by John Kindred
– Publisher —
From Sweden, Denied’s roots go back to 2003, when Andreas Carlsson founded the band. It’s taken a decade for the lineup to be solidified and an official album to be released. Signing a recording contract with U.S. label Sliptrick Records in the Fall of 2012, Denied has released their first “official” studio album titled Let Them Burn. The album oozes with heavy and melodic music and showcases the talents of Carlsson and his band-mates.
Hardrock Haven sat down with Andreas Carlsson to get an insiders look into the band’s past and current activities …
Hardrock Haven: Before we talk about your band Denied, let’s talk about your personal musical history. When did you first pick up a guitar? Who inspired you to play and how did you know that this the career you wanted?
Andreas Carlsson: I started with music first when I turned 25 but I have lived with heavy metal since I was very young. My greatest passion besides music is sports and above all football and ice hockey. I gave football 20 years then finally decided to put it aside. I can’t say that one single guitarist inspired me to play, but It was more for the love of heavy metal in general.
Hardrock Haven: Denied has been around for 10-plus years with various lineups. With all these internal changes has it been hard not to call it quits?
Andreas Carlsson: Yeah it´s been a long journey to say the least. Even if there has been some dark times, putting the band aside has never been an option. I breathe, sleep and live for Denied!
Hardrock Haven: You have independently released two full length “demo” albums and two EP’s. What was the response to the music on the albums?
Andreas Carlsson: Very good although not many outside of Stockholm have heard the albums since they are only demos and they have not gone through a proper distribution.
Hardrock Haven: Congratulations on releasing your debut album Let Them Burn. It’s been a long time coming. How did you land a deal with Sliptrick Records?
Andreas Carlsson: Many thanks! To take the band to the next level number 1 on our agenda was a record deal. We knew that we had to make a brilliant album to make It work. The album was recorded and sent to various record companies and even if many showed interest It was Sliptrick that took serious interest and the choice was made!
Hardrock Haven: When you look back on your “demo” releases how does the music compare to Let Them Burn?
Andreas Carlsson: On the first album we had a kind of melodic sound but with rawness to it. The second album became a lot heavier, maybe too heavy to be a Denied album. Now we have taken the best of both worlds and made the perfect mix. I also have to point out that I’m the only one from the original line-up and that the other guys have made their mark on the music and how we sound today.
Hardrock Haven: Talk about the band that you have assembled on Let Them Burn?
Andreas Carlsson: I´m proud to present a strong line-up on our first official release Let Them Burn. On the drums we have the power-machine Pete Dolls, who has been with me since 2005. On lead guitar and since a few years back we have Chris Vowden who played with an early line-up of Opeth. Also Fredrik Lsaksson, who has many years of experience from both Grave and Therion on bass. On vocals we have in my opinion, one of the best singers in the business Johan Fahlberg, also from Jaded heart.
Hardrock Haven: Do you think this is the best representation of the band you wanted from the beginning?
Andreas Carlsson: I can with 100% honesty tell you that Denied has never sounded this good. After various line-up changes to the left and right; I really hope this one stays till death do us part (laughs).
Hardrock Haven: There is nice contrast or balance of heavy metal and thrash inspired metal that appears on the album, was this intentional or just how the music unfolded as it was written?
Andreas Carlsson: A good mix of melodies and roughness was our ambition even if there really wasn’t any sort of agenda or something. The music was written straight from the heart and the result turned out to be great.
Hardrock Haven: What songs on the album are your favorites?
Andreas Carlsson: That´s a tough question to answer. It varies from day to day but I think I would say: “Judas Kiss,” “Dead Messiah” and “Garden of Stone.”
Hardrock Haven: Are there plans to tour?
Andreas Carlsson: We are working hard to book gigs both in Sweden and abroad. The closest one we have so far is a tour of Italy beginning in early May.
Hardrock Haven: Thanks for taking the time to talks with Hardrock Haven. Is there anything I didn’t ask that you might want to say to our readers and your fans?
Andreas Carlsson: To those who haven’t heard us before and like metal with power and melodies should give us a try in the stereo or computer or whatever. Last but not least, a big thank you to those who have supported us through the years. See you on the road!
Hardrock Haven: Thanks again Andreas. Look forward to hearing more Denied on the future.
Andreas Carlsson: The album can be ordered at this address www.sliptrickrecords.com & www.cdon.se/eu. If you want to buy it digitally you can find it at Spotify, Amazon and Itunes.
Official website: http://www.deniedworld.com/intro.html
Read the review of Let Them Burn here.