Greetings and hugs! Let’s open a beer and begin. How are you doing these days guys?
Norse: Hi man! We’re doin ok
Ola: Except the right wing/racist coalition seems to have won the election here. Apart from that, peachy. 02 –
My honest congrats, your new album is fucking fire! I really enjoy it, but what feelings did you have when you recorded the last note, and what feelings did you have when you get your copies in your hands?
Norse: Well, thank you! We’re really glad it’s finally made it to a physical record. You know, we recorded and mixed it in may 2020. Due to covid and some endless lines at the pressing plants things just have taken forever.. Our feeling when we were done recording it was the same as we have right now, we’re damn pleased with it!
Ola: Thanks, glad you like it. Let’s talk about feelings… I was well pleased with the results after recording, but we were really pressed for time this time and… that stopped me from enjoying this recording process so much, it was a bit stressful. Wouldn’t have minded an extra day in the studio.
It consists of 21 fast’n’roll pieces and it sounds super sick. What’s the secret of Massgrav’s crazy musical formula? How’re the fan’s and the media`s reactions so far? Do you have the info from the labels, how many copies did they already sell?
Norse: I don’t know if it is much of a secret. You take 2 parts of Hellnation thrash and then you add 1 part of Status Quo rock’n’roll riff, voila! People seem to be going crazy over it. So far we have only gotten great reviews. And it really pleases us that the fans like the production and the sound. On this album we decided to add even more rock’n’roll than before. That’s why we decided to record it in Studio Humbucker with Robert Pehrsson who is this really great rock and roll dude. He really nailed the sound we were after.
Slowly We Rock is your first album in 5 years. What is the deal behind this hiatus? Did you have a creative crisis, or did your daily work and family not allow you to often rehearse and create music?
Norse: See the answer to your second question. We rehearse once a week year round and have done so for 20 years, rock’n’roll is nothing to fuck with. This also means we basically have all the songs written for the next album as well.
Ola: First of all, we did release a split 7-inch in the meantime. We also added a man on guitar, those things take a bit of time. The album was recorded almost two, two and a half years ago. At first, we took our sweet time coming up with a title and a cover. Since the pandemic was raging, everyone told us it was pointless to release it then. After that, we just ran into a bunch of problems that delayed us another year.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but you have entered into agreements with two labels. Also, this album will be released in 3 different formats, tell us about these things, please.
Ola: Yes, that’s right. Selfmadegod is not really interested in releasing vinyl anymore, so once that became clear to us, we contacted Lixiviat, who loved to do the vinyl release. The two labels then agreed to release the tape together. CD has been a pretty dead format in Sweden but we start seeing signs it is making a comeback, so we’ll see how it does. The vinyl limited edition is a beautiful yellow splatter that matches the colors of the cover and the tape is a nice pink cover. We’re all about color with this release. We’re printing shirts at the moment that are pretty colorful too. The monochrome black and white crust style is so yesterday’s news.
Is there somebody who can remember how everything (your love to heavy music*) has begun? A rehearsals that were played in garages, the re-recorded tapes with different not so famous but loud bands?
Norse: I guess it all started way back in time with the likes of Accept, Iron Maiden, Motorhead and that stuff.. And you know the drill – you always wanted to find new stuff that was harder and faster leading you to Kreator, Napalm Death… You probably know most of our influences pretty well so I won’t go into too much name dropping but one not so well known band that was a huge inspiration is Kurbits I.R, check them out – they’re fast!
Let`s go back to our record. I really feel the vibe of old rockNroll on this album… What bands inspired you? And could you name your favorite all-time acts?
Ola: rock n roll influences, I would name the Swedish king of rock n roll Eddie Meduza but also artists like Johnny Tudor, the Accidents and Dave Edmunds. And of course Hurriganes. Norse: My all time fave band is New Bomb Turks.
Right now we will open a top secret. So how much beer did you drink during the recording?)
Norse: Can’t remember, had too much beer…
My friends, where and when people could catch Massgrav next time? Where will you play?
Norse: If you don’t live in Sweden, where you can see us in Stockholm in October, you can catch us at Bloodshed Fest this upcoming spring. There is other stuff cooking but we can’t talk about it yet.
You already crossed a mark in 25 years, next is the 30th anniversary, how do you feel about it? I bet you didn’t regret the time you spent.
Ola: Yeah, the pandemic made it impossible to celebrate the 25 year mark so… we’ll see if we make it to 30. I feel… old, sometimes. And also fortunate that we are still around, that people still want to see us live and buy our records. As long as bands much older than us keep going, I guess we’ll do the same.
And now let’s fantasize a little. Would you save the princess in the castle guarded by ugly dragon or you would say “nah, fuck it, I gotta go take a beer”?)
Ola: Not sure if this is some sort of metaphor about civil courage that we’re too dumb to understand, or what, but I don’t think we see ourselves as dragonslayers exactly.
OK, please share your final thoughts for the end… and long live the Massgrav!
Ola: Thanks for having us, keep up the good work, hope we get through these dark times soon.
Norse: This, this is the end. This is the end of everything.