Guitarist Oscar Dronjak of Swedish metallers HAMMERFALL was interviewed on the latest edition of "The Classic Metal Show", which is heard live on Saturdays from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. EST at TheClassicMetalShow.com. You can now listen to the chat in the YouTube clip below.
HAMMERFALL's new album, "(r)Evolution", sold around 1,900 copies in the United States in its first week of release.
The band's previous CD, "Infected", opened with around 1,700 units back in 2011. The CD debuted at No. 16 on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists the best-selling albums by new and developing artists, defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200.
Speaking about "(r)Evolution", Oscar told "The Classic Metal Show": "It is not a throwback exclusively, it's not something completely new. It's just a HAMMERFALL album that we…. We try always to make it as great as we can, and this time I think we succeeded pretty well."
According to Oscar, part of the reason some fans have called "(r)Evolution" a throwback to HAMMERFALL's earlier sound can be attributed to the fact that the band hired cover artist Andreas Marschall, the "father" of HAMMERFALL's mascot Hector, to design the artwork for the new CD. "I thnk it certainly has a lot to do with it," he said. "I think the artwork and the fact that we're working with [producer] Fredrik Nordström again, those two things, it helps to influence people way before they even heard a note from or anything from the actual music on the album. That said, though, I think there's some valid points in that the album does have some kind of energy and hunger and attitude that we did have on the first album but maybe we haven't been able to recreate since then. I think that's something you shouldn't count out as well. It's the intangibles, the ones that [are] hard to put a finger on. But I don't know… It's difficult for me to sit here and tell anybody what it is or what they should think it is. It's all up to the listener to make their own judgement about things."
HAMMERFALL recently parted ways with longtime drummer Anders Johansson due to "increasing musical differences." He has since been replaced by David Wallin of PAIN. In addition, HAMMERFALL bassist Fredrik Larsson will be on parental leave through March 2015 to take care of his second child, which is due in December. Handling the four-string duties in Fredrik's absence will be none other than HAMMERFALL's former guitar player Stefan Elmgren.
The music for "(r)Evolution" was recorded in March and April at Oscar Dronjak's Castle Black Studios. Singer Joacim Cans then went to the United States for vocal recordings, once again working with James Michael (SCORPIONS, MÖTLEY CRÜE), who previously collaborated with HAMMERFALL on "Infected".