SOILWORK Guitarist Talks About Making Of 'The Panic Broadcast'

U.K.'s Guitarist magazine has posted the second part of its interview with guitarist/producer Peter Wichers of Swedish metallers SOILWORK. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Guitarist: You came in with a lot more experience as a producer for this album, did you find you work a lot quicker as a band now when recording as a result?

Wichers: Yes, I've been focusing on that entirely since I've been away. I consider myself to have a high work ethic and coming into it we had a very strict time frame in which we needed to get everything done. I really didn't take one day off in eight weeks. It was pretty intense but we needed to get it done and I would say that everybody was pretty well prepared and it helped a lot that we'd done pre-production."

Guitarist: The band set up in a house to record this album, what effect did that have on the experience?

Wichers: I did that as well when I produced the NEVERMORE record ["The Obsidian Conspiracy"]. It's right outside of Charlotte, North Carolina and there's a big lake. There's massive houses there that you can rent and I did it for NEVERMORE and it worked out very well so I suggested to the guys that we did the same thing. And I think in a way it gives you a more relaxed atmosphere. Sven [Karlsson] set up his keyboard station in his room and then the whole basement was the recording base where I brought in my studio gear. We ran cables over to isolation walls so we could record on the other wide of the house. It was just a very, very relaxed that helped people to perform better. Because I know a lot of times you can be in a studio and one person is sat outside watching TV or playing video games while one person is recording and everyone else is banging on the door trying to get in. This was a different way but I really think it worked very well.

Guitarist: You've mentioned how well prepared that band were with the songs going into the album, but what about your lead guitar parts?

Wichers: I had practiced my parts like crazy but I'm so used to doing things this way so I guess that's one reason I was so prepared. I think everyone was pretty decently prepared but since we live all over the place, we don't rehearse before recording. We do it all over the Internet and everybody needs to know their parts for when we get together. The first time we usually rehearse is when we do pre-production for a tour.

Guitarist: There's obviously signature SOILWORK moments on the album but "Let This River Flow" feels like a departure — a ballad but heavy with some interesting twists too, including the use of acoustics. Did it start as an idea on acoustic guitar?

Wichers: It did, actually. Björn ["Speed" Strid, vocals] wrote that acoustic part at the beginning and when I wrote that song I based everything on that guitar part. I tried to take the approach of Dimebag when he said, if you can play a riff three different ways then you have a song. And that's kind of how this song is. But you've got to really listen to it if you want to hear it — if you play the same riff over and over it can get really boring. With regards to the middle section, we had a lot of major key on "Natural Born Chaos" which I think made it really unique. The song is pretty minor key until you get to that middle section and then we do something completely different. That's kind of progressive in a way but it felt natural. Then that whole part came at once then leading into the next part we needed a breakdown and Björn came up with some great vocals for it. I think that his performance on that song is probably one of his best on the record.

Read the entire second part of the interview at Guitarist magazine.

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