Here is interview with Anders Biazzi, guitarist for two killer Swedish death metal bands.
JUST BEFORE DAWN
Hi Anders! How are you? Hope you’re ready for some serious questioning! But first I wanna start with something I am just curious about… Your real surname is Hansson, but for some time you’re just Anders Biazzi. Why this change? Are you hiding from police or mafia hehe?
Hi man, I’m great! Bring it on! I can tell you this man; my real surname is Biazzi nowadays hahaha. I’ve got married and changed it from Hansson to Biazzi, now I’m the only Anders whit that surname! And yes I’m hiding from the Mafia also.
Let me first ask you about the band you formed quite recently called Just Before Dawn. I am guessing that this is more like your own band, for which you wrote the music, am I right? What were the reasons for forming this project, especially since you’re quite active with Blood Mortized? What motivated / pushed you into this?
I started to write the first song “Raped Soil” after I’ve seen a live video from Hypocrisy with the songs “Apocalypse” and “The Fourth Dimension”, posted on Facebook by Jocke Ringdal (Paganizer). Damn heavy shit and I always wanted to do a project like that and a kind of Bolt Throwerish! After that I called up Rogga (Pagainzer) and asked him if he would like to growl on some songs, he said yes but “…only if I can sing in Swedish…”, he said. I came up with the name and Rogga came up with the idea to bring in some more singers! We were going with five songs first, but I was on a riffing spree at the time so I did three more. We got a contract with Chaos Records for the eight track CD and vinyl!
Just Before Dawn is a band, where you play with your old buddy from Pathalog, Gustav Myrin. It almost feels like a reunion thing hehe. How long have you known him already? Was it you who also invited him to join Blood Mortized? And is Jonas Lindblood a full time member now? I must say that I love his Puteraeon!
I’ve known Gustav since the beginning of the 90’s, when we started the band Mortus! We never did any demos with that band, only rehearsal tapes that are lying dormant in Gustav’s basement at the time! We later on started the band Pathalog! We did go separate ways after two years, when I joined Scum / Amon Amarth in 1992 and Gustav joined some various Rock Bands (Apes IQ). And in the year 2010 I asked him if he would like to join Blood Mortized and later on I also asked him if he wants to do some stuff on the Just Before Dawn album, like solos and growls, so yes - a kind of reunion. And no; Jonas Linblood is not a full member in Just Before Dawn. I’m the only one. I recruit new guys every time.
The idea of having different vocalists for every song on the album is not new, if we think of such bands as Necronaut or Megascavenger. But tell me what criteria did you have when picking up the growlers for your album? Did you have certain vocalists in your mind already when writing the songs? And are there any, who you wanted to have but it didn’t work out?
The thing is like this: the guys that are growling on the first album are friends of mine, the only one I really did not know was Tony Freed. Some of the songs I had made I had certain vocals in mind like Jonas, he did fit to his song perfectly. And no - all guys I asked really loved to do it, no one turned it down.
Unlike Necronaut and Megascavenger, who I mentioned above, you picked up some lesser known vocalists. OK., we all know and like Rogga, Jonas is also well known now. But such Dennis Johansson is completely unknown, also Arthuro Vargas is less known… Not many will also know Tony’s Godhate / Throneaeon. The question is why them then? From the marketing point of view, it would be better to choose some well known and characteristic vocalists, so their name would attract the fans more, don’t you think?
As I said above I did bring in some friends and did not have any marketing stuff in my head, only cool to make some great music for you guys. I think it turned out great anyways, the first album does sell pretty good hahaha.
Of corpse it turned out great, I cannot deny this! And to have Rick Rozz, playing a solo on one song… what does that mean to you? All in all, he’s been a Death / Mantas / Massacre member and played death metal as early as it is only possible. I’m not into Massacre’s come back album at all, but I suppose it is cool to have someone like him playing a solo on your album, don’t you think?
