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Interview DEAD SOUL

Could you introduce your band ?

· Dead Soul is a two-piece band/project consisting of Anders Landelius (lead vocals, guitars, songwriting) and Niels Nielsen (guitar, keyboards, drums, backing vocals, songwriting, producer). We’ve been around since late 2012 when we signed a record-deal with Anders Fridén from IN FLAMES and we’ve released 2 albums since then and toured quite a lot all over Europe. Depending on the occasion we’ve been everything from 7 people in the live band to just Niels and I.

· Could you tell me a little more about your background in music ?

· What really made me want to play music was when I discovered punk in the late 70’s and hard rock and heavy metal in the early 80’s. After spending my teenage years in bands I discovered delta blues 1991 and that kind of changed everything. Since then I’ve been touring in Europe and USA under the name Slidin’ Slim and I’ve released a number of solo-albums during the last 20 years. I first began working with Niels when he produced my album “One Man Riot” in 2007 and we have worked on different projects since then.

Niels got a very different musical background than me and he’s 14 years younger than me which meant that it was natural for him to start working with recording music on his computer very early. He’s been doing his fair share of playing different kind of music in bands but I think that it is his love for electronic music that comes first. BUT, there’s always influences like Radiohead, Sonic Youth and Beck as well in most of what he do. In a way I think that the studio is his main “instrument” though. He’s a great producer and during the last 5-6 years his been very much in demand for production work. He’s also released a number of solo-albums.

· how did you choose the band name « Dead soul » ?

· It was one of those rare occasion when a band gets a record deal without even having a name so it was pretty much taken without too much thinking. We like to think of our name as a rather good despription of what we do because we mix blues and machines. The blues ain’t nothing without heart and soul and the machines we use to create our music are “dead”.

· Could you describe your music, particulary your album concept ?

· It is always difficult to describe music that’s made without any obvious influences but the best way might be to look at us and what we’ve done previously to DS and how we think about music. I have my background in blues and roots music and Niels is a master of electronic music. We do not share any common favourite bands at all and do not listen to the same stuff but what comes out when we write and record together is this weird mix of blues, electronic sounds and distorted guitars. Very dark, intense and, mostly, quite heavy. What we do share is a love for “real” albums, solid songwriting and we think in terms of making albums that you listen to from start to finish. Very much like in the golden age of bands like Pink Floyd and other big bands from the 70’s. As the lyricist of the band I look at every album as a document of where I am as a human being at the time of recording, the thoughts and experiences I feel a need to write about. In that aspect our albums might feel like concept albums even if we don’t think like that when write and record them.

· I read that your first album« In the Darkness » took 5 years to do. Could you Tell me more about the process of creation ?

· The original plan was to do a follow up to my album “One Man Riot” but due to reasons like a my heavy tour-schedule and Niels work as the tour-manager of Ghost it was hard to find time to record. For each and every song we did record we also felt that we went further and further away from doing the blues-album that we intented. We had too much fun just making music and finally decided to do just do that without thinking to much about the “destination” for the music. When Anders Fridén heard the first two songs, we had more or less finished, he signed us right away. At that point it took just 6 months to make the rest of the album.

· I found that until a last breath from The Sheltering Sky is a way to release the pressure « une chanson exutoire » ? are you agree with that ?

· Yes. That song is very much a statement for the new chapter of Dead Soul that “The Sheltering Sky” constitutes. We kind of thought that “if the listener hates this song (which is first on the album) he/she will not listen to the rest”. The song got all the ingredients that makes Dead Soul what we are.

· What band did influenced you? artists or songs ?

· We do not have any common influences at all so I guess it is the sum of what we listen to seperately. Without Son House, Big Joe Williams, Chris Whitley and John Mooney I wouldn’t be the songwriter and performer that I am and Niels is just as much shaped by his listening to Radiohead, Sonic Youth and a bunch of German techno-bands that I don’t even know the names of.

· Touring without drum and bass guitar was difficult for you ?

· Going from a big band of 7 people with (sometimes) two drummers to an electronic set up with 3 people on stage felt strange at first but all we care about is the music not about of how many people there is on stage. It took a couple of gigs, of course, but then it felt natural. There’s no way not to think about the practical aspect as well. Being on tour for 9 weeks (our latest tour with Ghost) costs a lot of money and the budget for a support band doesn’t allow a big production. But we do want to be free to do whatever we like when we play live so the next time we might be more people on stage.

· When we talk about Dead soul, the word is « fascinating », what do you think about that ?

· Our ambition is to make music that is very “for real” and that makes the listener feel something both when it comes the lyrics and all the aspects of the music. Of course it is not unique but there’s a lot of blood and tears invested in Dead Soul and the fact that we’re not like most bands that get together thanks to mutual love for a certain kind of music we really don’t sound like anybody else. I can understand if, and I hope that, people find Dead Soul fascinating!

· Could you tell us about the place of the musician in the Swedish society?

· Even if Sweden has changed a lot during the last 20 years it is still a very good place to be when you’re a musician. There’s a lot of support you can get when you start out as a youngster and no matter if you can pay for own instruments or not you can get help with both instruments, a place to rehearse and studio time to record. Then it is just as hard to make a living from playing music in Sweden as in any other part of the world. Very few can live from playing music. It has always been, and will always be, a difficult path to choose. Sometimes I do feel that the respect for a musician (especially if you struggle to “make it”) from society is higher in other countries.

· you make many references to devil and to hell in your texts. What role has the satanic imaging in your creations and why?

· I really don’t know how much the fact that I grew up in a religious home shaped my fascination for the images of the devil and hell (as well as the lack of a attendant God) but I often find myself using it as a way of describing my own and mankinds struggle. No one is all bad and no one is all good. But, in my opinion, what makes a descent human being is the will to improve and act as good as possible.

· How do you see Dead Soul in 10 years?

· We never intended to form a band and Dead Soul could cease to exist just as fast as it came to life. The only thing we really care about is to find joy in creating, recording and performing music together. If that joy fades we will not continue as Dead Soul but hopefully we will keep developing and making good music.

· Your friends of GHOST received two awards recently, how do you feel about that ?

· We couldn’t be happier! We love the guys and we’ve seen them work extremely hard for many years (even before Ghost) so they deserve every kind of recognition they get.

· What could we wish to you ?

· We wouldn’t say no to a long, healthy and creative life!

Un grand Merci à Monsieur Anders Landelius DEAD SOUL

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