70000Tons of Metal Interview with Rikard Zander (keyboardist) and Jonas Ekdahl (drummer) of Evergrey


Interview and Photos by: Zenae Zukowski



Zenae: What are a few things you guys have been looking forward to for this cruise?

Rikard: Hanging out with a lot of friends, catching up-

Jonas: Yeah.

Rikard: The ice cream bar, the buffet and the weather and of course, playing some music.

Zenae:  Awesome. Once you guys get back to the mainland, what do you have planned for Evergrey?

Rikard: We’re starting to write a new album, so in a couple of months we will do that and then we are going to record it and, we have a release date set for January next year.

Zenae: January next year? Very cool, looking forward to it. Now, let’s talk about 1998’s The Dark Discovery it’s turning twenty years old this year, do you have any special plans for celebrating it?

Rikard: No. We kind of thought about that shortly.

Jonas: There’s going to be some kind of re-release.

Rikard: Yeah, yeah.

Jonas: There’s going to be vinyl and stuff like that.

Rikard: Yeah, they’re already available. The first 2 albums are available.

Zenae: A lot of bands are doing anniversary tours, so you’re not doing anything crazy like that for this record?

Jonas:  No.

Rikard: No.

Jonas: I mean, we set a tour and we just realize that…

Rikard: Just to be able to do this still, is our reward, a reward itself, so that’s the celebration. It’s more for us. It’s like being grateful for still being here and being able to do this.

Jonas:  Yeah and I don’t think with respect for our band, I don’t think we would grow the masses by doing The Dark Discovery.

Rikard: No.

Jonas: Because we, during that time, everybody was not that big anyway, so it’s not like … With some bands they were huge, they were really huge. For an album, the line came out the store. It would be no good.

Zenae:  It wouldn’t bring back much of a feedback.

Jonas:  Let’s wait a couple of years and see what happens.

Zenae: And, speaking of continuing, what are your thoughts on bands retiring this year? Slayer just announced their retirement, there’s also chances of AC/DC and Rush as well. What do you feel about this trend?

Rikard: I have no idea actually, I’m not any of those fans. But I don’t believe in it anyway.

Jonas: It’s just something they say.

Rikard: Yeah, I mean, look at all the bands-

Jonas: Yeah-

Rikard: You know, so many bands say that they are going to retire and they do their last farewell tour and then they’re back. They realize that the tour is a success and they’re still you know, got the marks for it or whatever, they can still keep going, so … I’m getting kind of allergic to that word nowadays because so many bands don’t keep that promise.

Zenae: You make a valid point.

Rikard: It’s not hard to say anything really, just don’t, do an album if you don’t.

Jonas: Yeah.

Rikard: If you don’t want to. Don’t tour.

Jonas:  That’s up to you.

Rikard: If you don’t like it, don’t work.

Jonas: So, yeah, I don’t know, it’s getting boring that whole farewell for world tours. I mean, just look at Aerosmith, they announced their farewell tour last year

Rikard: And now, they kind of are like, oh maybe we changed our mind, we keep going.

Zenae: And how do you guys feel about the Gothenburg scene. How has it evolved over the years, in your opinion?

Rikard: Maybe it’s not as dominant as it was, you know, back in the day, the middle to late nineties but the bands, I don’t hear as many bands coming out anymore.

Zenae: It’s not as prominent as it was.

Rikard: No, I wouldn’t say so, maybe around, you know … Right now I can’t think.

Jonas: There are a few bands, but-

Rikard: Yeah, of course, but it’s, it’s not like … It was such a dominant thing … In late nineties, so it’s time for other cities to do their thing, you know. We’re still around.

Zenae: And, would you guys pay to watch the Dio hologram?

Rikard: What’s that?

Zenae: There’s a hologram for Dio, and now there’s a tour consisting of a hologram of Dio.

Jonas: Yeah, I’ve heard of all that-

Zenae: It’s a big thing now, it’s been circling around the press and a lot of people are curious about their thoughts on the Dio hologram. Basically, would you guys actually pay to see a hologram of a dead singer?

Rikard: Uh, I don’t know.

Jonas: No. My first reaction was hmm, kind of disgusted.

Rikard: I don’t know, maybe it’s a cool thing but still, it doesn’t sound nice. But, I’ve been fortunate to see Dio, a lot of times.

Jonas: Yeah.

Rikard: I mean, I even saw Dio in the eighties, so, so maybe it’s cool for people who have not seen it but I don’t know if it’s the right thing.

Jonas: I heard about another hologram as well. I heard something … I read something-

Zenae: There’s been talks and rumors.There’s definitely talks about Frank Zappa, I believe they wanted to have one but I am sure this is going to start a trend with all different types of genres in music.

Jonas: Yeah.

Rikard: I don’t know, I mean, my gut is telling me that I really don’t like this idea, it’s yeah … I don’t know.

Jonas: Not, not something I’d pay to watch.

Rikard: No.

Jonas: I mean, it’s all that you can do, what can you can do with technology but it’s not like-

Zenae: It’s taking away from the reality of music.

Rikard: Yeah, it’s still going to be something that’s from a plain backtrack or something that’s pre-recorded anyways so …

Jonas: Well, maybe it’s a cool thing to see, how … If it looks realistic, with the sync and everything. I don’t know.

Rikard: No, I don’t like that idea. Not my cup of tea, so to speak.

Zenae: Do you have a particular song that you like to perform live the most?

Rikard: Oh, yeah, a bunch of them.

Jonas: But usually the new ones, it’s fun. Now, it’s fun, I think, to play the new songs.

Rikard: Yeah.

Jonas: It’s hard to … It’s different from every concert. It’s hard to choose.

Rikard: Yeah, it’s kind of funny, sometimes you don’t play songs for several months and then you, know, throw them in a set once in a while and sometimes, some songs, you know, you need to have a break from them. Just, you’ve been playing them for so long and it’s not … You’re not actually playing them, it’s just like muscle memory. You just do it and … But when you take them out again … Take them out from the attic, put them in the setlist again. You say, whoa, this feels fresh. You’re eager to play that again and you kind of missed playing some songs that you put away for a while, so that’s cool.

The new songs … Yeah, I really like “Distance” from our latest album (2016’s ‘The Storm Within’).

Zenae: Do you have anything you’d like to say to your fans?

Rikard: Thank you for reading this and make sure to check out our new stuff.

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