THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA (2017 - English Version) - Björn Strid (Vocals)

Warmness is the first thing I remember about Hellfest 2017. Especially under the tent of the press area. But we are braves so we don’t care and I have to focus on my next task: meeting Björn Strid, but not to talk about Soilwork, well not exactly. I really wanted to meet him and talk about THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA, his astonishing rock project.

SBM: Hello Björn and thank you for your time. So you’re here at the Hellfest! How do you feel about this festival?

Björn: Well it’s a huge festival, it has grown a lot and it’s very impressive so it’s very good to be back.

So we’re here to talk about THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA, if you’re ok with it of course…

Yeah no problem!

The Amber Galactic” is out now and reviews all around the world are extremely great! How do you live that?

Well I didn’t really know what to expect, I knew myself that I was really happy with the album, and everybody in the band was so excited. And it was kind of a shock when Nuclear Blast would have signed us in the first place. We were in the studio recording “Domino” and we were thinking “Do Nuclear Blast actually know what they’re signing?
If you heard the song I’m sure you would understand what I’m talking about. So we sent the master and the actually loved it, and the press is loving it too, even people who usually listen to black metal loved this band, so it’s quite interesting.

I’m quite in that position actually, it’s intriguing… And you’re talking about “Domino” which is kind of special for me because I sometimes dance while listening it and I NEVER DANCE! (Laugh)

You never wanted to dance before hearing “Domino”? You’re saying you’re listening to black metal?

Black metal, power metal, all kind of metal, some blues, but I don’t have a good knowledge about the period that inspired THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA. When I was a kid I listened to Supertramp, The Police, ZZ Top but that’s it.
And on this record we can really hear an influence of the first Toto albums, musically and with the fact of using women names for the songs. Is it a big influence for the band?

I would say so yeah. And Bobby Kimball is a great inspiration as well, it’s a fantastic singer, especially back then, so yes it has definitely a big impact. And concerning the women names I think it’s a little bit more of a tradition, and something we thought David, we didn’t just bounded over classic rock when we started to know each over, it was also the whole concept of classic rock; the other styles, the aesthetics, everything that comes with it.
And I think we like to talk about mysterious women.

And is it the reason why you made women sing between the songs?

Yes that’s linked to it and they are friends of ours, so it’s not something we founded randomly on line, it’s real friends and I think it really works with the music.

So I suppose it was a real pleasure to record the album when you around friends.

Yeah and I think you can hear it, we had so much fun, a little bit to much fun I would say. It’s like we had to go rehab after finishing the album, because it was so intense, such an endless party as well, such a great unit.

That’s exactly what I feel when I listen to it, always a good mood, very good vibes, and I was very impressed by your Lou Gramm singing on “Something Mysterious”, I didn’t know you were such a fan of Foreigner, did you grow up with it?

I would not say that I grew up with it… I was born in 78, so obviously I do remember I wanted to know what love is, getting a lot of radio air play, but I sort of discover Foreigner in the 90s, because they were not that big in Europe while they were huge in the States.
And Lou Gramm is one of my favorite singer of all time, so it definitely had a huge impact on THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA.

Is it the same with The Journey? Especially on “Josephine”, it feels like an homage to this band because we have everything that made this band great.

Hum I think it’s a little bit of an homage to dance movies from the early 80s. Do you remember the movie with Travolta after “The Saturday Night Fever”?

No, not that one…

It’s “Staying Alive” and there’s a song from Franck Stallone, I don’t know if you’ve heard “Far From Over”?

No, sorry…

You should check it out it’s fantastic, and I… I’ve always been a sucker for flash dance, “Staying Alive” believe it or not (Laugh), I would never thought I would say that!

Well thanks for sharing that! It just shows that you’re open minded.
I know you created this band, maybe just to have fun, to do something different, but did you need it somehow to break a sort of routine from always working in Soilwork?

Yeah I think that every part of me needed it, and it’s something I’ve been curious about for so many years, you know I’m definitely a metalhead, but I feel 50% metalhead, 50%… Rocker/pophead if you will.
So I think that there was a lot of things that needed to get out, and I discovered a total new dimension, vocally, and also mentally, it had a lot of effect on me and I now feel very balanced musically, I think I have the best of both worlds.

And apparently you’re great in both of them. As you said it’s a new dimension, was it hard to sing that… New way?

I think I learned a lot from touring for 20 years and making albums, so I needed to do the journey with Soilwork regardless, so I built up a very strong voice and I think that the switch was fairly easy, I think that the only obstacle was to find the confidence, because it was kind of scary at first but when I noticed “Ouaw I can actually pull this off” I developed very quickly.

Well I can say that you don’t have to be afraid of that anymore!

Oh thanks! But now I really feel more comfortable!

So the next step will be to sing it in from of an audience, I’m sure you’d like to tour. Are there any dates booked already?

We are currently trying to book some dates in the fall and it needs to be something special. I want this band to be very special and I want each and every show to be exclusive and special as well. And we want to bring a rock show that is not out there right now, something that has been lost. We do have two back up singers as well, two girls, so it’s very special and it sounded great.
So we’re definitely trying to book some shows in the fall, so keep your eyes open.

Wait and see as they say! But before that can you tell us where is Soilwork now with the new album? Have you started recording it?

No, I mean we have some loose ideas here and there but we’ve been touring so much for “The Ride Majestic” so we’re kind of slowing it down. We have something like six or seven festivals this summer, so I think you’re gonna slowly getting into writing notes this fall and it’s gonna be interesting.

I really hope so, because you’ve recorded the first double CD in the history of melodic death metal, so will you try to challenge yourself to a new level?

I don’t know… We’re thinking about a triple album! (Laugh)
I don’t know if you can push your luck, because we’re still musicians and skilled song writers but I think we made the perfect double album, I’m very pleased with it still, so I think we’ll find other ways to stand out a little bit.

Actually I’m a bigger fan of “The Ride Majestic”, the songs are really great so I’m looking forward to hear what’s coming next.

We’re gonna keep on developing our sound, I think we found something new with “The Living Infinite”, we also developed it for “The Ride Majestic”, so we’ll just continue that journey.

I’d like to say that I love the fact that you record an album when you feel it and not when you have to. Some bands are recording systematically each two years but inspiration is not there all the time.

I can understand that some band need to get out there in order to make money because there’s no other way to make money beside the tour. If you don’t tour you disappear, people will forget about you. But I will never release an album as an excuse to tour.

I respect that a lot man. Well I’ve reached the end of the interview. I personally would like to thank you for “Amber Galactic” which is and will be one of my high lights of 2017. It came out of nowhere and was really fantastic.

Thank you, it makes me very happy.

And so I leave you the final words if you want to conclude or say something to the French fans.

Well thanks to everyone who bought the album, we really hope we could bring a great show to France really soon, we’re so excited so keep you ears and eyes open because it’s gonna happen!

I’m waiting for it! Thank you once again Björn!
Critique : SBM
Vues : 149 fois