DARK TRANQUILLITY guitarist Martin Henriksson recently spoke to Korea's Hot Music magazine about the group's new album, "Character", and their upcoming touring activities. Several excerpts from the interview follow:
Hot Music: While the new album does not have any major stylistic changes, it is very straight-forward thrash metal, just like your early releases. However, the romantic keyboards and other modern elements seem to have developed even more. Is your future songwriting going to follow this formula?
Martin Henriksson: "Well, like always with our music, that's impossible to tell. We never really know beforehand how our music is going to develop. This 'formula' is how we wanted it to sound this time around, and I must say we're very pleased with the outcome, but the next album might sound completely different."
Hot Music: Do you write any of the music yourself or with guys in rehearsal room or somewhere else?
Martin Henriksson: "We write the riffs at home, usually me or Anders. Then I put together stuff in a basic structure that we work on together at the rehearsal place where we add stuff until it's completed."
Hot Music: The band produced the album at Studio Fredman. It seems that you no longer need the services of Fredrik Nordström. How did the recording process go?
Martin Henriksson: "It's a common misunderstanding that we used Fredrik as a producer in the past. We never did! He's just the engineer in the studio who gets us the sound we want, but he never produces our music. Our songs are always 99.9% ready when we start recording, there isn't much to produce really. The recording went quite smooth, we were by ourselves a lot, which works great for us. We just had Fredrik come in when we needed some equipment to be changed. Other than that we were alone in the studio."
Hot Music: Last time, Niklas Sudin said that he didn't know much about the current Gothenburg scene. That response could be translated as meaning that the Gothenburg scene isn't what it used to be. Are new bands still coming out from that area?
Martin Henriksson: "I don't really follow the scene, but I haven't heard of any new bands coming out of Gothenburg lately. What most people don't know is that Gothenburg is a quite small town and there never were that many bands coming from here to begin with. A lot of the bands that were mentioned in the past in connection with the Gothenburg scene weren't actually from here, they just happened to sound somewhat similar to some of the bands from here... A lot have been said about the Gothenburg sound in the last 10 years, but what all these bands have in common is really that it's death metal and it's more melodic than most other bands in the genre. For me that's what it's about: melodic death metal."
On the death of DAMAGEPLAN/ex-PANTERA guitarist "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott:
Martin Henriksson: "I think it's a tremendous tragedy. The metal world has not only lost a brilliant musician and inspiration to thousands of bands, but also some of its innocence. It won't be the same again..."