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The debut of the Swedish band Styggelse, "Heir Today – God Tomorrow", was released in June. Today they are here with us to talk about themselves.
Welcome guys, let's begin with some info about you.
Larsson: We are Styggelse, a Black Metal act from Gothenburg consisting of Larsson (vocals, rhythm guitar), Kallbrand (lead guitar), Folkilsk (bass) and Skadeglade (drums).
Folkilsk: A band with no compromise. We are who we are.
I came in contact with your music through the videos posted on Youtube and thanks to Daniel of Unexploded Records, the label that released your debut album, I had the pleasure of reviewing it. How did you come in contact with the label?
Larsson: Well, they contacted us via mail. Gave us an offer to sign us, and the deal was pretty much set. They're doing there part great this far.
Your music is very dynamic and groovy, a Black'N'Roll sound somehow similar to Darkthrone and Horned Almighty. Are there any albums which influenced your style?
Larsson: Maybe not any specific albums (except all early Bathory), but music that sounds real and brings a fucking darkness (don't mistake me for being into some lame weeping music), but that kind of music that you can find in old-school and raw Black Metal aswell as D-Beat/Crust (swedish bands like Anti-Cimex, Bombanfall and Avskum) has always been a great influence when it comes to our music. About the groove that just comes naturally when you're in a sweaty, disgusting, beer-drenched state of mind.
Personally I think that the title-track is one of the best songs of the album, because it features all the many influences of your sound. How do your songs take life?
Larsson: Great that you noticed, for this album that song (title-track) was our last song created for this album. It leads to where we are now, influenced by Bathory (four first records and demos), Venom, Motörhead etc. That was what we aimed for. All the songs on this record have a way of their own, but they are all connected leading to the title track. When you listen to the album you understand this. Next album will be much more of all the above, more of everything. Expect much!
Is there a member which takes care of the music and another one of the lyrics?
Larsson: I contribute to a lot of the music, but all contribute in their own way, it's not Styggelse music just because of a riff I made, it becomes Styggelse when all four parts do their share!. Lyrically it's mostly me and Skadeglade, but the guys always have a say about them.
Folkilsk: That is true. A lot of the times Larsson comes with a complete song/idea and we "butcher" it together and in that way make it our way.
I noticed that you alternated the English and the Swedish languages. Why this choice?
Larsson: It will be Swedish lyrics in the future again. But right now English is more suited for the music we make, Swedish was more suited for the mCD "Among Endless Fields…". But sure, if it feels right (and it probably will) Swedish lyrics will reappear, but not taking over.
How is the feedback about the album from critics and fans up to now?
Larsson: Great! Sure not everyone likes it, but that's good! If everyone did, we would be aiming for an audience that listens to popular radio music (crap), and we would be playing shit music for shit minds! If people have something to say about it ("good" or "bad") it means they think. And that means we are not some shitband playing for people to love us. Rockstars can fuck off!
Folkilsk: I am happy about the feedback we get. But if "Linkin Park assholes" tells us that we are crap, that has no impact on us whatsoever. Those people should not review our band in the first place.
Larsson is a member of Hinsides (the other member is Trish, the beautiful and very good drummer, mastermind of DödsÄngel), and Likblek and Bjorn are part of Pagan Rites. Is it difficult to unite the work of more bands at the same time?
Larsson: No, but sure, everything takes time. More time than just having one band. But I need to play various kinds of Black Metal (and D-Beat), you can clearly hear the difference between Styggelse, Hinsides and Likblek. Trish lives in Norway, but we see each other every weekend, so we can practice a lot even if there is a long distance.
Folkilsk: Yes I play with Pagan Rites as well. And all of Pagan Rites do not live in the same town, which makes it more difficult, but the bands do not come in the way of each other at all. I would say that we help each other in a positive way. But it takes more of one's time to play in more bands. I have to get more of my Thrash and Heavy Metal needs somewhere and Pagan Rites is perfect for this.
