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Interview von: arne mit William Blackmon, am: 25.01.2004 ]

Nach der 2001er Split 7Inch mit Exhumed musste man ja lange auf ein weiteres Lebenszeichen von GADGET aus Schweden warten. Das war dann ihr Beitrag auf dem “Swedish Assault“ der Relapse Underground Series. Mit “Remote“ liegt nun endlich auch der erste Longplayer der Sickos vor und der rotiert fast eine halbe Stunde. Zu hören bekommt man wilden Grind mit gelegentlichen Mosh-Parts und doch schon gehörig viel Melodie und latenter Hardcore-Schlagseite.


Musicscan: give our readers a short briefing about GADGET, please.

Gadget: Gadget is a four-piece grindcore band from Sweden that combines the mind-ripping aggressiveness of death metal and grindcore, with emotional crap and depressing lyrics. Haha.

Musicscan: what's your self-understanding of GADGET? what does your band stands for? what was your motivation to start this band?

Gadget: We started out because I was sick of playing in shitty bands with unmotivated people. I wanted to make fast and brutal music, and be dead serious about it. Music has always been serious stuff for me, and at that current situation I found myself making excuses after each show, each demo-tape, and just figured that if you're not aiming to make it 100%, why bother at all? I can never understand bands who do things half-hearted. It's one thing if you fail your own expectations of course. That happens all the time.

Musicscan: i visited your website today and i am not sure wheater GADGET is a solid band tehse days since you started out as a sideprojevt i read. what have been the important steps in bands development?

Gadget: Gadget is a very solid band. And have been since we started playing in late 99. The problem in the beginning was to find a full line-up. Actually we are still short on a drummer. I think the first important step in the development was when I asked Rikard to join in and try make it a full band. It was about then we started getting the first set of songs together and recorded the first demo-tape. The second, and perhaps biggest step was probably when we got in contact with Relapse. Playing live was also a big mess in the beginning, with different bass players all the time, and only one guitar, but I think we have become a whole lot better as a live-act these two recent years. Next step will be when we find a proper drummer and can go on stage with two guitars and two vocals!

Musicscan: it looks like you are very experienced with tough situations. like "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger." am I right?

Gadget: The big problem for us has always been the line-up. Instead of having some half-serious person join the band, we have chosen to wait until we find someone that fits 100%, both as a person and music-wise. It's like if you can't find people to play with, do it yourself! These years have also been a lot of hard work for me personally since I' I've had to work a lot on my drumming. I didn't even own any drums when we started playing. Apart from that, I think life has been very good to us.

Musicscan: why did you choose to be around as grind-outfit? what's your motivation t play especially this heavy kind of metal?

Gadget: Grindcore is just about as evil you can get without having to put on corpse paint. Haha. No, but seriously I think it turned out that way because of the fact that Grindcore is such a prefect mix of punk and death metal. I listen to just about anything from disrupt to cannibal corpse when it comes to the harder stuff, so I always felt that this is the perfect way to mix all my influences into something that actually works. Even the more emotional parts seem to fit in.

Musicscan: tell me something about band members background, please. i read that you come out of a hardcore-background, right? wasn't hardcore what you were searching for? i mean it's still a huge step from hardcore to grind?

Gadget: It started out with punk and hardcore for all of us. I used to play in a hardcore band called Abegail, Rikard played guitar in different hardcore and punk acts (Shitstorm to name one), and Nygge (the old guy) has been playing in nearly all the classic bands from Gävle. Dross, Sorcery, Ashram and Serene have all been big names in the local underground scene. To me it never seemed to be such a big step to go from the metal-hardcore in Abegail to play grindcore in Gadget. Perhaps that is because I had been listening to black metal, death metal and grindcore during the same time as I had been in Abegail. Fast and extreme music was already my cup of tea so to say.

Musicscan: are you stll connected to the hardcore-scene? maybe you have kept some kind of hardcore/punk-attitude?

Gadget: Absolutely! We still feel very much a part of the Swedish hardcore scene. in Sweden it seems like the grindcore genre is more connected to the hardcore scene than any other. We mostly play on punk-shows with hardcore and punk bands.

Musicscan: unfortunately i only receiced kind of promotional copy without the lyrics so i only can read your song-titles. they aren't that typical grind-titles i guess. what are the topics you deal with on this record?

Gadget: I would have to say that the lyrics are in general very un-typical for a grindcore band. Most of the lyrics on Remote are quite depressing stuff, but not all of them. The Sentinel for instance is a typical sci-fi inspired lyric. We usually end up with one or two cyberpunk influenced lyrics, since I am a big fan of William Gibson.

Musicscan: what are the topics you take care of in general? this there something like a certain message you guys try to get out in the scenes?

Gadget: I can't really answer on the behalf of Emil and Rikard, but since I write most of the lyrics I will try and explain from my own perspective. I think life in general is what inspires me the most to write. Situations, feelings and personal experiences are what make me feel a need to express myself. Whether it is from the feeling of inadequacy or euphoria, I've always felt that lyrics should be honest to whoever wrote them. And if someone else can relate to it, even if not in the same way it was intended to express "itself", then that is what it is all about. Just like when you turn on a record and relate to the music.

Musicscan: are the lyrics equally important to the music? for metal-bands lyrics are often less important, but i always think that bands should have something to say, because it's not only about the music, wheater the lyrics are not understandable most of the times.

