Svenska Akademien is a new band for me but when I got their CD Tändstickor för Mörkradda I was on immediately. Their reggae in swedish mixed with a little bit of hip was really good. Martin(Sture) was answering my questions on a warm augustday 2004.
Some history thanks, I hadnīt heard of you before this record and donīty know anything?
-We started as a trio for about 4 years ago. Simon (Don) did
beats,Martin (Sture) andIvan (GeneralKnas) was toasting and rapping. With that line up we released a 12-inch record (Snapphaneklanen) and an album (med anledning av). The fullength came out 2 years ago and we played a lot and then we took Patrik (Phelar Öfv) and Leia (Titti Tång) to play on the gigs. It felt good and after the summer they became permanent members. When we started to do new material it felt as we want to go on further,much because of that we as youngsters played in real bands, with real instruments.. Last summer we played live a ninemenband with Sture on drums and rap Don on guitar and vocals, Knas on toast, Titti on vcoals, Phelar on guitar and vocals, Oro on percussion, K on drums, Lance a lot on bass, Räven on Keyboard. With these line-up we recorded the record and the most of the songs became more live this way. Before this summertour Phelar wanted to quit the group and in for her came Agnes ion vocals and keyboard.
Please tell me a little about every member, age, work, family and something bad about every one
-Martin (Sture) and Ivan (Knas) is 26 and theyīre old schoolmates.Simon (Don), Johan (Räven) and Larsa (Lance a lot) is 27. Leia (Titti
Tång) and Joseph (Oro) s 30. Kenneth (K) is the oldest, and heīs 33. The youngest of us is Agnes , she is 22. We are as a big family and we like musik and independent thinking. The most of work extra sometimes in the social care or study. I havenīt anything bad to say about none of them except that theyīre very talented every one of them in different things
Isnīt it hard to be so many in the group?
-It can be a little bit messy sometimes, but we go well together. It have itīs bad things but itīs nothing I will change on. I canīt se who I donīt want to be in the group. Itīs only nice!
There is not so many who plays reggae in swedish , it feels like it was Peps the latest, what do you think that is that way?
-It isnīt that way, fact is that it is done a lot of reggae in swedish. But itīs not seen so much in media, itīs rock which is the thing. And isnīt anyone see you, so is it so that youīre not are, was it someone who said.
I havenīt heard your first record(how can I get it?) but was it more hiphop then?
-You can surely buy the record on some recordstores on the net. It was more hiphop then you could say. Itīs so that everything was programmed and it notīs so much backbeats on so many songs on that record.
You like hiphop also I can tell, I can hear some influences here too? Is there any good hiphobands/artists in Sweden?
-Some of us likes hip hop, other are more amused of doing it for themselves. The musictaste in the band is very mixed, from punk to jazz. Personally I donīt listen so much to hiphop but Swedish acts that I like is Timbuktu and Promoe.
Other bands in Sweden
-No brain! But sure itīs a lot of good bands in Sweden, many backupbands which noone notice
How did the reviewers react on your record Tändstickor för mörkrädda av?
-Mixed, everything from very good to really cool wellwritten bad reviews.
Do you care about reviews?
-I donīt do it personally. Especially when we think of that weīre never been hyped in media but we still plays in front of a lot of people, who wants to dance and sing along. It drains reviews with heaviness.
Which do you trust the most, the good or the bad ones?
-None of them.
Which is the most peculiar review you ever have got?
-The only stage this clown will be play in is in a circus ". Or something in that style, and the music they talked about was our first demo. That I think itīs funny.
From where came the name up to the new record?
-I havenīt so good check on that, but I know that is coming from a poem. And we thought that was a good name, a little bit pretentious.
How is a good gig with you?
-The audience is with us, then we can do a really good gig. All in the band loves to play live and is it contact between us and the audience is impossible to fail. Wonderful!
How do the audience who come to your gigs look like?
-Itīs very mixed, and thatīs the fun thing, both old and young, punks and reggaepeople. We seems to have a really broad public.
