For over two decades, IN FLAMES have been creating influential metal records. Their early works were instrumental in creating the signature Gothenburg sound of melodic death metal. Since their debut, the band have not been strangers to sonic change, altering with each following album. Siren Charms is their latest release and a continued evolution for the band. As the musical growth continues, the heavy focus of great songwriting and memorable melodies remains at their core. IN FLAMES may not sound like they did years ago as up and coming stars in the metal world, but the change has been a successful one; avoiding the cloning of records past and breaking new ground to expand their catalog. They continue to remain a relevant and influential force. The band is currently on the road with numerous dates lined up around the globe. I had a great opportunity to speak with drummer Daniel Svensson about the upcoming tour with OPETH (get tickets HERE) and all things IN FLAMES. Check it out:
Amps: As a long time, dedicated fan that appreciates the early material through the latest release; I must say I have been listening to Siren Charms just about daily since the release, and I love every bit of it. How have fans been receiving the new material on tour? What have been your favorites to perform live from the album?
Daniel: The response has been overly great with the new material. Fans dig it, and are already chanting along to the new tunes, which is just what we hoped for. Favorite tracks for me are “Monsters in the Ballroom” and “Paralyzed.”
Amps: The pairing of you with OPETH is such a great package. How did that come about and how long was it in the works?
Daniel: Anders is good friends with Mikael Åkerfeldt and this is a tour we have been wanting to do for a long time. Great friends and fantastic band.
Amps: Also, I noticed that there have been a few special acoustic performances in support of the new record. Is there any chance that Jesterheads will get to see some acoustic performances on your upcoming dates? Would you ever plan a purely acoustic tour?
Daniel: The future will tell! We always like to explore new ways presenting our music.
Amps: Siren Charms is the first album in which guitarist, Niclas Engelin, was involved in the writing process since joining the band full time in 2011, correct? How did his influence help in shaping what the five of you created for this record?
Daniel: The record was actually written by Björn & Anders, although everyone in the band of course participated with their own “touch” so to speak. Niclas riffage and master work on the guitar really contributes to In Flames 2014, and we love having him onboard.
Amps: What continues to inspire IN FLAMES to write new music and evolve the sound of the band with each album?
Daniel: Everyday life…We grow older and experience new things along the way. That has always been our inspiration.
Amps: Over the 20+ year life of the band, what has been your favorite thing about IN FLAMES?
Daniel: Too hard to choose one favorite event. We’ve been through good times and bad, but overall we’ve so far had a fantastic ride.
Amps: What is the name of a band right now that all five members of love and the world should be listening to?
Amps: Tell us one thing about you that people might be surprised or shocked to know? Something that’s not on Wikipedia or Google.
Daniel: We all love golf and video games.
Amps: What, if any advice to you have for that young group of guys in a garage or rehearsal space right now, just starting out?
Daniel: Hang in there, work hard and never give up. The music business is a hard business, but hard work always pays off.
Amps: What would you like to say to all your fans all over the world?
Daniel: If you haven’t done it already, make sure to check out our new album Siren Charms and hope to see you on the road!
The Swedish percussion machine known as Daniel Svensson gave us some excellent insight to the IN FLAMES camp. The impending US tour with their friends in OPETH is sure to be unforgettable. Gauging from his responses, it doesn’t look like there is any way the band will be slowing down any time soon. Their source of inspiration is unending and constantly changing: life. If you haven’t already, pick up Siren Charms and make a connection with it. I gave it a perfect rating for a reason, people. Buy it from your local record store today!
INTERVIEW BY ERIC THE BULL