Yes, Rick is a great guy to have on the album, he’s also playing on the Blood Mortized’s “The Key to a Black Heart” album! That’s why I asked him to join the Just Before Dawn crowd also, he was honoured, he said! A really down to earth kind a guy.
Just like bands such as Bolt Thrower, Hail of Bullets or Decaying, the IIWW is the main lyrical theme for Just Before Dawn. And being interested in it, I like the idea a lot. Can you tell me something more about it? Who chosen this to be a concept for the band? Also, reading the lyrics I feel like they’re not really telling some certain stories from the history – like Hail of Bullets does – but are rather briefly saying about things such as warmachines (submarines, tanks), about nuclear weapons or just death in war in general.
It was my idea to bring in the war theme, I did think the music sounded like tanks on a battlefield. So I asked Rogga to write some war lyrics. And no, the lyrics are not historic. They’re only about the destruction that the war was, the historical chapter is coming on the new JBD!
Different question now… but imagine that WWII has ended differently. Blitzkrieg was a success, Russia has surrendered and the Allies decided to sign a pact with the Reich. Let’s use our imagination and think how would our world be like after the war? Have you seen “Fatherland” movie with Rutger Hauer?
I don’t really know how the world would look today if it had turn out like that, but it sure would have suck I think. And I do not remember much from “Fatherland”.
The lyrics for two songs written by Rogga, are in Swedish; they’re called “Precis innan gryningen” and “Slagfält efter slagfält”. What are they about?
“Precis innan Gryningen” (Just Before Dawn) is about a guy that’s waking up in a trench crawling up from it and meeting his destiny on a battlefield just before dawn! “Slagfält efter slagfält” (Battlefield after battlefield) is about the will to survive on a battlefield. The lyrics on those two are pretty bloody hahaha.
I must say that what I especially like about Just Before Dawn are those slow, almost kind of doomy parts, with some truly incredible melodic riffs or leads… like in “Raped Soil”.
Yes, that track turned out damn great with the heaviness and the melodic riffing and Jonas great solo at the end! More of this great stuff on the new Just Before Dawn album! That’s my still, use the right kind of tones in the riffs!
And speaking of the new album… I did hope that Just before Dawn is not just one time project, but a band you’ll continue with. So, I was very happy to read about “The Aftermath”!! Give me some more details on this upcoming album. When will it released, who will sing and play on it and finally what will be the lyrical concept of it?
The new album is going to be a blast, my best work to date! We are still on the war theme and are always going to be, have been working with 24 great musicians on this one! Started to work on this one directly after we have finished with the new Blood Mortized album. We did finish then new Just Before Dawn like one week ago! So it takes time when you work whit so many guys! Benny Moberg (Malfeitor) did a hell of a job mixing and mastering this beast of war! He also did all the artwork and layout on the album! Here’re some names of guys that are going to growl and solo on the new album: Dave Ingram (Benediction / Bolt Thrower), Jonas Stålhammar (God Macabre), Gustav Myrin (Blood Mortized), Jonas Lindblood (Putereaon), Johan Jansson (Interment), Marc Grewe (Morgoth), Anders Strokirk (Necrophobic), Rick Rozz (Massacre), Ralf Hauber (Revel in Flesh), Thomas Wouters (Bodyfarm), David Nilsson (Feral), Ronnie Björnström (Aeon), Nick Jones (Crepitus), Rogga Johansson (Paganizer), Jonny Petterson (Syn:drom), Håkan Stuvemark (Wombbath), Dennis Håka Johansson (Headstoned), Mathias Lodmalm (Cemetery), Teddy Möller (FKU), Jocke Mikiver (Tormetion), Mathias Borgh (Crypt of Kerberos, Blood Mortized), Dennis Blomberg (Paganizer), Brynjar Helgetun (Liklukt, Ribspreader, Crypticus)… The release is going to be in May / June this year! It’s going to be two editions released with two different cover artworks and one bonus track on each edition! There is also going to be a free download track out there soon, a teaser of things to come so to speak! So keep your eyes open for the upcoming war mayhem!
