Now it is time to have a talk with Swedish glam/sleaze rockers Innocent Rosie who have recently received a lot of attention recently for their ass kicking debut release BAD HABIT ROMANCE. I had the pleasure to talk to the drummer in the band Benjamin Boräng. The band has been out on tour for most part of 2009 and if you have the chance to see them live then do it. I guarantee that you won’t be disappointed.
Interviewed by: Anders Sandvall
Thanks to Micke at SwedMetal Records for setting up this interview.
Thanks to Hybrid Foto for providing promo pictures of the band. The photos are taken from the band MySpace page.
First, let us talk about your brand new debut album BAD HABIT ROMANCE, how long did it take to write and record the album?
Well some of the songs that we recorded we made almost two- three years ago, so some songs are old and others are newer obviously they all fit perfect. But "Animal" and "shine,shine,shine" are two songs that we wrote after the record was done, so we decided to swap them for two song that was already on the CD.
You recorded a demo before you did the album, did any of the songs on the demo landed on the final edition of the album?
One song did, and it’s "Don’t drag me down" The rest of the demos didn’t make it because they fitted perfect as just demos.
In which studio did you record the album and who have produced it?
We recorded it in a studio called Soundsolution productions, with the producer of Arch Enemy, Henrik Bengtsson.
Who in the band writes the material? And what are your lyrics about? Are there any common theme in the lyrics?
The music is written by all of us really but the lyrics is all Oscar’s. No I wouldn’t say it is, it’s whatever things that is going on around us at that time, it can be some small thing about being bored and poor to bigger things you know, whatever feelings we have at the time. Its a kind of therapy in some ways, always feels some better to write down things and thoughts, and sometimes it can be about nothing as long as it rhymes,ha ha.
Where does the title BAD HABIT ROMANCE come from?
It’s about just that, bad habits that are hard to kick, whether it is smoking or bad relationships you always fall back in that old pattern, whether you like it or not.
Who has done the cover art-work to the album? What do you think of it?
Its a funny story actually, We have a friend called Johan and one day when he was bored he decided to make this front cover for us because he knew that we were trying to make on and he made it just like that an sent it to us. And of course we totally loved it and kept it
You have already shot a video to one of the songs, are there plans on shooting a second video as well?
Yes we got plans to shoot a video, don’t know when or where or even which song yet. But what we will do soon is to release a live DVD from Sweden Rock festival, that one’s going to be sweet.
Have you read any reviews of the album yet?
Sure from time to time, and I’m often surprised of how good most of the reviews are since I didn’t have any huge expectations on the album.
Do you have any special favourite tracks on the album? If so which song?
I’m a sucker for "shine,shine,shine" it’s a great rock n roll song!
Did you throw any release party for the album? If so when and where did it take place?
Yeah we had it in March, in the town where Olof and Oscar grew up.. On really really really fun gig!
Do you think that Swedish media treats you any different compared to foreign media?
Sweden works like this, its really weird because if you want to win the respect from the Swedish crowd or media when you are a Swedish band you got to make it outside of Sweden first unless you play mellow slit-your-wrist pop ha ha, don’t get me wrong we all love our country but musically its fuckin boring, the sad thing is that there’s a lot of awesome rock bands from Sweden that just gives up music because they don’t get any recognition from the Swedish crowd, that sucks but its the sad reality, but we’re looking to change all that!
You have released the CDS “Animal” is it available out in stores or only for the radio?
Both, It’s available on www.Swedmetal.com
Was it hard to land a deal with a label in the first place?
Well we was asked if we wanted to join, so we did. But hard? no not really.
How come you signed on for Swedmetal?
It seemed to be a cool Indie label, and things gets much easier when you have a label behind you, big or small.
Are you happy with the work Swedmetal have put into BAD HABIT ROMANCE?
They haven’t had anything to do with the songs on the album really but the afterwards has been great.
How many albums are you signed for at Swedmetal?