You have really political lyris, is it important to have an opinion?
-Without a doubt! Donīt you say what you think you agree. And we think about how the world look like so is it a shame if you donīt engage yourself and you have an opinion. Itīs important that you do it in a way that suit you. But of course is it important!
Which is most important when you do a song, is it a good lyrics, good melodies or to have a refrain that people remembers?
-Everything! One things makes the other, it can be the music which inspires the lyrics or then it mustnt be so. It varies from song to song. But I donīt think you should write a song just because of the lyrics, then itīs being too progressive. And if you have a thinking of melodies which does that people remembers it isnīt bad if the melodies is stucked in people head, but I donīt think itīs being good if you do a melody with only a hitrefrain. Itīs not going to be true then
Which band/artist does the best political lyrics?
-Nobody. All do in their own way, I donīt think we can compare that way to write a political lyric can be so much.
Can music change anyones life?
-The punk changed my life, it gave me selfconsciousness and belonging and it did me to the one I am today. I dopnīt think Iīm alone to feel that way
Reggae have many times been mixed up with drugs, where do you stand there
-We have no bandpolicy or so, we arenīt that way. Iīm personally itīs critical to all politicians today and then I mean the drugpolitic also.
Where do you stand in the Mp3-question? Whatīs the best and whatīs the worst with MP3īs?
-Mp3 is good I think itīs a way to reach out with your music even if itīs not fucking commercial. I hope it can make the big record label go under , the ones that do nothing for the music. The bad thing with is that it can be hard to finance new recordings if you canīt been paid for them but if you buy records from the one you like and go to a lot of concerts so can you do your thing to promote the thing, to support it .
Do you download? Why or why not?
-I donīt do it, donīt barely know how you do. But i get from others and have no problem with that, But a I buy a lot of records too, things I like, everything as the thinking up above
Should a record be copyprotected?
-I donīt know what it is. Pass.
Please rank your five favouriterecords, five favouriteconcerts and five most important things in life?
-I cannot rank records that way. I have been on some really good concerts but I cannot come up with them now. Capleton on Summer Jam this some was a fat experience, Bounty Killer too. But what the hell, I cannot come up with the others.
But important is love, afterthought, striveness ,musik, to live right now but with dreams
First, latest and most expensive record ever bought?
-The firstmust have been FYC, thought they were really fat when I was in intermediate level . And I had a cassettetape with Hasse Andersson when I was younger. The latest was a liverecord with Donny Hathaway. I havenīt bought any expensive record what I can remember, isnīt the collectertype.
The most embarrasing record in your collection?
-I saw a while ago that it is a record with Marie Fredriksson in my collection. That isnīt so fat!
How do you think it is to live in Sweden? Then I mean politically, is it happens too much or too little?
-It happens too little, that must the most with some heart think. If it happens anything is it something scary, terroristhunting and other shit. The world is sick and that can we say about Sweden too which sometimes can feels like a middlewayarsehole. But weīre coming from Sweden and in some way we like it. But that itīs mostly the nature and that is fantastic everywhere there it have been left in peace.
What do you think about Anna Lindh, Tony Olsson, Bingolotto and Markoolio?
-The Anna Lindh-thing wasnīt surprising, the world is getting harder och in many ways I have some understanding for these attacks when it is done by people with a brain behind. But I will not say that I think itīs good. Tony didnīt came so far away, boring to be photographed in his panties after some days when you probably dream about the freedom. Bingolotto have I never seen and I donīt thinking of begin to see it.
But I can understand that people plays, itīs more profit there than to be willing to do something as oursociety looks today. Markoolio was drunk somewhere I saw somewhere. But I donīt think so much about him.
Futureplans for the band?
-Play, play, play and then weīre going to do some new material.
-I have no life except the band almost, so now it is as same as the the band.
-Look after them yourself, build together parts of the things you have found to an own opinion and questioning it all the time
Something to add?
-Iīm more used to do interview live# . But i did a good try!
Have a good time!