Per And Anders Of
Interviewed in Ovtober 2000 by EvilG
Let’s start out with the new CD. Tell me about the album cover and why you choose to use a collage of serial killers on the cover.
PER: First of all we wanted artwork that was matching the first album. The idea about the serial killers came in last, and was partly put there to emphasize the title. Since a couple of the songs on the album is about serial-killers and other funny characters it all made sense to include some on the cover. I’d say, they’re rather a part of an overall concept, than the actual concept of the album.
Anders: I think we wanted to portray a sort of “we are guilty before we even release the album” in regards to all the censorship and musicians blamed for violent crime…….It’s about thinking for yourself and always clean up the shit you created.
For those who do not know, can you name what ones you picked to put there and why you chose them specifically?
PER: Let’s see…We put Jeffrey Dahmer there, we have Charles Manson (even though not being a serial killer), and Henry Lee Lucas…to name a few. These are all fascinating characters in their own ways.
Anders: The person that describes it all is definitely RICHARD RAMIREZ. I don’t know if he’s on the cover or not, but the whole concept is about “an individual is responsible for his/ her own actions in life”, it’s always easy to blame something else, and not noticing the real problems in society. Taking the easy way out in the RAMIREZ case would be: “we have to ban AC /DC”
The title “The Haunted Made Me Do It” reminds me of the old “The DEVIL made me do it” thing that some insane people have used. Do you buy that argument?
PER: Ha, we used “The Haunted Made Me Do It” as a cynical statement to all the censorship discussions in the US, to sloppy cunts like Tipper Gore and the PMRC. People are gonna do what they do regardless.
Anders: Yeah, like my previous answer. Also, I think contemporary pop-music also is to blame for violent acts. They sing about how perfect life is and “life is beautiful” and all that, but they’re mostly wrong. A fucked up mind maybe suddenly realizes that everything in life isn’t as sweet as they tell you and ………??????????
Tell me about the writing process for the album. I know many of the members have other projects on the go…were you able to write many of the songs as a band or was it more like each member wrote their parts separately?
Per: Nah, nowadays it’s only Jensen working with side projects, everybody is concentrating 100% on The Haunted. If people perceive The Haunted as a side thing to anybody they’re wrong. Some songs were already written before I joined, but when we came back from the US tour with Testament last year, we started writing the last songs, which became “Bury Your Dead”, “Leech”, “Trespass” and “Revelation”. Jonas, Anders or Jensen will bring in riffs, or a verse and chorus, and all the members can then have their input on the way the song will go.
Anyone who’s been following the band knows you have a new singer on this CD. Where did you find him and how many singers did you have to try out before realizing that he was the man for the job?
Anders: Well, we thought about Marco after having tried a couple of local people out (maybe about 5 people). They all were pretty wrong for us so……… Me, Jonas & Adrian suggested Marco Aro for Jensen. Marco, formerly FACE DOWN had toured together with AT THE GATES way back in 1996 so me, Jonas and Adrian already knew him. When I called him up, he was both shocked and honored at the same time. After trying him out the first session, we all felt he was the right man for THE HAUNTED.
Your first vocalist sounded more hardcore while the new guy has more of In Flames / At The Gates feel going on (not derivative – just in that> category). Do you think he is better matched to the band’s sound and style?
PER: I like Dolving and respect the guy very much, but I think Marco brings in a wider range, His voice will probably attract more death metal fans. He’s a great singer, and a great frontman.
Why did Adrian Erlandsson (drummer) leave? Was is an amicable split and what is he up to these days?
Anders: Well, basically he got in contact with the C.O.F guys the summer of 1999 (but he knew them from before) since they were looking for a new drummer. He got very interested in becoming the new drummer for them. He even went over to learn some songs and to check things out!!!!! However, while we prepared for the TESTAMENT tour, Adrian said to us that it might clash with a thing they had with C.O.F. So, we gave him a simple choice: THE HAUNTED or CRADLE………
Adrian couldn’t really make up his mind in time, so he had to leave the band. We found Per really quick, and he turned out to be a real talent, so everything’s just been great since then anyhow. The whole thing could have turned out very critical, but fortunately it didn’t !!!!!
What is up with Terror (and what’s with the website http://www.geocities.com/terror_theband/? What is the concept behind the band/project and finally is Terror still current?
Anders: It’s just a fun – thing we had going back in 1994. We existed just for a week, but who knows, we might do something again.
What’s the story on Witchery? Shouldn’t they have released another couple albums by now? haha
Anders: Yeah! They like to do alot of albums. However, I don’t really know what’s up. I have heard some things about a possible recording this fall. I don’t know. I don’t really talk about witchery with Jensen that much. I still like the fist album the best!