Only BAD HABIT ROMANCE.
Is the album released worldwide yet? If not in what territories is it released today?
Well anyone around the world can order it, so I guess it’s released everywhere.
Are you gonna try to conquer the Asian and the American market in the near future?
Well definitely, we want everyone to hear it, and us, but I think we will get in to that even more when we´re releasing our next one.
When was Innocent Rosie formed and is this current line-up the original line-up?
Innocent Rosie was formed a cold ass night after a Vains of Jenna show in their and mine old home-town Falkenberg around 2006, and that was me and our former guitar player Skid LaRusso.
Who is the band leader?
That’s hard to say, we all fill different roles in the band, but I’m sure of that I’m the least leader though ha ha.
Do you guys have job’s beside the band or are you musicians only?
Yes except me. But Joel works with old people, Oscar works as a personal assistant for a guy in a wheelchair, Dixxie works as a music producer and Olof works in a garbage dump.
Did your demo only included material written by the band or did you feature any covers on it?
Actually only our own material, we used to have a real hard time deciding what kind of cover we wanted to play so it was always different ones, but we never put anyone on our demos.
The demo got great reviews in the press, how did that felt for you?
Yes which is weird I think, I guess people heard that we had some sort of potential there because my honest opinion is that they’re not very good at all ha ha.
Does the members in the band have any common idol or artist that they look up to or are inspired by?
Well we all have different inspirations, but I don’t think anyone has got an Idol really, maybe when we were 12 ha ha.
I myself listened a lot to Oasis and Foo Fighters while growing up, and still do, I guess in a lot of ways Dave Grohl has had an impact on me.
I think that Innocent Rosie plays glam/sleaze party hardrock with a twist of blues/punk and rock’n'roll, but how would you like to describe what kind of music you play?
That’s your opinion and that’s fine, but I don’t agree at all, We play plain rock n roll. On our first demo I guess you can say that was more sleaze kinda sound, but we grew tired of that style pretty fast,and to be honest there’s no glam/sleaze band in the world that I enjoy very much.
You have toured a lot in Europe as well as in America, how has it been being out on tour?
Touring is the whole reason for being in a band I’d say, I mean think about it we’re doing a road-trip around all of Europe with our best friends, have a couple of brews and play fucking loud rock music ha ha its awesome!
The video to “Knock Me Out” is now a huge success on MySpace, it’s the most aired on the Swedish MySpace, how does that feel?
Great, that was totally unexpected. I remember that day when we were on the top and I think it was Joel that told me about it and I didn’t believe him at first and checked it, that felt cool to see our own band all the way up there.
You played at Cruefest during 2008, what was it like to perform at Cruefest?
It’s awesome for sure and we actually played there in 2007 as well. But just counting all those HUGE bands that been playing there like Led Zeppelin. And from what I have heard, us and Vains of Jenna were the first Swedish bands playing there, so that’s cool.
How did you land the Cruefest gig?
We simply send our first demo(!) and they really liked it and asked us if we wanted to play, and we didn’t think twice about that I can tell you.
When you returned to Sweden from Cruefest your guitarist Skid LaRusso left the band, why? Was it an expected departure?
Yes it had been growing for while, well we wanted different things, he wanted to go one way with the music and the rest of us wanted to go the other way.
Are you friends with LaRusso today? And was it given that Dick Börtner was gonna replace LaRusso?
Yes there’s no hard feelings there. Not given at first cause only Joel knew him back then, but as soon as we rehearsed with him the first time it was totally given, like the missing link for sure!
Have any of the members been active or involved in any other acts besides Innocent Rosie?
Nope none of us have, maybe except for Dixxie who runs a studio but not in any other band or something like that, right now there’s no time, and we’re having way to much fun with what we’re doing right now anyway.
Where does the band name come from?
Well, it was our first guitar player Skid LaRusso that came up with the name ages ago, there’s no cool story behind it or anything ha ha it just sounded cool you know so we kept it.
