Archive for TEOG

The End Of Grace – Infinite Shadows Of Memories

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on 9th May 2017 by Pieni

The End Of Grace
“Infinite Shadows Of Memories”
metalcore
Released: 10th May 2017
by Illumnirec

18268551_1450111981677758_1613674322985679302_n_zpsrjrhlus2

Where I come from there’s a saying that goes something like “who awaits always achieves”. And then someone twisted it, creating a new and pretty negative version, that says “who awaits gets desperate”. The latter translated my state of mind in the recent past regarding a full-length record by The End Of Grace, which I’ve been waiting for since the band got together. But it’s finally here and I’m living the original version of the saying, as waiting for “Infinite Shadows Of Memories” totally paid off. Between the two EPs “Lost In Transition” and “Unity”, there had already been an evolution in the songwriting, its features emboldened; but “Infinite…” is more than an upgrade of said features, it’s a new path straying away from the traditional metalcore they’ve begun with.

The crystal-clear clean tones have been replaced by somber, deep ones, still contrasting perfectly with Kriss’ growls; the focus on breakdowns is water under the bridge, the main priority now based on the musicality and not on sounding tougher than leather – even if they do sound relentless nevertheless. It’s just a whole new level of melody, more mature.

The ominous catchiness of “Life On The Line”, the yearning of the title-track, the collision of opposites of “Breathe”, the daring “Ride The Dark”… This record is a rollercoaster of emotions and shows TEoG pushing the proverbial envelope with their music. Hell, a whole stack of envelopes! It’s not even clear what it should be called anymore, but whether you go for “blues-core, deathcore or metalcore” (quoting the upbeat “We Really Don’t Know Yo”), this is The End Of Grace.

5/5

Renata “Pieni” Lino

The End Of Grace – Unity

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , on 3rd June 2016 by Pieni

The End Of Grace
“Unity” [EP]
metalcore
Released: 3rd June 2016
Via Ilumnirec

 photo unity_zpsgfrwjfi9.jpg

If you know The End Of Grace and have been following their story, you may find this title a bit ironic, given the recent major line-up change in the band. I see it the other way around, a tribute to what makes us one and not what divides us (check the words on the artwork – they’re not exactly random). First of all, the departure of 3/5 of the band had nothing to do with falling outs – it’s just life and its usual way of forcing people to make hard choices; they may not partake in the songwriting and performance anymore but they’ll always be a part of TEoG. And then there’s founder Jimmy Bergman’s passion for this project, which will keep it alive no matter what – a true unity with music.

Now that you have my two pennies on the title, let’s go for what really matters. When I’ve last spoken to the boys (interview here) they told me there would be more breakdowns They weren’t fooling around! All songs are much richer in that department, making them sound heavier, thicker. Well, all except the ballad “Fighting For Another Day” (I still smile at the term “ballad” when Kriss Clark is busting up his throat to growl like that, but there’s no other thing to call such bleeding melody) – this one has its own heaviness and there’s no need for extra breakdowns for that.

There’s also more riffs/more elaborate guitar structure, more meaningful lyrics and a better complicity between the aforementioned growls of Kriss and the clean tones of Johan. I had the chance to see “The End Of Grace” (yes, they named a song after themselves) in concert (report here) and witness how such briskness works live. Well let me tell you that “If You Fall”, “Never Break” and “Trigger” will cause the same restless effect. This is what metalcore is all about.

It’s been already three years since the release of “Lost In Transition” but it seems like yesterday, as those songs keep rolling on my playlists. I’m pretty certain the same will happen with “Unity”.

5/5

Renata “Pieni” Lino

The End Of Grace recruits Andreas Hagman as their new drummer

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 15th June 2015 by Pieni

It’s been announced today that Andreas Hagman is the new drummer in THE END OF GRACE, after Thomas Manell‘s departure in April. Andreas, who’s recently joined THROUGH THE CRACKS as a temporary replacement for Daniel Holmgren (currently studying in the USA), has found a permanent place among the metalcore band from Gothenburg.

The band has shared one of the tryout songs that convinced them Andreas was the right man for the job:

TEoG are working on their upcoming new release, which should be a 5-track EP. Now that the line-up is complete again, the process should be faster.

www.facebook.com/TheEndOfGrace

Skitarg w/ support – Gothenburg, Sweden

Posted in Gig, Live with tags , , , , , , , , , on 14th April 2015 by Pieni

BatAAr, The End Of Grace, Skitarg
Sticky Fingers, Gothenburg (SE)
10th April 2015
Promoted by NEMIS GBG

 photo skitarg01_zpsdywxhoh1.jpg

Clown metal is a big thing in Sweden, at least when it comes down to Skitarg. But support acts BatAAr and The End Of Grace caused quite a fuss as well that night.

 photo bataar1_zpsvgxsjmry.jpgDespite my often trips to Sweden and the crash-course I’ve taken last year on its native language, I’m still not able to maintain a conversation in Swedish (reading is okay, talking not so much). This means I can’t tell you what BatAAr-Seb said to the screaming crowd that welcomed the band. But then again, it’s the music that counts, right? They themselves must think the same, as their borderline visual kei image is toned down once they’re on stage, in comparison to what you see in their videos and promo photos.
Between the exquisite prog of “Riskbreaker”, the spirited melodies of “The Distance” and “Owls And Snakes”, or the extremeness of “Refrain From Your Porcelain”, BatAAr’s sound may be hard to label in matters of genre, but pretty easy to do so in terms of quality: DAMN GOOD! Adding that to how comfortable they are on stage and how they give themselves to what they’re playing, it all can only result in a show worth attending to. (5/5)

 photo bataar2_zpsjrwq65nh.jpg

https://www.facebook.com/BatAAr

 photo teog1_zps52y9pbfy.jpgJust like BatAAr, The End Of Grace also come from Gothenburg, but since Kriss is British and addressed the audience in English, I can be a bit more thorough regarding the singer’s speech. For instance, I can tell you about the at least half a dozen times he said “oh my God you’re fucking crazy” and “we love you all”. If you’ve been following our posts on these guys, you know I’ve been to quite a few TEoG shows, so trust me when I say that Kriss wasn’t kissing ass – this crowd was the most vibrant I’ve ever seen on a TEoG show. There was even a wall of death at the beginning of “Beneath The Waves”, right after a cool, melodic new intro – guess they got inspired by Frodd‘s remix of it for the B-side of their latest single “Final Burden”.
They’ve been hard-working on their upcoming debut album and less than a month since the release of the aforementioned “Final Burden”, they were ready to introduce another new song – a song about being in a band, how that means “brotherhood”, and so it’s only natural that it was named after the band itself. The response to “The End Of Grace”, the song, was as massive as to the rest of the gig, which makes me believe the album will get a killer feedback once it’s finally out.
And because of that brotherhood, this being drummer Thomas last show felt like “losing an arm”. He got quite an ovation from the crowd and then BatAAr-Seb got on stage to help Kriss sing the last song “Fist Face Bleed”. Thomas couldn’t have asked for a better farewell show. (5/5)

 photo teog2_zpsdcvanp32.jpg

https://www.facebook.com/TheEndOfGrace

 photo skitarg3_zpsvsunz0yv.jpg

The house had been crowded for both supporting acts, but for Skitarg it was fully packed, leaving no doubt that they lived up to their headlining status.
Sure, their creepy-clown makeup and flashy outfits cause an impressive visual impact, but if we strip those away, we’re still left with a very active and powerful performance. So if you’re thinking that Skitarg’s popularity is only due to their looks, think again. And songs such as “Jag Bryter Nacken Av Din Häst”, “Du Har Keps Och Knarkar” or “Utvecklingsstörd” made the crowd go wild in mosh circles and loud sing-alongs, proving my point.
At some point, close to the end, TEoG-Kriss joined on stage, not to sing but just to fool around with Barnet. Sadly I had already put away the camera, as the aforementioned mosh was too vicious for my bones’ sake and I had retreated to a safe point at the back. Yeah, it was that kind of show, that kind of party. (5/5)

 photo skitarg2_zpscf22jnjz.jpg

https://www.facebook.com/skitarg

A big thanks to Martin Efternamn for the help with the Skitarg song-titles.

Text & photos by Renata “Pieni” Lino.

