Interview mit Pär Sundström von Sabaton

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SABATON – a band that obviously needs no further introduction. Both regarded as veterans of the Power- and Heavy Metal genre and rejected due to war-related lyrics. Read our talk with bass player Pär Sundström about controversial song topics, the new album „The Last Stand“ and the upcoming tour as well as working together with metal musicians who are good friends.

SabatonHow are things going on in the SABATON – HQ?
Hi there! All is good here. We currently start the first part of „The Last Tour“. Its a North American tour for about six weeks and we have all looked forward to this so much. It’s exciting times for SABATON with a new album out!

SABATON is really a big name in the genres of Power Metal and Heavy Metal. How do you feel about the current metal scene and it’s development?
I think the metal scene is strong. Even if I dont really see SABATON as a Power Metal band due to the fact that the two main things you think about when you hear Power Metal is high pitched vocals and fantasy lyrics and SABATON has zero of that.

What do you think about metal styles SABATON has nothing to do with? Like, let’s say, Death Metal and Black Metal?
Of the two Death and Black metal I personally like Black the most. I was listening a lot to Black Metal in the past. Today these genres sometimes impress me both through technical skills as well as sometimes very convincing liveshows!

Due to your war-related lyrics you often face critisism. There are people who see a glorification of war in them. What comes to your mind when you’re confronted with that?
Sometimes people misunderstand SABATON. And I can fully understand that if you just hear one song or part of a song. But if someone understands the whole concept behind SABATON there are no more misunderstandings.

So, let’s move on to your current music. Your eighth album „The Last Stand“ has recently been released. How do you feel about that?sabaton last stand album cover 2016
Now that it has been out for a while I’m so relaxed. When we just record it the albums are difficult to get a distance to. But once we get some feedback from fans and journalists we get a bit calm and can relax. Now I know we made a good album, let’s see how many songs will last for a long time.

What do you think about the feedback the album has received so far?
Super, I’m very happy with the feedback. It has been great everywhere, except the occasional haters which we always get.

How did the idea for the concept of writing lyrics about so called last stands come up?
It felt very natural to follow up „Heroes“ with this album. The concept is quite similiar as several of the topics on this could also fit on „Heroes“. We initially had another idea but about a month before we entered the studio we changed our minds and decided to go for last stands.

With songs like „Sparta“ and „Blood Of Bannockburn“ you bring the SABATON sound into the times of antiquity and the middle ages for the first time. How different did it feel to write lyrics like that?
It was fun to write this lyrics as we must widen our vocabulary from the traditional tanks and guns to spears and swords. I personally enjoy more world-war-two-themes since there is more accurate information. The info you will find about something that is hundreds of years old will not be as accurate.

Is that something that we might can expect again in the future?
We sing about history and I do not cancel out the idea of writing about ancient things.
When you compare the sound of your new album to your prior outputs, what has changed? Where do you see the most remarkable developments?
I think you still easely can hear the traditional SABATON sound. It’s in the songwriting and also in the sounds we choose. The way we arrange the harmonies and so. And adding to that we have Peter who has been producing our last three albums. He developes the sound a little bit without taking too far steps out of the traditional SABATON.

I personally see a big difference in the opening track. Most of your albums started very energetic and agressive, for example „Heroes“ with its first song Night Witches. Now Sparta is opening the record and it’s a quite slow one. What made you choosing it as first song?
When we played it for friends and such and when we first heard it we simply said to ourselves that this is the opening track. Long before we knew about that it will have the topic of the 300 spartans. The song just had that feeling just as The Last Battle had the vibe of being the last song on the album.

Which of the topics you chose for your album are the most interesting ones in your opinion and why?
The winged hussars in the battle of Vienna. There is so much to this battle that we could have written an entire album about just this battle.

Which songs of „The Last Stand“ will be definitely part of your upcoming live shows?
That will be interesting to know in the future. We personally all of us love the song Sparta. The song Shiroyama will definitivly be there for quite some time too.

Both „Heroes“ and „The Last Stand“ worked on a certain concept. Do you maybe already have an idea like that in mind for your next album? If so, please give us some hint.
Yes, we have some ideas, but for sure I won’t tell anything about it.

Do you think it’s possible that there once will be a Sabaton album that is not about war? Like your first demo Fist For Fight and its re-recording Metalizer for example?
Maybe. But so far we have not found any topic we would find more exciting to write about.

Joakim was featured as guest singer both in the new Pain album „Coming Home“ and the new Twilight Force album „Heroes Of Mighty Magic“. How was it to work with those guys?
Well, Joakim guested with several bands in the past. With Pain and Twilight Force it’s simply so natural. They are our great friends from our home region. We help eachother out!
In conclusion, please tell us something about SABATON besides the music scene. What kind of hobbys, interests etc. do you guys have, how do you spend your freetime?
I like to run, then most of the other time I work.

We are at the end of the interview. Thank you again and I’d like to finish it with a little brainstorming session. Please notice the first thing that comes to your mind when you read the following words.
Game Of Thrones: I don’t dare to watch it as I don’t have time for series and Im sure I would be hooked.
Scandinavian Metal scene: Always been strong, and we aim to keep it that way.
Primo Victoria: The song that changed my mind and made me go all in for the band.
New Metallica song: Good, not great.
Your favorite dish: Indian.
Sports: Running.

The last words are yours. What would you like to tell our readers and your fans?
Glad so many got our new album, cannot wait to bring it out on tour!

Publiziert am von Pascal Weber

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