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Hatesphere

author PP date 09/08/06

Hatesphere can rightfully be called the flagship of Danish death/thrash metal after their critically acclaimed album "The Sickness Within". As a result, the band grabbed a slot at this years Roskilde Festival on the roughly 4,000-capacity Odeon stage. To our giant surprise, the band actually camped with the general public in West instead of taking use of the backstage facilities provided by the festival. The undersigned and Mikkel Schläger grabbed a hold of the bands heavily tattooed frontman Jakob Bredahl and their guitarist/songwriter Peter 'Pepe' Hansen backstage behind the Access All Areas to find out their opinions on the festival, downloading and the state of Danish metal the day before they were scheduled to play. The session contained lots of funny moments and a promise to play the Top Gun theme on stage (which bizarrely enough was kept), as well as some new information regarding the bands future plans and the next album. Read on to find out what Jakob & Pepe had to say to us.

RF.net: How long have you been here on the festival?

Jacob: Since Thursday

RF.net: Did you see any bands yet?

Jacob: Guns N Roses and Volbeat and Trivium. Volbeat was good. Tons of different stuff, I saw Happy Mondays yesterday too..five minutes of Bob Dylan (all laugh)

RF.net: Citing your exact words, "Some people give us the label 'metalcore'. What the fuck? Metalcore is a lame attempt at metal by 16 year old kids playing Slayer riffs." How would you describe Hatesphere's style?

Peter: People must be very stupid or narrow-minded because right now the very popular music genre for the young people is metalcore. They get bombarded with this 'metalcore' and everything is just being labeled this 'metalcore'.

Jacob: No matter if it's this or that it's labeled metalcore.

Peter: We play death thrash metal. And sometimes we got some melodic elements, we got some groovy elements. But just because you play some groovy stuff it doesn't mean you're metalcore. It was Jakob who said that, I wanna give him my full support (Jakob laughs). It is so true, I don't know why they call it 'metalcore'. But we play especially in Germany with lots of metalcore bands. We're friends with lots of them as well, that's cool, but that doesn't make us metalcore.

RF.net: Since the release of your debut album, how, if at all, has your musical style progressed?

Peter: I think the music style is pretty much the same, we got some new inputs and outputs here and there, and we got inspired by some different stuff over the years. But as I said earlier, the main thing is that we're getting better at making this music. We're better at writing songs. We don't invent a new thing, we wouldn't say that of course, we play thrash metal as it sounded before maybe. When we play you can't say: 'ah you play spacey something something metal', it's not new in that way. But we just have our own sound i think, and the most important thing for us is when we make songs, you gotta be able to hear it's hatesphere. And of course we just make riffs that we like, that are Hatesphere riffs, and not somebody elses riffs. That's what we want to do.

RF.net: So who would you say is your biggest influence?

Peter: When I started playing music my biggest influence was Def Leppard and Mötley Crue, and they've come back!

RF.net: How about you Jacob?

Jacob: Ummm... The Cult and AC/DC, Metallica, Morbid Angel, Pantera.. and also Mötley Crue

RF.net: People have called you the pioneers of the Danish metal...

Peter: That's what we are! (all laugh)

RF.net: ...and right now there is more and more metal at Roskilde. What do you think of this new development? Do you think that the Danish people are finally starting to get into metal more than before?

Jacob: There's a new young generation of young people who wants metal. Which is good. People got hooked on Limp Bizkit some years ago and they wanna try something harder and the next step is Slipknot and next step is Slayer and us and stuff like that. There's a whole new young generation who wants to have music, and that is cool!

Peter: I mean we got fans only 11 years of age, it's kind of cool to get these emails from little boys (impersonating 11-year old boy voice) 'Hey this is Mathias 11-years old, how long have you been playing guitar?' That's awesome.

RF.net: When do you think metal will come off the underground? Do you think it ever will in Denmark?

Peter: I don't know, I don't think so. We've always got trouble in Denmark to get airplay on radio and TV and all that, but we got few of those. We were told about two weeks ago there was a Slayer-special on the national radio. It was like an SMS-chain, like everyone writing 'hey there's gonna be some metal on radio at 10 o' clock this evening, you gotta check it out. Okay'. Turn on the radio, 'hey it's metal, yeah, cool!'. That doesn't happen everyday for sure. Metal will also be underground as long as it is as extreme as ours, not that it's extreme death metal but it's too extreme for the media. There's no singing parts and like 'hummmm' parts.

RF.net: Why do you think that is? I have a theory that the only reason the young people listen to pop music is because that's what's on the radio?

Peter: Yeah, but it's the old thing. We don't dare to put metal on the radio right now because people won't listen to the radio that much then.

RF.net: But if there was one Danish station that played only metal or rock only do you think people will listen to it?

Peter: Yeah of course. You know, when I turn on the radio it's always the same songs and I know the songs after a week. For example when I'm working out at some place, ah okay (humms) 'naa-naa-naa-naa-naana'...they sell lots of singles and lots of albums, they get their music videos on the Danish tv and MTV and all that, we don't get that. We're not crying about it but of course it would be cool. It would mean a lot to us.

RF.net: This is your first time playing at Roskilde. How does it feel to be playing

at a festival of this magnitude and what are your expectations for the set?

Jakob: It's great. It's something special for all of us. We're all here from Denmark and Roskilde is something that has always been the biggest event in Denmark and almost Europe as well. It's always been something very special and finally we got to play here and that's just awesome.

RF.net: Are you satisfied with the Odeon stage?

