When Dead Lord’s vocalist/gutiarist Hakim Krim, guitarist Olle Hedenström, bassist Martin Nordin, and new drummer Adam Lindmark (ex-Morbus Chron) get heavily caught up in near-ritualistic listening sessions to Thin Lizzy, early Iron Maiden, and The Hellacopters, they write albums like In Ignorance We Trust. Songs like ‘Ruins,’ ‘Kill Them All,’ and ‘Reruns’ extol the virtues of heavy rock and proto-metal from years long gone. Formed a mere five years ago, it’s hard to imagine a band so in-tune with its influences. The Swedes have the feel, the tone, and the moves that other bands only dream of.
Now three albums in, Dead Lord have learned the balance between intensity and restraint equals rock magic. Produced in sunny Spain with Ola Ersfjörd (Sourvein, Wolf), In Ignorance We Trust rolls confident in its throwback quality. Krim is a dead ringer for Lynott, recalling the legend’s quality on ‘Emerald’ and ‘Borderline’. Meanwhile, Hedenström embodies Gorham and Håkansson (of Kebnekajse fame) in his lick choice and brilliantly tasteful soloing. And rhythm section Nordin/Lindmark? Not to downplay others, but there’s no finer backing band in the land of the Three Crowns. In Ignorance We Trust belongs in 1977, but was crafted not more than a year ago.
But Dead Lord aren’t entirely a twin guitar attack outfit. They’ve brought in the cool adventure of 1970s Swedish hard rock, like November, Kebnekajse, and Made in Sweden. Songs like ‘Leave Me Be’, ‘Never Die’, and ‘Part Of Me’ impart a particular Swedish aura to Dead Lord that might not be noticeable if it wasn’t for Hedenström’s affinity for Swedish musical heritage.
Time to sit back, down a few Swedish Imperial Stouts, and read up on Dead Lord’s latest rabble-rousing exploits. Frontman Krim tells all. Well, some, actually.
What are some of your favorite records of all that time. Records that have influenced Dead Lord?
Hakim Krim: The one that got me playing guitar was Metallica’s “Ride the Lighning”. But when it comes to enjoying good music and finding influences, we listen to everything from Aretha Franklin and Abba to Winterhawk and Venom. As long as it’s good, it’s good. But being Swedish, I think The Hellacopters have had a big impact on all of us. “High Visibility” was the one that turned me on to action rock. The Swedish scene nowadays is also a great inspiration. Seeing our friends play in killer bands and having that kind of community going is nice. Great bands like Horisont and Robert Pehrsson’s Humbucker are a real inspiration.
Describe Dead Lord’s sound. Just so there’s no guessing.
Hakim Krim: Mind-blowing, face-melting, awe-inspiring, jaw-dropping, twin-guitar infused smart-rock extravaganza.
The songwriting sessions for new album “In Ignorance We Trust”. Smooth or pain in the ass?
Hakim Krim: It’s always a mess when I write songs. Olle [Hedenström; guitars] usually makes demos for his songs, while I keep everything in my head and try to explain my ideas to the others at rehearsals. I prefer it that way, ’cause then each band member brings their own flavor to the songs. I generally have some sort of idea of what I want the songs to sound like, and try to make it go that way. It usually works out. Adam [Lindmark; drums], Olle and Martin [Nordin; bass] usually tell me when I’m too far out there, and everyone shares their opinions to tweak the songs. This time, I think I wrote half of the lyrics in the studio. I was there from evening ’till early morning every day, writing and trying out ideas. Then, Martin would be there the next day trying out and recording harmony ideas. It was an interesting way of arranging and writing, ’cause we didn’t really know what would have happened to the songs the next day.
Sounds less like a jam session then, right?
Hakim Krim: Usually, we write most of them individually. Some parts do come from jamming, and we all try to arrange and come with input and ideas. I can, for instance, tell Adam to go full-on “Burn” drum-fill-verse mayhem and he’ll understand what I mean.
Tell us about the album title, In Ignorance We Trust. Seems applicable to today’s world political climate.
Yeah, this new anti-intellectualism is kind of terrifying. And things that are sad and sucky usually inspire me to write stuff. Thanks Donald!
What other lyrical topics are explored on In Ignorance We Trust?
Hakim Krim: A bit of heartbreak, a bit of LSD, politicians, hopelessness and whatever came to mind while I was drunk in the studio.
How long were you at Cuervo Recording Service Studio?
Hakim Krim: Ten days. Two days to get the songs down and 8 days of guitar solos, lyrical head-scratching, and vocals.
What was it like working yet again with co-producer Ola Ersfjörd? He’s almost like a member of the band now.
Hakim Krim: Yup! Often times we don’t even have to say what we’re after. He knows. This was probably our fastest run in the studio, so far. Seventeen days from recording to mixed, mastered and sent off to be pressed. I like it that way, otherwise you always end up poking around too much in the songs, which is generally never a good thing.
What’s next for Dead Lord?
Hakim Krim: We’ll all run for presidents of rock next year.
** Dead Lord’s hip-shaking, in-shower singing, balls-out new album, “In Ignorance We Trust”, is out now on Century Media. Check it out on LP (for real grooves) or on CD (for digitally-enhanced riffage) by clicking HERE.