Indulás: 2007-01-11
Artillery 2.

Consequently, Ronsdorf, the Stützer-brothers, Sandau and Nielsen began rehearsing for this task but Sandau decided to take his leave, for what reason your brother switched to the guitar while being assisted by session-bassist Peter Thorslund (ex APOCALYPSE/FORCE MAJURE), was it hard getting the band together again?

No not really, but Jřrgen did´nt like the new direction. some of the riffs was going (early riffs to Khomaniac and Equal at first), and Morten also wanted to play the guitar so we decided to stop working together.


As next effort was done the „1989 demo”, which was recorded at the Sweet Silence Studio ultimo February 1989, produced by Flemming Rasmussen and the band, what about this demo as a whole and how did Flemming get in the picture exactly?

Did you choose him, because you liked METALLICA’s material and sound or…?Roadrunner asked us to do a demo with some new songs and we knew Flemming Rasmussen through Metallica , who rehearsed in Mercyfull Fates and ours rehearsel room just outside Sweet Silence Studio, when they recorded both Ride the lightning and Master of puppets.


On this demo Morten handled bass as well as guitar duties, how did it happen? Why didn’t things go with bassplayer Michael Rasmussen, who was the member of the band at this point? Didn’t he fit both personally and musically to the band?

Michael was a nice guy but he was´nt used to play so fast, and at the same time, we was workin hard to get Peter T. in the band to record the B.Y. Album , so he knew that from the start and until we got Peter in the band. Morten played the bass.


Did you this tape shop around to attract label interest?

No not really cos Roadrunner was very interested in signing us.


Did besides Roadrunner show interest other labels as well in the band? Would you say, that Roadrunner was one of the best underground labels back than, having influential acts, such SEPULTURA, EXHORDER, OBITUARY, DEFIANCE, XENTRIX etc.?

Yes we were very glad that we were signed by Roadrunner at that point, and did´nt really do anything to find other labels


As far as the „Don’t believe/Khomaniac” single, did the label ask you to record this material? What kind of goals did it serve at all?

It was meant to be a promotion single, but it ended up like a real single, because of the interest from the headbangers, magazines etc.


At which point did Peter Thorslund return to the band? Didn’t you audition other bassplayers?

We only tryed Romchal, and after being in Russia we knew we wanted Peter to join the band and after a while he decided that he had missed us and join the band for real.


Your third album „By Inheritance” was produced, engineered & mixed by Flemming Rasmussen at Sweet Silence Studios, Copenhagen, Denmark, January-February 1990, how did you approach the songwriting for the record which is a crucial stage in any band’s career?

We never really thought about that , we just play what we liked.


As far as the songwriting, songcomposing as a whole, were there main songcomposers in the band or did everybody have a big hand into it?

After we had dispanded the band for 10 months, Morten spend a lot of time, writtinge a lot of songs who all ended up on the By Inherritance record. So a lot of the materiel was already finish , but we all came up with inputs for the final songs.


Did the recording sessions go well with Flemming without any frustration, anger etc.?

Yeah it was really easy workin´with him, and there was a lot of jokes and funny things going on, and later on we recorded the Missing Link album “Lobotomized with him.


Is it true that Morten played much of the bass lines because Thorslund hadn’t learned the lines yet?

Yes cos Peter only had 4 days to learn all the songs.


Would you say, that this album represented ARTILLERY at its best?

Technical yes , but i like the other albums as much.


Do you agree with that „By Inheritance” was admittedly your most polished release up to that point, but without being overproduced or anything?

Our first mixes was much more raw that the final result who was made by Flemming and the band . But Roadrunner wanted it to be a little more polish and after some discoussion the band and Flemming agreed to try Roadrunners version.


„By Inheritance” is more melodic than the band’s past releases but mostly it’s still the same heavy ARTILLERY, some more mellow elements are apparent in songs like „Bombfood” and „Don't Believe” though they are handled pretty well, what’s your point of view?

I think its always importent to try some new things , and when we tryed out those riffs, we got the feeling that it would work and put them in the songs.


Is musically the result quite consistent and heavy even though not as intense as on the earlier albums?

Yes and thats mainly because of the lighter production.


On the NAZARETH cover „Razamanaz” the band even manage to sound like LED ZEPPELIN, who came up with this song, which in my opinion, totally fitted to your originals?

We all liked the song and Morten and me was introducing it to the other guys, and we could hear right away that it was fitting tottaly to Flemmings voice.


One definitely get an Asian feel when one hear you play; two songs, „By Inheritance” and „Back In The Trash” make use of an odd sort of clean sound that really is great, and is also used in the middle of „Bombfood” to make for a very dramatic and deep sound, acoustics are used for intros and passages in „Don’t Believe’, and they sound positively great and shimmery as well, is that correct?

