*Interviewed by: Scott Smith
In what is turning out to be a massive month or two for lovers of all things glam and sleaze, Swedish natives Crashdiet, against the odds, return with arguably their most complete album yet, ‘Generation Wild’. Following the loss of original singer Dave Lepard in 2005 to suicide, the band returned in 2007 with newly appointed singer Oliver Twisted and delivered the more experimental and darker ‘The Unattractive Revolution’. The union with Oliver didn’t last and he headed back to the ranks of ‘Reckless Love’. Faced with the prospect of finding another singer, in a twist of fate, the band ended up with former ‘Jailbait‘ singer Simon Cruz who was originally in the band’s sights after the passing of Lepard.
Lead single ‘Generation Wild’ is a killer bombastic anthem with a video clip that is so killer it has even been banned by MTV Sweden! In a time when sleaze/glam/hard rock is as popular as it ever has been in recent years and with an image and attitude to match the quality of their new release, ‘Generation Wild’ well and truly propels Crashdiet back as the leaders of not only the sleaze rock genre, but as one of the more exciting hard rock bands on the planet.
Virtually straight off the bus after a tour of Italy, Greece and a couple of shows in Sweden, the bands drummer Eric Young brings us up to speed with all things Crashdiet in 2010.
Firstly, congratulations on a killer release with 'Generation Wild', you must be pretty damn happy with the response the album has been getting so far?.....even currently as I write these questions, you are #3 in Sweden ahead of Slash's new album!
THANKS! It’s been going great actually, we are touring quite frequently now and the response has been awesome! I guess the rumour is spreading about the glitter and glam we bring with a punch to the cities we visit so the crowd is growing for every time we play. Yeah 3rd place is just mindblowing ya know? We knew we had a good interest and demand for the new album but I never imagined we would end up that high!
You just got back from playing some shows over in Italy and Greece. How did the tour go? What are a few of the new songs that you thought tore the roof off? and how has your new singer Simon Cruz connected with the Crashdiet fans so far?
Well the tour was both a bit messy and of course as touring often is, freakin' awesome! Like it should be I guess haha! Touring in new countries (like Greece) you never know, partially about how the attendance will turn out and what the people you work with are capable of... But hey, we had fun, we did the shows and people seemed to like it! A lot!
Well we tried out some new tunes but not too many since the album wasn't really released yet. But songs like REBEL, BOUND TO FALL, ARMAGEDDON and NATIVE NATURE really kicked ass and got the asses wiggling... SIMON just is amazing, i gotta tell you, its like he´s always been in the band, not only for us but the fans as well. They seemed to love him and he loved them back so we all just fell in love and had lots of sex! Haha! But seriously, he connected really well and it was a great turnout if you ask me!
Whilst speaking of Simon, given the way things turned out with Oliver Twisted after your last album, did you go about things differently this time around before you finally settled on the decision to appoint Simon as your new singer? Were there lengthy periods of rehearsals, songwriting and beer drinking!!??
We really focused on trying each other out on every level...and by that i mean EVERY level! Drinking, hanging, writing together, working out together, sleeping together, jogging on the beach together, cooking together... Well u get the point. We didn't want to discover later on that we didn't click since we are basically going to spend more time together than i will with my own future wife.
One of the definite strong points of this album is the diversity when it comes to the actual songs themselves, with every song virtually introducing something extra to the Crashdiet arsenal in one way or another. Do you feel there is a specific song on this album that best typifies where the band is at in 2010?
Good one.. I would say, the diversity itself really typifies where the band is today. We are thinking a lot more mature and understanding that the best albums contain something for everyone.
Can you give a bit of an insight to the songwriting process for this album? How much did it differ from past releases and what do you think Simon brought into the mix as far as contribution to songwriting goes?
Simon has been VERY much a part of the songwriting and composing lyrics. This is the absolute best way to go about it if u ask me, let everyone bring something to the table and hear out everyones ideas! We ALL were much part of the whole process of the album and I think thats why it turned out so good. Every inch of every song is worked out to the MAX!
Having written over 50 songs for this album, was it a struggle to select the final 10 songs? How much influence did the record company have in the selection of the final 10?
They had their influence by simply voting on which songs they liked the most! Then of course the labels always wanna toss in some mathematical reasons and calculations on which song will bring in the most money and all that. Sometimes it works, sometimes it don't haha!
The album was produced by the combination of the Swedish duo of Rampac and also Tobias Lindell mixed the album. Compared to your previous two releases, 'Generation Wild' certainly has a much bigger "sonic" sound. Was this the type of sound you were aiming for at the commencement of recording the album, or did it evolve as the songs evolved during the recording?
We wanted, as i said earlier, to have every part of this album just explode in your face and of course the sound is a HUGE part of how u find an album, at least in our genre. So we just aimed from the start to make it a real ear-bleeder!
Aside from being a kickass anthem, the title track and first single 'Generation Wild', has a killer videoclip to match....so killer even MTV has banned it in Sweden haha! Was the concept for the video something that the band came up with or did your director/producer Marcus Tinnerholm heavily contribute to the concept? The video sure looked like a lot of fun to make, at least for Simon anyway...
Well, we just noticed as we went along with our ideas, that probably it would be censored anyhow so why not go all in? By the way it was even the censored version that got banned. This was a collaboration between us and Marcus but he had the most "realistic" ideas haha... We had the typical artist ideas with exploding pigs and airplanes flying around and crashing in the background. This is of course, a bit hard to make happen if u are not Lady Gaga.
For the release of 'Generation Wild', you have now struck up an association with the Italian based label Frontiers Records who are fast expanding beyond their traditional melodic rock roots and branching out into bands such as Crashdiet, Crazy Lixx, Vince Neil etc. How did this association with Frontiers comes about?
I have no idea actually. That was our Swedish labels trick. All I can say i'm very happy about it and looking forward to a great collaboration!
With the quality of this album and it's obvious appeal to hard rock loving fans worldwide, what are the plans at this stage for worldwide domination outside of Sweden/Europe? By this I refer to both releasing the album and touring in places like the USA, Japan, maybe even Australia haha?
We currently have Europe, South America, Japan in our sniperscope and we are basically touring these parts the year out. Of course we are working for an Australian tour debut, as fast as we get a serious offer!
For a relatively small country, in Sweden there is certainly a big supply of high quality "rock" bands at the moment, do you find that there is a lot of competition amongst the bands?
I don't see it as competition, just do what you do and let the fans decide what they like best. We have a lot of great bands active here in Sweden like HARDCORE SUPERSTAR, MUSTASCH, AVATAR and so on... It’s just all about keeping the rock-nerve alive and it really doesn't matter how many tickets or albums you sell... we all contribute to keeping the rock-spirit going! Including the fans!
Speaking generally, what are your thoughts on where the worldwide sleaze rock scene is at in 2010, compared to when you first blazed onto the scene about 6 or 7 years ago?
Well over here in Sweden it kind of looks the same, around the world I don't really have too much of a clue. Europe has it’s strong believers like Italy and Greece, dudes look like ladies down there i can tell ya and I mean the sleazy 80‘s looking kind of ladies... just like us!
Lastly, by the end of 2010, Crashdiet will have.....
1.Toured the world
2. Gained sum weight
3. Lost sum weight
Thanks for taking the time to answer the questions and maybe we will see you down here in Australia one day!! May the rock be with you!!
No, THANK YOU! Cum to our shows, have a beer with us and party till u puke uncontrollably!