Damn, that list of the session guys is impressive as hell! And I already had a sneak listen of the album and I’m sure it will turn out excellent!
Meanwhile Blood Mortized has released their third album! I loved the two previous CDs, as well as the brilliant “Bestial” cassette, so I was really expecting it. And obviously “The Demon The Angel The Disease” does not disappoint. It is exactly what I expected to be… Classic, old styled groovy aggressive death metal! I wonder, when you compose such albums, do you care about being original, or just want to play what you feel passionate about, what you feel is killer, without giving a shit about originality? And in that matter, would you say that Blood Mortized has – after three albums – its own identity, something characteristic and recognisable?
Me and Gustav wrote the music as always and did our best giving no shit about any originality! Originality is only a wet dream in the death meal business hahaha. 1/5 percent out of 100 is original and yes you hear when Blood Mortized is spinning in your sound system! I write in a certain way and Gustav writes in a certain way, combining them together you get “The Demon The Angel the Disease”!
How did the whole composing process of “The Demon The Angel The Disease” look like? Is it usually a team work or rather it’s just one of you, who’s responsible for the writing of music? Did the composing of “The Demon The Angel The Disease” go smoothly? I wonder what was the biggest challenge for you when writing / recording this album?
Both me and Gustav are doing the writing on this album. We did six tracks each and we did write them by ourselves, only a small stuff we did together on each other’s tracks. The writing was no problem and the recording went smooth. Me and Gustav have recorded all guitars and bass at my place, Parkkila recorded his vocals at his place and Brynjar recorded the drums at his place. Then we sent the recordings to Linus studio and he did an hell of a job on it!
If I can describe “The Demon The Angel The Disease” in one sentence, then it would be nothing new, but just a classic, groovy Swedish death metal. No more, no less and no bullshit! This album is powerful, is filled with a lot of energy and passion, and more so, it has killer riffs, so this is why I love it. What do you think about it?
I think it’s a great mixture of groove, doom and grind and classic death metal with killer riffs - all stuff a metal head need from a death metal album! Hahahahaha!!!!
So, tell me… is this guy, who’s been presented to us on the covers of your last two alums is sort of creepy, horror version of Lemmie hehe? I’m guessing he’ll be returning with every new release of Blood Mortized, am I right here?
Yes, it’s Lemmy alright and we will see if he returns once more in the future.
I must say that I am not sure whether the choice of Chaos Records, instead of FDA Rekotz was a good decision. All in all, FDA is brilliant with their old school death metal roster and have quite good distribution here in Europe. And I am not sure whether I can say the same about Chaos (for instance I haven’t seen both Just Before Dawn and Blood Mortized available anywhere here in Poland yet!). So, why this decision?
It’s all about the money! FDA code not give us any money for “The Demon The Angel the Disease” album, Chaos did, so if we had chosen FDA then the album would not sound this way! So we walked with Chaos instead.
Exotic record labels are nothing new for you… The debut CD was released by Singaporean label, which does not exist anymore, so the debut is quite hard to get. I’ve heard you’re very unhappy with their work, or rather a complete lack of it. I’m lucky to have a copy, but do you think about doing a re-release the debut?
In the future maybe if someone are interested in doing a re-release.
Mattias Borgh has left your ranks. Any reason for this change? On the other hand Per Ekegren has an impressive list of bands he played in!
Hi did not have any time, he had a baby on the way and left right before we started “The Demon The Angel the Disease” album , so he left in the right time. Söderlund left at the same time, our bass player.
I must say that I was quite surprised seeing on Metal Archives that Blood Mortized has also few demo recordings! Were they officially released on tape or CD/CDR and have you released them in many copies?? What were they like, what songs were there? Any plans to re-release these demos for the fans?
Yes, there are four demos out on Spotify right now. There are actually more recordings off tracks on Benny Moberg’s computer, recordings from the early 2007, but that shit is not going to be released hahahaha. And also here anyone is free to release the demos on CD!