Thomas Manell leaves The End Of Grace

Posted in News with tags , , , , on 1st March 2015 by Pieni

On April 10th, The End Of Grace will support Skitarg at the legendary Sticky Fingers, Gothenburg. This will be drummer Thomas Manell‘s last show:

 photo _DSC0821_zpsef2a8dvs.jpg “Hey guys!

The time has come for me to move on in my musical endeavours. Metalcore was a new genre for me when I joined and as it has turned out its not what I’m looking for.

I want to thank the guys for a great time with everything I have experienced and lots of love to all the people I have met out there and through fb/instagram. I know that The End Of Grace is going to go far so support them just as awesome as you’ve done so far. smile emoticon

See you in Gothenburg- witch I will still attend on.

/Thomas

Thomas also recorded the band’s latest single, “Final Burden”, which will be released soon. The “B-side” for this single will be a remix of “Beneath The Waves” done by TEoG‘s friend Frodd.

www.facebook.com/TheEndOfGrace

One year later – interview with THE END OF GRACE

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , on 2nd December 2014 by Pieni

Formed in December 2012 between Stockholm and Gothenburg, THE END OF GRACE has been under my radar practically ever since. I made sure to be present on their live debut, at Rockbitch Boat 2013, and took the chance to interview them at the time (read it here). Now, exactly one year later, the boys played the same event… and there I went again, and had a chat with them, again. I sat down with Johan (clean vocals/bass), Jimmy (guitar) and Thomas (drums), and eventually Kriss (growls) joined us. And what was supposed to be just a quick catching-u, ended up being quite a long conversation, both riveting and amusing.

 photo _DSC0567_zps9b5a3eeb.jpg

Renata: It’s been exactly one year since your first show, but you’ve played quite a few meanwhile. What was the best and worst experience you’ve had so far?
Jimmy Bergman: The best experience was when we were on tour with OUTTRIGER. It was so much fun!
Thomas Manell: Actually… no! ‘Cause Johan wasn’t there!
Jimmy: Yeah, I know, but it was really amazing for us!
Thomas: What do you have to say about that, Johan?
Johan Hagman: Well, I had the best time of my life when you were out there touring, so… (laughs)

Renata: So for you, Johan, what was your best show?
Johan: It was NOT the OUTTRIGER tour… (laughs). I don’t know. It was really fun last night, actually. It really felt like people stepped out to the plate. After one year we’ve hopefully grown together that much, so it felt good, it felt cool. I think that was one of the best shows. But soundwise it must have been Sticky Fingers because they have the best sound. Now the worst show…
Jimmy: That was also the OUTTRIGER tour (laughs). There were like… four people!
Johan: Ha, now I get it. But we had so many shows with crappy sound…
Thomas: Kryptan…
Jimmy: Definitely Kryptan!
Johan: Oooooh! Sure, sure! Kryptan!
Thomas: It was very well set, we got hotel rooms, food, beer…
Johan: Too much beer…
Thomas: True, we had too much beer. Anyway, they took care of us but the show itself was just… terrible!
Johan: The sound was terrible and we got drunk. After that we decided not to drink again before shows.
 photo _DSC0040_zps5cfc20ac.jpgThomas: Robert (Åkerlund, guitar) was sooooo pissed, yelling at the sound guy. We had programmed all the sound before, the soundcheck took like one hour and a half, two hours – which is extremely long for a soundcheck – and then when we’re supposed to start playing, everything that they had memorized is gone! As for the funniest experience, I think it was with SEVENTRIBE. That tour we played in Linköping, Gothenburg and Stockholm? That was really much fun. And the Rockbitch Boat this year and last year. It’s a good event, there are lots of people… and we get to hang out.

Renata: I remember that last year, your first show was also the first time the five of you were playing together. That’s still your MO, rehearsing separately?
Johan: Didn’t you hear our soundcheck last night?
Thomas: That was rehearsal! (laughs)
Johan: That was the first time we’ve all played the new song (“Final Burden”) together, so that was rehearsal. We can’t rehearse but people can tell that we focus on the positive sides. We do what we do and it works.

Renata: Speaking about “Final Burden”, the reception by the crowd was so great! Were you expecting that?
Johan: I think people are embracing the new sound. That new song is harder and I think people like that. I saw what bands the kids out there had on their t-shirts and it’s right down our alley. And we’ve been talking about sounds for soooo long… So if one song, that no one ever heard, gets that reaction…
Thomas: It’s such a good thing!

Renata: Which reminds me that you, Johan, were afraid of ruining the TEoG sound given your hardcore preference/influence, but after listening both “Beneath The Waves” and now “Final Burden”, I don’t think anything’s ruined at all – just as I expected!
Johan: Ah, but “Beneath The Waves” was written long before!
Jimmy: It was maybe the first song we did with THE END OF GRACE.
Johan: Anyway, it was never a problem. We’re so open now, we have the sound that we’re aiming for. I was unsure at the time but it’s really never been a problem.

Renata: So in comparison to “Lost In Transition”, what can the fans expect from this upcoming new album? photo _DSC0291_zps8ea75ad2.jpg
Jimmy: Faster riffs. And more riffs in the songs.
Johan: Yes, much more riffs! More breakdowns too.
Jimmy: Really fast drums…
Thomas: Yeah, we’ll see about that… (laughs).
Johan: Cleaner. Better.
Jimmy: Harder.
Johan: More… us, in my opinion. More Kriss, more me, more Jimmy, more Robert, more Thomas… You know, we can send a metalcore song to Thomas and then he grooves it up. That’s the funny thing – we want the drums in a certain way but then he… I can’t explain it! It gets groovy! All of a sudden it’s groovy. What the fuck, this works! It’s not supposed to, it was supposed to be a drum machine! (laughs) But yeah, faster, heavier, and even more focused on the choruses.

Renata: On that first gig, Robert was still a stand-in guitarist, replacing Sulan Von Zoomlander. What did he bring to the band when he became a permanent member of TEoG?
Thomas: Yesterday me and Johan were talking about how Jimmy and Robert work together as guitarists. Not just how they play but what they do on stage – taking each side, jumping on the speakers and just giving it all to the audience. That’s one of the things that tells you how well they work together.
Johan: They have a healthy rivalry. If Jimmy does something, Robert has to do it too but he has to do it a bit better. And then Jimmy has to best him… you know?
Thomas: And you said that it makes YOU want to do better!
Johan: Exactly! Hopefully I can make them do what they do and feel comfortable around me, ‘cause I can’t play bass that well, I just focus on banging my head and then they can focus on doing their shit. And then all of a sudden they’re standing on speakers! (laughs) It feels like they get fired up from each other and it’s “fuck it, I have to do better than him”.

Renata: So you’re more consistent, more whole as a band?
Johan: I hope so! But it comes with baggage. We’ve been playing together for so long (Jimmy, Johan and Robert played in ROAD TO REPENT before THE END OF GRACE) and we all know each other so well that it’s easy to fall into the trap of doing it as we used to. The same problems, the same issues, same discussions… That hasn’t been a problem yet but I believe it won’t be as we’re more open now.
Renata: And you’ve been through that before, so now you know how to find a way.
Thomas: You’ve learnt from it.
Johan: And especially with this band, where we never see each other. With the other band it was three times a week, but this time we never see each other.
Renata: You don’t have time to get tired of each other.
Johan: Exactly! It’s a blessing and a curse (laughs).

 photo _DSC0245_zpsb1d08d31.jpg

Renata: Last time we also talked about making a video (which you ended up doing for “Beneath The Waves”) and how the budget was the biggest obstacle. What we didn’t talk about was – if you had an unlimited budget, how would you like to make a video?
Thomas: Personally, I’m not a big fans of videos where you just see the band standing and playing in a certain scenario. I’d like to try animations and stuff like that. Try to build a story – fiction or whatever. That would be cool.
Renata: Any special storyline in your head already?
Thomas: No, that would depend on the song.
Renata: Something according to the lyrics then. And you guys?
Jimmy: I’m with Thomas. I don’t like to see just the band, I want a story behind it. It’s more fun to see.
Renata: Animation too or… ?
Jimmy: I hope for a big production actually. Girls… cars… you name it.
Johan (while Thomas laughs): What the fuck?! Have you even heard what you’ve said? “We want girls, we want cars”… whaaat??? (laughs).
Thomas: One of my favorite bands nowadays, I think I actually like their videos more than their music… (pauses) well, they’re both good.
Johan: They are called THE END OF GRACE(laughs).
Thomas: They’re called OK GO – definitely no metalcore but I love their music videos. They’re in them themselves where they do all these fucked up things. In one (“This Too Shall Pass”) they have these Rube Goldberg machines and they jump from one to another, just like a domino. They drop one domino and it goes all the way around through the whole music video. That kind of things! So it’s interesting to see the video.
Renata: It catches your attention.
Jimmy: Girls… cars… (laughs).
Johan: BRUDAR (girls in Swedish)! Well I don’t have a problem with a performance video. I think it’s cool, more old-school-ish, but it depends on how you do it. it’s not good to see a performance video shot from one angle, you have to do something else, something special. Like in BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE’s video “Tears Don’t Fall” where they introduce the water, and then you have their song “Hand Of Blood” where they go SLAYER and it’s raining blood and shit like that. That’s cool. Of course I could see something with a storyline and I think lyrical meaning works really well.

