Skumdum is a group which I have followed since the beginning(I think) and I got a cassette from Chris(The drummers) aunt and then after that I have followed them with a big interest. They have started to sing in english now and I haven’t get used to that thought yet. It´s Pierre which have been answering the questions in the end of may 2005. .
Did you thought that it should go this far when you started to play with Skumdum. That you should play this long together and release so many records. Or how was the plans in the beginning of the 90´s?
-Yeah, it was a good question. I don´t think that anyone thought about those questions when we started to play together. But I found an old classphoto from ninth grade there we all had written down what we would do in ten years. I wrote “ In ten years I´m a rockstar and plays punk with my band Skumdum”. Not totally wrong wasn´t it even if I don´t know how it went out with the rockstarpart.
Have it been many personal changes?
-No , not really and it have been really calm on that
front and that when we thinking about how long we have been together. Our
first memberchange was 94 when Peder took over the guitarplaying instead of
Christian. And then the members was the same until that Nisse stopped
playing drums. Then Chris took over the drumming and a guy which is called
Patrik came into the group on guitar. We had that group until 2001 and then
Peder quit the band. Linkan is the latest member and he came into the group
2002. I(Pierre)-bass+vocals, Linkan-guitar, Patrik-guitar, background
Please tell me a little about every member, age,work, family, interests and something bad about every one?
-Pierre Pettersson, 27 years young, plays music as a full-time work and lives together with my girlfriend in Skellefteå. The interests is music, travels and spontaneusparties. And even harness racing have been a passion the latest years. Have a little bit hard to understand the the limit is enough(and that is so with the most things) .
Linkan, 25 years young and plays music and work as a seasonal worker. He lives in the same street as me with his girlfriend. He´s interested in music, cooking and growing plants. He can be really mean but he don’t know it. .
Patrik Stenman, 25 years young, plays music and he works on a living for people with psychical problems. He lives with his girlfriend in the centre of Skellefteå. He´s interested in music and studiotechnqiue. And Patrik is also keen of harness racing. He is the only one who isn´t from Kåge and that’s really terrible.
Chris Tjärnlund, 27 years young , plays music and he’s a dad. Lives with his daughter Hanna in Skellefteå. He likes playing TV-games and relax. Have a memory like a goldfish which can lead to misunderstanding and problems sometimes.
You have started to sing in english? Is it only English now?
-There are many reasons. I think that every band comes to that day when they notice that they cannot develop their music so much more without doing anything drastic. Our noblemark have always been skatepunk in swedish which not maybe is the right music to anywhere further. When I sat down to write new songs after “Det vi kan bäst” I noticed that the challenge was gone. I managed to do 12 songs in lesser than a week and that´s a sign that something is wrong. When we later translated 6 of the songs we noiced that it became OK we decided to do some new songs in English.
We went into the rehearsalroom and we decided to do songs which should sound as the classical Skumdum never have done. It became 5-6 songs and then it continued. And it felt really fresh and inspiring to be on some new areas. And then it was stupid to say that we never have thought about how our music should work in the rest of the world with English lyrics. It´s a very little market when you sing in English. I will not say that we never is going to do anything in Swedish again but right now we put al force into the english material.
-We try to mix reaslly much when we play live. The last gigs we have done material from all our records. But of course are we going to put more stress on the new material when we go out this autumn and play live but we´re going to play one or another classic song also.
Which is your strength as a liveband?
-That we always gives 110% from the first to the last song. We have also the goal with every gig that it must be better than the last one and then we´re never satisfied. And then there is a happiness to play and a tightness which I think that many bands can beat us on.
-Earlier have the goal was to do 25 gigs a year. Now have we decided to put a much more effort in the music and the band and then I hope it will be at least 40 gigs in the future.
-No, I don´t actually think so. I think it was a upswing 2 years ago but then after that it stopped a little. Sure there are some new promising bands and some driving forces but I miss the undergroundnetwork which was in the beginning and in the middle of the 90´s. Then everybody knew when it happened something new and it felt like if it was so much better communication and cooperation between band, fans and fanzines. Today it feels more divided and if like everyone sits on their own island and do their things. Even if I don´t listen so much to Swedish punk today have I always cared about the scene.
-We have sold all pressed records of Lisa, Demoner and Kågepunx actually. I think that there isn´t so many copies left of “Det vi kan bäst” either. It will be really interesting to see how the future will be when everyone seems to download music from the net. I´m not against that people download music but they can support the bands with buying a t-shirt, record or go to concerts when they like what they hear.