In this 2010 full of important releases in Sweden which saw the return of many big names among which Watain, what do you think about your national music scene?
Larsson: It's great, so many bands that sound raw and Black Metal in their own way. Not following the Norwegian standard, but their own. Nothing against Norwegian Black Metal, they have numberous of great bands. But the Swedish Black Metal scene has always had Bathory on their back and you can hear that! Not so much folk inspired but more fuck off and hate!
And what do you think about European and world scenes?
Larsson: Great. Good bands everywhere.
Black Metal is maybe a genre which flooded the metal world with sometimes useless bands, can we say that there is a not so professional approach and the idea that playing two notes badly is enough to be considered part of the scene?
Larsson: Subjects that make you question and just a desolate feeling will always be apart of the scene. Simplistic or not, groove or monotonous. When you do what you want to do, then you do something that this scene was built on, according to me that is.
Folkilsk: Lots of lazy people out there with two chords and "panda paint" [laughs]. But there are a lot of good bands out there too. We found our place and we try to do the best out of what we do.
Which are the weak spots of the new generations when trying to create this kind of music? What do they miss compared with the bands of the last decade?
Larsson: I think the new bands (at least in Sweden) are actually digging further back in the old-school and that's great. More bands influenced by old Black, Death and Thrash metal instead of some symphonic, synth-based "I'm so sad I paint tears under my eyes" music that was greatly popular not so long ago. Also young bands shouldn't listen to what the elder bands say, but instead make up their own mind!
Do you miss something of the past years? Tape-trading, the hard searches for an album or maybe the commercialization of the Metal genre?
Larsson: I'm too fucking young for tape-trading, even though I traded tapes (you speak of early 90's), I was like 8 years old then. But I like places like The Truck in Gothenburg, where the underground scene meets no matter what they play, Thrash, D-Beat, Black Metal or Death. That place reminds me of when I was younger in my 15-16.
Folkilsk: Nope. You have to keep up with what the world is coming to. We as a band are getting more attention just with the Internet which we in the old days never would get without good contacts. But I still search hard for albums that I want in my collection and there is always albums hard to find no matter what year it is.
What do you think about webzines and paper zines today? Are there some bias or influence peddling or is it just my impression? I noticed that many people find difficult to say that a famous band made a bad work, do you think that this is true?
Larsson: I like every person that shows support to the scene in one way or the other. Zines, fans, labels etc. If they have a 'zine just as their hobby that is great if they only happens to have 20 something continuously readers I would still answer their questions if they wrote me. My answer to your question about the famous band doing bad works. I do not think so. I think people are honest.
I think that your songs would sound better on stage, the force and the somehow alcoholic attitude hearable in tracks like "Day Of The Pentacle" took me on this idea. How much are your live shows important?
Larsson: Extremely! The music we create is the message of Uncreation and is best suited live. Where we can display our ugly faces and really show who we are and what we do! All in with fuck off moral!
Folkilsk: Yes. We are more of a live band. We do want to play more live. Any management that is interested can just contact us with their ideas and make a deal.
Would you prefer to play at some festivals or to make a tour with many dates in little pubs with not many people (200-300, to say some numbers)?
Larsson: I'm looking forward to it!
Folkilsk: Festival gigs would carry more people and that is what I like (even though I have not done so many) but I like small club gigs as well, when you get close to the audience.
Will we see you in Italy?
Larsson: Contact us for booking and we'll se how it works out. It would be cool going there. Always interesting with an audience abroad.
Folkilsk: Bring me a cannoli and I am there… [laughs]. No seriously. Of course that would be great.
Thanks for the time spent with us, the last message for our readers is up to you.
Larsson: Thanks for having us! Turn the bottle and the cross upside-down, fuck society, fuck moral, fuck the government and fuck the 3 book religions! Cheers!
Folkilsk: Just go with your own thoughts. Let no other asshole tell you how to live your own life. Hope to see you at our show somewhere. Raise the Horns!