Renata: You’ve told me last year how the expression “deathcore popcorn” came about. Tell me now about the “angry pop” hashtag that I’ve been seeing in all your Instragram photos!
Jimmy: Yeaaaaah… that was me. Again (grins). There’s this band that I won’t say the name where the guy hates metalcore. He called it “angry pop”. But I actually think it’s perfect for us! We ARE an angry pop band! So I took it!

Thomas: And Kriss is here! We can do all the questions again… (laughs).

Renata: Is there anything about this past year that you want to share? Something that’s happened or that you’ve planned for the near future?
Jimmy: World domination! (laughs).
Thomas: Jimmy is moving to Gothenburg, close to Kriss, and I only have two hours of driving to Gothenburg from where I live…
Renata: So it’s not world domination, it’s world chaos…
Thomas: Ha ha, yeah, it’s world chaos! But I think that’s going to change a bit how we’ll work from now on. We will be able to rehearse and Johan and Robert can come down once in a while.
Kriss Panic: I happen to know a flashy new studio.
Johan: Progress! We’ve got a practice room! And we’ve got an album…
Renata: Any idea of when it’s going to be released?
Johan: Let’s say… we don’t. It’s better that way. We’ve got the songs. That’s it for now.

Renata: What about “Final Burden”? Will it be released as a single?
Johan: It’s just a new song. I don’t know about the other guys, we haven’t talked face-to-face about it yet, but in my opinion it’s just a new song.
Thomas: You’re so mysterious! (laughs)

Renata: I think it’s good to keep some things to yourselves. Nowadays things are posted on the internet so on-the-spot, every idea that later it doesn’t sound so good anymore or just can’t be fulfilled. I remember, for instance, someone posting “TEoG is so unstable!”, when Sulan left, because you’ve had all those line-up changes before. But that’s common in the beginning. So many major bands went through it but at the time there was no Facebook to post about it and so you’d only come to know the line-up that would be playing a show or recording an album.
 photo _DSC0559_zpsaf7a2a41.jpg
Johan: It’s so easy to post stuff on Facebook. It’s better to be a bit more careful. But when it comes to stability, this band it’s not unstable AT ALL. There will be no more line-up changes. I don’t think any of us would want to keep on playing if someone would quit right now. It’s a special feeling. If Kriss would leave, how would we ever find someone who could… what did Robert say? It was in Swedish and I can’t find the right words in English.
Thomas: Oh yeah, last night! It was so beautiful!
Renata: Call him!
Johan: He’s asleep, he’s hung-over (laughs). It was something like Kriss being able to suck the audience in and make them feel like they’re right there in your face.
Thomas: Exactly! Thar Kriss can make that person in the back of the room feel like he’s in front of the stage. His way of entertaining. He really REALLY entertains the audience. That is something that’s unique and it has become a sort of a trademark for us. We’re a live band after all.
Kriss: This is maybe weird for a singer to say, but my inspiration on stage isn’t any singer. It’s actually Jimi Hendrix. I see myself inside Jimi. I don’t always sing the same way ‘cause I think that makes a better show. If you’ve seen us a bunch of times, and you see the same thing over and over again, I think it gets boring. So I change it. Not all of the time, I’d say 90% of it it’s the same, but I switch things around a little bit. I think music is organic and you can change things, especially on a live show. When you write music, in your head it’s dead on. but once you’ve sung it or played a bunch of times, you think “oh, I wish I’ve done this way, I wish I’ve done it that way” and it’s always a kind of progression. Maybe not so much with the guitars, but with vocals it’s fun to do.
Johan: And there’s room for it.
Kriss: That’s why I love you guys because none of you goes “uh, what the fuck?”. It’s fun, you know? Have fun on the fucking stage! Enjoy what you do! That’s the more important thing. And the crowd sees you having fun and that you’re digging it… We’re on a journey for every show, so follow us!
Thomas: Like yesterday. I think we had a great crowd, considering the fact that we were the first band out and people were still drinking in their cabins or whatever. But we had a great crowd who built a fucking mosh pit! That gives you a special feeling.

Renata: That thing you’ve said of “enjoying what you do” being the most important thing. I totally agree. I think you have to please yourselves first. It pisses me off when some people accuse a band of disregarding their fans just because they wanted to try something new.
 photo _DSC0251_zpsb1e38e02.jpgKriss: I think it’s a fine line. As a band, from a business side – which I deal with (Kriss is a promoter and band booker for Klubb Defused at Sticky Fingers) – sometimes you have to put yourself out for others. We are a metalcore band, by definition, and within those boundaries you can mess around but… SLIPKNOT have made pretty much the same album for four albums but they love it. They’ve now changed their sound and developed it. I think that’s the way forward. I don’t think we’ll be needing to make a radical departure from our sound, we’re not going to turn into SABATON anytime soon, but you can evolve, you can grow the music. And for us, the way we’re set up – living in different parts of the country – we do our best to put up the best possible show that we can. But I think that from day one it’s just been about the energy. Pure pure energy. I believe that if you’re going to do a show and people come and pay money to see that shit, you’re not going to just stand there. We’re not a dance band, we’re not going to be still… we get into it, it’s fuckin metal! You shake your head and jump around the stage. That makes for a great show, it’s what people want to see. If you’re on a boat like this, with 30 bands, how do you separate yourself from the others? I figure you just go in the attitude “I’m going to blow everyone away in this fucking killer live show”. And I also think heavy metal fans are very forgiving about certain things. To me the most important thing is to see a killer live show, people giving it all. I think the crowd respects that more. I know a lot of bands who can stand there and be super tight but that’s not a live show to me, that’s listening to a cd. And if I want to listen to a cd, I can do that back home. I want to see some guys shake their heads up and down. I had my club night and I saw I KILLED THE PROM QUEEN. They played at Sticky Fingers at the small stage and I’ve never seen a band make that stage look so big. It’s the tiniest stage, you’ve seen us on there, and they just made it seem huge. And I think that’s the key, if you can nail that. Last night the stage was really small but we made it look fucking huge. We opened up. We’ve played with some bands and they’ve not learned how to use the stage yet, while we just kind of go in and… If there’s something to jump on, we’re on it! If something provides me a fucking hangoff, I’m doing it! I’m going to bring this fucking whole show into your face. Jump into the audience… I’ll join your moshing! You know, let’s do this!
Thomas: It gets more natural to do that because we’re not getting together that often. So every time we meet for a gig it’s like… I’m going to be super Swedish now, but it’s like when you let the cows out in the spring, they go super happy. photo _DSC0075_zps7968191c.jpg
Johan: We’re like cattle, that’s what you’re saying…
Thomas: Yeah, we’re like cattle, man (laughs). I love these guys, both as persons and as my fellow musicians. Being up on stage and playing with them it’s the best thing I know. And that reflects itself, people can tell. You can go up and do a great show as a band but it can be fake, like a built-up show. But it comes natural for us. Being us is enough. (Addressing Kriss) what was it that you said about a year ago, in Stockholm, at Pub Anchor? “I’m just being me” or something.
Kriss: Oh, right! “I don’t do pressure, I just do me”. In the beginning I had nerves doing shows with the boys, but now it’s just a relaxed and calm feeling. It’s like a relationship you have with someone, in a sense that when you first start you’re always a bit tentative but then, after a certain amount of time… It’s like my relationship with my girlfriend, I wake up in the morning and it’s just natural. And that’s what it’s like being on stage. Right now it’s just natural, everyone’s very comfortable with what’s going on. I have to say I’m super stoked that Johan’s back ‘cause he’s poured the energy back into the band, especially on this boat. We just missed that, it’s just not the same. Niklas (Aggemyr, THROUGH THE CRACKS) did a great job but we can’t replicate Johan. He’s that little bit of glue that binds us together.
Thomas: And for those of you who can’t see it, Johan has a tear in his eye. (laughs)

