SOURCE – First question that came up is: why the album title “…to North”?
Jonas Albrektsson (Bass) – The title “..to North” kind of reflect upon our Norse heritage and the main concept we use for lyrical inspiration. It has ambiguous ways of being seen upon and is vague in its description and thus also left open for peoples own interpretation. From our side it’s in short a tribute to North, our heritage and/or the longing for home. We felt it fit right away to entitle the album, being representative of the entirety of the songs as well as it also got to be the title for the instrumental song “to North”.
SOURCE – Do you also see it as a good album title in how it reflects the whole package of the King Of Asgard-music and how it has evolved?
Jonas Albrektsson (B) – Yeah for sure, as I said, it kind of capture the whole essence of the material and it’s also representative for the lyrics in a way. It is probably as you say too, reflecting on the whole King of Asgard overall musical approach and lyrical content.
SOURCE – Was the writing/recording process for “…to North” the same as usual, or were there differences from the norm?
Jonas Albrektsson (Bass) – First of all, we were way more prepared in every possible way this time. We’ve all been involved more or less from the very beginning in writing and putting this album together which really wasn’t the case on the predecessor. Everything was clear to us and pretty much everything was finished and just needed to be set on tape.
We were armed to the teeth! It was very cool getting back together with Andy as we work extremely well together with him and he’s really open and understands our goals and intentions with King of Asgard. We made it clear once we arrived in the studio on how we wanted this album to sound etc. Together we discussed on how to reach those goals and from there on the hard work started. The actual recording session was pretty much the same as on the debut apart from that, again, it was more clear to us on what we wanted the final result to be like.
Working with Andy is very easygoing by now as we’ve known him now since many years and before working with King of Asgard as well. He’s helping us out a lot and get the picture of what we endeavour which is the most important point for us when picking out a studio to be creative in. Another cool thing is that he’s also very proud of what we achieve together, especially on the new one, “…to North”.
SOURCE – Do you bring more songs into the studio than you’ll need for an album?
Jonas Albrektsson (Bass) – No, not really. We record everything at home before we enter the studio so we know pretty much what will come out and the stuff we feel won’t make it is already history. Yet we still have enough material so there could either way be a song that wont make it to the album. So, there are many pre-productions made pre recording and we keep doing so until we’re confident it will turn out the way we picture it and thus we can give these song full focus while recording for real.
SOURCE – Nowadays in every album the person responsible for the sound production is strongly mentioned especially when he is a known one. How important do you think is the producer to the sound of a band?
Jonas Albrektsson (Bass) – I think that depends more on what sound one is looking for. Of course there are bands booking a specific studio because of getting its representative sound and that specific producers name on the album. It could also push some in sales points and promote a newcomer. But in the end it’s the tunes that counts. In our case it’s more of a safe thing to do as some of us knew Andy before and has recorded in Sonic train in earlier stages. We’re not there for its specific sound or because he is a famous artist or producer.
We want our sound that bring King of Asgard out and we’re making that clear when we start. Andy is very responsive about our ideas and make every effort to achieve it and up until now we have been successful in our cooperation and both parties are satisfied with the outcome.
SOURCE – Is there any difference in how you are treated by national media compared to foreign media?
Jonas Albrektsson (Bass) – Not really. What differs is maybe that the overall interest is much bigger in foreign media. Probably due to that this kind of music doesn’t get the same attention here in Sweden as in say Germany or U.S. According to the reviews we’ve seen “to North” get pretty much the same treatment all around the world judging the similarities in opinions. So it’s all fine and nothing I’ve thought of or that has bothered me but now when thinking of it, some more interest from our own compatriots would be pleasant. Still we’re pleased with all the attention and support we get, no matter from which country it comes. It strengthen us!
SOURCE – In addition to King Of Asgard, what other bands are you currently involved in?
Jonas Albrektsson (Bass) – Actually it’s only Karsten that’s in a more serious band beside King of Asgard. He also plays the drums for Falconer since many years which is the creation of one of the old Mithotyn members, Stefan Weinerhall. We’ve all been in countless of bands during the years but at the moment we’re fully investing our time in King of Asgard which takes about all our time in addition to what goes on in our private lives. There are some stuff at times as for example Lars is doing some industrial noise things and such at times.
SOURCE – The music industry is in a state of flux and album sales have pretty much collapsed. How does it impact your life as a musician?
Jonas Albrektsson (Bass) – It doesn’t affect us much more than that it’s a pity this is the fact and reality we all have to face and live with. We all have regular jobs and King of Asgard is on a level that doesn’t affect us personally in terms of money or so. But sure, we do want people to buy our albums to the largest extent possible, if not the physical ones at least pay for downloading. But in the end of the day, this is the current situation and we could only hope it won’t get worse because then the industry and musicians will face a real problem. Without album sales there will of course not be any possibilities for labels to finance and produce professional releases but if this is what the future holds, well, then we?ll have a new issue or opportunity to tackle.
SOURCE – What are your views on the recent controversy of the Stop Online Piracy Act?
Jonas Albrektsson (Bass) – Never heard of this term or bill before I think so I can’t really comment on the controversy around it for the obvious reason. At first quick view on it I guess it’s a bit too tough way to go actually as it seem to prevent and close many ways which also is good ones in terms of promotion and general circulation. It would be like closing opportunities we’ve all created and developed through the years and almost return to a form of censorship, which certainly would be of stupidity. Like removing cars and return to the horse and carriage. Difficult. But as I said, I have not followed what happened around this and therefore it’s difficult to directly express an opinion on the subject right now. Think there are also some of this going on in Sweden but the target isn’t very easy to capture.
SOURCE – Please feel free to add a last comment?
Jonas Albrektsson (Bass) – Thanks a bunch, Falber Teles and Sourcewebzine, its readers and the followers of the King – for supporting King of Asgard! Make sure to check “to North” out if you still haven’t done that. Hope to see ya! Cheers and Horns up!