Yes i think that one of the reason that B.I sounds different from many albums released at that time , when combinate those things


Rhythm section members bassist Peter Thorslund and drummer Carsten Nielsen add to the tightness of the band greatly, Peter’s bass is tight and heavy, loaded with semi distorted and chunky sounding lines that hit hard and back up the band great, though he follows the guitars somewhat, he does not totally follow along and makes some lines that fit the tightness of the music and volley off the drums really nicely, definitely up there in the pantheon of great metal bassists  what’s your opinion about it?

Both Carsten and Peter are doing a great job and are very importent for the way Artillery sound and its really great to work with them again. Peter also have the touch of of his own drivin´way to play.


Drummer Carsten Nielsen is positively prestigious, his technique is loaded with lots of double kick, tom drum rolls, rapid snare drum rolls, flowing and tight grooves and loads of hard hitting madness and Compared to other thrash metal drummers, his double kick technique is a tad on the slow side, the fastest he does are in these quick bursts on „Back In The Trash”, but the tightness he shows would definitely make one consider him for any fantasy thrash metal band, what’s your point of view?

One thing Carsten love to play is his toms , he dosen´t want to play two bass drums all the time as many bands do, and this is very importing for the sound of Artillery.


Would you say, that the songs are all melodic and at a pretty nice tempo that is fast but not so fast that it compromises technicality (like Slayer) and most of them here are at the tempo of „Master Of Puppets” era Metallica, but several times you change time and get much faster before going slower again?

Yes i guess you can hear that better than me , but sometimes we also got compared with Slayer


Do you agree with, that the fastest songs are probably „Beneath The Clay” and „Life In Bondage” and they are decently progressive (more progressive then Metallica on „Master Of Puppets”), but not progressive enough to label you true progressive thrash metal?

We always try to play what we like and don´t try to be to progressive metal, you know if you only play to show how good you are, it gonna be boring in my opinion and the  riffs you can headbang to are gone.


„By Inheritamce” is very consistent, straight forward awesome thrash, there’s really no low points to be found here at all, its downright catchy from the start and to the finish, how do you see it?

Yes in many ways B.I is our most catchy album with songs like Khomaniac, Don´t Believe and Beneat the clay


There’s uses of acoustic’s on occassion from time to time, „Don't Believe” probably being the best example, and it really flows with the music perfectly, is that correct?

Yes and its funny  it goes back to the earliest period of Artillery, from the demo “Shellschock” titled as Blessed are the strong.


Do you think, that the progession of the music and the flow of the songs is again, very much like Heathen, its very catchy, dramatic, techincal and it never really gets boring?

I Think Heathen is a good band and maybe you can compare some of those things ,  with that kind of support from the headbangers it seems like we had the luck to make something right.


„By Inheritance” combines all the hallmarks of classic Thrash – it’s aggressive, it’s technical, and it can be melodic, but not in a sellout type of manner, what’s your point of view?

That´s always been very important for the band not to sell out . We will always try to make honost music.


Would you say, that Flemming Ronsdorf’s vocals are positively great, as he is like a thrash metal version of Helloween’s Michael Kiske?

I never thought about that ,but maybe you got a point there .I personnally like the Keeper albums with Kiske as some of the best Helloween did.


What were the shows to support the record?

We really did play so much after the B.Y . A tour in Denmark including Roskilde festival, some gigs in Germany, Sweden, Norway and Belgien and Holland.


I own a bootleg cd, which was recorded in Rotterdam during 1991 or so and it’s titled „Rotten in Rotterdam”, are you aware of this material?

Yes i got a copy of that. It was recorded after Flemming and i had left the band.


What do you think about bootleg rehearsals? Are they somethinkg like for the diehard faantics, collectors or are they a kind of illegal money making? Do you like boots?

As a big fan of Heavy rock and metal i think it´s good from the fans, but i wish the sound quality had been better.


Then you soon left ARTILLERY, reactivating MISING LINK with an almost new line-up, why did you decide to leave the band? Did you part ways on a friendly term with them?

Ironicly i left the band cos i couldt´nt make it work between Flemming and me and i really needed to play just for fun in a while with some old friends, and then Flemming left the band. So Artillery and Missing Link played a small tour together in early 1992, Before Morten also jointed Missing Link.


Flemming Ronsdorf left ARTILLERY as well, soon to be employed by German thrashers DESTRUCTION for a European tour replacing their original bassist/vocalist Schmier, but as I as know, things didn’t go with Flemming, can you tell us more about it? In your opinion, would have fitted Flemming’s voice to DESTRUCTION’s music?

I gues that his voice would have fit , but i know that they was wery angry at him , cos he let them down and never showed up to play the tour they had agreed to do.


In June 1991, the band played at the prestigious Roskilde Festival, any memories about it? I know that the guys (Morten and Peter was the only ones who was back at that time) thought it was great playin´at Roskilde for the second time (1989 was the first).