Kriss: One thing I love is watching all of us develop as human beings, not just as musicians. Like Johan getting married, I’m getting married next year… we are all in a different place, we’re not that band just going out trying to score chicks. We’re just about playing music, literally. And I think that’s more positive. We’ll have a drink, as we did last night, have some fun, but it’s more focused on the music. And I think that’s a more positive thing for us because that really comes out. We’re not worrying about other shit and we’re more together as a band because of that.
Johan: We want to be positive. We are all positive beings. photo _DSC0200_zps5588e570.jpg
Kriss: We were talking about lyrics… how do you write metal that’s positive? It’s quite a difficult thing! ‘Cause the way I sing it’s pretty brutal at times, so how do you turn that into positivity? Me and Johan had talked about it and I think you can still be angry but positive at the same time. Obviously it’s metal, we’re not going to sit and write love songs in that way. We ain’t gonna be Barry White(laughs)
Johan: As Kriss said, metal, traditionally, is angry and it’s a great way to get all your frustrations out. And most lyrics are kind of negative. And I think the future is being able to write songs about positive things because, like I said, no one in this band is a bad dude.
Kriss: I’m a badass dude, what are you talking about? (laughs)
Thomas: But he has a big heart.
Johan: That’s the thing! Everyone has a big heart! Why should we not show that in our lyrics? There’s not a song in the new album that involves anything negative.
Kriss: I think we’ve developed. It’s still angry but we’re just taking a different perspective on things. We’ve changed as human beings since the first stuff came out. I think we’re just trying to connect with people from a different angle, it’s more about personal experiences than anything else.
Johan: Just take “Final Burden”. It’s an angry song but it’s anger towards yourself, to what you’ve done, what you have to become to be a better person. We all want to be better persons, we all NEED to be better persons. Why not write music about that instead of “I wanna fucking kill you”? (starts singing SLIPKNOT’s “Disasterpiece”). Nothing wrong with that, but… I’m really really proud of the lyrical meaning for all of the songs now because we’re all positive dudes, we should make music about positive messages.

TEoG official Facebook

Text & photos by Renata “Pieni” Lino

Interview with Jimmy Bergman of Through The Cracks

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , , , , , on 4th August 2014 by Pieni

There’s a brand new soulful rock project blossoming in Stockholm, courtesy of Jimmy Bergman and Tillie Grundel. The duo has just released their first single, the beautiful “Breathless”, and as I went to Gothenburg to see Jimmy’s other band, The End Of Grace, I arranged a little meeting with the talented musician. He was tired from the show on the previous night, and had an almost-five-hour roadtrip back to Stockholm ahead of him – from where he would drive to Berlin the following day – meaning he really needed to rest. But still he took his time to talk to me about Through The Cracks, always with a smile on his face.

 photo ttc_zps61c35b51.jpg

RL: You’re a very creative person and I know you’re writing stuff all the time, not always for The End Of Grace, not always metal. What made you get serious with this project in particular?

JB: I’ve always thought of making another project, something rock or more acoustic… a different music style for me to play. I had some ideas, been thinking about them for a while, and then I met Tillie. I showed her my stuff and she really liked it, so I told her “hey, put some vocals on it!”. From there we created Through The Cracks and… yeah, it got serious.

RL: Tillie isn’t here, so tell me a bit about her!

JB: She’s studied music for a while and she’s a really talented girl. And that’s the thing between Tillie and me – Tillie has studied a lot in music and I’ve never done any of that. So I think we’re a cool match! It sounds so good what we’re doing together! We have so many ideas and Tillie’s a great singer, really great singer, she was a stand-in in… (tries to remember the name)

RL: Karmic Link. I was surprised to see that it’s a symphonic/gothic metal band! I thought of her more like a jazz/soul kind of girl.

JB: Yeah, but she can do everything with her vocals. She has a great soul voice and it’s the perfect match for the sound we have. I think it’s kind of unique, really interesting. People really love her voice. I have a lot of fans and friends saying they don’t like female vocals but they love Tillie’s voice.

RL: Like me! Nowadays talking of “female vocals” is associated precisely with symphonic, high-pitched vocal ranges, which I’m tired of. But her voice is sweet and strong at the same time!

JB: Exactly. I really love her voice. It’s so fucking good I don’t even have the words for it. And she’s a great girl.

RL: And how did you feel when you heard “Breathless” for the first time with her vocals on it and the lyrics she wrote?

JB: We were at my little home studio, ready to record everything, and before starting the recording she just sang it to me. I was, “what the fuck? This is really good!” She asked if I wanted to change something and I said “Noooo! Just do what you want!” (laughs) We did some producing stuff and yeah, she’s really amazing, like I said before. I was in love with her vocals and her work.

RL: What about the name? I love how it sounds, Through The Cracks. How hard was it to choose?

JB: (Laughs) It was really hard! I think me and Tilllie spent three weeks, maybe four, thinking about the name.  We were working with the song at the same time, so I went through Spotify and I got some ideas, looking for song names. Through The Cracks came up, I showed it to Tillie, she liked it… we still thought about it for a while more, we had a lot of choices, but we went with Through The Cracks. I think it’s easy to say! People love it! When I played with The End Of Grace yesterday people came up to me and asked “what the fuck is Through The Cracks?”. “It’s my other project”. “It sounds really good!” “I know.” (laughs) So people know Through The Cracks already, it’s an easy name. It’s like The End Of Grace – it’s easy to say, easy to remember.

RL: One thing I’ve been wanting to ask you for a while is about your writing process. Do you wake up in the morning and think “today is a good day to write (insert musical style here)” or you just let your creativity run free?

 photo _DSC0002copy_zpsf876199e.jpgJB: I’m playing every day. I pick up the guitar and just play. And if it’s a great metalcore riff, then it’s for The End Of Grace. If it’s not so The End Of Grace style, like Through The Cracks, then it’s for Through The Cracks. I never focus on one band, I just let it flow.

RL: And sometimes you come up with totally different things, like punk rock songs…

JB: Yeah, it’s really crazy. I even made some “Turkish stuff” too. (laughs) I’m doing a lot of music, actually. I’m doing it with my friends – like that punk rock song you’ve just talked about. It’s just fun! I’m playing music every day, I love it. This is why I’m doing this.

RL: And do you look at someone or something for inspiration?

JB: No. I think it’s just my passion for music.  I’m working and listening to music, and then I come home and I start playing music. I don’t have just one band or one artist that inspires me so… I think I’m my own inspiration. (smiles)

RL: And what do you do when you’re not inspired at all?

JB: Hmm… hang around with friends… (pauses, thinking)

RL: Pick up girls…

JB: Pick up girls (laughs), have some fun… I don’t know. I’m doing stuff all the time, I’m never at one place. That’s why I’m going to Germany tomorrow – to clear my head. And then I come back and go into the studio and do stuff for Through The Cracks and The End Of Grace.

RL: You’re in charge of all instruments here but you’re a guitar player. How old were you when you discovered this passion for the guitar? When did you start dreaming of becoming a rockstar?

JB: I’ve always been dreaming of being a rockstar, since I was a kid (smiles). I think I played some guitars when I was 12 but I was so bad that it wasn’t fun anymore and I stopped playing. I started again when I was about 15, maybe, ‘cause my uncle is a guitar player and I was a lot with him, playing with his guitars all the time. I really wanted to be cool, really wanted to be a rock star, and more than that, I wanted people to like my songs. And to be on stage. Stage is the main thing, I love to be up there. It’s  a child dream and now it’s something that’s going forward. (smiles)

RL: And you want to play live with Through The Cracks. How will that happen – session musicians or you want this to become a full band?  photo 10580125_656118814483566_906789451208994489_n_zps7ee631d3.jpg

JB: Me and Tillie were talking about having stand-in players. I have some guys I’d like to have in Through The Cracks but I can’t tell anything about it right now ‘cause nothing is official yet. But if we were to have a show now we would get stand-ins for the drums and the bass, maybe another guitarist, and maybe also some female backing vocals… Then we have backtracks, of course, for the keys. We were thinking of having a guy doing that too, but it would be too much. Yeah, we will play live…

RL: I will be there!

JB: I am sure you will. (smiles). We have some new songs on the way, we’re going to release an EP. We have another product for Through The Cracks, but I can’t tell anything about that, but we’re working on it now and we’ll see what happens. I think the EP will be out maybe in November.

RL: You produced “Breathless” but now you’re working with someone else…

JB: Yes, he’s a great guy, a friend of mine, Niklas Aggemyr, and a really good musician. We were drinking some beers, I showed him Through The Cracks and he really liked it. So I showed him the new song too, told him what I wanted to do and he was really stoked, really wanted to help producing it. So we’re in his studio in Södertälje Sweden, called Musikaffär’n, and he’s helping me making the song sound really really good. It’s just one song we’re doing, so we’ll see what happens with that.

RL: I was going to ask what are the plans for the near future, but I guess you’ve answered that already – EP in November?

JB: November – yeah, I hope so. We just need to get it done, that’s the first thing. I really want to release it but things go really slow sometimes… But we have some songs in our minds and I think we’ll make something good. Then release it and play some shows, some kind of release party, maybe… I don’t know. Actually Sticky Fingers wanted to book us… yesterday! But we have just one song done, so… But it’s a possibility for when the EP is out. We’re a new band, everything takes time – write and practice the songs, get shows… it’s a lot of work. And I need to do The End Of Grace work too. But it will be done.

RL: Of course it will! Wish you all the luck with that. Have fun in Berlin!

JB: Thanks!

Through The Cracks Official Facebook

Interview by Renata “Pieni” Lino

Göteborg Metal Fest – Gothenburg, Sweden

Posted in Festival, Live with tags , , , , , , , , , on 28th July 2014 by Pieni

Lost Seconds + Chasing Neverland + BatAAr + The End Of Grace
Valand, Gothenburg
25th July 2014

 photo _DSC0096_zps09244409.jpg

Göteborg Metal Fest was this really cool event that took place last Friday. Well, cool in the sense of “awesome”, because the literal meaning, regarding temperature… dear Lord! As The End Of Grace-Kriss would later say, “it was like playing in a sauna”.

The original line-up included A Silent Escape and pointed BatAAr as the headliners. But about a week prior to the show, The End Of Grace were announced as the headliners and A Silent Escape’s name erased, just like that. No one gave an explanation for these changes and I didn’t ask for any either – I don’t know A Silent Escape well enough to be bummed by their cancellation, and as you probably know by now, TEoG is one of my favorite bands and so I was stoked to see them topping the bill. Even if just for “prestige” sake, as every band played exactly the same time (half an hour).

I got delayed and almost missed the first band, Lost Seconds (sorry guys). So I’m not very comfortable in saying that I wasn’t impressed with them, as I’ve only seen the two last songs. Especially because I was now listening to them on Spotify and they sound good enough (“Broken” and “Forgotten” particularly standing out). It just seemed they needed a little bit more of attitude – the passion’s there, they just have to let it flow outwards. (3,5 / 5)

Lost Seconds on Facebook

 photo _DSC0046_zpscdda5c96.jpg

 photo _DSC0037_zps10cc2285.jpg

Chasing Neverland, on the other hand, got on stage like they owned it. A solid discharge of anger, with a handful of fans backing it up loudly. Their debut album “Dissonance In Harmony” was released early this year, I think, and songs such as “Hollow Eyes” (for which there’s a video), “Two Birds One Stone” and “Treat Her Right” seem to be quite popular. The latter is barely one minute and a half long but in this show it lasted a lot more than that, the chorus being sung over and over again by the crowd – let’s face it, “treat her like a princess, fuck her like a porn star” has a catchy ring to it… (5 / 5)

Chasing Neverland on Facebook

 photo _DSC0180_zps8b373e5c.jpg

 photo _DSC0152_zpse2f1aa0f.jpg

Last year, at Rockbitch Boat, I was advised to see BatAAr’s show. I ended up not following that advice and when I checked them out later on, I was really pissed at myself. So I was more than happy for this chance to make up for that mistake. Needless to say that both the music lover and the photographer in me were enthralled by their show – despite the aforementioned heat, the bad lights and the smoke machine. They’re playing Rockbitch Boat this year once again and this time I’ll make sure to watch it and bring you a detailed report. They have a new single/video out, “Riskbreaker”, but I invite you to take a look at all their YouTube channel and listen to everything that’s up on Spotify, so you can grasp the full talent and diversity of this band. (5 / 5)

BatAAr on Facebook

 photo _DSC0654_zps49372c79.jpg

 photo _DSC0475_zps28e1bd33.jpg

Now, what’s there to say about The End Of Grace that I haven’t said before? Oh, wait, there is something – this was their best show! And the funny thing is that the heat affected the band’s computer and some of the backtracks simply didn’t play; that Thomas wasn’t playing on his drumkit and, according to him, “some things were missing” so he wasn’t totally satisfied with his performance at the end; that, again because of the heat, Kriss’ voice was somewhat broken near the end; that they skipped one chorus in “Metal Mulisha”… But a great show doesn’t need to be technically perfect – for that, you stay home and listen to the studio recordings. A great show is all about the band’s commitment to their music and the empathy they establish with the crowd. Who, by the way, was just as amazing – there’d been lots of headbanging and a small mosh pit in Chasing Neverland, and BatAAr had some devoted fans screaming along the lyrics, but The End Of Grace got the most vigorous circles and fists in the air. Kriss covered every inch of that stage, and during “Fist Face Bleed” (that BatAAr-Seb helped singing) Jimmy jumped into the front rows, playing his guitar side-by-side a fan in a TEoG t-shirt. And since they improvised well enough to make up for the little slips I pointed out, which also takes skill, I say it again without second thoughts – best TEoG show I’ve seen so far. (5 / 5)

The End Of Grace on Facebook

 photo _DSC0806_zps4cf0ed5a.jpg

 photo _DSC0001_zps508d7b50.jpg

Text & photos by Renata “Pieni” Lino

Through The Cracks release first single

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , on 20th July 2014 by Pieni

 photo ttc_zps61c35b51.jpg

The talented songwriter Mr. Jimmy Bergman (THE END OF GRACE) and the beautiful voice of Ms. Tillie Grundel (former KARMIC LINK) put together THROUGH THE CRACKS, a project of rock music full of feeling. The first single, “Breathless”, was released digitally last Friday, on iTunes and Spotify.

Follow them on Facebook, where you can also see the lyrics for this beautiful song (click here) .
 photo breathless_zpsf3b886c0.jpg

The End Of Grace release video for “Beneath The Waves”

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 28th February 2014 by Pieni

 photo teogsingle_zpsb97359b4.jpg

The End Of Grace new single, “Beneath The Waves”, has been available on iTunes and Spotify since midnight. Several comments from fans on social networks (Facebook, Instragram…) claim that this is their best song so far.

The band feels the same and thought a video for it was in order. It has just been released on their official YouTube channel:

TEoG online:
Official Facebook
Instagram
Twitter
Youtube

Dead By April w/ support – Gothenburg, Sweden

Posted in Gig, Live with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 20th February 2014 by Pieni

Dead By April, Seventribe, The End Of Grace
Sticky Fingers/Klubb Defused, Gothenburg
14th February 2014

 photo be_zps8780da11.jpg

With the release of their third full-length album, Dead By April threw a release party – read “concert” – in one of the most famous venues in their hometown. The End Of Grace and Seventribe had already announced a gig there on the same date, although on a different stage (Sticky Fingers has a middle and a top floor stage), so I guess having those two bands as support was a matter of chance, not a plan. Personally, I was more than happy with that line-up.

Despite merging the events, The End Of Grace and Seventribe still performed in the middle floor (Klubb Defused), which was wise. Let’s face it – no matter how amazing they both are, it was DBA’s night and the majority of their pop-metal fans isn’t exactly keen on fierce metalcore. So it’s better to play on a smaller stage in a smaller room that will fill up easily, than in a bigger stage where the room would be almost empty.

Being the younger band (they were formed in late 2012), TEoG played first. They’ve been gathering a solid fan base – me included – since the very beginning and especially after the release of the “Lost In Transition” EP, so there was a considerable number of people singing along the choruses. The rest of the crowd seemed to surrender to the band’s sound and vigour, as when I looked around, everyone was either headbanging or smiling approvingly.
They played the aforementioned 5-track EP, kicking off with “Betrayer” and ending with the title-track, and in-between presented us with a new song which will be released as single on 28th February – punchy riffing and with a catchier-than-ever chorus, “Beneath The Waves” has everything to be a hit.
As in their first live gig, at Rockbitch Boat last November, Sebastian from Bataar got on stage to sing the Swedish verses in “Fist Face Bleed” – and spike the people in the front row with a beer shower… Speaking of that first show, TEoG have only played two more between that and this one but you could see a major difference in their self-confidence. I know that despite the Plexiglas cage in which the drum kit was set, this stage was still bigger and allowed them to move around, which didn’t happen at Rockbitch Boat. But it was more than that. Their performance was thicker, more intense. And even though there wasn’t a killer mosh pit, the response was great, which must have had a special meaning to singer Kriss, as he’s been working as a promoter there at Klubb Defused for over a year. [5 / 5]

www.facebook.com/TheEndOfGrace

 photo teogkd1_zps918b343f.jpg

 photo teogkd2_zpsb28ee9f1.jpg

I was glad of finally having the chance to see Seventribe live. I’m a subscriber of Sweden Rock Magazine, and when they won the Released, Live and Unsigned contest and got to play at Sweden Rock Festival 2011, the single “Dream Me” came with the magazine and completely won me over. But that was it – I totally lost track of them afterwards. Well that won’t happen again.
I’d seen live videos of them, but even if I hadn’t, when a metalcore band gets on stage wearing some kind of school Summer uniform where the shirt is pink, you just know that something wicked is coming your way. Even if someone is missing. Seventribe is an eight-piece but I only counted seven members. I don’t know what happened, and I hope one day I can see the full line-up in action, but maybe it was for the best – things were pretty crammed up there already. Still, they managed to jump and headbang and dance and whatever, without bumping into each other or missing a note. Eventually, near the end, two of them hopped into the middle of the crowd and played from there.
As I’ve said before, I’d lost track of them and only when I learnt they would play a couple of shows with The End Of Grace did I remember of checking what they’ve been up to since that single on Sweden Rock. Well, a new EP, “Reborn”, had been released last year, and even if I really enjoyed it, I confess I didn’t memorize the songs, except for “Be Reborn”. I can tell you for sure that they played that one, as I was humming along the melody, but can’t tell you much more about the setlist (apart from the mandatory “Dream Me”). There’s a video for “Takedown Syndrome” and a recent lyric one for “The Aftermath”, and “Wings Of Belief” is their most played song on Spotify, so maybe these were some of the songs played that night. Whatever those were, they were loud, aggressive, a total adrenaline discharge. [5 / 5]

www.facebook.com/seventribe

 photo STKD1_zps2fd15b7e.jpg

 photo STKD2_zps1ae52513.jpg

As expected, the top floor of Sticky Fingers was crowded. I tried to get close to the stage but quickly gave up – the first three or four rows were already packed with eager fans. So if I was disappointed when Dead By April didn’t play more than 45 minutes, I can only imagine how those fans must have felt. But at the same time… to say I’m unimpressed with “Let The World Know” is quite an understatement. That’s why I haven’t written the review about it yet, as it’s taking me quite a while to process it and find the right words in order to be fair. It’s not that it’s a terrible album, but… Let’s just say I was glad that this release party didn’t include the entire track-list and that old songs such as “Losing You” or “Within My Heart” were strategically played here and there.
This was also the first full show of Marcus Rosell as the new drummer. Marcus has played with DBA several times in the past, as a stand-in drummer for Alex Svenningsson whenever he needed to step out of some gig. But now that Alex has left for good, it was only natural that Marcus’ role would become permanent. So natural that there wasn’t even an official announcement. It took the video for “As A Butterfly”, where Marcus is featured, for the fans to realize the new line-up change. Alex would recently confirm his departure on his own Facebook page, but since main songwriter Pontus Hjelm is still on board and Marcus’ face is already familiar to the fans anyway, there shouldn’t be any fuss about this.
The intro of “Beautiful Nightmare”, the first track in the new album, echoed and thrilled screams followed suit. Truth be told – even if I’m still struggling with the new songs, DBA are all about emotions and put their full hearts in their performance and establish an empathy (no pun intended regarding their song with the same name) with the audience, which are essential features in a great live show. And that’s what this was – short but great. [4,5 / 5]

www.facebook.com/deadbyapril

 photo DBASF1_zps9c047278.jpg

 photo DBASF3_zpsf0860fd3.jpg

 photo DBASF2_zps192f2649.jpg

Text & photos by Renata “Pieni” Lino

The End Of Grace release live-footage video for “Lost In Transition”

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 21st January 2014 by Pieni

 photo 1507625_681131615242469_818385506_n_zps1e6d812e.jpg
Photos by Malene Aakre

As previously reported by us (see here), The End Of Grace will release a video for their upcoming single “Beneath The Waves”. But until then, they’ve gathered live footage and a bit of backstage scenes to put up a video for the title-track of their EP “Lost In Transition”:

TEoG online:
Official Facebook
Instagram
Twitter
Youtube

The End Of Grace announce release date for “Beneath The Waves” single

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on 14th January 2014 by Pieni

 photo 1507625_681131615242469_818385506_n_zps1e6d812e.jpg
Photos by Malene Aakre

As previously reported by Valkyrian Music (see here), Swedish metalcore act The End Of Grace will release a new single, “Beneath The Waves”, soon. The date has now been revealed as 28th February and that a video for it will follow.

This is the first single from the upcoming debut full-length album which the boys are working hard on. Meanwhile, they’re also playing a few live shows in their homecountry:

13/2 – L’Orient, Linköping
14/2 – Sticky Fingers, Gothenburg (with SEVENTRIBE)
15/2 – Harry B. James, Stockholm (with SEVENTRIBE)

Valkyrian Music will cover the Stockholm show.

TEOG online:
Official Facebook
Instagram
Twitter
Youtube

Robert Åkerlund becomes permanent member of The End Of Grace

Posted in News with tags , , , , on 31st December 2013 by Pieni

 photo teogrbb01_zps5438bd3a.jpg

The End Of Grace finish 2013 announcing that Robert Åkerlund is now a permanent member of the band. Original guitarist Sulan Von Zoomlander had some personal affairs to take care of that prevented him to play TEoG‘s debut live performance at Rockbitch Boat and its follow-up at Göta Källare. Robert, who had played in Road To Repent along guitarist Jimmy Bergman and bassist/clean singer Johan Hagman, was called to fill in. Now that Sulan is leaving for good, Robert is the undoubtful perfect choice.

Quoting drummer Thomas Manell in the interview which Valkyrian did with the band last month, » One thing I can say about Robert is you can really tell that they’ve played together before. It’s a thing of magic. It’s like kindergarten all over.« Johan added: » Robert’s a great guitar player and he can feel the rhythm like Sulan does. «

 photo teogrbb14_zpsd45c011f.jpg

https://www.facebook.com/TheEndOfGrace
http://instagram.com/theendofgrace
https://twitter.com/theendofgrace
http://www.youtube.com/user/TheEndOfGrace

The End Of Grace release teaser for upcoming single

Posted in News with tags , , , , on 16th December 2013 by Pieni

 photo teog2013_zps2629e216.jpg

Metalcore act The End Of Grace (or deathcore popcorn, according to their own words – read the explanation here) are in writing process for their debut full-length album, after the successful EP “Lost In Transition” last October. But first a single will be released in February and the boys have just released one of their famous instrumental teasers for “Beneath The Waves”:

TEOG online:
Official Facebook
Instagram
Twitter
Youtube

Interview with The End Of Grace

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , on 13th November 2013 by Pieni

You’ve probably seen some of our posts about a Swedish new band called The End Of Grace. With roughly a year of existence, an extraordinary EP was released last month and this weekend they finally had their live debut. Perfect time for Renata to meet up with some of the boys and have a little chat with them.

 photo 1462949_667306176636178_810487083_n_zps90ebddf6.jpg

Renata: Hello boys. Thanks for taking some time to talk to me. My first question is something I’ve been wanting to ask you since the band was formed… Why is The End Of Grace a Gothenburg band when the majority of the band lives in the Stockholm area? What’s so special about that city?

Jimmy (Bergman, guitars): Gothenburg scene is bigger than Stockholm’s…
Johan (Hagman, clean vocals/bass): I don’t agree with that. It used to be bigger. The metal scene in Gothenburg used to be “the shit”, the “Gothenburg sound”. There was In Flames, Dark Tranquillity, At The Gates… But five years ago or so, the underground bands from Västerås, Eskilstuna… they started to pop up and the underground scene got bigger around here. Adept is one of them, coming from Trosa, near Södertälje, near Stockholm. So I don’t agree ‘cause Gothenburg has a lot of great bands but I’m not sure if the scene is better than in the rest of the country.

Renata: So now you’re going to change your location?

Jimmy: Yeah, I think we’re changing it to Stockholm/Gothenburg.
Johan: Anyways, who the fuck cares where we’re from? I don’t give a fuck. (laughs)
Thomas (Manell, drums): I say Småland. (more laughs)

Renata: Yes, it doesn’t matter, but I was curious because until recently, only Kriss (Panic, vocals) lived there and yet your Facebook page says you’re from Gothenburg.

Johan: I guess it had something to do with them travelling to Gothenburg when they started out, as Jimmie Strimmel (former singer) lived there.
Jimmy: Yes, we were going there when we made the page so we adopted Gothenburg.
Johan: And people around the world know the Gothenburg sound, so when you say “Sweden, Gothenburg” it means that okay, this is a great sounding band… (laughs)

Renata: you’re a metalcore band, but you have your own special “genre”… how did “deathcore popcorn” come up?

Johan : Ha ha ha!
Thomas: Oh Lord…
Jimmy (smiling): Yeah, that was me again.
Thomas: It’s always you!
Jimmy:  We have a thing like a pop band…
Johan: It came up during the recordings, while Jimmy was playing around. Since Kriss has a deathcore background and… I didn’t do the choruses in the first four songs but for “Lost In Transition” it was me who wrote the chorus on the spot, in the studio room, and i made it really poppy.
Thomas: Along with me!
Johan: Yes, but you did the uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuhhhhhhhhhh and I did the chorus. It doesn’t matter. It’s all great.
Thomas: It’s all gay!
Johan: In our old band (Johan and Jimmy played together before, in Road To Repent) we’ve always said that we wanted poppy choruses. Not because we want people to like it but because WE like it. It gives the music another dynamic. And that’s why it’s hardcore / deathcore / pop…
Jimmy: CORN!
Johan: Yeah, deathcore popcorn!

Renata: Thomas, you joined TEoG by the end of March, replacing Marcus Rosell, but I know that you were Sulan (Von Zoomlander, guitar) and Jimmy’s first choice. They’ve asked you a few times but you refused. What made you change your mind?

Thomas: That’s a really good question.
Johan: He likes the tail! Ha ha ha!
Thomas: What can I say? I really wanted to give it a try, you know? This is a genre that I’ve never played before and I’m all about developing as a musician. To me that’s what music is all about. So if I can become a better metalcore drummer, that’s all good. And the fact that Jimmy buttered everything up and said that “hey, we’re going to play this stadium and this stadium and you’re going to get laid like every hour…” so I was like yeah, okay, shit, I’ll be there!  photo _DSC0713_zps8e7d3250.jpg
Johan: I’ve heard that before! He said the same thing to me.
Thomas: But seriously, I love working with Jimmy. He’s a great guy and he writes good music. And I’m really happy that I met Johan and Kriss and Sulan… and now Robert (Åkerlund, live musician temporarily replacing Sulan), as well… it’s a great group. I’m really happy to be working with these guys. ‘Cause that’s what music is – a team effort.

Renata: And you, Johan. You’ve joined on bass but you’ve never played bass before, right?

Johan: Me, Jimmy and Robert used to play in Road To Repent and there I was just a singer. We did a lot of shit together for about three, four years. I used to play guitar in the older bands but I haven’t played an instrument for a few years. And then Jimmy called me because their bass player had stepped down. And he just asked me if I wanted to be in the band. I said, “dude, I can’t play bass. I’ve never played bass!”. And he said, “first thing, I need someone I can trust”. Okay, no problem. “I need someone that can sing”. Yeah, no problem. “And then the bass… yeah, that, well… whatever”. And I said, yeah, I can do that! As long as the bass is “whatever”! So it’s kind of a leap of faith because I have to trust in my musical talent to understand how I’m supposed to play bass. But when I look at other bass players… oooooh shit! I say I’m only here for the beer and play the bass as good as I can. And singing. It’s different, because I used to be the frontman. I don’t give a fuck about being a frontman or not, I just want to sing. That’s the baseline.
Thomas: I just want to say that when we rehearse without Kriss, Johan steps up with the microphone and the bass and he does a great job. I really enjoy watching it, as he hasn’t a bass school background, and he still plays his instrument well and is able to sing the way he sings.
Johan: You have to remember that I’ve been playing bass for 3 months
Thomas: So this is a music guy from deep down in his bones!
Johan: Thank you Queen!

Renata: Even before “Lost In Transition” was released, you were already working on your upcoming debut album. How’s that going so far? Is everyone more involved now?

Jimmy: We are working on the album right now. We have 8 or 9 songs, actually. And yes, we’re doing it as a band.
Thomas: There are a couple of songs that I’ve listened to two years ago, old songs that Jimmy played for me when we got to know each other for the first time. And that’s coming to light now. It’s really funny, really sweet to know that I’ve listened to these songs, I really felt that this was good at the time, and now he wants to bring them into The End Of Grace.
Jimmy: Also Johan is including a more hardcore feeling into the sound.
Johan: And that’s a problem! I only love hardcore and metalcore. I like metal but what I love is hardcore / metalcore. And I’m afraid I’ll ruin the sound of The End Of Grace. That’s the thing when I work with Jimmy. We went out to his family house and we sat down for a whole day working on a song. i wrote the song on the bus there and we started recording it and he was like “fuck this, fuck this, this is shit, this is hardcore shit” all the time. And then he got to write a breakdown.  photo _DSC0900_zpsd0cc01d8.jpgThat’s the only thing he was really passionate about. He wrote other stuff but he was really passionate about this breakdown and four hours later… “dude, this is a fucking good song”. (Jimmy laughs). “Yeah, I’ve been telling you!”. But that’s the problem! They wrote four or five or whatever songs two years ago, they had a song in mind and then I get in and mix it up with hardcore sounds and I’m just afraid of ruining the sound. Hopefully I won’t ‘cause Jimmy’s always there spoiling my shit. (Thomas and Jimmy laugh) So I think we’ll find something halfway.

Renata: You’re adding a new element; I don’t think you’re ruining the sound, you’re making it richer, more unique.

Johan: We keep focused on that. As far as we know, there’s no real band in Sweden right now using the deathcore vocals and then doing the really really REALLY poppy choruses. Because you have Betraying The Martyrs and some things like it from other countries but in Sweden I haven’t heard any band that sounds like we do. Because we have this kind of happy riffing, this kind of happy breakdowns… I can’t explain it. But yeah, we’ve got some shit. A lot of shit. (laughs)
Jimmy: I have to say that it’s a lot more fun to write it all with these two guys and not just alone or with Sulan.
Johan: it’s more fun when we’re all on top of it. we can send our stuff to Sulan, because he’s living in Hindås now, instead of them doing it together. It’s more fun getting  the input of everyone. Even if he (points at Thomas) hates my punk intros. Fuck you! (everybody laugh)
Thomas: Since Johan joined the band Jimmy’s like a little kid on Christmas Eve when it comes to writing and creating. Everything is exciting and I think these two are a great combo and they’re bringing it to the group. Jimmy has a lot of drum ideas for the songs but I try to make them some sort of my own. But since I’m not a metalcore drummer, I try to maintain whatever ideas he has and just make a twist or something with what I’ve got.

