GRAND MAGUS Frontman: "We Are No Frills And Our Music Is Very Simple"

January 26, 2014, 3 years ago

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David E. Gehlke of Dead Rhetoric recently conducted an interview with GRAND MAGUS vocalist/guitarist Janne "JB" Christoffersson. A few excerpts from the chat follow below:

On the band's basic, classic metal sound:

“We are very no frills and our music is very simple. That is the most difficult thing to do really well. I mean, a band like AC/DC might appear to do very simple stuff, but it’s an illusion that becomes very obvious if you hear other bands trying to do covers of their songs. They are virtuosos of simplicity, every beat, every note counts and they have the groove that makes it work. Pretty much any band can flail around with a lot of distorted guitars and weird time changes and a lot of fast drumming. But try and clean that up and play a straight 4/4 beat and they will sound like shit. What I’m trying to say is that we have very simple ingredients and we record things in an extremely basic way, but it takes understanding of this type of music to give it that extra edge.”

On the album title, Triumph And Power:

“I think it pretty much speaks for itself. We want to project the feeling of triumph and power to the listener with our music. That’s the feeling I got from the great metal bands I grew up with. It also signifies the power and ultimate triumph of nature. No matter how much we try and control and destroy nature, we have to realize that we destroy our own lives and that we can never ‘win’ against nature, we should be humble to its awesome beauty and power. And enjoy it and respect it.”

On changing their name from "SMACK," then signing to Lee Dorrian's Rise Above Records in the early 00's:

“We had actually changed the name before we were signed, luckily. It was pretty obvious that we needed a name that suited the music and Smack was definitely not that name. Regarding getting signed: I think we couldn’t really believe our luck and how big of deal it really was. I mean, CATHEDRAL was a huge influence for us back then and to be signed by Lee’s label and an English label in itself was mind-blowing, really.

“But I guess we just carried on and did what we were supposed to. We’ve always been like that; we just do what we do without reflecting too much on it. Of course it helped us immensely and we got to know so many great bands and people through the fact that we suddenly were in London rather than in Stockholm. We started touring proper tours on night liners and became quite professional quite quickly. I’ll always be grateful to Lee for that.”

To read the entire interview, click here.

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