Band of the Week at Pirate Rock 95,4 FM

HTK group

Kan ni kort presentera ert band och vilka ni är?

We are a 4 piece rock band based out of Gothenburg. We play music that is inspired by 90’s alternative rock, grunge, stoner and metal. That being said, I really feel that we have found at style that we can call our own. We don’t present ourselves as the “Swedish” AIC or QOTSA.. We are Hide The Knives!

Var kommer ni ifrån?      

Glen is from Chicago, USA (born near Seattle, WA), Rob and Fredrik Medin are from Orust (childhood friends), and Fredrik Kretz is from Småland .

Hur bildades bandet?     

Hide The Knives was conceived in early 2007. The original lineup came about after quite a few years of jamming with an old friend of mine, Martin Johansen. Later we brought in a few of his old schoolmates, Ola Lindström and Magnus Persson, to complete the band. One can say it all really started when we stumbled over the riff for the song Holy Banner. That was the spark that lit the flame.

Vad kommer bandnamnet ifrån?

You’re going to get a kick out of this. It’s an expression people say in England when they want to say that someone is nuts or dangerous. They say “hide the knives”, he’s coming our way. We thought is suited the band well and our risky sound.

Hide the knives var bandet på allas läppar efter ni släppt debutskivan Savior for Sale. Hur var tiden efter realesen av Savior for Sale? 

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times! We released Savior For Sale in 2009 and it was an instant success. Things literally went from the rehearsal space to playing sold out shows, topping charts, and appearing on live TV. At the same time it was extremely stressful because most of us had day jobs and families to support. In the end it all proved to be too much for some which created a domino effect and by the middle of 2010 myself (Glen) was the only man left standing. I totally understand their decisions and reasons for leaving when they did and I wish all of them the best in life but the show must go on! It has taken many years of testing different constellations and working with others to find the lineup that we have today without compromising the legacy of the band. This is why we’ve been on ice the past years. Hide The Knives started off as a group of friends that like music, and that is how we would like it to continue in the future.

Kan ni berätta om historierna till texterna bakom singlarna Honey och Holy Banner?

Honey is about a stripper named Honey that an old room-mate of mine in Chicago used to date. It drove him crazy that she was giving other guys lap dances and I couldn’t help but write a song about it. I love the lines, “every day it’s in my face, every day we must replace” and “she’s gonna make them pay”. It’s an homage to his pain and my joy as I watched the whole affair.

Holy Banner’s text is all based off of my reaction to watching a documentary called “Jesus Camp” and a few other frustrations that I have had related to topic. I suggest you watch it then listen to the song again and you will get it. What is most funny is that from the beginning I hated this song because I did not have good lyrics before we went in the studio. I wrote these lyrics maybe 30 minutes before we recorded the studio version and I still remained a skeptic to the song. Thank goodness I listened to the others and we went on to release it as a single.

Hide the Knives har varit ett sovande band ett par år, är ni tillbaka för att stanna nu? 

HELL YES!! NEXT QUESTION! J

Hur går låtskrivarprocessen till? 

In most cases the songs have come about from having an idea at home and then testing them live with the band and making changes till we are pleased with the result. Recently the songs have started with a vocal idea and then adding the riff around it after (these songs you will hopefully hear on the next album). Whatever sounds good works in my opinion. HTK group

Var hämtar ni er inspiration? Är det lättare att få din inspiration från äldre band eller från modernare/nyare band? 

There are very few newer bands that inspire me personally so I would have to say older bands for the most part. I like music that makes you feel something and has a real message that comes from the heart. You know… something the listener can connect with and get goose bumps from. 90’s rock, metal and grunge… it’s hard to beat the quality of the song writing and talent that was around then. We want this level of quality in Hide The Knives music, so the bar is set high.

