The legendary Unleashed will release their new album, “Odalheim”, in Europe on April 20th and April 24th here in the States via Nuclear Blast Records. The concept of the new record was revealed in the previous statement released by the band: “Warriors!!! The new Unleashed album is the story about the future of Yggdrasil and those who survive Ragnarök. It is the story of the Midgard Warriors who carry on the Viking tradition into the new world Odalheim, (which is also the name of the new album).”
I recently got to send some questions to the Unleashed front man, Johnny Hedlund, about the new record, touring, the metal scene and more! Check it out below and go pick up the new CD in April! Support the legends!
You guys will be releasing “Odalheim” next month and it’s definitely one of the most anticipated records of year for all metal fans. How excited are you for fans to finally get to hear the new material after all of the hard work you put into it?
We are off course very eager to hear what our Warriors think of the new album. It will be out the 20th of April so soonish then!
“Odalheim” will be the band’s eleventh studio album to date. Did you guys to try anything new or different on this record that might surprise fans?
We have developed our music and production more in the detail of things so to speak. I hear some already say this album has a little more black metal in it than the previous one, but we always keep to the roots. So no major changes, only development and over all progress, especially when it comes to the production in which I think Fredrik did an amazing job.
Being the eleventh album, do you guys still feel like you have anything to prove?
Not really. We are what we are and we have done this since 1989. Those who like us know what to expect and those who don’t need not bother. We don’t play for the whole world. However, it is important to always aim for the best and stay hungry. Every album needs to be an improvement from the previous one. That’s how we work.
One thing I’ve always respected about Unleashed is that there is always a lot of thought behind the lyrics. Whether it be a mythological tale or something else, you guys really put more attention on lyrics than most death metal bands. Do you feel that’s a lost art in the metal scene today?
Thank you very much! Well I can’t speak for others but I sure spend some serious time doing the lyrics, and this story line for “Odalheim” is something I have been working on for almost 7 years now so it sure did take some time.
The first single you released from the record was “The Rise Of The Maya Warriors.” Why did you want that song to be the first that fans heard from the CD?
Our record company chose this one in cooperation with management. Personally I don’t mind having any of the songs as a first release. I don’t have a favorite to get promoted in a certain stage of things, so I let the company decide this.
Do you have any plans for any videos from the record?
I think this also has to be a decision for the record company. If they have the means to a budget we are happy to do it, but I heard nothing about that so far. I am guessing it is more Youtube style these days.
You have several European shows lineup up in the summer, but every fan in the States is wanting to know when we will see the return of Unleashed on tour here again?
I know, we need to get our shit together. It is always a question of time frame and a reasonable offer from a promoter. Last time around that just didn’t go our way.
You have been involved in metal since 1989 and you’ve seen the scene change drastically from when you started. A lot of people talk down about the music world today, due to illegal downloading, but what would you say is the biggest positive about the scene today?
I am not so sure people changed that much. Formats and such have changed a lot though because of the internet. But I traded demo tapes and LP’s with my friends even before I was in a band so that wasn’t so far from “downloading” if you compare the ages here. The biggest change is the ability to reach people and off course the fact that there are millions of bands today. Way back in the eighties you could almost count the number of bands.
Do you feel the scene is better today or back in 1989?
Way better today. We have gotten to where we said we’d get. We now play for thousands of people on a festival and on tours. In the late eighties in the demo tape trading days, we played for no one. So it wasn’t better back then…we were just looking better haha.
Anything left you want to say to Unleashed fans?
Thanks for the interview and hold high the Hammer of Thor! Unleashed is back!