DECEMBER 3rd 2014
AT THE GATES EXCLUSIVE
Welcome to Metaltitans, Guardians of Metal Entertainment worldwide, we are here with Martin from Death Metal a'la Gothenburg Style AT THE GATES. Thank you for taking the time to do this interview with us.
1. It has been almost 19 years since your last album, that is a long time. What made you decide that now was the time to get your name back out to the fans?
We started playing together again in 2008. It was meant to be for a limited time, but we played more and more shows and the good feeling never wore off. After a while we realised that we were in fact a proper band again, and proper bands don't just tour, they write music too.
2. You have named your 5th album 'At War with Reality', to be released on Oct. 27th through Century Media. How did you choose this title?
It's a title we've had for a long time. It's mainly about challenging ones perception of reality, and it fits well with the overall lyrical concept of the whole album.
3. Who wrote the lyrics for this album?
Tomas did. And how he did it!
4. Was there some inspiration behind the songs?
Yes, this is the first time we have a connecting theme to all the lyrics. They're inspired by a literary genre called magic realism, with writers such as Jorge Luis Borges and Ernesto Sabato. The style is pretty dreamlike and surreal. You should look into it if you haven't yet, it's very interesting and good reading.
5. There are 13 songs on this album, do you have a favourite among them? And why that one if you do?
I have a lot of favourites and it depends a little on what day you're asking me. Heroes and Tombs, Order from Chaos, The Night Eternal and The Circular Ruins are definitely among them. The three first ones because they're a little different from what we've done before, and the last one because it's so seamlessly arranged and also the ending reminds me of Alf's writing.
6. What can people expect to hear on your new album?
Good solid songs with one foot firmly planted in what we did in the 90's and the other one stepping forward.
7. When you were working on the album, did each of the members (Tomas, Anders, Martin, Jonas and Adrian) all bring their own music to the table, or did one person put it all together and then they learned their part?
Anders and Jonas wrote all the music, but everyone has had their say in the arrangements and Adrian has come up with some awesome drum parts too. It's been a long process where some songs we're up way past version 20 before we went into the studio.
8.You recorded 'At War with Reality' at Studio Fredman with Fredrik Nordström, who has worked with some big names (In Flames/Arch Enemy/Dimmu Borgir). What was the reason that you chose to work with him on this album?
Fredrik and his studio have played a huge part in our history. That's where we recorded the last two albums before we split up. The quality of the recordings made there is widely known, but he's also a good friend of ours. We also shouldn't forget Fredriks colleague Henrik Udd, who really helped bring out the best of us.
9. You mixed the album at Fascination Studio, why two different studios?
We had a chance to test the waters with a few different people mixing a demo song. Most were great but the mix we all really enjoyed was the one from Jens Bogren at Fascination Street. That one was the most dynamic and sort of timeless.
10. Love Costin Chioreanu's artwork for your new album. Did you approach him with ideas, or did you tell him what the album was about, and then he created something for you?
He had all the lyrics to inspire his paintings. Then, much like the songwriting, there were a lot of sending different versions back and forth until all six of us were satisfied. It was definitely a collaboration and we definitely made the right choice in Costin.
11. The first part of the world tour in Finland, Sweden and some Europe (November/December). Will there also be more, including Canada?
There will definitely be more. New dates are being announced by and by. Information about North America will be made public shortly. We can't wait to go back there.
12. Does it feel good to be back and creating, and doing shows?
It feels great! We're counting the days til we can start playing the new songs live.
13. Because it has been such a long time, when you returned, is there anything you did different from your earlier days?
I can't think of anything we consciously do different, but a lot of things are easier now compared to then. Tours are better organised and such. We're in a completely different position now and we're humble to the fact that it's all thanks to the fans.
14. After a long absence, how did it feel to get back up on stage again?
Surprisingly natural and effortless.
15. For you, what is the best part about being in At the Gates?
Being in the same band as some of my favourite musicians and best friends.
16. Looking back at your career, what advice would you give to your younger self?
I don't believe in regrets. I like where I am now. And also, my younger self wouldn't listen to advice from older people.
17. What advice would you give bands today just starting out?
It's a cliche, but do what you love and love what you do.
18. Is there anything you would like to add that I may have missed asking, but you want people to know?
I can't stress enough how much I love Canadian metal. Voivod, Sacrifice, Exciter, Razor, Slaughter etc. were all a huge part of my metal education. Also, newer bands like Adversarial and Antediluvian show great promise.
Thank you (tack) for taking the time to do this interview with us. We at Metaltitans wish you much success with your new album 'At War with Reality'.
Thank you for your interest and support! It's greatly appreciated.