Brendan Crabb of Australia’s Loud magazine recently conducted an interview with vocalist Angela Gossow of Swedish/German extreme metallers ARCH ENEMY. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Loud: The band has had a strong touring work ethic for some time now, but with CD sales in such a poor state, you’ve now got to work even harder on the road.
Angela: Yeah, I mean you sell like 250 CDs and you’re like fucking gold in some countries, in the top ten, you know? CD sales are… It’s not even really worth talking about because you don’t usually even recoup (from sales). A band now just needs to tour… I think it’s possible for bands who like grew up being more studio projects, people who weren’t as interested in the touring to still be around, but it’s very difficult to have a band these days, because you want to make a living off it.
Loud: Mike (Amott, guitar) has been quoted as saying that this album was a case of “more is more.” Can you elaborate on that?
Angela: Oh, well, if you listen to it, you’ll understand there’s a lot of shit happening. Musically, it’s quite an extreme journey. I’m not sure if anybody’s going to like it, because it goes from, I don’t know, like a very extreme part; let’s say “Cruelty Without Beauty” or “Cult of Chaos”, then it goes into this very sweet, almost Eurovision Song Contest kind of guitar part, and then in (to) a very long, drawn out solo part. You know, there’s a lot of different things in it that define ARCH ENEMY, but we kind of simplified our songwriting a little on the last couple of albums, so we stepped back from that again and this time we thought, more is more. Now it’s a lot less simple I think and there’s a lot of stuff happening. I think it’ll be very interesting when you listen to the album; musically, it’s all over the place.
Loud: You mentioned a DVD earlier and the band has recorded a wide range of covers and bonus tracks for stopgap releases in the past. What other projects are in the works for this album cycle?
Angela: We actually recorded 21 tracks for the album; we’re putting 17 tracks on the album and then we’ve got a couple of songs left over that are going to come out on an EP, I think in the spring of 2012. So we’ve got something new out there for the next round of touring. Then we plan to release a DVD, maybe at the end of 2012, then the new album in spring 2013. We are planning releases; we don’t plan on abandoning the touring and music circuit anytime soon — we’ve got plans (laughs).
Loud: I understand you do manage the band, as well as SPIRITUAL BEGGARS (Mike Amott’s ’70s-style hard rock supergroup) and correct me if I’m wrong here, CARCASS as well. How did that come about?
Angela: No, no, CARCASS is self-managed; I think Jeff Walker does all that. But that’s actually where I got the idea from; when Michael joined CARCASS again and I went, “wow, they’re having none of this baggage,” you know? They’re having none of the booking agents and no management to try and tell them what to do, and just get approached by people in different countries to do tours. They just do it totally their own way, and it was so much easier for them actually, it was so much easier. That’s where I got the idea from; but ARCH ENEMY was a lot more established in its set-up. We are a business, but we have to approach things differently. We have people in the U.K. and a publicist contract, and we have to do accounting and all that. And for many things we have the important people you need (helping us), but they’re on our payroll, so it’s the other way around for once (laughs). Nobody’s saying, “you guys have to do this tour” or anything, we just make our own decisions these days. So, it’s nice, but it’s a lot of work too.
Read more from Loud magazine.
“Yesterday Is Dead And Gone” video: