B-Mac Chat with Elize Ryd of Amaranthe
When it comes to guitar players, I like the ones America has produced from Duane Allman to Eddie Van Halen and Dimebag Darrell. What all these masters have in common, besides being awesome, is that they are guitarists that changed rock ‘n’ roll forever. Hailing from Sweden, one riff maestro is doing the same thing by combining melodic death metal with pop. His name is Olof Mörck from the Swedish band Amaranthe. I have been following him and his band since 2013 when I stumbled upon their music video for “The Nexus.” Not only did I fall in love with vocal arrangements they produce, but the shredding that Mörck provides is marvelous. As with Elize Ryd, I had the chance to speak to him through Skype. I was excited for the opportunity to interview such an amazing talent.
After the grand introduction I bestowed upon him (which he liked), we started talking about how Amaranthe got started. He and fellow singer "Jake E" were hanging out, composing music with Elize Ryd and Andreas Solveström. In the process, according to him, they created something that was different and exciting, which resulted in them touring franticly since 2011. He said he got his start in rock music when listening to Metallica in the 1980's. He started really practicing his lead guitar work when he began studying guitar virtuosos Yngwie Malmsteen and Steve Vai. This ultimately led to him adding a little neo-classical vibe to their sound. Mörck explained to me how he met Henrik Englund Wilhemsson in 2012 and what led led him to becoming their unclean voice after Solveström left the group.
I asked him how their new album, Maximalism, will be different from the previous releases. Mörck told me that the record will be diverse and adventurous. Amaranthe wants to avoid a repeated formula when it comes to making music. The songs that he believes the fans will respond to the most are “That Song” and the opener “Maximize,” which he says will set the stage for what to expect from this album. He hopes to spread more positive message with his metal music, like what Gemini Syndrome vocalist Aaron Nordstrom is doing with Memento Mori. We went on talking about playing huge festivals in Europe as well as here in the US. He even mentioned how Amaranthe was asked to play at Download when they first formed, but it fell through for different reasons.
Mörck is a real charming dude who is also very down-to-earth. He really believes in his band and what they could achieve. I am glad I found this group three years ago. The album will drop in stores on October 21, 2016 and I am already excited to listen to it. From what Mörck has told me about it, Maximalism is going to be one of the best metal records this year. To Olof Mörck, thanks for the interview and we salute you. Horns up!!!