In 1991 you recorded a demo called „Mind factory”, can you tell us more about this material? How would you charakterize the material musicwise compared to the previous releases?

I think it was the most melodic materiel Artillery had done and one of the songs turn out to be on the Back album (Jester) and we are still playin´ Uniform live today, and i think its gonna bee on the next Artillery album.


What was the line up of the band at this point?

 Morten and Peter , a singer called John Mathiessen and a drummer called Benny balsmith.


What happened with the band after the recording of the demo? Was it also shopped around or…?

Shortly after the demo was recorded Morten was starting to play with Missing Link and the band dispanded Right after the demo.


In November 2004, ARTILLERY (you, Morten and Flemming) performed another local show with assistance from HATESPHERE’s rhythm section, bass player Mikael Ehlert (ex-HUMAN ERUPT) and drummer Anders GyldenOhr (ex PIXIE KILLERS/GROPE),? What about the show as a whole?

In 2004 we performed at The Rock in Copenhagen with assistance of 2 Hatesphere guys and the reaction was great from the audience. You know we hadn´t been playin´ together since 2000 at wacken cos Flemming did want to play so much live, so it was great for us to do this show.


On April 14th 2007 you were performing at the Keep it True festival alongside for example LAAZ ROCKIT, SABBAT, TWISTED TOWER DIRE, DIAMOND HEAD etc., what do you recall from that gig?

You know, we never played that gig cos Flemming suddenly could´nt play , so we had to cancelled it just 4 weeks before , so we are really glad we can play there this year.


Metal Mind Records released last year the „Through the years” boxed set featuring all of the ARTILLERY materials with bonus ones as well, are you happy with the result? Was it the right time the re-release ARTILLEY’s materials?

I´m very happy with the result cos this was a big chance to give something special back to the die hard headbangers .We also starting to talk about jamming with the band again so i quess the time was right.


Didn’t you think about to add also a DVD to the material?

We did´nt have so much dvd materiel in a good condittion , so we decided to record a live dvd instead


Why was it limited to 1.500 copies?

It was released in 2000 copies ,cos Metal Mind wanted to release the 3 first albums separatly again at the end of this year i think, so let´s see , and it was also meant to be for the die hard fans. Not only ARTILLERY’s material, but TOXIC’s, ATROPHY’s, VIKING’s, HALLOWS EVE’s, DEFIANCE’s or SACRED REICH’s old, classic ones were released as well, would you say that old school thrash came back in the common knowledge again? There´s been a lot of times when people saying that the old school thrash are B.A.C.K. ,but i don´t think it never had been gone exept for the beginnings 0f the 1990 .And acording to the interest in the band at the momment the interest is still growing.


Was a big demand on these materials from the part of the old school fans?

I guess the old fans always want stuff like this, and many people keep asking us about these older things could come out on cd again.


Do you still keep an eye on what’s going on in the scene these days? Are you interested in the new bands or are you tied up to the stuff you’ve enjoyed listening to while you were growing up?

I still listen mostly to the older stuff but until a year ago i was workin with my own radio metal show and had always keept an ear on the newcommers.


You are back again with almost the classic line up, that means you, your brother, Carsten Nielsen and Peter Thorslund, but why didn’t Flemming take part in the reunion? What about him these days?

Flemming did wanted to play live, and thats was our main reasson to tour again and we could´nt do that if Flemming was staying in the Band and gettin´ Peter and Carsten back together with Sřren was like gettin 3 lost brothers back again.


The new vocalist is Sören Nico Adamse, what about his musical past? Do you consider him as Flemming’s perfect replacement?

Sřren had make records with Swedish band Crystal eyes and Itallian Twin Spirits, but really wanted to play the style Artillery play and he can sing like Flemming and also add some of his own things , and up til now people says he fits perfect to Artillery,


Was he your first choice or were there other singers in mind as well? Was he always an ARTILLERY fan?

We first try to get the singer from the band Annibus gate Torben Askholm to do it , but due to throat problems he couldnt do it. He suggested Sřren and he was very interested and after rehearsing 2 song Terror Suad and Eternal war 2 or 3 times we was all agreing that this was the singer we wanted.


What about your future plans? Do you plan to record a new full length record, to do live gigs and stuff?

We wanna go for it all now when Flemming has gone, we can play live and record as much as we want.


Do you think that ARTILLERY’s name is still big and it’s in thrasher’s minds? Do you consider the band as one of the influential thrash outfits?

According to the respons it seems like the interrest in the band is getting bigger and bigger , so that´s really great. A lot of people keep tellin´ us that and we are really flattered by that ,but we really think a lot about that. The most important is to have fun playin´ music. And thats how we feel now


Michael, thanks a lot for your answers, anything to add what I forgot to mention?

Thanx to you and the Thrashers from Hungary , someday we will play for you. Keep banging! Michael


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