When recording these demos I suppose Blood Mortized was treated more like a fun band, rather than something more serious, am I right? Now you evolved into a respected, powerful underground death metal machine, with three albums. I suppose you must be happy with how’re the things going?
Yes, in the beginning when it was me, Parkkila and Benny we did this for fun! To live the 90’s all over again hahaha, but later on when we got a contract the serious stuff started to happen! Yes, we were really happy when things started to move.
OK., what are your expectations with “The Demon…”? Is Blood Mortized a full time band, which will play gigs / tour Europe any time soon, or it is mainly focused on being a studio project?
We have played some gigs in Sweden and Germany last year and we are trying to get the word out about Blood Mortized, but it’s hard! So, we will see how this is turning out for us, we hope for the best!
THE UNKNOWN PAST
Can I ask you about some of the older bands of yours? I mean bands such as Scum and Pathalog… I have never heard their music, so I am curious what were they like? For Pathalog you recorded the guitars just for one demo and then left. Do you still remember why? And Scum later changed the name for Amon Amarth and you also played on Amarth’s early demo / album. What are your feelings towards this band now, when they became so successful? I’m personally not their biggest fan, their albums are too repetitive for me, but the kids seem to love them, maybe for their viking image…
Pathalog was an average death metal band. I don’t know how to explain how they sounded when I played with them, but after I left they turned into a more Cannibal Corpse / Suffocation act! I don’t really remember why I left the band to join Scum / Amon Amarth. Scum sounded like a death thrash act, when I joined, but turned more into Amon Amarth after some years. I played on the bands’ two first demos and then on two first albums.
It seems that after leaving / or being thrown away (??) from Amon Amarth you didn’t play in any bands for few years. So, what were you doing in the meantime, speaking of the music? Were you still interested in death metal, searching for new killer bands and records, watching the underground? Have you noticed the coming of new awesome Swedish bands such as Nominon, Repugnant, Kaamos, Paganizer back then?
I did quit Amon Amarth after I got a kid on my throat as we say in Sweden haha. I also did separate from my girlfriend so Amon Amarth was too much work for me at that time, we had just signed a contract with Metal Blade and the career was shooting straight up! So it was hard to have a kid and play music at the same time! So I left the music scene for about ten years, till Benny and Mattias called me up one day and that’s the start on Blood Mortized! Under those ten years I left death metal! Did not listen at all to that kind of music, only to the new Amon Amarth that came out from time to time!
Do you feel some regrets that you left Amon Amarth so early? What was your influence on their early recordings? Have you composed some songs, been responsible for arrangements, etc?
I did not have any choice, I had also lost the will to play the music and did not understand how big the Metal Blade thing was! Till their first tour with Deicide and Brutal Truth hahahaha! I did not compose any stuff for Amon Amarth, but I came up with some cool riffs here and there, for example I did the opening riff for “Victorious March” one of their most famous song that they’re still playing from the early days! I did also help to arrange some songs. It was hard to contribute with stuff in the band, we had a main song writer that had a strong will that was hard to break! I think that’s why I lost the interest in the end!
And just to finish the interview, maybe I can ask which older and newer Swedish death metal albums / demos / EPs are those, which are most important for you and are kind of special as well?
These albums and demos are the most important to me:
Entombed – “But Life Goes On”
Entombed – “Left Hand Path”
Therion – “Time Shall Tell
Carnage – “Dark Recollections”
Grave – “Into the Grave”
Dismember – “Like an Ever Flowing Stream”
Obituary – “Cause of Death”
Terrorizer – “World Downfall”
Napalm Death – “Harmony Corruption”
Morgoth – “The Eternal Fall”
Morgoth – “Curse”
Massacre – “From Beyond”
Death – “Leprosy”
Hahahah that’s a list alright!
OK. Anders! Let’s leave it all here… I suppose we know enough about you and your bands! And last comments?
Thx for this interview man, and to all you metal heads out there!!!! Check out Blood Mortized and Just Before Dawn!!!! CHEERS!!