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  INTERVIEW WITH SAVN

Roger Berzerk Fauske

Roger Berzerk Fauske

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MetalTalk's Roger Fauske got together with Carmen from Norwegian band SAVN (album review is already on MetalTalk) about the band, their plans and generally putting the music world to rights.

RF: Musically, it is quite a departure from previous bands and maybe not what people are used to from the band members. Was the direction pre planned or was it more a case of the music taking you there? What influenced you all to go in this direction?

Carmen: Hi Roger, great question! I totally agree with you, SAVN is quite different from The Sins of Thy Beloved and Midnattsol. When I became a regular member of the band and the song writing process together started, the musical direction felt very natural I have to say. We never wanted to be a copy of anyone, and nothing was pre-planned or anything.

"Much more we inspired each other while writing songs and got inspiration to something unique that we had never created before. It has never been so easy writing songs, it was this special flow over us, and we felt very creative. We never stopped up and thought: 'No wait, this is the wrong direction'."

Article continues below...

 
 


RF: With the song structure, most people will notice the presence of the fiddles where a lot of bands would have the customary guitar solo. It does work very well, but was it a vision from the beginning to have the fiddles so heavily involved?

Carmen: It became clear pretty soon that the fiddles would play a big role in our music, we all thought it fit so perfectly into our songs. I wouldn't call it vision, but song by song we thought: 'here a fiddle should come!', and we felt that it would lack something huge without it.

RF: The music, and particularly the rock scene in Norway, is probably stronger and more varied than it has ever been. Of course Norway is still unfortunately associated musically with the burning churches era but that is slowly changing (it gained notoriety abroad so it is understandable... Jahn Teigen never quite had the same impact!). The irony though is a lot of the bands make it bigger elsewhere as Norway has a tendency to go for the more pop end of the market on occasion. Is that something you can see changing in the future and does it make life as a touring band a little more complicated? How do you see the state of Norwegian music?

Carmen: The funny thing about Norway's rock scene is that we have loads of bands compared to the people living here, but at the same time there are not so many people actually supporting the bands and buying the albums that are made! Perhaps you could compare it with an export article hehe ;) I could be wrong, but this is my impression at least. I know sooo many metal bands only in my county and some of them are well-known abroad, but at home they don't get the same attention. SAVN has got such overwhelming good feedback abroad (including UK – thank you so much!!), but some of the worst reviews come from Scandinavia, can you believe it hehe? Like you mention, touring includes a lot of travelling and that costs of course. I don't know what the future will bring, but I still have the hope that the Vikings here around open up their eyes and ears for SAVN and other rock and metal bands, that would mean a lot to us!

RF: Yes, the market there does seem a little slow, apart from the more extreme metal historically. As you say there are some very good Norwegian bands, the likes of Audrey Horne from the wonderful city of Bergen, and they have the same issues in their home country. Is the media at fault with the lack of publicity and airtime?

Carmen: Yes, you have a good point there! When it comes to Norway or Scandinavia in general, there are not that many media channels for the metal bands that are not that hard or extreme after my impression. And without media exposure, your music will not be shown to so many people. It's also very difficult to get your hands on CDs in shops here, they almost don't sell CDs anymore and only order a limited number of metal albums. I hope something changes and that the scene get more open-minded to musicians not following trends!

RF: You touched on the songwriting in the bio, but what is the actual process behind it and is it a democratic process?

Carmen: Yes, a very democratic one, which I think is amazing! We are good friends and feel that we can say whatever we want to. Stig started the song writing process some years ago with all his basic guitar ideas, so when I got involved, some songs were already made by him and Anders. I was allowed to make the changes I wanted though, and we started rewriting every song and wrote new ones. We made ideas on our own, and when we met, we worked with developing the ideas together. I felt free to let the creativity flow in every way, and I think that influenced the result. Some of the melodies on the album are the best I've ever made after my opinion. But I could never have done it without the great inspiration from the other two!

RF: Being mischievous... what is your opinion on the music industry today, and how it functions to help the artist and the music (or doesn't!).

Carmen: The music business has changed a lot during the years and also since I stepped into it in the beginning of 2000. I think today it's much more difficult for musicians to survive and the way to success is harder. Now the scene explodes with bands and artists who compete about getting known. The digital world makes it harder to sell real records as well, which again affects the label and everyone involved, which again affects the band. I get the sad impression that money is the most important thing in many cases, and not the music itself.

It's not so much about making or supporting the music you believe in and want to share with other people any more, it's about earning the most money and getting the most attention. But at the same time, I have to say that SAVN has got to know lots of fantastic people who does everything they can to support us, we are actually overwhelmed over the great response and help we are offered. We wouldn't have come so far without the amazing support, we are so grateful for it! THANX TO ALL OF YOU IN THIS PLACE!! (including you and MetalTalk!)