You doesn’t have a website only a MySpace site, why?
Well we can’t really do it ourselves and we don’t have too much money to pay someone to do it, but I think MySpace is fills it’s purpose great anyway, BUT it’s coming though.
Where in Sweden do you guys live at the moment?
Gothenburg and Varberg.
Does all of the members live in the same town? If not ado you see any problems in the fact that the band isn’t gathered at the same location?
No the distance between our cities is nothing, so that’s not a problem.
Do you feel that Innocent Rosie have gained more fans with the release of BAD HABIT ROMANCE?
Oh yes, definitely, a lot more of recognition overall I’d say, and that’s great because that means that we’ll get to play more live shows than ever.
What’s the most common question you get from fans?
"How long are you staying?" "when are you guys coming back" , maybe hehe
I’ve seen that you are active bloggers on your MySpace site, is blogging something that the band enjoys doing?
Yes and it’s important for our fans to see what we are up to at the moment and so on.
What would you consider being the most unique with the sound of Innocent Rosie?
Well our sound is nothing revolutionary or totally new, but I think that the simplicity of our sound and music is something unique, it only rock n roll!
Earlier this year you performed at Rock The Night Festival at The Rock in Copenhagen and the announcer presented you as the new Guns’N'Roses, how does it feel to be compared with the legendary Guns’N'Roses?
That is of-course an awesome resemblance since we got a lot of inspiration from them. But as you say they are legendary and to me they quit playing after "spaghetti incident".
You work together with BDO Management, how is it to work with them?
That works out great!
You also have a row of press/media partners in Sweden, Germany, Italy and America, how does your co-operation work with them?
Those things are handled by Swedmetal so I don´t know very much about that actually.
You are going out on the road in Sweden and the rest of Europe this year, how is it to be out on the road so much as you guys are? What do you long for the most after being out on tour for lets say 3 months?
As I said earlier we’re doing a road-trip around all of Europe with our best friends, have a couple of brews and play fucking loud rock music, and it’s just so much fun, the main reason why we play music really. Well personally I miss my bed and mom’s cooking ha ha, but honestly you eat so much crap food while on tour, touring isn’t always as glamorous as some people might think, in some places your sleeping place might be a DJ booth in the gig place, that actually happen to us when we played in Lincoln, England, but still it’s so much fun.
How would you like to describe a live show with Innocent Rosie? What can we expect when we attend a show with you?
Come see us! I swear that you will get a huge kick out of it! Its a high-pulse high energetic rock band and you will not be able to stand still that´s for sure!
According to your MySpace site you’re soon heading into the studio to start the recording on your second album, what can you tell us about your next album? Do you have any titles for songs or for the album yet?
Yes that’s correct,we are actually recording one song right now that we will release on MySpace soon. But so far we got at least 6 potential songs for the album, but sometimes we’re like a machine when we rehearse and so for this album it will probably be kinda hard to choose songs because I have a feeling that there will be loads of them in the end.
Have you decided which producer and what studio you’re gonna use?
Well Dixxie works as a producer so it falls kinda naturally that we do it in his studio.
When can we expect the next album to be ready and out in stores?
Hmm that’s really hard to say, but we’re aiming to have it done at the start of 2010.
Give me three reasons why the readers should buy BAD HABIT ROMANCE.
Buy it if you like Rock n Roll or any rock for that matter,
otherwise you will be missing out an high-pulse high energetic rock album that will get you to move!
Finally is there anything you’d like to say to the readers and to the fans out there?
Check our MySpace for tour dates and come see us if we´’e visiting your land and city, and keep updated cause we’ll release a live DVD soon! And keep on rocking out there.
Thanks a lot for taking the time off the answer my questions, I’m really looking forward to hear and to see more of Innocent Rosie in the future, I think that BAD HABIT ROMANCE is an amazing debut album. Good luck in the future.
No thank you! It was a pleasure for sure!
More info about the band