For 25 years now the Swedish band Arch Enemy has been cranking out molten metal and touring the world; they are currently finishing up a stretch in the United States before they head to Japan and eventually Greece. The band consistently releases solid records and their latest disc, Khaos Legions is no exception. I was fortunate enough to catch up with Angela Gossow to discuss the tour and the record with her. Here is what she had to say.
How is the tour going?
Angela: We had a fantastic line up with us in the US – Chthonic, Skeletonwitch and Devildriver. All extremely nice people, very pro, kind and caring. Shows were good but not sold out. The economy is definitely taking its toll on people’s wallets.
We will be touring Europe, Asia, Latin and South America now and in 2012, and then take a year off at least. So we won’t be back to the US for a while. We plan to return when we got a new album out.
Check out the song “Bloodstained Cross”
What can fans expect when they pick up a copy of the new CD, Khaos Legions?
Angela: 100% Arch Enemy. Have a listen and you’ll know.
After 25 years in the business, how do you stay inspired when recording a new album?
Angela: The hunger to create something new never ceases with time. An artist should always strive for the next step in the evolution of his/her art. We don’t look back, we just march forward and we are still as excited as we were back then to compose new songs, write new lyrics, put it out there on stage, sharing it with metal fans all over the world.
Was there any different writing this CD compared to your last?
Angela: We wrote Khaos Legions over a lot longer period of time and Chris had more input in it as well. But other than that we always jam new tunes on the road or in the rehearsal room and create them together. The tools of the trade stay the same.
What lyrical themes do you cover?
Angela: Mostly atheist and anarchist themes. I am a human and animal rights activist and I fight for protecting the environment, saving this planet – this obviously influences my lyrics as well.
What does heavy metal mean to you personally?
Angela: The freedom to say and to do what I want. It is a fearless form of art and it helps me acting fearless in a world full of frightening events with an equally scared society. Fear is a powerful tool to govern people. I am un-governable. Metal plays a great part in that.
As a veteran of the scene, does it get harder or easier to tour with the live shows?
Angela: Both. We have obviously acquired a great touring routine and know-how. We know the drill and I make sure we got a nice tour bus, clean hotels and the shortest flight connections possible. But with age one tends to become more and more private and comfortable. And the body hurts more, the immune system is less tolerant and living with all the compromises gets annoying. We have been a very heavy touring band for 10 years now. Its time to slow down a bit.
What three words best describe Arch Enemy?
Angela: Pure Fucking Metal.
What’s next for Arch Enemy?
Angela: We are playing the Loudpark Festival in Japan next week, then we are off to Cyprus for a festival, then we do a tour in Scandinavia and Europe in November, December and January (2012). We will go to Latin/South America in March and Asia in April 2012. Then we will start the EU festival season in May already, do that for the rest of the year, throw in a little X-mas tour at the end of 2012 and then 2013 off to recover, find that spark again and eventually write a new Arch Enemy album.
Check out the song “Yesterday Is Dead And Gone”