– Hello, thanks for answering to our interview. What’s currently keeping you guys busy?
Right now we are anticipating the long awaited release of The Doomsayer’s Call, which is on february 13. We also have an upcoming gig at the Neurotic Deathfest in Holland march 3. It’s been a while since we’ve played abroad, so it’s going to be a blast for sure. Additionaly we’re trying to get some more european dates, but nothing is decided as of now.
– First of all, could you please tell us some history of the band and how did COLDWORKER come to existence?
Coldworker got started in february 2006 with Jakobson, Bertilsson and Oskar, and they were joined by guitarist André and myself in the following months. We wrote a shitload of songs in a very short time and started recording our debut album The Contaminated Void in june the same year, and played some one-off gigs before going on a short scandinavian tour with Arch Enemy and Path of No Return in november. The album was released shortly after and about a month later André was out of the band since touring didn’t really work out for him. Daniel stepped in on guitar and we did some more shows before going on a european tour with Misery Index and Dew-Scented.
After the tour we went right back to writing songs and recorded Rotting Paradise in December 07 to January 08. The album was released in May 08 and was supported by select gigs in Sweden and Europe, but a tour for the album unfortunately never materialized. At the end of the year we recorded two cover songs for appearance on tribute albums to Repulsion and Nasum. In 2009 we supported The Black Dahlia Murder for a couple of shows in Sweden and Norway, and later that year released a split 7″ with finnish grinders Deathbound. In October we did two gigs with fellow swedes Remasculate and after that went into writing mode, only playing a couple of local shows in the meantime. The Doomsayer’s Call was recorded December 2010 to january 2011 and was originally meant to be released in the summer the same year.
– You have recently unleashed your new opus, which I read it was ready some time before being released. Why did it take you that time? Maybe you weren’t with Listenable yet back then?
That’s right, the album is very delayed and it’s because we switched labels between recording and release. Not super practical if you want your album out quickly! We were dropped by our last label, Relapse Records, and had to start looking for a new one. We inked a deal with Listenable Records and planned on releasing the album later in 2011, but those plans were also scrapped when the artist who was doing the cover had his office burglarized and his computer stolen along with the work he’d done so far. He didn’t have a chance of redoing it on time, so we had find another artist, which I’m happy to say we did in Pär Olofson who did an amazing job.
– In fact this is your first album with Listenable after leaving Relapse. What prompted that move? And how’s everything going with Listenable so far?
Like I said we were released from our contract with Relapse, and I really don’t know why. A guess could be that it was because we had been keeping a low profile the last years with them, not touring and only doing a handful of shows. Everything is working out great with Listenable so far. Of all the labels we were in contact with during our search for a new home, they were the ones who seemed to like our music the most, and we really appreciate that!
– This new album is «The Doomsayer’s Call»; how’s its feedback being?
All feedback has been great so far. People really seem to like it and quite a few are saying that The Doomsayer’s Call is an improvement from Rotting Paradise, and what more could you ask for? We think we have a really strong album this time (cliché, I know) and are now very anxious for the release. It feels awesome to soon have the album out after such a long wait. I’m sure someone is gonna come along sooner or later and tell us our new album is pure shit though, but I don’t care. I know in my gut that we’ve made a great record. If I wasn’t in the band, I would buy it.
– First song on the album is «New Era»; is this some kind of statement?
Really not, it’s just a coincidence that it opens the album. I was a bit surprised myself to see it as the first song, since I had championed the idea that it should be the album closer. I can totally see why people would think it a statement of sorts though, in fact we said among ourselves that «oh, it’s pretty obvious that people are gonna think this is some statement», but we went with it anyway. The fact is that our first two albums start off with very fast and vicioius songs, so for the sake of variety I believe it was a great idea to open The Doomsayer’s Call with the slow and crushing A New Era. While I’m on the topic of choosing the order of songs on an album, I think it’s both a fascinating and a frustrating process. The order of the songs can change the feel of the record completely, but it’s really hard to arrange them in a coherent way. We had a lot of heated arguments about the song order on The Doomsayer’s Call, but it came together nicely in the end.
– In this effort I notice a songwriting improvement, though there are not drastic sound changes. Anyway, what could you say are the main differences between this latest CD any our previous «Rotting Paradise»?
Thank you. I can’t remember us ever saying «we need to write songs like this and that», except that we wanted a couple of slow ones this time, so I think it’s just a matter of us getting better at arranging the tunes we write. A difference from Rotting Paradise is perhaps that the songs, while being equally varied, form a more coherent whole on Doomsayer. With Rotting Paradise it was more like «this is the Cannibal Corpse song, this is the Hate Eternal song, and this is the old school-song» and so on, and maybe we’ve moved away from that the bit. On the other hand we do have Monochrome Existence on the new album, which was called «the Terrorizer song» during the writing process, so maybe that’s still something we do, ha ha.
– And how has your evolution been since then?
