Entombed ahead of the bands tour of the USA, LG Petrov tells Metal Chaos all about the bands new live album "Unreal Estate", and lies ahead for Sweden's premiere Death 'n' Rollers.

 
 
How are things with you and the band?
Good. We just rehearsed a little bit today, we're going to the States on Sunday so we've been checking up on ourselves, making sure we know all the songs,
The latest news from the band is that Jorgen has left the band, is this indeed the case? What were the reasons for his departure?
Yes, Jorgen has left, quite a while ago. At the time we did extensive touring and we were on the road for a couple of months and I guess he didn't feel comfortable with that.  So he was honest to himself and to us. If you don't like something you shouldn't do it, so it was for the best.
Nico Elgstrand has already been named as Jorgen's replacement, how is he fitting into the band?
He is perfect, he's a funny guy and a good bass player. We all sat down with him today and all learned a couple of other songs for the US set
You guys have just returned from a short Baltic tour, how was the tour and which countries did you visit ?
Yeah, we did three shows over there. It was the first time over there, it is very close so I don't know why we haven't been over there before. We played Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia. It was cool, there were four to five hundred people at each show. I guess they are starved of metal over there!
February sees the band heading to the USA for a tour with Crowbar, Pro-Pain and Mighty Nimbus. The must be really looking forward to this trip? How long are you on the road?
Yes it should be interesting, as we are all different types of bands. It's not like four bands all playing the same type of music and we have met them before, so it should be cool. There are twenty one
shows over three and a half weeks. We start in New York and end up in Phoenix. We have not been back since we were there in 2003 with King Diamond. We were there five weeks that time, that was a long tour. We did like two weeks in Europe, then straight to the USA for five weeks and then back to Scandinavia for a couple of weeks. It was good fun though.
Do you find the European crowd differ from the US audiences?
Yes, in Europe there is more heading banging, were as in the States they tend to run around in a mosh pit. It can be quite funny to watch, a circle of people running around, it can look like an aerobic class. I get dizzy just watching them.
The band will be promoting your new live album, "Unreal Estate" perhaps you can share with us how the whole concept came about?
They emailed us, Bogdan and Carina that is. The first time they contacted us, we were thought it was a joke, so we didn't answer the email. We don't belong in an Opera House! They continued to contact us, so we knew then that they were serious. So we sat down and they gave us the whole idea and stuff, it was only then that we thought that is could work. They picked all the songs, as they had a certain idea of what kind of vibe it was going to be. Our work was to put it all together into a forty minute melody. I think the dancers had more problems than us, they had to count in time to make their jumps.
How was it to play in such a venue as the Opera House ?
Yes, it was totally amazing playing the opera house. We had people just sitting there wide mouthed. It was a real mixed audience; the eighty year old millionaire types, you know the usual opera goers. I saw one old man actually asleep. That was pretty funny.
Were you at all nervous before going out on stage?
No actually, as we felt all the pressure was on the dancers and the two guys that set the whole thing up. We were like, "lets just do this thing", and it was sold out most of the time. Playing the piano at the beginning was the worst thing I've experienced.
Looking back at your last studio album, "Inferno", the album appeared to be well received by the press, how have fans responded to this release?
Good. I think people accept how we are and how we sound. They also know we are trying to sound different from album to album. I can hear in the songs that it's Entombed and it will always be Entombed; our style will always be the same. When we go into the rehearsal rooms it's important that we think it is good and fun to play.
The more albums you write and record, do you find the process gets easier?
No. For "Inferno", like all the other albums, we always finish the lyrics when we record the vocals. It's like, we've really gotta write something here!!
Touching on the subject of the writing process within the band, how do you approach writing, what influences you to pick up a pen and write lyrics?
You don't need to have the music to write a lyric. I myself don't write a lot of the lyrics, but Alex and Uffe on tour have lots of paper around, it can be something someone says or anything really. When we come home we will have lots of paper with quotes and words. We then make things out of that. It's like life in general, you take inspiration from everyday things. 
After Nicke Left the band in 1998, as the credited chief songwriter, how did the dynamic towards writing change within the band?
It hasn't changed that much as when Nicke was  around, we brought other people into write lyrics then too. Kenny from the Hellacopters did some lyrics for some of the albums. Our lyrics moved on though as the early albums were far more gore driven compared to now.
Satanism has been a theme touched upon on previous albums, but "Inferno" has the most in your face song lyrically in "How I became a Satanist". You appear to have written the song from personal experience, how much truth verses humour is there in this song?
That is Uffe experience of part of his life, and what you want from your life. There is not so much humour in that song. Uffe can be a depressive guy sometimes, he's not the happiest guy in the world let's put it that way [laughing].
"Songs of Satan, Praise the Lord", was an eclectic mix of cover versions. I have always wondered who selected which songs? How enjoyable was it to also break away from your "traditional" sound?
It was just us, we picked all the songs. There was a lot of humour on this record. Uffe loves Bob Dylan, so we were like, we have to do a cover of one of his songs. The whole album had a wide range songs from one end to the other and every song was fun to record. It was interesting to us to see what we could do with those songs and then we loosened up a lot when recording. If we bailed a song in one take we took it, it was a nice easy recording; lots of happy faces all around.
Entombed are celebrating 15 years since your first release and a great deal has changed in this time. What is your view on the scene today? Do you feel it is as healthy as when you guys started out?
Power metal is pretty big here in Sweden as well as Death metal. The bands are all behind one each other, The Haunted, December, Unleashed, regardless of the type of music. The old underground scene is really gone, and it wasn't until we played a festival in Holland with all these bands that we saw all the fans with patch's on their jeans, it was really great to see. It is just now a different type of extreme music scene exists.
Threeman Records are releasing material from your Nilihist days. What can we expect from this album?
I just hope I can find all the old songs! It is important to us if we are going to release something it has to be in full and complete. I'm starting to go through all my old cassettes. I would hope to put the stuff out as it was originally, that's more honest I think.
The term death 'n' roll has been used to describe the bands music, do you know where this originated, and do you think it does justice to the bands sound?
We see it as Entombed music, if people see that as death 'n' roll so be it. We just laugh, death 'n' roll, why not? When we write songs, we aren't thinking it has to be a particular style.
What are the plans for Entombed once you return from the USA?
We will start writing new material for the new album. We would like to release a new album in the fall [of 2005]. As once we have the songs we don't take that long in the studio. We did "Left Hand Path" in one week. I couldn't be in the studio for three months at a time, I would get bored. It's fun in the studio, but it should be spontaneous also.
 
All photographs and images used with kind permission of Entombed.
     

2005-08 Metal Chaos