Industrial metal rockers Clonecircle from Denmark finally have a new album out after keeping their fans in suspense for three years. And it’s a good one, boys and girls. ‘Behind the Wire’ is a different take on electro-inspired metal music and well-worth a listen for those who also enjoy fully rounded concepts.
The Power of Metal.dk’s Thomas Nielsen wants to know more and guitarist Morten Sandberg is the happy provider of answers.
Morten, it has been a while since we last heard from you. What has Clonecircle been up to since ‘Superimposed’ came out in 2006?
Morten: Well, it's been a work in progress since we released "Superimposed", we work a lot in the studio all the time, because we have our own studio, and our music demands a lot of studio work because of the complexity, and all the layers in the music! Besides that we didn't want to make the same album again, we wanted to develop the music and song writing, and try to do an even better mix of styles and experimenting, before releasing a new album.
‘Behind the Wire’ has turned out to be a great album [see review elsewhere on this site]. Can you explain the underlying ideas and concepts for the album? It doesn’t exactly signal love and flowers and happiness stuff…
Morten: A lot of our inspiration is drawn both from the absurdities of modern mass media and the fear and cynicism it projects as well as our personal encounters with the backside of the world around us. The album is not a concept album, with one long story, but in general we work and write about the darker sides of human kind, and try to make both the music and lyrics reflect on that!
How would you say the new album shows a development in Clonecircle when you compare it to ‘Superimposed’?
Morten: First and most of all we have a more open sound in the production on "Behind the wire", where "Superimposed" was more of a dirty and raw industrial sound, we have twisted the soundscape to a wider and more appealing sound, without losing the power and rawness of the music. The song writing ,in general, is perhaps also more appealing this time, and is also more differential that on "Suerimposed". We have a wider mix of genres on "Behind the wire".
I love the artwork you’ve used! Is Martin [Hellgren – singer, bassist] responsible for it all?
Morten: Yes, he is a true master when it comes to artwork. He has this time drawn it all by hand, and after that done the finishing touch in the computer. The lay out ideas also come from him, and it all reflects the album title "Behind the wire"!
We were all just blown away when we saw the result, and we couldn't be more happy about it!
Who is Winni? She’s got a great voice and forms a fine duet with Martin on ’Thunder and the Rain’.
Morten: Winni is actually married to our rhythm guitarist Thomas, and therefore we all knew that she has a beautiful voice, we of course thought a lot about who should do the duet, but when we heard her voice for the first time on the song, it just matched perfectly, and then it's just a bonus that she often can do the duet with us live!
Speaking of ‘Thunder and the Rain’…when I first listened to the song, I thought ‘Clonecircle tries to do a Volbeat!’ [Volbeat did the song ‘May Ann’s Place’ with The Storm singer Pernille Rosendahl on ‘Guitar Gangsters’] Did you consider the radio potential when you did this song?
Morten: The song of course is a more poppy tune, than the others on the album, and that will always reach a wider audience, we didn't write the song to ‘do a Volbeat’, but the song was just another approach to develop our songs for this album, and actually we had the song without vocals for quiet a long time, before we decided what to do about it!
If the radio stations decide to playlist the song, we will of course be happy about that, it's always a chance to reach new listeners!
You decided to use Jacob Hansen for the mastering of the album. Why?
Morten: Yes, that right, as we have worked on this album for years, and done everything ourselves, we just wanted someone else to do the finishing touch, and Jacob is someone we know from playing with him, and for all his good work with Mercenary! So we were glad to let him do the mastering, and it really gave the music the wider sound and that was what we were looking for!
Is Clonecircle a bunch of friends who play music together or a group of musicians who think alike?
Morten: We are actually both, our friendship goes way back in time, long before we decided to make Clonecircle, and we know each other so well by now! As musicians we are also are very much alike; we all bring something to the writing process and we hardly ever argue.
Will we see you on the road soon?
Morten: We are ready to play live with most of the new songs from "Behind the wire", but we don't have a tour lined up. We will play some gigs around Denmark this year, starting January 30th, in our hometown Randers, at the Midwinter festival along with Konkhra, Illuminatus (UK) and some of the new talented bands from Randers!
What is your current top five metal albums?
Morten: These albums are all good albums that I listen to, and I can't give them a rating as number one, two...But here are 5 albums that I always would recommend others to listen to:Marilyn Manson / Mechanical Animals , Rammstein / Reise Reise , Mercenary / 11 dreams , Paradise lost / Paradise Lost, AC/DC / Highway to Hell
Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions, Morten! Any famous final words for our readers?
Morten: If you’re into bands like Rammstein, Marilyn Manson, Paradise Lost with a crossover to Alice Cooper, then go out and buy our new album "Behind The Wire". It's in the shops in Denmark now, and will be released internationally May 2010! We’re sure you will enjoy it!