The evolution since Doomsayer has not gotten started yet, as we have not started rehearsing any new songs since. I know that Oskar sent out a demo for a new song a while back, but we are not actively trying to write new material yet. In time it will be great to start working on new songs, but for the moment we are fully concentrating on rehearsing the Doomsayer material.
– This about the songwriting being said; how was the writing process?
We mostly wrote individually, dividing the lyric writing between us whenever someone had a new song completed. It’s pretty much the same way we wrote Rotting Paradise. There was the occasional collaboration, but generally we wrote by ourselves and brought the songs into the rehearsal room when finished. Something that is really becoming a standard now though, is that every song is made into a demo with a digital drum track before we start rehearsing it. I personally don’t have that kind of recording equipment, but I write by far the least music. Everybody else makes demos of their songs. It helps out a lot to hear the song like it’s intended to be and not just a collection of riffs, especially when it comes to tunes with weird riffs and arrangements like for instance Murderous and The Walls of Eryx.
– Mighty Dan Swanö took production duties; are you satisfied with the work done by him?
We are extremely lucky to have been able to work with this guy on all our albums so far, as he really steps up his game for each outing. Rotting Paradise blew The Contaminated Void out of the water production-wise, and Doomsayer is a far better sounding piece of work than Rotting Paradise. My mind was blown by how good our new album sounds. Of course a lot of credit should also go out to Johan Berglund who managed the guitars- and bass recordings.
– About the visual part of the album, the face on the cover artwork reminds me a bit to «Metropolis», was this something intended? Beside this I would like you to shed some light on the artwork; the artist, etc.
You are absolutely correct, «Metropolis» along with art deco aesthetics were the inspiration for the artwork and were beautifully realized by Pär Olofson. I love that kind of 1920’s look and think it made for a cool cover. It also continues our semi-tradition of having our covers depicting a guy in the middle of it. We discussed Olofson as a potential cover artist early in the proceedings, but later decided that we were going to go with Orion Landau who did great work for both our previous albums. He started working on a cover but then, as I said earlier, got his office robbed along with all his work. We then had to get another artist and immediately thought of Olofson, who has done a lot of good stuff for respectable bands like Malevolent Creation and Immolation in the past. It turned out he was all set to go and churned out the first versions of the cover in a matter of hours basically. He has a colorful style I really dig. The cover isn’t the typical death metal fare but still representative of our music and lyrics.
– It seems most people tends to compare COLDWORKER with NASUM though musically are not that similar. How do you feel about these comparisons?
It’s a double edged sword. We got the band off to a flying start because of the Nasum-connection and I’m very thankful for that, but at the same time it means we are always going to be compared to them and how big they were. Musically, Coldworker more than stands on its own feet, and now that we are three albums into our life as a band, the comparisons to Nasums music are starting to get pretty stale and obsolete. Since Jakobson is one of our songwriters, it’s inevitable that there will always be a trace of Nasum in Coldworkers music, and that’s fine, they were a great band. I think most people understand by now that Coldworker never was meant to be a continuation of Nasum, and with the Nasum farewell thing that’s going to happen this year this will probably become even more clear. But of course I understand why the connection is constantly brought up. People loved Nasum and I fully respect that.
– You are hailing from Sweden; are there things easier for an extreme Metal band or the opposite? As it seems to be in Sweden a huge interest for this kind of music but, on the other hand, there’s a huge competence as well.
Nowadays there are shitloads of great bands playing extreme metal in sweden so I’m quite happy about the musical climate here. It’s certainly different from the mid 90’s when I started to get into this kind of music, as metal back then was pretty much dead. But the interest is still only on an underground level. The mainstream doesn’t give a shit about death metal or grindcore and that’s just as well, these are genres and sub-cultures that thrive undergound and burst in the sunlight. There have been a couple of books and documentaries lately though that have gotten some attention, but it’s talked about for a day and then it’s back to radio rock and fake bullshit again. So I wouldn’t say the interest for this kind of music is huge in Sweden, but the underground is certainly very healthy, and as you say there’s a lot of competence and talent to be found there.
– Finally, what are you near-future plans? Do you plan touring to support «The Doomsayer’s Call» on stage?
Yes, we are certainly planning to tour in support of the new album, but unfortunately I can’t give any hard information about anything yet. It’s high time for Coldworker to get out on the road again, and I’m positive that we will in the not to distant future. There are a lot of places we haven’t been yet (hint: Spain) that we would love to visit, so hopefully that will happen. This year is a little strange though, with Jakobson doing his Nasum-thing, so you’ll have to wait and see what the future has in store.
– That has been everything from my side, thanks again. Now feel free to add some final words.
Thanks for the interview! The Doomsayer’s Call will be released on february 13 and contains 13 songs of full blasting death metal. Visit coldworker.com for info on upcoming shows or visit our facebook page for all sorts of info. If you have the oppurtunity, visit the Netherlands and the Neurotic Deathfest march 3 for Coldworkers first gig supporting the new album.