This week, our featured Meet The Band artist is the Swedish trio Gravebreaker. They just released their debut album Sacrifice. Vocalist Nightmare and guitarist/bassist Fury introduce us to their band.
Give us a brief history of Gravebreaker.
Nightmare: Me and Fury, we go back some 25 years, and on and off we’ve been discussing the possibility of recording something. And on a dark and magical night a few years back we did. That led to a series of recording sessions that ultimately culminated in our debut record.
Fury: “It was a dark and stormy night…”
Describe the songwriting and recording process for Sacrifice.
Nightmare: Fury harnesses his inner….fury, and spits out riffs and melodies, while I just show up with a book filled with words.
Fury: We work very quickly, and then we listen a lot to the stuff we make to pick out the best bits.
What will be your strongest memory of the recording of the album?
Nightmare: Learning how to make the perfect cup of coffee, to make Fury play faster.
Fury: He does make a good cup of coffee.
How would you characterize the album’s style/sound?
Fury: Traditional heavy metal, there’s no getting around that. But rather than the usual twin guitar template, we wanted to be like the great five-pieces with guitar and keyboard: Rising Force, Sabbath, Dio. Having said that, the rest followed naturally.
Nightmare: We want songs that get to the point quickly, and then move on. We actively try to avoid repetition, giving them an epic feel. All within three minutes or so.
Fury: Miniature epics.
What has the response been like so far?
Fury: Oh, terrific. We just put our album up on Bandcamp to have a link we could forward to record labels, but people started getting in touch already an hour later. Crazy. People have been saying all kinds of nice things about it, which feels good.
Nightmare: And the great enthusiasm shown by the guys at Gates of Hell Records has been really inspiring. We couldn’t have signed with a better label.
Fury: True, that.
What are your upcoming show/tour plans?
Fury: We figured we’d try to do something on the scale of the World Slavery Tour, but, boy, that takes some planning!
Nightmare: I’ll leave the planning to Fury. Just tell me where and when, and I’ll be there.
What’s the best concert you’ve attended as a fan?
Fury: That has to be each time I’ve seen Magma perform.
Nightmare: Van der Graaf Generator in Milan, Italy. Just brilliant.
Who are you all time top 5 Swedish metal bands?
Fury: Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force, Yngwie Malmsteen “solo”, Yngwie Malmsteen’s Powerhouse. Does half of King Diamond count? No? Maybe Heavy Load and Candlemass. In that order.
Nightmare: I agree, and half of King Diamond should count. Long live Andy La Rocque!
What are your non-musical interests and hobbies?
Nightmare: Professional wrestling and hard liquor.
Fury: I didn’t know there was such a thing…
What’s currently in your heavy musical rotation?
Fury: I’m really into the first Captain Beyond record at the moment. Best Deep Purple record by a mile.
Nightmare: Headless Cross by Black Sabbath. The undisputed 11th best Sabbath album of all time.
Anything else you’d like to mention or promote?
Fury: The album is out now on Gates Of Hell Records. Man, that felt like a real rock star thing to say, like we were on Monsters Of Rock with Mick Wall or something.
Nightmare: That’s because we ARE rock stars! Aren’t we?
(interview published December 17, 2016)