“NORRSKOLD” INTERVIEW – MHF
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“NORRSKOLD” INTERVIEW

NORRSKOLD by Shibalika Tamuli

It has always been very pleasant to talk to relatively new, young bands hailing from different corners of the globe, welcome to the Alpha Omega family and regards from Metalheads Forever magazine! Let’s get to know you! How have you been 🙂

Greetings! And THANK YOU for this, we certainly feel more than welcome to the AOM family! As for now, there are TONS of cool things happening in the Norrsköld camp. Much thanks to the AOM cooperation, but also since we’re generally a restless orchestra!

So first of all, that band interest about “rehearsing naked”, you don’t actually do that right?

Well, there was a time in our career when the nudity factor was more a rule than exception. Playing multimetal several times a week in a desolated catacomb , high on intergalactical amounts of lava-tempered caffeine and snus, make you want to undress, scream and look really mean. Nowadays we’ve been subject to a certain maturity, and we usually stop at “looking mean”. 

Alright let’s get serious. Define “multimetal”.

Ever since day one, when the first riff was written (“Night crystals” from the EP “Blessings of winter”), there has been a desire to write music beyond the conventional borders of metal music. The songwriting is inspired from a multitude of sources, ranging from classical music to jazz and Scandinavian folk music. With such a diversity of influences, it becomes natural to try to keep our own creations dynamic as well. With “multimetal” we want to create music that appeals to, first and foremost ourselves, but also to fans of different metal “genres”. It’s a shame that one has to limit oneself to a single “genre” when there are SO many elements in metal that could be blended to something new and exciting! Therefore we aim at making songs that contains several “styles” in riffs and sections. This without necessarily become too “proggy”. In our songs, you usually find elements of black, folk and death metal. And occasionally, also some nose flute solo’s.

Doesn’t that resonates with the term “Avant Garde” to some extent?

To some extent maybe, but we thought it would be fancier to market ourselves as multimetal. The prefix “multi” usually has a nice vibe to it. We mix so many elements, so that´s the most valid description I would say.

We know Henrik formed the band after leaving Irrbloss, so what were your blueprints for Norrskˆld like back then at the time? Have you completely achieved your goals about what you wanted the band to be like? Was there ever a certain genre/theme you wanted to make music about?

Well, the idea at the time was to write, record and release some of the demo songs that had been lying around collecting dust in Henrik’s brain for far too long. THe early ambitions was to keep the project to a studio one, since Norrsköld was basically a one-man band during the dawn of time. As session members were recruited, we collectively felt an eventual need to express our creations in front of a crowd. The songs were way to fun to play, we realized. One of the first goals was to complete our first studio recording session with our dignity intact. I (Henrik) made a memorable start of that recording process as I burned my left hand when boiling a cod, one week before guitar trackings. “Boiled fish karma” in its purest form.

Tell us the story behind the naming of the band.

The originally idea was to keep the name simple, unique and pragmatic. I come from the northern part of Sweden, “Norrland” a.k.a. “the wild side”. My last name Sköld (“shield” in English) is an old soldier name. Wild sides and shields are in themselves pretty metal phenomenons, and woven more so if they are combined. Så Norrsköld = origin + last name. As easy as that!

What’s your process of mixing black and death metal with folk melodies? Tell us about “dödshambo”.

The “dödshambo” labeling was made quite spontaneous by a profound person I hung out with some years ago. She claimed the folk:ish metal noise sounded like an orchestra playing “hambo” music (ancient Swedish folk dance in silly clothes, google it!), but in a slightly more offensive manner.

Where do you get inspirations from, other than nature (which is more of black metal)?

Nature is, of course, the main element of inspiration. Nothing beats quarreling with an acoustic guitar on the stump of a tree while being completely lost. Other heavy influences are modern/classical pieces of violin/orchestra music. The grandeur of a classical orchestra always provide some proper desire to create intricate and beautiful melodies. Another, maybe not too expected, source of inspiration is movie and videogame soundtracks. That’s literarily a chest full of gems when it comes to melody inspiration. Finally, of course, some latent inspiration occasionally comes from the early 90’s death and black metal scene of Scandinavia.

Two words. Gothenburg and Melodeath. Belonging to such a prominent and dominant scene, do you think it has ever benefited the band in any way?

I think the fact that we play quite melodic metal and deriving from Gothenburg automatically brings some kind of “quality stamp” to the music, since SO many exceptional acts from Gothenburg has made such a huge impact in the scene historically. They have, so to speak, “raked the stables” for younger metal bands from Gothenburg during a long time. Although, at the same time, the metal scene of Gothenburg has  exploded with good metal bands during the last decade. This has made it significantly harder to “stick out” from the melo-death crowd.

Has the “Gothenburg sound” ever influenced your music? How do you plan on making Norrsköld stand apart, thematically and musically?

I would lie if I denied that those bands, especially In Flames, Sacrilege (highly underrated band) and Dark Tranquillity have had a large impact on our songwriting. Especially when it comes to melodies. Also Dissection is a great inspiration, with Jon Nödtveits (so far) unmatched talent of melodic black/death metal composing. Even though we are sometimes compared to these acts, I think we stand apart from them in the sense that we dare to make “unholy” mixes of black, folk, and death metal with a distinct flavour of catchiness.

What are the Band’s plans for the future? What about touring?

We are now, more than ever, ready to seriously hit the roads in order to spread our multimetal to the more and less unknown corners of the world! Although we have played abroad a number of times before (f.ex. supporting NIGHTRAGE on an European tour 2016), we are now facing some truly epic opportunities. For classification reasons we cannot share any details of tours yet, but we can say that some heavy touring news are coming up SOON. We encourage all fans to keep a keen eye open on our social Norrsköld media (Facebook and Instagram) as well as our label Alpha Omega Management social platforms. 2017-2018 will be years of true epicness!

Tell us about your experience with Alpha Omega management so far 🙂

AOM are super easy to work with, and are exceptionally service minded as they support us as a band 24/7 whenever we have the need for it (which is, quite often). During the short time we’ve been a part of the AOM family, we have been presented some truly impressive offers, which we could only have dreamed of a year ago! We look forward to a continuous cooperation with these lovely people!

Thanks a lot for talking to us! Leave a message for your fans and the Alpha Omega family 🙂

Thank YOU for giving us the possibility to spread our word and ambitions! We encourage all the metalheads out there to listen to our latest ultra-melodic, mega catchy and über brütal album “Withering Virtue…” on SPOTIFY, since we’re really proud of that piece. It’s a living proof that metal music can still be adventurous and unique while flirting with classical melo-death elements. Also, Follow NORRSKÖLD and ALPHA OMEGA on FACEBOOK and INSTAGRAM, since we’re gonna cook some truly exciting stuff together in a not too distant future! Thanks for reading, CHEERS!!

Shibalika Tamuli/MHF Magazine

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