New album, do tell us what kind of feelings do that bring up in you?
Martin Hedin (keyboards/production) – We feel great about it! We know a lot of fans have been waiting for this, and so have we! Unfortunately it takes a lot of time to write, reherse, record and mix the music we create.
What’s the biggest difference between “The Immunity Zone" and this one?
Martin Hedin - We’ve tried to take the music in all directions, so it’s more dynamic I guess. You’ve never heard us this angry before, yet there are more quiet parts on this album than on the previous ones.
Spoken words and sound clips parts have always been an integrated part of your music, how come and why do you use this tool?
Martin Hedin - Well, on this album it’s kind of obvious why – what better way is there to criticize our political leaders than using their own words against them? Musically I think spoken word is an interesting contrast to singing.
Tell us a bit about the artwork – who made it etc. and how important do you feel it is to have a cool artwork?
Martin Hedin - It’s very important. If I would take a photo of my ugly face and put it on the cover of an album it wouldn’t sell, no matter how brilliant the music would be. Markus Sigfridsson did the cover for this one, based on my ideas. I think it turned out great! Sofia Bennrup did some amazing illustrations for the booklet.
You have called the album “Manifest Tyranny”, how did you end up with the title and is there a deeper meaning behind it?
Martin Hedin - Manifest Tyranny is a reference to the 19th century expression “manifest destiny”, the belief that the U.S was destined to expand and to spread democracy and new technology. The only thing that has changed is that you don’t hear them call it “manifest destiny” anymore. Check out a painting by John Gast called American Progress – it expresses the concept very well.
Music-wise you are continuing down the same path, but at the same time evolving. This album is more mature and wide-spread. What inspired you on this album and do you feel the band is stronger than ever now?
Martin Hedin - Johan Reinholdz (guitar) and myself do most of the writing in Andromeda. We both listen to all kinds of music, so it’s hard to say what exactly inspired us this time. I guess it’s inspiring just to see where an idea can take you. Each song has it’s own life, it follows it’s own path. If you let that happen you often get some very interesting results. Rather than sticking to what you’ve already done in the past.
As a matter of fact I do feel we’re stronger than ever now. With our new bass player Linus Abrahamson, our new label, and the new material, we’re gonna kick some serious ass on tour next year!
Could you give a brief introduction to the lyrically ideas behind “Manifest Tyranny”?
Martin Hedin - Preemptive Strike and Play Dead are about the current U.S wars. Lies ’R’ Us is about excessive consumption. Stay Unaware is about the corrupt banking system. Survival of the Richest is about the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami. False Flag is about 9/11, 7/7 and other false flag operations. Chosen by God is about the arrogance of the ruling elite. Asylum is about feeling like an outsider. Go back to sleep is about waking up to a world where nothing is what you thought it was. Antidote is about the swine flu vaccination scam.
I write about the things that bother me deeply with the ways of the western world. It’s an angry outcry against the injustices that has become so common, most people don’t even notice them anymore. I’d like to think that this record could be a wake up call, the red pill of the Matrix. J
What’s next for Andromeda, any tours planned, work on your next album…?
Martin Hedin - We plan to do as many shows as possible in 2012. So far only a couple of festivals are confirmed, but more is on the way! Right now we’re not working on any new material. We want to focus on promoting the new album. And do what we like the most – meeting our fans!
If you had the choice to pick your ideal touring partners, who would you pick and why?
Martin Hedin - Right now we’re so hungry to go on tour that we’d happily hook up with anyone! J I think it’s fun to tour with a band that is equally successful (or unsuccessful, haha). But of course it would be good promotion and great fun to share the stage with some of the bigger bands in our genre. You know who they are.
What does the words progressive metal mean to you?
Martin Hedin - There are many problems with being labeled “progressive”. At face value it should mean that you always do something brand new. I guess we try to do that, nothing new under the sun maybe, but new to us. The paradox is that everything you do is compared to your first release. Many who liked Extension of the Wish are not slow to point out how they miss this and that. It’s kind of funny when someone who calls themselves a fan of progressive music at the same time are very nostalgic. We will never sound like that again – but on the other hand we will hopefully never sound like we do on “Manifest Tyranny” again either. Each album is what it is – be happy with that! J
Thank you very much for answering my questions. Do you have any last rants for our readers?
Martin Hedin - Thank you! Be sure to check out our Facebook-page and our brand new YouTube-channel! If you didn’t know it already, we’ve released a video and a single from the new album. Both available on YouTube! See you on tour next year!
Interviewed by Kenn Jensen