Is the At The Gates compilation album really going to be released by Peaceville, or is it just a false rumor? Any idea what material is going to be on it and how do the ex-members feel about the compilation? Did you have any input?
Anders: Well, the rumors is somewhat true, but I can’t reveal anything about the content since it’s still in production. Sorry!!!!
The three live tracks on “Terminal Spirit Disease” sound fucking great! Did anyone ever think of releasing that entire show as a live album or EP?
Anders: No, not really!!! I don’t like ‘em myself, I definitely expected better things for TERMINAL SPIRIT DISEASE which I think is by far the best AT THE GATES album (minus the live tracks of course).
Any comments on the latest Satanic Slaughter album “Afterlife Kingdom”?
PER: I haven’t heard it.
Anders: Me neither!!!!
What is taking so long to release “Burner” and “I’ll Be Damned” (two unreleased tracks from the debut Haunted album)? I know one of those songs was released on that Earache triple-CD time capsule package, but it was limited edition and pretty expensive for just a few unreleased tracks. Is Earache holding those tracks for a future re-issue of the debut album?
PER: Well, we’re talking about redoing both these songs and releasing them on our next album, so they better not!!
Anders: I don’t think BURNER turned out that great, but I like I’LL BE DAMNED!!!!! However, if we redo them, they might work alot better!!!! Be prepared!!!
In the lyrics for “Forensick”, a third “verse” appears but in the actual song it is not sung/spoken. What happened to this verse?
Anders: No idea! Ask Dolving? hehe. Maybe it’s intended that it should be read? I can’t remember, sorry!
Tell me what your tour plans are. I know you are headlining a short tour beginning on Oct. 27th but are there any plans to tour after that? Will you make it to the USA or Canada?
PER: Yeah, we’re doing the 10 shows in the UK, then we might be going to LA for a festival “November to dismember”, but that’s not confirmed yet. Then we fly to Japan for some shows with In Flames. We might be touring europ? with Nile in January. We’re still looking for the right offer from the US, but sooner or later within the next 5 months we’re gonna be back in the states to tear some shit up!
If memory serves, you played some US dates with Testament on the last tour. How did that go over and would you like to tour with Testament again?
PER: Yeah that tour was cool, Testament are very good people, and we got along fine. I love those kind of tours: you get to play a great show and you get to watch a great band every night. I would tour with Testament again any day! To me personally that tour was also special because they had Dave Lombardo playing, he’s always been a great influence on my playing.
I recently read about a near riot that occurred in Chile. Was it scary or funny? What caused it and have you ever witnessed something like that first hand?
PER: We were doing a signing session at this record store in Santiago, and so many people turned up, it was fuckin chaos. They would only let two or three people in at a time, so after an hour or something, we had only signed for a small percentage of the people there. When the session was closed, people just ran amok I guess. We couldn’t see what was happening outside, but suddenly all these policemen showed up, there were many! All dressed up for the riot. So after waiting for quite some time, they managed to get our bus out in front. So we had police-escort back to the hotel and shit. Something to remember, that’s for sure. The funniest episode was when a policeman got knocked down by the crowd on his bike.
What albums have you been listening to lately?
PER: As always John Coltrane “Transition”, and I’ve listened to some of the new Morbid Angel.
Anders: KYUSS – CIRCUS, MESHUGGAH – DESTROY, SLAYER – SOUTH OF HEAVEN.
I know this question is probably tiresome but for anyone new to the band I’m sure they like to know your answers…and that is – what bands do you look to as being influential on your sound?
Anders: We all like SLAYER ,That’s maybe a common influence. We don’t see a problem with that. We don’t sound like SLAYER so what =)???
Do you think there is too much dissention in metal these days between fans of different styles of metal? Isn’t metal supposed to be about “brotherhood”?
PER: I think that’s more common among the younger fans. When you’re young you’re so busy making everything fit to your perception of yourself. Your self-picked image. That’s very typical among the black metal crowd today, as they mostly consist of young teenagers. I guess it’s always been the same.
That’s all the questions I have for you. Good luck with the album release and tour. Are there any closing comments you’d like to pass along to readers of Metal-Rules.com?
PER: Check out “The Haunted Made Me Do It”, and look out for The Haunted might drop by somewhere near you in the coming months!!
Anders: Thanks to you!!!! See ya around – check us out on the next tour and keep metal alive!!!!!
The Official THE HAUNTED website: www.the-haunted.com
Thanks to Earache Records for setting put this interview for us! Check out their website and bands at www.earache.com