Renata: I’ve noticed it in the EP, in comparison to the first recordings with Marcus. (Read review here)

Thomas: Yes, like the end of “Betrayer”. I’m more of a groovy drummer. I’m not that typical metalcore drummer that just keeps on hammering. I want to keep the beat. I really think the working combination between Jimmy and Johan is going to make The End Of Grace come to a whole new level. In a good way.
Johan: Hopefully… Well, the thing about him being “like a kid on Christmas” is about trust. He knows he can trust me. I will tell him when it’s fucking shit. And I will say when I see something that’s good and he will tell me… well, no, he will not tell me. He will be like this (crosses his arms and looks sideways). And I know him, ‘cause we’ve been playing for years, along with Robert. We know each other that well. I can tell when he doesn’t like something.
Jimmy: I stay quiet.
Johan: Yeah, he will shut up, that’s how he reacts.
Thomas: One thing I can say about Robert filling in for Sulan is you can really tell that they’ve played together before. It’s a thing of magic. It’s like kindergarten all over.
Johan: you have to keep in mind that we’ve played for so long and didn’t have a gig for one year and a half. In Road To Repent we were taking a step back, considering our sound. We wanted to go more metalcore, more like The End Of Grace but not The End Of Grace and so we didn’t have a gig for a year and a half or so in that band. So when we got together last night, it wasn’t just the first gig of The End Of Grace but also the first gig that Robert does in all this time. Last night was insane because it was like old times for us. For now it’s three parts of Road To Repent in this band. it feels weird but good. And we really appreciate that he could step in. We can’t wait for Sulan to get back , but we know that Robert’s a great guitar player and he can feel the rhythm like Sulan does.
Thomas: We miss Sulan in the group because of what he always brings but Robert does a really great job for the moment. That’s the thing with The End Of Grace – we always get by. The music comes first.

Renata: You’ve been talking about a video for ages. Is the idea still on? And I’ve heard that maybe it wouldn’t be for “Metal Mulisha” after all…

Jimmy: We’ve been thinking of maybe doing “Fist Face Bleed” if Martin (Westerstrand, from Lillasyster, guest vocalist on this track) can join us. If not,“Lost In Transition”.
Johan: It’s all a matter of budget. We were talking to Robert from Adept and discussing their videos and our videos and he told us it’s fucking expensive. I’m not sure that’s a number we can talk about, really. We’ll do it when we can do it good. We don’t want to put up shit on YouTube. It’s better to just post videos of us because poorly made videos… nah, not good enough.

Renata: You’ve played Rockbitch Boat yesterday, you have another gig in  Göta Källare next Saturday… Can the fans expect a tour or you’ll continue to play random shows for now?

Jimmy: We are working on something but it’s not 100% confirmed, nothing we can discuss at the moment.
Johan: Of course we want to get out there, so stay tuned.

Renata: The gig yesterday was The End Of Grace’s first ever. What did you think of it? Did it meet your expectations?

Jimmy: It was amaaaaaaaaaaaaaaazing!  photo _DSC0823_zps1a5d4734.jpg
Johan: It was awesome to see people we don’t know down there. That’s what I care about. That was kind of a warm up for us. It was the first time we were together, the five of us.
Jimmy: We’ve never practiced all together before that.
Johan: Never. That was our first practice yesterday. We were expecting less. That’s what warms our hearts. There were kids there that none of us knows. The first thing when I got off stage was that I was stopped by two kids that no one in the band has ever seen and go “dude, that was fucking sick!”. And then I went five steps and I met another dude, “dude, that was fucking sick! I’ll see you in the next gig”. So it was above all our expectations.

Renata: And Sebastian from BatAAr, who got on stage to sing “Fist Face Bleed”? How did that come about?

Jimmy: That’s a Kriss question.
Thomas: Kriss knows a lot of people and he played a couple of artists for us to choose from. We chose Sebastian because he resembled Martin and could maintain the tone and energy that Martin brings to the song. Sebastian is the best choice, definitely. And I’ve never met the guy, so after having him up on stage was like “okay, I officially love this guy!”. He was just all over the place, Then we met him after the show, had a couple of beers and get along very well. So I think it’s a thing we will maintain.
Johan: He’s an awesome dude. And BatAAr, his band, has been around the Swedish scene for a long time. They are a big band, especially in Japan, so it’s kind of an honor to have him jumping in and he being so psyched about it. It was really cool.

Renata: And still speaking of Rockbitch Boat, they used precisely “Fist Face Bleed” for the trailer of the event. Is there anything else where you’d like to see your music as soundtrack?

Jimmy: Fäbodjäntan! (famous Swedish porn movie)
Johan: Because I’m a gamer, I would love to have our music in a game but I don’t know if it works… Maybe in a Battlefield-ish story, a game of intense action. I would love that, but I’m not sure. I don’t think it fits in a movie either, but if it would, cool. If they did another “Die Hard” with a young John McClane
Thomas: “Married… with Children Reunion”! That would be fucking awesome! (starts singing the chorus of “Lost In Transition”)

Renata: The last verse of “Metal Mulisha” is “world domination”. Is that the goal for your music?

Jimmy: Yes, yes, YES!
Johan: I think that’s how you should think. When you dream about being a rock star when you’re a kid, you dream about being in a stadium tour. Being a rock star isn’t going around in a fucking small Toyota through Sweden, spending more than you earn. That’s not what you dream about, that’s not what we have in mind. Well, we have the music in mind, of course, but playing in stadiums, that’s world domination.

Renata: And I really hope you achieve it. Thank you once again and keep up the good work!

TEoG online:
Official Facebook
Instagram
Twitter
Youtube

The End Of Grace release lyrics video for “Betrayer”

Posted in News with tags , , on 5th September 2013 by Pieni

 photo 970275_570373832984915_1725836553_n_zps86015a7c.jpg

To compensate the delay of the release of their debut EP “Lost In Transition” (review here), Swedish The End Of Grace have just posted a lyrics video for the song “Betrayer”. When the EP is finally out, a “real” video should be filmed for another song.

In a couple of months the band will be part of the Rockbitch Boat Halloween Party 2013 and it’s currently working on the booking of other shows.

TEOG online:
Official Facebook
Instagram
Twitter
Youtube

The End Of Grace – Lost In Transition (EP)

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 8th August 2013 by Pieni

The End Of Grace
“Lost In Transition” (EP)
To be released on 4th October 2013

Metalcore

 photo 1234008_627925483896416_1684230138_n_zps345c1659.jpg

Sometimes it takes just one song for you to fall in love with a band. It doesn’t matter if you don’t know any other songs, or that you’ve never seen them live – that one track tells you that there’s something about that band which will put them on your radar. And “Metal Mulisha” did it for me regarding The End Of Grace. Storming and fast drums, riffs that dwell so easily in your ears, the brisk guitar solo…. and “we ride with pride, we ride until we die” reminding you why hooks are called that way.

The first time I’ve listened to it, all vocals were done by Jimmie Strimmel (ex-Dead By April, now in Ends With A Bullet). He’s a hell of a screamer, but the clean parts were clearly tuned. Now they have Kriss Panic (from Panic Area) doing the harsh tones in growling mode – his death metal school in full charge – and bass player Johan Pettersson taking care of the cleans with his natural tone, so the outcome is rawer, stronger and more “real”. In one word: better.

Even before Kriss, “Fist Face Bleed” already had a whiff of death metal to it through the somber guitars in the beginning and the mosh-friendly tempo later on. Martin Westerstrand, from rock band Lillasyster, has a guest appearance on this track, singing a few Swedish verses in a more aggressive way than the first recordings he did of them. So the clean, slower and more melodic parts create a much sharper contrast. There will be a video for “Metal Mulisha”, but should they ever release a single, “Fist Face Bleed” would probably be the best choice.

“Betrayer” is the catchiest song in this EP, but not in a commercial way. It just sticks to your brain. And Thomas Manell revamped the drum work, slightly changing a few beats here and there, but such changes were enough to give it a whole new texture, adding feeling to it.

Johan takes a break from vocal duties in “Forget”, as this has only growls & gutturals, and even some harsh screams, courtesy of Jimmy Bergman and Sulan Von Zoomlander. But it’s their rich work with the guitars that will stand out here, the solo in particular, also somewhat improved since its early version.

“Lost In Transition”, the only song truly new and never released in any other way to the fans (well, except for a snippet or two in the band’s famous Facebook teasers), is fierce in all aspects, the chorus sung simultaneously by Kriss and Johan sounding quite refreshing. Then comes an almost melancholic interlude, which eventually leads to a sequence of heartfelt gang vocals, lasting until the end of the song. Pretty emotional, this one.

And I couldn’t finish this review without praising the amazing job that producer Johan Henriksson (Studio Fredman) did here, making TEOG’s sound so distinctive and stark.

Something bad about this? Sure – it’s just an EP, five songs aren’t enough! But don’t worry. The boys are already working on their debut full-length.

5 / 5

by Renata “Pieni” Lino