1.Hello there, 2011 has been a hectic year for you, with the release of Human Cometh´s 2nd album HCII and recording the new album, plus the involvement in the mazeOne project. Is inspiration all around these days?
Hello my friend! Well inspiration comes and goes. It's all about getting things recorded when inspiration comes. I also believe in hard work. Making music takes time, lots of time. It's been many late nights in the studio. MazeOne is fun because I only have to focus on the guitars.
2.From what I know, you stopped playing guitar for a while. Why?
Yes there were a couple of years without guitar playing. I did not think it was fun anymore. I had played in cover bands for many years and that kind of took the fun out of playing. I mean, its fun to play covers when you are on stage but when time comes to practice and try to do something creative the energy was not there. At that time we also had our first child Simon. The guitars just collected dust and I sold a bunch of them to. But after maybe three years of no playing I found kompoz online. Kompoz is a fantastic place and it made me find inspiration again.
3.Your roots are based in the 80´s metal but your songwriting tends to develop into more modern progressive sounds. I guess you don´t want to record the same album twice?
Yes my playing has its roots in the 80's and 90's but I always try to evolve and take in new influences.
But I believe that you have to have some kind of core in what you do and write and not just go with trends and what is on the radio. I try to make music that I love to listen to myself not what I think that others want to hear.
4.Human Cometh´s first two albums were performed by the same lineup of you on guitar, Kaj Roth - Lead Vocals, Jon Robbins - Drums, Björn Pehrson - Bass and Jay Schankman - Keyboards (only HCII). But you have a new line up of musicians on the 3rd album, would you like to tell me who they are?
There is a new drummer Walter Kelleher. He is an online session drummer from the US. Eric Johns is the new lead vocalist, also from USA. Eric also sings in the band Southern Gentlemen. I also invited Anders Plassgård to play Hammond on a couple of songs. Anders is just an amazing keyboard player.
5.The first album "Evolution" started out as an instrumental guitar album but developed into a vocal oriented metal album, it seems like that album was more of an experiment where to go from there sound wise?
Yes some of the songs on Evolution where meant to be instrumental songs. But the best songs where written for vocals. I'm thinking about Himalaya and Aiming High to mention some. Evolution was in a way an Experiment in every way. I did not know if it was possible to make a CD online with people that had never met eat other. It was also a new experience to be the songwriter and not have to argue with band mates during rehearsal of the songs. But there is a backside to that as well. I formed the way I work when making songs when we did Evolution and I have found my way of writing music and I learned a lot about mixing and mastering.
6.The 2nd album "HCII" are songs written for vocals from the start, it sounded like the puzzle had all the pieces this time?
Yes we defined the sound we wanted from maybe two or three songs from Evolution and said that that´s the Human Cometh sound and let's try and make songs that have that sound. I think that we succeeded to nail what we where after.
7.I have heard samples of the 3rd album and it sounds both heavier but also a bit more bluesy compared to the previous records, is this a natural step for Human Cometh to evolve and always move on?
When making this CD I wanted to try some new things when writing. I wanted to break free from that everything have to be so correct. I have tried to write more with my ears than with my knowledge of what is the correct chords and scales to use. I also try to mix the styles a bit. Eric is a new singer for me to work with so I try to make the songs fit his vocal style. He can sing modern but he is also very bluesy, so thats cool.
8.The mazeOne project is led by Anders Plassgård on keyboards/vocals, who also designed the artwork for both Human Cometh albums.
You play guitar on his songs, what´s the style?
MazeOne's music style is kind of hard to describe. It's very unique in a way. I would say dark and beautiful.
9.If you could only bring 3 albums and a cd player with loads of batteries to a desert island, which albums would you pick?
Eric Johnson's Venus Isle, Chris Cornell's Euphoria Morning and the first Rising Force album.
10.What are the most important guitar players?
Hendrix, Van Halen, Blackmore and Yngwie.
11.You had to choose one, what would you choose between:
A-Write and record a soundtrack for The Expendables 3 movie,
B-perform with Satriani and Vai in G3,
C-be a fulltime member of Opeth or
D-get a 10 albums deal with a major label for Human Cometh?
The last one of course :)
12.And finally, since Human Cometh is an online project, will the band ever perform live on stage?
That is something I would very much like and it is not impossible that it will happen.