You did a tribute to Skellefteå Hockey also, howcome?
-Everything started with that someone should release a tributerecord to the club and then someone asked us if we wanted to join. I was convinced that every band should to tributesongs but in the end it was only we and some other band which have done hockeyrelated songs. Anyway so was our song really appreciated and they play it as an intro on every homegame. But we have to eat the song because many people connect us only with that song ”Världens bästa AIK”.
-Haha , good question, I suppose that the song was better than the team..
-No, I don´t really think so. In Skellefteå it have almost been opposite sides between musicans and sportpeople. The sportpeople think that the musicans have been lazy slackers and the musicans have thought that the sportpeople is boring musclebastards without a brain. I think the record was a way to do a bridge between these two groups. I can imagine that is the same in other towns.
-No,. Not really ,the only tribute we have done is the one to folkbeer.
-Both…sure you can write political lyrics and put a lot of effort on that but I think that the melodies are more important. And I´m strictly against that politics and punk music MUST be together. I know that we have been ritten down much depending have been to politic by the people who have thought that the music is really good. The new Skumdumrecord is more politic and more filled awareness than any other things we have done. I don´t know if it is the communityclimat which have done it that way or if we have been m ore aware of things now when we´re getting older. It´s really important to say that Skumdum isn´t any partypolitical band.
-Wow, this was a hard question. I must mention some bands, Anti-Flag is a band that I like. Randy and Propagandhi is two other bands I rank highly. When we talk about Swedish lyrics I think that Räserbajs wrote extremely smart lyrics.
-Punk or? When we talk about punkbands I want to foreward Vintertid and A good name for a band even if I think the last one have been to poppy the last time. And I think that Varnagel is a good band.
-Arrrgggghhhh will you give me a lifecrise or? Yeah, I´ll try then. Records are really impossible so I take the first which comes up. And observe that I don´t rank them in any particular order.:
Rise Against – Revolutions Per Minute
Social Distortion – White light, white heat, white trash
Levellers – Levelling the land
Manu Chao – Radio bemba sound system
Rancid – And out come the wolves
Manu Chao – live at Barcelona 2001
Kristet Utseende – live at Hultsfred
Gogol Bordello – live at Roskilde 2003
Turbonegro – live at Roskilde 2003
D.L.K – live at Mullberget 92 el. 93
Most important things
-The first- I don´t remember
The latest – Gwen Stefani
The most expensive – Gwen Stefani
-Redhouse Painters – Discography
-Manu Chao – Radio Bemba Sound System + everything with Turbonegro
-A lifestyle without a doubt.
Is it wrong/ugly to earn money on punk(with earning money I mean to have money to live)?
-Absolutely not. The dream is to earn as much money so that I can live on it. When you have been working as much as we have done the three last years and offered everything for the music so do you realize that is must come money from somewhere. The best should be that everyone in the group could live on music. I can be really mad sometimes when I hear that people think it´s expensive to go on a concert which costs 70:- but in the same time they pay 100:- to go on a club or a disco with really bad music.
-Good and bad. It´s a really good social care which is almost best in the world. Noone have to die because of the fact that they cannot eat or have somewhere to live(almost anyway). But there is many bad sides too, the climat is one of the them, hehe. And then I always think that you can improve things as healthcare, unemployment and the schoolsystem. But in all I start to wonder if the youth unawareness today is depending on the fact that Sweden is too comfortable and wellorganized.
-He have got too much critics from the opposite parties and people. Sure you can complain on him but I think it seems to be a guy with both his feets on the ground.
-It´s a local label here in Skellefteå which is called Morphine Lane Records. It´s the drummer in This Perfect Day and his wife which is having it. They have mostly indiepop there but now is Skumdum there too.
Have you heard any reviews on the new record yet?
-No, not from papers or zines.
-Of course you read them but it depends who is doing them how you react on them.
-It´s from you actually, haha. A think you wrote something in the style as: A singer which sound as a wonderful antisinger and therefore is their punk so good.
Futureplans for the band?
-First we will release the record, and we hope we do it in the whole world. And then we will be known in the whole world and earn so much money so we cab live on the music.
-Feel well and be happy and the things here above.
the life in itself which is complicated, it´s we human beings which do it´s
more diffucult than necessary.
Something to add?
-Thanks for a really good interview Peter. Check out our website www.skumdum.se and buy our latest mcd. Keep on rocking and thanks for listening.