SVÄRD – This band is like a Kinder egg: it never runs out of surprises

by Chiara Simonetta

Versione italiana

After the release of their first EP “The Rift” (here you can read our review), we had the pleasure and opportunity to contact Svärd, heavy/psychedelic band which mixes together members from Ahab and In Mourning in a new and exciting projects. We want to thank Tim Nedergård, guitarist from In Mourning, for his courtesy and his time spent with this interview. 

Hi Tim! We are so intrigued by listening to your debut EP, “The Rift”, that we found really catching and interesting, so thank you very much for dedicating us some time replying to our questions and satisfying our curiosities! First of all, when and how did you meet and when did the idea of this project take shape? What is the meaning of your name, Svärd?

Ciao and very much grazie for those kind words. Let’s see if we can help damping your curiosity a bit!
My history with the In mourning guys goes back to 2005 or so I believe. But you are probably wondering about the first Ahab and In mourning encounter. Well, you could say that we met with the poetry in Italy, one cold november day in 2009 and I remember pretty clear how it all went down. It was our first show in Italy ever and in a big ass club out somewhere in the deep. Ahab was also on the billing and quite directly I fell in love with the aura of the german drummer. And time just flew away. It was a match made in heaven, or Brescia, more particulary. A lot of water has passed under the bridges since that night and at some point around the end of 2017 it struck me that we had been friends for about ten years, but never played music together. The first idea of a band was planted. It’s always cool to come up with band names and the one that drops the coolest name is of course the coolest one. So it’s too freaking bad that the name Svärd choose us. Svärd is Swedish for Sword and means long knife or something like that.

The choice of this genre is pretty singular and unexpected, it is definitely configured as an unicum in your career. What motivated you to create this project? Was it born from the union of your personal interests or rather from the desire to get involved with something completely different from your previous and parallel production?

For sure it is motivating to create something different from the other bands. I mean the elements are still there, but we find no interest in making songs that will fit in Ahab or In mourning. All four of us have totally different taste and influences when it comes to music and I guess that this EP is the product of us.

Considering the diversity between what you propose with this EP and the sound of the other projects in which you play in, we spontaneously ask ourselves if the origin of this proposal has been influenced by some other band in particular. If so, which bands were you mainly inspired by?

Well there’s a lot of bands that we fancy, from old heavy metal bands to todays metal acts. But there are no reinventing the wheel wishes in this. Just a wish for cool riffs and having fun doing that. And as it is in life in general, it’s not healthy to compare with others. Wich is easier said than done. So I think you can find references to the style of both Iron Maiden and Mastodon pretty easy.

In which way does your provenience from Ahab (doom metal) and In Mourning (melodic death) influence this project (if somehow it does)? Have you thought about differentiating yourselves from your other respective bands from the beginning or is it an intent that arose later instead?

As I mentioned before the elements are of course present due to the fact that we are active in both bands. They are both old bands that have been around for some time and perhaps the experience of writing a lot of albums before have a relaxing feel for us. I mean, Svärd is a new band but with old horses pulling the cart.

Personally, as an art lover, I always watch carefully the artwork of an album before and while listening to it, and this one particularly struck me, making me immediately suppose that it was something psychedelic. What’s the meaning behind the graphic itself, its symbols and colours? In which way is it related also to the content of your songs?

Hey, me too! I just love looking at album covers and try to see some connection to the lyrics or the tones of the album. What’s your favourite? I am really happy how “The Rift” turned out. The cover is the interpretation from our lyrics and music made by Emy, from the french art duo Arrache-toi Un Oeil. We wanted to have something in earthly colours mixed in a psychadelic way. She really captured the essence of the EP and enhanced the lyrics.

What about your audience? How did your fans welcome such a radical novelty within your music? Are you satisfied in terms of reception, appreciation and criticism?

Since we haven’t showed the melodeath community this project yet I don’t really know how they will react to it. Hopefully they will like it and wanna dance at least some to the tunes! But I must say that we have got a real warm welcoming so far by the sludge and stoner guys and gals.

We already know that “The Rift” is just a little taste of a bigger project that will take shape in your first full-length, that we’re looking forward to listening to. Would you like to tell any spoilers about it? Is it going to be anything similar to this work or do you aim to surprise us all with something else fresh and new?

When the EP was written we just aimed for the stars you know, just plugged in our instruments and created in the free universe. And just by having fun and hanging out in this constellation gave us the guidelines that became “The Rift”. It’s not necessarily the Svärd guidelines, but it sure was how the EP were ment to be.
The album will be in the same ballpark, but this time we might try the swings instead of the sliders!

Somehow taking up the previous question, what is your intent for this project? Is Svärd a side project compared to your other bands or does it already qualify as a stand-alone and long-term project?

When the first riffs were created, before the dawn of Svärd, the four of us were destined to end up in a band. And at that very moment it was decided that we would take our tunes out on the road and in to your stereo.
This band seems to be like a Kinder egg surprise or the tankard of Thor if you prefer. It never runs out of surprises.

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