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Nominon's Monumentomb (reviewed here) is that rare death metal record that keeps me coming back. One reason why is the drumming. Via email, I asked Perra Karlsson about his band and his "Drums ov Death". The ALL CAPS, in time-honored metal 'zine style, are his.
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When I think of Nominon, the first thing that comes to mind is lineup changes. Why has Nominon had so many?
The thing with this band is that we never really look back. We just continue working, and if some people don't want to spend their time being part of the creatitvity within the band, then it's pretty obvious that they shouldn't waste their own or our time. I have been a member of this band for nearly ten years now, and I even moved to the city of Jönköping eight years ago to commit my time and life to NOMINON. Lots of people have been coming and going throughout the years, yet I'd say that we have a much more stable lineup today than ever before.
When I think of Nominon, the second thing that comes to mind is old-school death metal. What do you think of the current resurgence of the sound, and where does Nominon fit into it?
Seriously, we're getting bloody tired of this "old school" talk all the time. I don't have the time or feel like spending energy on thinking what, where, and when NOMINON will or would fit in within the Death Metal spectra. Sure, we have been around since 1993, but we don't want to sound 1993 today. After all, it's 2010, and we like to take things a step further.
I don't think that we sound that much like other bands out there, honestly. Yet people always compare NOMINON with the likes of UNLEASHED, GRAVE, ENTOMBED, DISMEMBER, etc. We are far more brutal and have much more variation within our music than any of these bands. Sure, we grew up listening to Death Metal and Metal in general. And we've brought in a lot of twisted ideas and stuff to NOMINON from other forms of Metal, without getting cheesy or anything like that. So, the bottom line: If you like Death Metal, then NOMINON are your kinda music, period.
The early Swedish death metal scene is well-documented, thanks to Daniel Ekeroth's Swedish Death Metal book (reviewed here). What is the Swedish scene like now?
It's a good book - good, entertaining reading. But I think that the whole thing got a bit overestimated. I know that there's some details in the book that's not correct, and some wrong information in the band/info section. After all, it's a book, it was made to SELL. People tend to forget that. I am personally amazed, though, that Daniel pulled it off and made it all happen. Good for him. One book I would like to see published is the one by MASTER-mind Paul Speckmann. I bet [there will] be some killer reading and moments in that book.
The Swedish scene today?! Ehm. UNLEASHED keep making records year after year that aren't really that good. It's like 3 songs on each album that stand out, but the rest of 'em is just filling out the albums. ENTOMBED have done loads of less interesting albums, but their latest one Serpent Saints had its moments, for sure, I give them that. These guys are unfortunately doing the whole thing more or less like a routine these days, both on albums and on stage. TRIBULATION is a good live act. NECROPHOBIC is a good band, too. The best band in Sweden besides NOMINON are WATAIN. They don't really have any competition in Death/Black Metal over here besides perhaps NIFELHEIM.
What was it like working with Tore Stjerna (producer)?
It certainly feels a bit like coming home every time when we enter NECROMORBUS STUDIO. I have personally recorded six albums with Tore by now, so we definitely know each other. NOMINON have recorded the three latest albums at NECROMORBUS with Tore, and the good thing is that he always pushes us as hard as possible to perform as [well] as possible. He doesn't really let any shit pass through the filter, so to speak.
NOMINON focus [on writing] the music, and then when it's time to record, we contact Tore and let him take over, start the recording procedure, and pretty much let him decide on what's the best sound for each instrument, to make it sound killer, you know. We prefer to be musicians and not recording engineers, producers, or anything like that. Tore is also a huge fan of NOMINON as a band, and that is also one of the reasons why we continue to work with him, since he knows what the freaks out there expect from NOMINON.... DEATH METAL MASSACRE!
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What was it like working with Chris Moyen (cover artist)?
We ended up working with Chris again since we weren't that satisfied with the art that one guy from England had done. Chris, however, managed to redo the artwork after a basic idea that Juha [Sulasalmi, guitar] and I had for the cover, and it ended up amazing. It suits the title for the album and the music just perfect. Moyen also did the art for Recremation (CD, 2005) and Remnants of a Diabolical History (compilation CD, 2006), as well as some other EP's and stuff for NOMINON in the past. One could say that we are huge fans of each other's work.
No lyrics came with the promo copy of the album. What are you guys growling about?
Lots of anti-Christian stuff, hatred, and other relevant Death Metal associated subjects. NOMINON are not a political band, so you won't find anything like that in our songs. Anyone that are more interested should get hold of our albums and make up their own mind about the lyrics, or at least try to find them on the Internet. It wasn't our idea to make "promotion CD's", "download-promo-versions", or whatever it's called these days, without including the lyrics, so I don't know what to say about it, really?!
You have some wicked beat variations in the intro to "Archfiend". How did you come up with them? Who are your drumming inspirations?
I actually do like to PLAY drums, and not just do it as something that I do just to get it done. I challenge myself pretty much in every single track, especially on the new album Monumentomb. Anyone with some sort of IQ can hear and understand that, and if you like music you can also be able to appreciate that, like YOU do. I've had my own drumming style since I was around 16-17 years old, so it's not like new or anything. When I grew up, my fave drummers were (and somehow still ARE) hard-hitting bad-ass mf's like Tommy Lee and Cozy Powell. Within the Death Metal genre are not that many drummers that influence me, besides perhaps Pete Sandoval of MORBID ANGEL and Morten Skogen of SHAARIMOTH.
You are given unlimited money for a tour. Where do you tour, and with what bands?
Unlimited money to tour?! Where did that come from? If that would be the fact, we would be out there touring the world every single day. The reality is that we do tour when we feel like touring, really, or when we get a good opportunity to do so. NOMINON as a band don't really like to tour ourselves to death. We also appreciate writing new material from time to time, you know, since that's why we are having this band to start with - it's all about the music. Playing live is second best. We've, however, toured both in Europe and in USA throughout the years with genuine bands like VITAL REMAINS, BENEDICTION, NUNSLAUGHTER, QUINTA ESSENTIA, and a few more.
What are you listening to these days - metal or not?
I am a Metal head. What I mean with that is that I listen to pretty much everything within the Hard Rock and Heavy Metal genre. My personal favourites at the moment include SLAYER, MOTÖRHEAD, ROOT, TESTAMENT, MORBID ANGEL, ZZ TOP, KING DIAMOND, IRON MAIDEN, DISSECTION, EXODUS, and so on. I also find some amusement in Finnish folklore songs - they are so damn depressive and dark.
What do the members of Nominon do "in real life"?
I don't know what you do "in real life", but we most certainly play Death Metal "in real life".
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