We caught up with front-man Olle Ekman of Gothenburg’s melodic death act Deals Death before their gig supporting Amaranthe at O2 Islington Academy in London. He reveals how they stay in amazing shape even while on tour and what is listens to in his free time….
Have you guys played in London before?
Olle: We played the academy two years ago but not this stage, the other stage, it was good. We played with Scar Symmetry
Amaranthe’s sound divides people within the metal scene. Do you think this gig is a good match for Deals Death’s sound and theirs?
Ollie: I think so. I mean the genres are of course somewhat different. You’re gonna find people who go “well this is not my style” I mean people like this music and they are not going to abandon one band or another just because of some slight variations in the vocals.
Olle: I think they have heavier songs than us sometimes, but they have female vocals sometimes and clean vocals sometimes, so everybody thinks it’s more poppish and it is sometimes but they have heavier songs. It’s a good band.
What do you think everyone of hasn’t heard Deals Death should know about you?
Olle: I think they should come to concert before they listen to the CD, because it’s a better way in. CDs nowadays, I mean people don’t have time to listen to CDs, they get bored. Attention spans are falling every year. So come to the concert because we will keep the attention going, you’re not going to walk from our concerts. So come to the concert, we will keep you interested. Then you will go “Oh the CD’s not bad!”. So you should know…it’s such a cliche but…I fucking pound bruises on myself live, I almost kill myself! We give one hundred percent. So come and see the show and enjoy it and then come and talk to us, have a beer and then listen to the CD. Or listen to the CD anyway, cos we have good albums of course!
Olle: Yeah we always do of course. Even if we can’t present something, it is percolating all the time. We played a lot of shows in September, October, November – the Scandinavian tour with Soilwork and then we went on some separate vacations. Mostly Australia, I don’t know why. Then we rehearsed a few weeks and now this tour, so we didn’t have a lot of time to write. So this summer is gonna be festivals/song writing summer, which is nice to write songs in summer. Maybe it’s not actually because you don’t wanna make happy songs. You don’t want to skip songwriting just to go down town to have a few beers, which tends to happen in summer.
Which festivals are you playing this year?
Olle: I have a few I can’t say yet as they’re not confirmed. The Sabaton [Rockstad: Falun] festival in Sweden we’re gonna play, and a festival up north in Sweden called Rock Out Wild and a small festival in my hometown, but I don’t think it’s totally confirmed, so I can’t give the name. But there’s some mid-European festivals I think will happen but well that’s all I can say.
Maybe a big UK festival?
Olle: I hope so!
You have some amazing videos. Do you think is is essential for bands to have good videos nowadays?
Olle: Thanks. Well since YouTube is there, you have to have something to post don’t you? So I don’t wanna do too may videos because it’s better to do one that’s really good. The album’s is filled with videos. There is only one video, so lets make it bigger then, instead of making two. So it’s important, yeah.
Where do you get your ideas for your videos? You use the same director as Amaranthe?
Olle: Yeah Patric Ullaeus. That’s the thing with Gothemburg, people know good people and they tend to share the contacts, so keeps the genre flourishing. Well I wrote all the lyrics for this album, so I had maybe most of the good ideas. So I pitched them to Patric and he told me some of them could work, we don’t have time for this and that. So we collected a few good idea and I brought the props and we filmed and made his thing with the editing. He’s Patric Ullaeus, I’m not gonna argue with his editing skills. The ideas pretty much come from the lyrics, so I just have to make some ideas that work and take it from the lyrics. If the lyrics say something and I can portray it in a video, I wanna have that idea. The fire was just ‘Lets have fire!’. It’s not an idea, it’s just something you want sometimes and you pay for it and make it happen
Was it expensive?
Olle: Yeah it is. Like a few hours and you pay shitloads for for few pillars of fire.
We brought kettle-bells and dumbbells with us! Some places are just packed with rusty cages, shopping carts, trolleys and bricks and stuff, so you can always build stuff up like that. That’s one way. You can’t find time to go to gyms on tour sometimes, you have to use whatever is available at the venue and you have to ask “do you have a broom, do you have a chair, this and that?” and you build like a makeshift gym.
What music are you currently listening to.
I listen to all of the rock and pop like you know Genesis, Queen I like that and then I listen to the most brutal Cannibal Corpse album you can find. My three favourites ever are ‘A Night are the Opera’ – Queen, ‘The Wretched Spawn’ – Cannibal Corpse and one or two Death albums because they’re so good. You can’t skip Queen, it’s my favourite band and I always say that. I don’t have a hard time admitting I listen to Queen.
Thank you for your time!