Musicscan: Who am I talking to? Could you please shortly introduce yourself to our readers?
Vildhjarta: Hello my name is Daniel Bergström, im composer and guitarist in riffethy.
Musicscan: Being around as a band with an own identity and vision, does it bother you when you see or meet listeners who ignore you or have a different understanding of what your music and your style means to you?
Vildhjarta: Nah not at all, People always got their own idea of what genre it is or how it sounds. Music is a free language and you should be able to do whatever you want with it and say whatever you want about it.
Musicscan: Right now, the harder music scene seems to go even more extreme than ever before. Bands are pushing the boundaries as far as complexity, technical approach and extreme arrangements are concerned. How do you feel about your place within the heavy scene as well as in between tradition and gaining new ground to bring forth what the heroes you grew up with did before Vildhjarta were around?
Vildhjarta: It's cool if we are able to influence our listeners in different ways of course.
Musicscan: What is it for you guys to be called djent or prog-metal all the time - is it somehow annoying or fine with you? What makes a prog or djent band from your point of view?
Vildhjarta: People will and can label us whatever they want, we are both proggy and djenty in my opinion so naturally people will label us as such.
Musicscan: Looking on metal in general you can find lots of sub-scenes and styles, the metal underground is changing all the time. Are there bands you feel connected with that might have a similar agenda to what you have with Vildhjarta?
Vildhjarta: We share a lot with Monuments and Uneven Structure i think, we all have our different take on djent but there are def similarities in our music.
Musicscan: What was the biggest and the most primary reason you got into this kind of metal music? Has this reason changed over time? How do you stay motivated with what you are doing?
Vildhjarta: I think this kind of metal is perfect for dark, machinelike and crazy arrangements and songs
Musicscan: The style Vildhjarta is playing finds separation through technical ability and passion. It's well balanced, brutal and having a good dramaturgy to keep things interesting. What is your attitude towards metal in general and towards being Vildhjarta in particular?
Vildhjarta: I don't listen to metal more then any other genre, it just happens that im not the most positive guy around, in fact im probably pretty emotional so it's no wonder i write stuff with a lot of feelings and moods in them.
Musicscan: With the extreme sound and the ìextreme crossover style that you guys have, does it give you a lot more freedom when you're going to record new material to go in a different direction and not be constrained?
Vildhjarta: I wanted our debut album to leave all doors open for us, and i have no idea what our next material is going to sound like, we will always do groove though.
Musicscan: Do you still have to deal with limitations when it comes to the songwriting or are you in a position to realize all the ideas you have?
Vildhjarta: I do have limitations and obstacles to overcome when it comes to writing. Zero Motivation is a good example, i always have ideas in my head but finding the motivation to write them down can be so hard.
Musicscan: Is it necessary to create a certain distance between you and the music in order to get a better understanding of its inherent quality - what do you think?
Vildhjarta: I know the album artwork really helped me to finish writing the album, every song in the booklet has it's own painting which really made me look at arrangements and songs differently. Rickard Westmand who did the art only had the concept as guidelines which was pretty cool, that way he could inspire us without having us inspire him.
Musicscan: Musically Vildhjarta seems like a band fueled by raw emotion which is at the same time tempered by a reflected vibe. What are the motives behind writing in this style, what reactions are you seeking to evoke in your audience?
Vildhjarta: Sadness, evil, laughter and anxiety
Musicscan: A more general one: Do you think there are still genuinely new sounds to be discovered or can modern extreme metal basically be said to be a recombination of already existing forms and elements?
Vildhjarta: People will always try new things, even though we have an industry that sometimes work a bit backwards in that sense there will always be metal that sounds fresh and interesting.
Musicscan: Masstaden is a pretty aggressive and self confident record. It is intense and stands somehow outside competition due to the fact you are not following trends. What is your view on the album?
Vildhjarta: In many ways we are trendy but yeah there are def alot of trends we dont follow. I think the album is unique in many ways but you can definitely hear different influences in there, especially meshuggah ofcourse. I love how i think we managed to make it so brutal and sad at the same time.
Musicscan: Are there specific aspects on your new record that stand out in your mind, or aspects that have an inner meaning to you, you would like to share with us?
Vildhjarta: This album is almost 5 years of writing songs and ideas so of course im attached to alot of it in many different ways.
Musicscan: Where do you see the line drawn between progressing on what you do well, and completely offering a new direction or sound?
Vildhjarta: Hopefully our fans will like whatever next stuff we come up, we just have to do whatever we believe in and think is fun.
Musicscan: Every band has a vision of how their songs should sound like after the recording. Listening to Masstaden right now: Would you say that this was a successful mission or would you even say that you have been able to surprise yourself? If this is the case - in how far?
Vildhjarta: Yeah we are happy with it every aspect of it really, we wanted it heavy, raw and groovy and i think we have acccomplised that.
Musicscan: Do you sometimes feel the urge to write a gentle pop song but then dismiss this idea again, because you think it does not fit the Vildhjarta aesthetic?
Vildhjarta: Pop is not something i want to do so i dont really try it, but if we wanted pop in vildhjarta we'd def go for it!
Musicscan: What about the relationship between music and the lyrics? What’s more important or are they of equal importance?
Vildhjarta: As it's a concept album the artwork, lyrics and music all go hand in hand to build a story with a soundtrack. As far as lyrics goes, i love the instrumental version of the album but it feels more complete with the lyrics and vocals on there.