to love it. Everyone I’ve talked to said that it’s our best record by far so far. The reviews haven’t been as good as last time. But what I’ve also learned is that reviews are not the opinion of all the people. The reactions from fans, from friends, label from everyone have been tremendous. Actually much better that I ever expected so it’s really really cool.

Sandra: That’s awesome! Unfortunately we couldn’t listen to the new album before it was released, so we had to wait like any other fan. How would you describe your new album?

Olof: Just very very roughly it’s the continuation of ‘Death By Fire’, where we wanted to take all the elements from the last record and exaggerate even more. We wanted to be heavier, faster… more working in all directions I’d say. Exaggerate every element to the limit as far as we possibly could. That’s very general.

Sandra: Would you say that there are also any big differences to your previous album ‘Death by Fire’?

Olof: I would say if you like Enforcer as phenomenon then you won’t be disappointed I think. We sort of self-defined ourselves. This is more of everything. We haven’t really tried to break much new ground, we haven’t tried to create a completely sound. We have our own sound that we believe very strong in and we just exaggerated it.

Sandra: Is there a song on the new album that you like in particular and want to explain its content to the fans in more detail?

Olof: I like all the songs on the album equally as much I would say. There are more different and more varied this time which makes it also even harder to take out one song and say you like it more than another. It’s also up to the mood in yourself when you are listening to it. Generally my idea about these kind of things is that all the songs have to be the best ever made otherwise it’s completely useless to do another song if there’s something else that’s better… at least in my opinion. I am not saying you or anyone else is going to think that it’s the best ever made but I certainly think so. But also since we have a couple different songs that seem different moods that you can be in. There are also songs on this album for people that are not in the fighting mode.

Sandra: What was it like in the recording studio? Did you work the same way as you did while recording ‘Death By Fire’, or were any changes made to the recording methods?

Olof: It was pretty much the same procedure. You know Death By Fire was actually pretty weird because when we started out recording half of the songs originally intending to be a demo of the song. But we did it so carefully and so well that it afterwards turned out to be the real album session. This time the actual procedure was kind of similar. We did it ourselves from the beginning, sort of the same gear, I think the only difference is that we did the foundation tracks in Stockholm and the songs there sounded better than ever I would say. Otherwise the recording process was almost identical to what we did before.

Sandra: How do you get the typical sound of the 80s? Do you use instruments from back then?

Olof: Well we don’t sound like the 80ies in my opinion. We don’t aim for any such sound whatsoever. People are accusing us of that stuff all the time but it just shows that people who accuse us of this that we sound like the 80ies total show ignorance of the sound production . In my eyes modern sound if you want to call that sounds more like 2002 or 2005, that’s the really bad thing because records sounded like shit back then you know. Let’s say 90ies, middle of the 90ies and forward, people started to use digital recording which wasn’t completely developed and also the trends from the mid 90ies were too over limit and over compressed stuff all the time. I mean taking away the dynamics and vibrations of almost all recordings. That’s nothing that we wanna do. We wanna do a classic, well-sounding album, full of dynamics and atmosphere. And you just hand-create that if you do it with a modern recording prospective. So we are not aiming for an 80ies sound, we are aiming for a timelessly, great sounding record and I think we achieved that. We don’t look at the 80ies in any way.

Sandra: Okay, fair enough. What bands are the ones that you like so much that you are orientating your music in that direction? Are there any at all?

Olof: As a musician I think you always have to be inspired in order to create music. This time we tried to pull our sound more… I mean let’s say we are really secure in what our unique sound is. After we created four records we have a very strong idea about what makes us unique and makes us special. We also take different kind of inspirations. This time we looked Eastern European, Russian heavy metal bands in search for a special atmosphere. I think that colored lots of the record in the end and made it have a more melancholic sounding. Melodic sounding compared to the last ones which have been more pentatonic based if you talk in musical terms.

Sandra: About a year ago you guys were on tour with Skull Fist. We were at your concert in Berlin and had the feeling that the tour was a lot of fun. Can you tell us and our readers something that happened that was so crazy or funny, that you will never forget?

Olof: I don’t know it was not like a special tour in any matter. Actually to be honest crazy stuff always happens on tour especially because you meet lots of new people all the time. It was more crazy in the beginning of our career especially on the first couple of tours. We were still teenagers and we were like “Fuck yeah now we are going on tour, now we are going to live by that crazy shit every day” and sort of lived up to that. The crazy stuff from our side were in the beginning. On this tour you mentioned it was quite calm actually, we had a relaxing time. There is no specific thing I can tell you about it, we had a calm tour. But there are plenty of stories from the old days but I don’t know whether that’s of any interest.

Sandra: What about your favorite story that you love to tell people?

Olof: Once me and Jonas we went swimming in Florida. We were travelling all day and it was before the show and we just wanted to get cool down a little bit so we went down to the sea and went for a swim. We were attacked by sharks.

Sandra: Whaaat?

Olof: Yeah it’s a quite fun story isn’t it? Well umm what other fun stories do I have… I don’t know. It’s hard to come up with something the moment you are asked. We can take a beer sometime and then the stories will flow like an ever flowing stream.

Sandra: Sounds like a plan! We always like to ask the bands what music they are personally listening to. What are the band members from Enforcer usually listening to?

Olof: All kinds of stuff. We listen to most kind of stuff. Jonas is actually when he is not working with the band he is a film music composer, he does lots of that kind of stuff. I appreciate that too… classical music. Lots. Joseph is into all kinds of Indie Rock stuff and I don’t even know what it’s called. But let’s say if we put all of the members together we sort of cover a very broad prospective of different kinds of music, even though Heavy Metal is sort of in the center. But yeah lately I’ve been really much into the Rock stuff.

Sandra: Is there an all-time favourite song from Enforcer?

Olof: All of them. We did all of them for a reason. If we make a song that is not… well let’s say you have favorites… that means that you have also songs that are not your favorites. Then it would be totally worthless to record those songs from the beginning. In my opinion all the songs we have ever done are 10 out of 10.

Sandra: Is there a musical trend in Sweden that you consider could be getting pretty big soon?

Olof: I think the trends in Sweden have always been very very different to the drift of Western Europe. (…) What we can see now in Sweden is that most bands are getting really… well let’s say the new trend is that most bands are really doing everything to be as freaked out as possible, always aiming for something completely unique. It’s like a competition about who can be most freaked out. Most bands actually do that stuff or they are just turning their back on everything. I am not putting any personal value into this but that’s sort of how it goes.

Sandra: Well thank you very much, this was my last question. Thanks a lot for taking the time to do this interview.


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