Had the chance to chat with Jimmy Lundqvist, guitarist from ENTRAILS via e-mail recently. Normally these things are like pulling teeth to get good, quality answers but Jimmy really broke it down when necessary and he was super-cool to talk to. New album Rise of the Reaper comes out October 11 on Metal Blade Records, and he was very happy to get into the recording process, having new blood in the band, and more. Check it:
Amps: First off, how excited are you for Rise of the Reaper to hit the masses in just over two weeks?
Jimmy: Even after so many releases ENTRAILS have done for a rather short time, I can’t get used to the feelings with only a short period of time before the release. Both nervous and excited in a cool mix. But I am truly excited to see what people think of it.
To finally read reviews (even if some are truly bad but we cannot play for Justin Bieber fans all the time,haha!) and also plan for shows and so on. It has been a different journey this time to get this beast done and finally released but we handled it well and soon its out. Argh!!
Amps: The album really sounds great. It’s punchy and biting. Does having a long relationship with Dan Swanö, and him handling the mixing and mastering once again facilitate that?
Jimmy: Well, Dan and I work very closely when it comes to the mix and to get the sound we want. I am very detailed when it comes to, for example the guitar sound. And if we just bring him the best material to work on the mixing process is very easy. And I have my own recording studio where we record our stuff and after some tips from Swanö and my own ideas we usually get him damn good material to work on. And after almost 10 years of relationship we know each other pretty well now and he had a very easy way to mix this new one after my directions.
Amps: What are some of the tracks that stand out to you? Any favorites, or are they all your babies? “For Hell” is one of mine, especially with that melody that kicks in at the 20-second mark!
Jimmy: Ah, cool you like that one. I must say I love ‘em all like tiny “babies” and cannot give any of them more credit than any other. They have all their highlights and history and of course memories. many of the songs are really old. “Miscreation” and “Destruction” are two songs that I made just before ENTRAILS was founded in the 90’s. it shows a bit because before Death Metal was into my life I had much Thrash and other metal in my blood and was influenced by older METALLICA, SLAYER, and also EXODUS. And those two songs have an older thrash attitude.
Amps: How often are you coming up with riffs and song structures? Is it a constant thing? Are you the guy in the frozen food aisle humming riffs into his iPhone, or just when the mood hits?
Jimmy: Nah, I need to get in the right mood to be creative. I remember when I moved into my house where I grew up and as a kid had my rehearsal room in a converted woodshed. This room was still in good shape, so I just cleaned it and then it became my studio and rehearsal room for ENTRAILS. At that time, I felt the old passion again and I made 18 songs in 3 weeks. The walls in there had something left to give me, so I just took the time and made all those songs. And I hope I can get that creative again soon. Although I have my old tapes left to find more riffing if I need inspiration and create something.
Amps: Since this site started we’ve been fortunate enough to get a new ENTRAILS album every two years. Is that a conscious decision, or does it just shake out that way?
Jimmy: The gap between albums have been wider compared to the first ones. Then we signed with Metal Blade and we changed members a few times and many things happened, and the tempo was getting slower. I am more into releasing a new album every year but then I need people around me to have that interest also. But maybe its better to not kill yourself as a band with too much and instead use every second year as a guide as far as when to expect a new ENTRAILS album, he hee!
Amps: There’s some fairly new blood in the band with Markus (Svensson, guitar) and Arvid (Borg, drums). What do they bring to the group as far as energy and the vibe now?
Jimmy: That’s correct. Two new guys were brought into the band in Nov/Dec last year. And they are very skilled musicians. And that’s positive. Unfortunately, the recording process had already begun when Arvid joined the band. So he was put into learning older songs for upcoming shows instead. So, he hasn’t had the chance to record yet. Guitarist Marcus joined almost at the same time, but he had options to choose between learning the new album really fast and also old songs for upcoming shows or just learn old ones. He took the chance and learned the new album in two weeks and was prepared when guitars were recorded while learning old stuff for shows at the same time.
Amps: You’re obviously gonna hit the road for this record. Anything booked yet that you can share with our readers? How long do you normally spend touring in support of a new album?
Jimmy: Yeah, we will do some shows but not a road tour. We were a bit short of time knowing the release and then after that book a tour. Every place had fully booked the whole autumn, so we aim for next year and to do a bigger one. Instead we will do a weekender in January along with Kam Lee and his MASSACRE X and in February we go back to Germany and nearby countries and do another weekender, but I don’t know if we support or are being supported for that one. Then we have some goodies to announce later on when the festivals make it official.
Amps: On that front, what are some of your favorite countries, cities, and venues to play? Most of us have favorite places to go see bands, so I was wondering if that was true from your perspective.
Jimmy: Since we almost always play in Germany or Netherlands when we are doing our smaller trips, I would list those as favorites. Cities are harder to say but Swedish Stockholm are cool if the music police stay at home, Haha! We have played at several great venues like Party San, Maryland Deathfest, Netherland Deathfest, Summer Breeze, Hellfest, Obscene Extreme, and many more and to pick the best one out of them is hard. Though Maryland was an adventure and extremely fun!
Amps: Away from music, what do you do to relax and unwind?
Jimmy: Well. I have my fiancé, cool cat and our extremely fun dog (Finnish Lapphund) and we are living in a house in a village with 500 people. And I am dedicated to our local Football team and follow them as much as I can. I also like to watch some movies and play some video games.
And I have bought myself a Rally car that I will be driving a few times next year when it doesn’t collide with our shows. I drove Rally for 10 years between 1993-2003 and that is so fun to do. So I will be pretty busy next year.
Amps: If you weren’t killing it in ENTRAILS, or a band in general, what do you think you’d be doing?
Jimmy: I think I would be driving that Rally car more and more since that is my second hobby, that is if I wouldn’t have started a one-man band or something. I don’t think I would have joined another band or such.
Amps: What are you listening to lately? Old stuff, new stuff? Metal, rock, funk, jazz, polka?? All of the above???
Jimmy: Almost only older stuff if I decide to listen more actively. Radio is in my ears all day at work, so I listen to what’s being played there. It can be almost everything but when its hip hop or such I usually change music. But overall I do prefer silence from music if I don’t get nostalgic and want to hear something from the 80’s or 90’s.
Amps: Looking ahead a bit, what do you think is next for ENTRAILS? Down the road…
Jimmy: Extremely hard to tell. Since this band has been changing members a lot lately it’s hard to plan what will happen in the future. But if we are solid, I think we will continue to make and release music when we have the feel for it.
Our contract is complete with Metal Blade now after this record and if no new deal is signed we will find another way to have the music out for our fans and followers. And hopefully we will be playing at bigger festivals. There are a few left to be a part of so we’ll see what happens.
Amps: What would you like the listener to take away from the disc when the last notes have rung out?
Jimmy: A memorable album with songs that have brought some headbanging. That’s something I look for when I am listening to other bands. Do they have good riffing, do the songs stick in my head etc etc. Those kinds of things would be great if they are what listeners are having.
Amps: What would you like to say to all your fans out there in the world?
Jimmy: This is always the hardest thing in an interview to do. But I use the cliché “Hope you´ll like our new album and help us spread our name. And some point we should be able to come over and do some shows for you.” But I really mean that.
Amps: Jimmy, thanks again for speaking with me. I am a fan first, and a writer second. I honestly think this album kicks ASS, and I can only pray you hit the States again one of these days, Philadelphia in particular!! Please give everyone in the band my best.
Jimmy: Thanks, man. Always a pleasure to meet new folks and fans. Answering interviews is a part of every release and this one was pretty fun. Cheers and hopefully we meet someday. Take care!