Well, this weekend turned out to be one of those amazingly creative and stimulating affairs that I just love to experience. First off a good friend decided to give me a good kick in the butt, insisted that I enjoy life at least once a month and dragged me away from the computer Friday evening for some mucho needed (and appreciated!) rest and relaxation with pizzas and taking the full plunge into the Walking Dead tv-series. I know the damn thing has been running since 2010, and pretty much everybody I know has been telling me how it’d be right up my alley, but I’m a stubborn, stubborn man that insists on doing everything in his own time. I made a mental note of checking it out “some day” early on of course, and now I’m glad I finally popped down some $$$ for the first season on DVD.
The hype was true and my friends were right to tell me to check it out. I liked how the creators managed to make such an improbable scenario so human at the same time (not too surprising though as the producer/director is Frank Darabont who directed The Green Mile.) Instead of going crazy and cover the screen with splatter (that fits good and well within the 80 minute format of a movie) they focused on the true horror of the story and made something that actually struck me as one of the sadder series I’ve seen. Like the old saying goes: in an Apocalypse it’s the survivors that damn their fate. Kick-ass show, although as someone who experienced the anti-horror hysteria of the 80s it was pretty damn surreal seeing the same concept being a hit TV show 30 years later. I’ll get into season 2 later on.
Saturday was one of those wrap-everything-up-and-move-on-to-the-next-project kinda days. I finished up all my parts for The Norliss Tapes upcoming It’s Halloween EP leaving Staffan to finish up the remaining bits for what now looks like will be a five-track record. It’s funny how he and I just keep riffing off of each other and what began as “hey, wouldn’t it be cool if we did one Halloween-themed song to give away for free?” ended up as five songs that just came from brainstorming and sending each other various sound bytes to work with. I love it and gotta admit that it’s the first time I experience this sorta thing with a collaborator. Five tracks and there’ll be a couple of surprises thrown in (vocals!) so make sure you check it out in the next couple of days.
Finished with the songs I finally got around to remix and remaster a couple of tracks from my old hardcore project Gå Vidare till Norrmalmstorg. Swedish for “Advance to Mayfair” off the Monopoly game – both a kiss-off to rich kids as well as an ironic statement to how commercial we thought we sounded - the band was more interested in just pummeling an audience than setting new land speed records that is so common (and clichéd) in the genre, especially these postmodern days. Taking our inspiration from early Black Flag we mixed it with Motorhead and Black Sabbath in order to create a sound that was truly uncompromising – loud and heavy with a pure adrenalin delivery.
One session saw us recording a total of 14 songs in one day with a guy that had the typical less-than-cooperative Swedish engineer attitude of “I don’t know what you’re trying to achieve, I don’t understand what you’re trying to achive, so I’m just gonna be arrogant all day and ignore every request you might have – or at least question it. But I do expect to get paid when it’s finished of course.” The session tapes remained unmixed and unreleased with the exception of a feeble attempt on my part of trying to remaster an existing rough mix about two years ago (with less than satisfactory results). Anyway, early Sunday morning I finally had the opportunity to sit down on my own and just unleash the punch-in-the-gut oomph I always knew this band had. It took roughly 12 hours of work, but the seven-track EP Blästrad (Swedish slang for being extremely drunk somewhat equivalent of “hammered”) is available via the band’s Bandcamp here. All members have heard it and are really happy with the results (me included), so how about a sample track: