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interview by: Jez Andrews

Arch Enemy are a band from whom I'd heard little since their 1999 Burning Bridges album. The odd MP3 sample, demonstrating the vocal talents of Angela Gossow, and that was about it. However, when I at last heard a few tracks from the new Wages of Sin CD at a decent volume, I was left speechless. It was truly incredible, the metal perfection that blasted forth from the speakers. I had to get my hands on a copy of this beast. Meanwhile, I talked things over with drummer Daniel Erlandsson. The past, the present, the future...

Maelstrom: Did you know a lot of people who listened to metal when you were growing up?

Daniel Erlandsson: Yes, I had my brother around (Adrian Erlandsson, Cradle Of Filth drummer) and he introduced me to metal, but none of my friends were really into metal.

Maelstrom: Who were the first band you saw live?

Daniel Erlandsson: Actually, that was At The Gates when I was 14, in Gothenburg.

Maelstrom: Who was the drummer who inspired you to start?

Daniel Erlandsson: I would give credit to my brother for that, because he was the one who had a drum kit in our house. Other drummers... I guess Clive Burr.

Maelstrom: How did you meet the rest of Arch Enemy?

Daniel Erlandsson: Through a record label in Sweden. This guy from the label got us together.

Maelstrom: Do you think there was some Carcass influence in the music at the beginning?

Daniel Erlandsson: Oh definitely, especially from Michael.

Maelstrom: What is your favourite Arch Enemy song?

Daniel Erlandsson: Definitely something from the new album. "Behind The Smile"
is excellent.

Maelstrom: How long did the writing take for the Wages of Sin album?

Daniel Erlandsson: About half a year, Michael and Chris writing the riffs and generally arranging the songs.

Maelstrom: What was it like recording with Andy Sneap?

Daniel Erlandsson: Actually, he just mixed the album. We recorded it and went over to England, stayed in Nottingham for about a week while he mixed it. It sounded great.

Maelstrom: Do you enjoy working with the rest of the band?

Daniel Erlandsson: Yeah.

Maelstrom: Are there any bands that you would especially like to go on tour with?

Daniel Erlandsson: Well, y'know, as big as possible. Pantera, Slayer, someone like that.

Maelstrom: What's your favourite Arch Enemy tour story?

Daniel Erlandsson: Tour story? Well, there's a lot to choose from. Probably our last Japan tour. That was my favourite. [Daniel didn't seem to have any amusing anecdotes from that tour to share with Maelstrom, but such is life.]

Maelstrom: How do you feel about Arch Enemy's success in Japan?

Daniel Erlandsson: I feel really good about it. The touring over there has been great. Things have been more quiet over here, but we're hoping to change that.

Maelstrom: I remember seeing you on tour with Cradle of Filth in London in 1999, but do you have any plans to come back to the UK at all?

Daniel Erlandsson: There are plans, but nothing written in stone.

Maelstrom: Have you had any strange gifts from fans in the past?

Daniel Erlandsson: Strange gifts? Not really, just some weird t-shirts [laughs].

Maelstrom: How would you describe your perfect night out?

Daniel Erlandsson: Well, to start, I'd have to have a Jack and Coke of course. Then basically, it would have to be just good music, good friends, good women, y'know?

Maelstrom: What's the best bar you've found while you've been out on tour?

Daniel Erlandsson: Well, we were in New York a couple of nights ago, in a bar called Severn Beach. That was really good.

Maelstrom: What was the last album you bought?

Daniel Erlandsson: Last album I bought was Rammstein. It's a great album.

Maelstrom: Are there any plans to release an Arch Enemy live video?

Daniel Erlandsson: We'll be filming some of the shows on this tour, so hopefully...

Maelstrom: Do you stay in touch with your family when you're on the road with the band?

Daniel Erlandsson: Yeah, I try to. I speak a lot with my brother.

Maelstrom: Is there anything you take on tour that you can't live without?

Daniel Erlandsson: I think that would be my Swedish rolling tobacco [laughs]. I can't live without that.

Maelstrom: If you could see anyone suffer right now, who would it be?

Daniel Erlandsson: Wow. I don't know if I could name any names...Bin Laden maybe.

Maelstrom: What was your response to the events on September 11th?

Daniel Erlandsson: Oh, I couldn't believe it was true when I saw it. I was really shocked.

Maelstrom: What are your thoughts on the death of Chuck Schuldiner?

Daniel Erlandsson: Tragic. I didn't expect it to happen like that.

Maelstrom: Are there any new bands that you would recommend to Maelstrom readers?

Daniel Erlandsson: There's a band from where I come from called Kromlich. They're worth checking out.

Maelstrom: What do you think of the extreme metal scene of today?

Daniel Erlandsson: It's very good. There seems to have been a kind of revival of extreme metal now.

Maelstrom: Do you think there's something about Arch Enemy's music that's particularly Swedish in nature, with the whole Swedish death metal scene?

Daniel Erlandsson: That would be the melodies and riffs. We recorded all our albums in Gothenburg, with a very Gothenburg sound.

Maelstrom: Are there any summer festivals around Europe that you're either scheduled or hoping to play?

Daniel Erlandsson: We're not scheduled to play any, but we'd like to play at one. Maybe Dynamo or somewhere.

Maelstrom: What is the most diverse festival bill you've appeared on?

Daniel Erlandsson: We haven't played too many festivals actually, but Dynamo is pretty diverse. You find a lot of different genres there.

Maelstrom: What kind of dream bill would you like to play on with Arch Enemy?

Daniel Erlandsson: Of bands that are around at the moment, probably just the biggest bands possible.

Maelstrom: Have you taken a lot of influence for Arch Enemy from old school metal?

Daniel Erlandsson: Yeah. I listen to more old records than new.

Maelstrom: Have you heard about any bands who have been directly inspired by Arch Enemy?

Daniel Erlandsson: I guess I've read a few reviews of bands that have been compared to us.

Maelstrom: What's the strangest rumour you've heard about the band?

Daniel Erlandsson: Well, lately there was a rumour that we were going to be playing in Mexico, but no one told us about it.

Maelstrom: I heard something about Angela damaging her voice last year. What happened?

Daniel Erlandsson: She's okay now. It started off as a sore throat, but she had nodules on her vocal chords. We had to cancel some of the tour.

Maelstrom: Name three essential metal albums.

Daniel Erlandsson: Volume 4 by Black Sabbath, Piece of Mind by Iron Maiden, and Reign in Blood by Slayer.

Maelstrom: Well, thanks for talking to us, and good luck with the show in Hollywood tomorrow night.

Daniel Erlandsson: Thanks.



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