Gadget: I think the lyrics are very important, but perhaps not in the same way as the music, at all. The first thing you connect to is almost always the music, and therefore it is the most vital part. But if you find a great song, and discover that the lyrics are terrific as well, then that song will immediately be three times as good. Also, I think this is most effective when a lyric really expresses something that enhances the general mood of the song. So yes, I agree totally, even if you don't always hear the lyrics, they are important. Weather it's just knowing that there ARE in fact lyrics, that whoever is singing is singing something, or when you find a band that really have great lyrics that you can relate to.

Musicscan: do all band members identify with the lyrics? do you have conversations about controvers topics?

Gadget: Since most of the lyrics are very personal and often related to situations and/or emotions, I guess not. And when it comes to the very few political songs we have, there is no problem there either since we are all on the very left side with politics.

Musicscan: You released this split 7Inch with EXHUMED back in 2001 - how did it happen? why have you been chosen for it?

Gadget: That was the first thing we did with Relapse, and it was a good thing for us since we where such a young band. We needed to get some attention from the scene, especially in the states, before we could do a CD. I think it's been a very smooth start for us, first with the split 7" and then with all the compilations and then the Swedish Assault.

Musicscan: how did bands relationship to relapse records developt after it. when did you really get signed to them? you have been featured on some of the relapse compilations as well as on the swedish assault. have you already been on Relapse when it came out?

Gadget: We started communicating with them in 2000, and then we did the split and all the compilations during the following time. But we didn't actually sign a contract until last year when we where set up for a CD.

Musicscan: it's a great honor for a younger band to be on relapse. what are your feelings about it?

Gadget: Absolutely. Usually bands start making records on smaller labels and then get in contact with bigger ones. We got a deal with Relapse from the start, and that is probably the best company to be on with this style of music.

Musicscan: there seems to be a very active grind scene in sweden, but what is different about GADGET? what sets you apart from other bands? I mean not every band was featured on swedish assault and get signed to relapse...

Gadget: Yes, the Swedes seem to be one grind-loving people! I think what happened here was that people started to get fed up with the whole San-Diego scene hype, and right then Nasum released Inhale/Exhale and all of a sudden people got into grindcore. What makes us different from the others might be that we have the darker emotional lyrics, and that we blend in a lot of deathmetal and crust in our music. I am of course not in any way saying we are better than any other Swedish grind band, just that this might be the two things that make us differ.

Musicscan: where do you put GADGET in the grand scheme of heavy music? is GADGET "only" a grind-band? i think you play a more open sound and grind is limitating that...

Gadget: I think we are a grindcore band, but with a lot of different influences. And I think you can hear that we really do take influence from everything from Hate Eternal to Tragedy, if you listen to the record.

Musicscan: if you would have to summerise the message and atmosphere of your music in one sentence. what would it be?

Gadget: Only grind is real!

Musicscan: can you take one typical song and explain what you hope people are getting out of it, please.

Gadget: A typical Gadget song might be "Anew" that has the D-beat intro with a whammy solo on it, then full speed grind-verse, D-beat chorus and the more hardcore ending. It is my biggest hope that someone, somewhere, will be listening to it and getting that same feeling of detachment from life that I get when I listen to stuff I like.

Musicscan: what is the song you guys feel especially proud of (whether compositionally, lyrically,...)?

Gadget: I am most proud of Crestfallen. with both music and lyrics. I really think I got it together with that one.

Musicscan: you chose phlat planet to record the record. why did you? when i received he record i would have expacted some soundlab recording, cause usually miezsko is doing such records. phlat planet is known for more progressive and modern bands...

Gadget: What we did was basically ask for prices in different studios, and go with the best offer. We really wanted 14 days in the studio, and Phlat Planet gave us a good price so it worked out with our rather tight budget.

Musicscan: what was the impact of f.reinedahl on the record? did he contributed additional ideas?

Gadget: Fredrik had some influence on the record, absolutely, but most of the production was already worked out by us. We usually record pre-productions on all the new stuff, since I am a studio-engineer by profession. Fredrik was great at making our ideas into reality though and some of the stuff on the record where his ideas.

Musicscan: i just took a short look on your relapse information: you are called "sweden's new grindcore sensation" - do you like this description? and do you feel like being the new sensation?

Gadget: I would like to believe it, and of course I want to get as much attention to the band as possible. But I'm still taking the buss to rehearsals and stay up late in front of my computer so I can be late for work the next day. It's hard to see the word "sensation" fit into my life. Haha.

Musicscan: for how long do you think that you can tour on the record? i think you didn't tour that much in the past, right? on your website i read a lot about weekend-gigs. did you already play a bigger tour? i can imagine that you have to tour in support of Remote!?

Gadget: Yea that is correct, we have mostly been doing weekend gigs. We were supposed to go on a tour in Germany, but we had to cancel. At some point soon we are hoping on going on a longer trip down south. but right now we are focused on the release, and the upcoming gigs. We just did another weekend thing, playing in Östersund and Umeå, and next gig is probably the on the release of the record. In spring or summer I am hoping we can book a tour, but we have nothing planned as of right now.

Musicscan: your biggest wish to happen for bands future?

Gadget: I want to find a drummer for the band, and go on bigger tours! That would be a killer!

Musicscan: something you would like to mention at the end? just do it.

Gadget: Visit our homepage! Buy the record! Stay grind!

  Relapse Records