RF: It is definitely about the money not the music. I know this may be an unpopular thought, but I think some of the problem is it is almost too easy for people to record things nowadays – so the market is swamped with mediocre music, almost becoming the norm. Do you have any opinions on that?

Carmen: Yes I agree with you, you have a good point there. With the help of the technological development, it's really not hard to record anything. On one hand it's positive that good bands and artists have more possibilities than earlier to show the world their music. But on the other hand, when the market is so overloaded, the chances for these musicians to actually get heard are not that big after how I see it.

RF: Back to the album - we know about the guitar, keyboards, vocals and fiddles but how were the drum tracks laid down?

Carmen: The great drummer Felix Born recorded it in studio, we are so satisfied with his work! He got some freedom to change some beats here and there, but Stig wrote most of the drum tracks. They were together in studio and cooperated very well.

RF: You sing one song in Norwegian - is that something you would like to do more of or is there always the worry that the language is not widely enough known for a mass market?

Carmen: Yes absolutely, I really like singing in my mother tongue. What I sing feels even more close to me and I enjoy the variation by writing in another language than English. Still, it's not a must for me on every album, it has to come naturally and fit to the atmosphere of the music, that's the most important thing. It felt very natural to sing in Norwegian in 'Lengselens Hånd', I just started singing with Norwegian words. Very often it happens on songs with this Nordic folk feeling, and that was the case here as well.

The first time I released a Norwegian song (on Midnattsol's first album 'Where Twilight Dwells') I was a bit worried that people would think that it sounded weird, and that it wouldn't make an affect on people, but the crazy thing was that I was overloaded with feedback that the fans wanted more. Some asked for a whole Norwegian album, some started learning Norwegian and some have visited and moved to Norway as well! So I never worried about that anymore hehe ;) When people who don't understand the language tell me that 'Lengselens Hånd' is the most beautiful song on SAVN's album and that it goes straight to their hearts, it hits me that music can be really magical.

RF: What live plans do you have at the moment?

Carmen: We would love to tour in the UK and other parts of the world and meet our fantastic fans face to face, but first we have to wait and see how the fans like our new album. The reviews and feedback have been awesome so far, so it looks promising! We have already found some live musicians and are planning the live-band SAVN. We want to have as much live and authentic as we can, we are not big fans of playback. But of course, to hire a whole string orchestra for each concert would be a bit difficult ;) We let you know as soon as we have more info, stay tuned on our homepage www.savn-offical.com and our FB-site! Hope to meet you one day on the road!

RF: So it sounds like SAVN is a long term plan, rather than one project. Will you and the other members still go back to the music you were more known for or can you see it as a more permanent departure?

Carmen: Yes you're right, SAVN is there to stay! We have already started to write new songs and are very excited to see where this musical journey will bring us. I'm still a member of Midnattsol, nothing has changed there, but Stig and Anders are no longer members of TSOTB. Like I mentioned earlier, the musical direction of SAVN came very naturally, and we feel that we can identify with the music 100%. It's important for us to able to develop as musicians as well, so I guess there are few chances that we will play music comparable 1 to 1 with TSOTB. But on the other side, you never know what the future brings ;)

RF: Thank you, Carmen!

Carmen: Thanx to YOU Roger, it was an honor for me! Wish you good luck with everything!


4.6.14





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linkin park LINKIN PARK PLAY TWO NIGHTS AT LONDON'S 02 ARENA IN NOVEMBER
Following their exhilarating headline sets at the European summer festivals, Linkin Park return for their own headline tour in November...

evil scraecrow AT LAST! A NEW VIDEO FROM EVIL SCARECROW
"It's an emotional thing for us to watch back. We hope that translates to everyone that watches it too!"

sabctuary SANCTUARY POSTS LYRIC VIDEO FOR 'EXITIUM (ANTHEM OF THE LIVING)'
Sanctuary continue that legacy that they started decades ago, delivering yet another fresh take on "classic-sounding" Metal...

electric mary ELECTRIC MARY ANNOUNCE MINI ALBUM AND UK TOUR
Australian five piece Electric Mary are back to spread Rock n' Roll's genuine flavour to Europe...

accept ACCEPT REVEAL LIVE CLIP OF 'PANDEMIC' FILMED IN FRONT OF 750,000 PEOPLE AT WOODSTOCK FESTIVAL 2014
UK fans can catch the band live at The Forum in London on the 27th November 2014...

hornet HORNET ANNOUNCE NEW EP AND SINGLE
"We really wanted to just expand the sound we already had by incorporating more of our influences to make our sound more modern and diverse..."

jimmy barnes JIMMY BARNES ANNOUNCES NEW 30th ANNIVERSARY ALBUM 'HINDSIGHT'
2014 marks the 30th anniversary of Jimmy Barnes' debut as Scottish born Australian rock singer-songwriter...