Jakob: Yeah it's the perfect size for us.

RF.net: But you are playing at the same time as Placebo. What would be your best argument for people to see Hatesphere instead of Placebo?

Jakob: I have no argument. (everyone laugh). I would like to see Placebo too! But I mean we're more metal. If you wanna listen to metal then come to us.

RF.net: What if you like both?

Jakob: I'll promise that I'll show my white ass!

Peter: I'll play the theme from Top Gun! (lots of laughter).

Jakob: Two good reasons eh? My ass and him playing Top Gun!

RF.net: "The Sickness Within" will be released in the US this fall. What are your expectations for that. America is a very difficult market to break.

Jakob: Yeah it is, very hard. But we already did lots of interviews for the release and got lots of reviews, and everyone seems to like it very much. Not that it means it will sell a lot but it's better than getting shit thrown in our faces. It's looking good but the most important thing we have to do is go there and tour as much as possible. Just tour tour tour. We tried to get there before because the last two albums were also released in the States by a different label.

Peter: It's more difficult to go there. It's easy to figure out because it's a long way financially, you gotta get the visas and all that shit. But apparently it has been hard for us to go. (Jakob makes fun of Peter's pronounciation of apparently). Apparently? That's how you pronounce it right? (laughter)

RF.net: Many webzines call your lshow the best Danish liveshow. What has been the best show in the history of the band?

Jakob: The one in Paris last year. It was just so intense and crazy.

Peter: We just played in France last Sunday on a big metal fest called Hellfest. It was amazing and people were just amazing. We've been playing fairly much in France actually the last year or something. And people like us a lot. Not that we sell lots of records down there, of course we have sold more now, but they just like us when we come to play they've been traveling to see us and they're just crazy.

Jakob: But the one in December in Paris was amazing.

Peter: Amazing. Like a little club.

Jakob: It was together with Chimaira and Dark Tranquillity

Peter: It was totally sold out. 700 people capacity club with stage only this high (demonstrates the stage height to be 20cm only) and people were almost on stage.

Jakob: People right in your face. Everybody was moshing around and it was great. Really great. Intense man.

RF.net: Many people talk about downloading these days. Where do you guys stand?

Jakob: Personally I don't download stuff illegally. When bands throw out a couple of songs for a new album and you get to listen to it or download it, I do it, and then you buy the album if you like it. I understand that people go and download this stuff illegally because if you don't have money to buy the album you really wanted to, then get it for free.

RF.net: Is that because prices are too high?

Jakob: In Germany, the price for CDs is actually very cheap. You can buy the new whatever for 12,99 Euros. That's not even 100kr. It's nothing. It's cheap for a brand new album.

RF.net: Many of the bands say when they are so small they'll never see any money on the album sales anyway. They say most of the money comes from merch and touring. Is this the case for Hatesphere as well?

Jakob: Totally. Now we just get money from our first three albums on our old label. We're starting to get money now. But that's also many years ago. But for the new album, we're never gonna see any money. Never

Peter: Because we've used so much money on tours, the record label has to get some money in, and that money is from record sales. We gotta sell lots of albums!

Jakob: So the way to earn money for the band is definitely merchandise. That's where the gold mine is. And of course go out and play and get money from that. That's the only thing to do if you wanna get some money in your pocket.

RF.net: What are your future plans after Roskilde?

Jakob: We're gonna do festivals for the rest of the summer, and we're gonna do some shows in weekends in September, and hopefully go to the UK in October and hopefully US too. Then we have a headlining tour in Europe together with Raunchy and Volbeat. Danish dynamite! Volbeat is opener and Raunchy are the headliners for three weeks in Europe in November. Then we are going to record a new album in January.

RF.net: When do you think you will release the album? How different is it going to be from "The Sickness Within"?

Jakob: I think there will be some different songs but the basic sound and feeling is Hatesphere.

RF.net: Have you written any songs yet?

Jakob: Two. One really fast one and one more mid-tempo like.

Peter: They're not finished-finished though.

RF.net: When do you think you will start debuting the new songs live?

Jakob: Maybe in the fall.

Peter: We should've done it tomorrow actually [Ed note. Sunday of Roskilde Festival] that would've been good. It gives us more money (all laugh)

Peter: Always when we do the songs I usually write most of the music. And it's not always that Heinz the other guitar player is going to learn the song before we go to the studio or play it live. To play it live all of us gotta know it and we don't know that yet. As I said, we have two songs, or one and a half songs, they're not finished yet.

RF.net: And the lyrics?

Jakob: We all write lyrics. Peter is always doing lyrics for one song. I have to do lyrics for one song. And Mikael our bassplayer did some for the last album. I actually did a lot on "The Sickness Within".

RF.net: How does it feel for you to sing the lyrics that aren't written by you?

Jakob: It's easier to memorize your own lyrics (laughs) but when the other guys write lyrics, they haven't fitted them to the music. I do that myself. That's my own kind of thing.

Peter: The dust around here is just filled with urine. They shouldn't have said that [Ed note. Roskilde Festival newspaper revealed most of the dust contains urine on the festival area] (all laugh)

Jakob: I'm thinking of it all the time. EEEEEWWWW I'm covered in urine! Please kill me!

RF.net: That was our last question. Do you have any last words for your fans?

Peter: We love you. We love you dudes! And dudettes!

Jakob: For those who don't know us, check out Hatesphere.com and check out our music and the story and everything, see pictures and read retarded stuff. Check us out as soon as you can!

Related: "The Sickness Within" review

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