Omslaget till ” Silence the Youth” är otroligt snyggt, vad är tanken om omslaget? The cover artwork came at suggestion of Anders Fästader at GAIN music. I explained to him how we wanted to portray the beautiful tragedy in the title track Silence The Youth which is about a young couple in love that are forbidden to be together. Anders quickly showed me a group of photos that he had from a worn down amusement park in America. That carrousel stuck out directly as a perfect cover piece because to us it represents how life is revolving from a darker side of youth as it’s faded and decaying into adulthood. It was perfect and we took his suggestions directly. I really hope that we get to work with him for the next cover art. He really understands what we are doing and knows how to make it visual.

Var Spelades Silence the Youth in ?

We recorded at Grand Recordings in Gothenburg. It’s an all analog studio and we recorded it on 2” tape just like the old pros did. It makes for a great drum sound and the real you shows through in the recording. There’s no fake computer processed crap on the album, just pure performance and tone.

Hur känner du inför att nedladdning av musik istället för att köpa album? 

Definitely buy the album! Do you know how much those things cost to make? If most people did then I think they would buy 10 copies.. for real!! People who ask for a free copy… COME ON…. do they think recordings grow on trees? :D I’ll give you a hint, the budget for Nirvanas “smells like teen spirt” was $65,000 and that was in 1990!… you do the math on the inflation there if you want to make an album in 2015. 

Kan nedladdning av musik på nått sätt ändå vara bra för mindre etablerade band?

I personally feel that it is holding back potential new artists of the future. It has created a catch 22 scenario keeping the industry in limbo. The music industry in general is a business and investors mostly will only invest in the older established bands where they know there is an easy profit to make. The same goes for festivals and other live bookings, they only want to book bands that will sell lots of tickets. So for new(er) bands they are in a really bad situation and do not get the opportunities that used to exist 5 or more years back. There are less and less new artists breaking through every year and this is a direct result of downloading… It speaks for itself. Only the strong will survive if something doesn’t change… and when I mean strong I mean bands that have been around at least 20 plus years or bands that have a lot of money to invest or just pure luck.

I suggest to all music fans to be more proactive. Go see the bands you love at live concerts and buy the cd’s, t-shirts directly from the artist at the show if you want them to stay in existence. It’s a hard life for all bands right now that most fans/listeners would not be able to understand. Support, support, support your bands!!! Our song Holy Banner has around half a million listens on Spotify, and we have not even received enough money to buy coffee with. If people had purchased a half million singles or albums instead then we would possibly be talking about album #3 or 4 right now. Remember that these albums cost large amounts of money to make and distribute. It’s easy to do the math here, so support your favorite bands! J

Beskriv er första spelning.

A real shitty gig on a boat that will remain nameless in Gothenburg.   We had a good time and played well but the place smelled like a toilet. At least the toilet got more shit than we did for playing that gig. :D

Bästa spelning ever? 

Pirate rock night of course! KUNGÄLV Crowd FTW! 

Var finns den bästa publiken?

The best crowd is the one in front of you. The crowd is what you make of it. It’s not a question of the crowd but a question of if you have what it takes to entertain the crowd and keep them interested. A good band needs an even better front man. Enough said.

Varför ska man gå och titta på Hide the Knives nästa spelning?

Because we will rock your socks off, you would be a crazy to not come see us live! We are better than the album live, we are loud, and we are cute! Have you seen a photo of us? Our latest poll shows that 63,5% of our crowd is female so we must be cute or hot or whatever.. I keep hearing that I look like Jared Leto when we are out performing… but he just cut his hair so finally maybe people will just see that he ripped off my look and we are not twins. ;)

Hur ser framtiden ut för Hide the Knives? 

It looks amazing! We’ve got Sweden’s best up and coming rock radio station interviewing us and playing our songs, and hell.. we look fabulous! So what could go wrong?

Vi är oerhört tacksam för att ni spelade på Pirate Rock Night, hur kändes det att spela där?

One word.. AWESOME! It was a night to remember and your listeners appreciate a great live show. We would love to do it again sometime. Next time let’s do it with the full rig and really blow the doors off the place. Cheers people!