dragonforce DRAGONFORCE SUPPORTS ANNOUNCED FOR FORTHCOMING TOUR
London based hard rockers Neonfly will support in the UK mainland, with Northern Irish Metalheads Conjuring Fate doing the honours at the Belfast and Dublin shows...

within temptation WITHIN TEMPTATION TO HEADLINE BLOODSTOCK 2015
Within Temptation appear as a UK exclusive. Prog Metal titans Opeth will also appear on the bill...

emigrate EMIGRATE CONFIRM NEW ALBUM FOR UK RELEASE VIA SPINEFARM RECORDS
'Silent So Long' is the second album from the band formed by Rammstein's Richard Kruspe...

highway to hell WINNERS OF HIGHWAY TO HELL 5 ANNOUNCED
Texas Flood are the overall winners from an outstanding field, winning a contract and an appearance at Hard Rock Hell...

grim reaper THE LEGENDARY GRIM REAPER RETURN TO LONDON
Get down to the Boston Music Room on 27th September for Grim Reaper with Amulet and Dark Forest...

quireboys THE QUIREBOYS ANNOUNCE UK TOUR FOR NOVEMBER 2014
The 30th anniversary celebrations continue with a world tour including a trip to North America and a nine date UK leg...

eric martin MR. BIG SINGER ANNOUNCES UK SOLO ACOUSTIC TOUR
Eric Martin will play nine unplugged dates in December 2014 with a mix of solo and Mr Big material...

absolva ABSOLVA ANNOUNCE NEW BASSIST
British classic Metallers Absolva are delighted to announce the appointment of new bassist Karl Schramm...

manowar MANOWAR ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM PLANS AND UPDATED TOURING SCHEDULE
Manowar will headline Loud Park Festival in Tokyo on October 18th 2014 and will then resume the 'Kings Of Metal MMXIV' World Tour...

skyscraper SKYSCRAPER RELEASE VIDEO FOR 'MONDAY MORNING'
This dynamic band has been taking critics by storm with their inimitable brand of melodic hard rock...

the more i see THE MORE I SEE ANNOUNCE OCT/NOV TOUR WITH SAVAGE MESSIAH AND BULL RIFF STAMPEDE
Featuring world renowned guitarist Gizz Butt, the band always deliver incredible live shows that combine passion, energy and breathtaking musicianship...

devin townsend DEVIN TOWNSEND REVEALS Z DETAILS AND ANNOUNCES SPECIAL ROYAL ALBERT HALL PERFORMANCE
Devin Townsend is extremely pleased to announce the release of long-awaited new double-album...

blastfest AT THE GATES, DARK FUNERAL, ROTTING CHRIST AND MORE ANNOUNCED FOR BLASTFEST 2015
Bergen, Norway, former home of the legendary Hole In The Sky Festival and considered thee black metal capital of the world...

exodus EXODUS REVEAL SPECIAL GUESTS ON NEW ALBUM 'BLOOD IN, BLOOD OUT'
Bay Area thrash Metal provocateurs Exodus proudly announce the special guests appearing on their latest showcase of unrefined rage...

panzer PANZER STREAMING LYRIC VIDEO FOR 'THE LAST MAN ON EARTH'
Brazilian thrash/stoner act Panzer have just released a new lyric video on for the second track of the album 'Honor'...

bush BUSH ANNOUNCE OCTOBER 20th RELEASE FOR 'MAN ON THE RUN'
Multi-platinum alt-rock band Bush have announced an October 20th release date for their highly anticipated new album...

absolva ABSOLVA RELEASE VIDEO FOR 'LIVE FOR THE FIGHT'
The video features Luke Appleton (Iced Earth) who is playing bass for the band on the forthcoming European Tour...

giants of rock GIANTS OF ROCK FESTIVAL: FIRST BANDS ANNOUNCED
The reformed Family and pomp rockers Magnum will headline the event...

weapon uk ESTRELLA TO SUPPORT GILBY CLARKE ON TOUR AND ANNOUNCE A NEW SINGLE
The band are currently gearing up for a thirteen date trek with Clarke that includes dates in Wakefield, London and Edinburgh...

weapon uk WEAPON UK ANNOUNCE TOUR DATES FOR NOVEMBER
Weapon UK have tour dates confirmed in support of their critically acclaimed album 'Rising From The Ashes'...

amulet AMULET DEBUT ALBUM 'THE FIRST' RELEASED IN SEPTEMBER: FIRST TRACK NOW ONLINE
The album track 'Mark Of Evil' has just been uploaded to Soundcloud. Raise your fists and bang your heads on this one...

michael schenker MICHAEL SCHENKER'S GUITARS STOLEN FROM GERMAN RECORDING STUDIO
German police are examining evidence and the studio for fingerprints and DNA evidence to help catch the criminals...

jimi jamison JIMI JAMISON OF SURVIVOR PASSES AWAY AGED 63
Jimi Jamison, lead singer of Survivor, very sadly passed away on Sunday night...

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