Gothenburg, Sweden quartet Sister Sin singer Liv has one wish for her fans: “”We want to make you all bang your head, spit your beer and leave the gig with a big smile and a good wry neck!” I can dig that. Can you?
Combining the classic aggression of old school heavy metal with the new era of visual and aesthetic mystique, the group is a perfect fit for fans of the early metal + in-your-face punk sounds. Supporting their new record, Now And Forever, on Victory Records, first timers should expect a loud, straight-forward and aurally pummeling show when they take the stage. Expect to stare at Liv a lot, too, because she’s pretty damn hot!
I got in touch with drummer Dave prior to their performance in Rochester, NY to talk about the new record, their hometown of Gothenburg, working with Victory Records, and where 2013 will be taking them.
G- Hi there and thank you very much for taking the time to speak with Live High Five! If you could, please introduce everyone in the group for our readers… Who is everyone, what do they play, and where does everyone come from?
D- Hello! I’m Dave, I play the drums, Liv is on vocals, Jimmy on guitar and Strand on bass. We’re a female-fronted Heavy Metal & we’re all born & raised on the west coast of Sweden, in or around the Gothenburg area. Nowadays we’re spread all over the place, me & Strand stayed put, but Liv lives in Stockholm and Jimmy in a town outside Stockholm.
G- So Sister Sin hails from Gothenburg, Sweden and I’d love to hear about what the metal scene is like over there! Can you tell me a bit about where you are from… How is the scene and how are the responses at your shows?
D- For a long time it was all about Melodic Death Metal or the “Gothenburg sound” as it’s called around here but things have changed a lot the past few years. Now, according to me at least, it’s the most varied scene we’ve ever had, its great! We had a hard time being accepted in Gothenburg when we started because Swedes thought everybody should sound like In Flames or At The Gates but now everybody’s way more open & we’re playing for packed house after packed house.
G- You recently released your latest album, Now and Forever, on Victory Records. How do you feel about the final product, and what is it like working with Victory Records?
D- We’re super pleased with how the album turned out & it’s been getting some rave reviews! This our third on Victory and it’s still going awesome. Compared to many other artist/label relationships, from what I’ve heard at least, we have a really personal one & we communicate every day on everything from promotion, tours, videos etc which we really treasure. It doesn’t feel like we’re just a catalogue number on a roster.
G- Can you tell us about the recording process for the album? Where was the album recorded and who was behind the boards this time around? How long did the release take to record and get ready for release?
D- We recorded everything in a small studio outside Stockholm called Stand Straight Studios w producer Chris Snyder. Everything went really smoothly and quick up until the mixing part. About 3 weeks to track everything. We were however not pleased with the mixes Chris presented so our label set us up w Cameron Webb (Motorhead, Danzig, etc) to finalize the album. It was such an honour having him on board it came out absolutely amazing! Super talented guy!
G- What is your writing process like, and who in the band typically comes up new music? Do you have a primary songwriter, or do you write music more organically through jamming during rehearsals?
D- Me and Jimmy (guitar) write all the songs. We basically start out jamming with guitars and drums and arrange stuff, then we start tracking the stuff in Cubase and EZ Drummer. Once the pre-prod demos are done we jam together to make the final changes and stuff. It’s usually a 2 month process from start to finish.
G- As a group traveling from abroad, how has you reception been in the states, and how does it compare with your performances abroad, both in terms of how you play and the audience reaction? Are any areas of the world more/less hospitable to travel artists in your eyes?
D- We really do love touring, this would be the fifth time we’re here in America and sixth tour we’re doing over here. The best thing is the results that are coming out of it and the word of mouth after we’ve played a show somewhere. It was kinda hard over here in the beginning but it has rapidly gotten better and the fans are just awesome! We have bit bigger name in Europe and especially in Scandinavia so we have a bit larger crew and stuff but other than that I think it’s all the same. One of the perks playing our type of music is that Metal unites, it doesn’t really matter where you’re from or which language you speak.
G- Taking into account all of your recorded work to date, do you have a favorite song you have ever written? If you could only give one song to someone who’d never heard of Sister Sin before to try and make a new fan, what song would you give them and why?
D- It’s hard because you always prefer the new material when we’ve just released a brand new album. I’d have to go with “In It For Life” from off “Now & Forever” because the lyrics pretty much sum up what we’re all about. It’s got a signature big fat hook to the chorus and that splash of Punk Rock amongst the old-school Heavy Metal sound. So yeah, I’d pick that one!
G- Who do you typically like to listen to between gigs and at home, and are there any acts you think we should know about?
D- I can only speak for myself and there are some great Swedish bands out there that definitely deserve more attention. Raised Fist is an awesome hardcore band I listen to a lot. Just recently I started to listen to this band called First Aid Kit when I feel like mellowing out. They’re like outlaw country sorta band with 2 super talented girls singing. It’s got some of the most beautiful harmonies to it.
G- Are there any bands or artists that you hope to share a bill with in the future? If you could curate your own feasible 3-band dream bill, who would you want to go on tour with and why?
D- Thats easy: Judas Priest, Motorhead, and of course Sister Sin. Why? Because it’s Judas Priest and Motorhead!
G- What is the craziest or most memorable show that you have played to date with Sister Sin? Can you tell us where was it and what was it like?
D - We opened for Motorhead in Milwaukee like 2 years back. We’ve heard some stories about Motorhead fans can be really picky and hard to win over so weren’t sure what to expect. First of all their crew was so cool to us and most importantly the crowd was kick ass!! The support we got was overwhelming! Then we hung out with the band and it just became one of those perfect shows all together.
G- Lastly, as a touring and recording artist, what advice can you give some of the young, up and coming bands everywhere who want to make it in music, on the road, and as a professional musician?
D- Find your own thing, believe in what you do and don’t glance at what’s going on right now with trends and all that. Work hard, never give up. It’s just the same like with every other career if you wanna achieve success. Stay true.