Sweden are known for some great music and our hard rock scene is one of the best in the entire world. Up in the north we have some very good Power and Heavy Metal bands such as Nocturnal Rites, Persuader, Raubtier and now another star is shining up the sky in the north of Sweden. The Lightbringer of Sweden is the name of the band and I wanted to know more about the band so I made a phone call to the bands master mind Lars Eng.
Hey there Lars. How are you?
-I’m fine because I can work from home tomorrow which means I don’t have to get up at 4:30 in the morning, that’s very nice.
That sounds great. I’m a little bit curious when it comes to The Lightbringer of Sweden. Who are you?
-If you ask me it’s kind of komplex. As we started the band I thought we played Power Metal but when the album was recorded it was more Heavy Metal I think, more Accept than Helloween so to say. When I started to write the album the thought was Power Metal in the traditional Helloween style but it turns up to be something else.
Did you write the album yourself?
-I wrote the album myself. I did all the music, lyrics and arrangements in my own studio in my house which isn’t the most lavish but it really works well.
The great response ”Rise of the Beast” have got did you expect that?
-No no no, not a chance. If we would have 1000 streams before christmas I would have been very happy but now it’s over 600.000 streams on Spotify and Youtube. It kind of crazy and I didn’t expect that at all.
And I guess you right now piling up all your money you made when you got so many streams on Spotify?
-Ha ha ha, no not really. I bought four Tesla and one Ferrari though to get away from the value-added tax.
That’s great, ha ha ha. What about the album? Is it available on both CD and LP?
-I have to say both yes and no on that question. My goal was to have the LP’s available with the CD’s but it doesn’t worked out that way. Right now I think the vinyls will arrive in the middle of January. We have sold almost 500 physical CD’s and 50 vinyls and I do all the packing myself here at my home.
When was the seed sown to record the album ”Rise Of The Beast”?
-It started back in 2017 when I started to write a story of The Lightbringer and Skeletor. To be honest I had not played Metal for many years and I wanted something to do. After a while I realized that the story were holding together and it was really, really great writing music without any personal feelings, it was all fiction.
I wrote ”Skeletor” first and it was also the first single released from the album. I wanted Niklas Stålvind from Wolf to sing on ”Skeletor” and he accepted but it turned out that Wolf went into the studio and he doesn’t find the time. Right there I heard that Herbie Langhans was free and was willing to try something new. I send him the music and was thinking that I just could get a simple no but he returned two hours after he got my mail and accepted to sing on the album, that was what happened.
We have something right now over the world called Covid-19 which doing a lot of damage for musicians. I believe that you want to go out there and play your music live but do you think it’s easier for you to accept the situation comparing to bands that’s been touring forever?
-Herbie are having quite a difficult time right now. This is his job and he lost his income. For me I’m not dependent of the music because I have a job I can go to everyday. Off course I want to play live but this virus did that I could concentrate 100% recording the album, marketing the album, contact the press, packing records and so on. It has benefited me but I feel sorry for all the people in the music business that doesn’t are as lucky as me.
I have to ask you something now that I shouldn’t have been asking if you were a woman. How old are you?
-Ha ha, I’m 36 years old.
I thought so because I saw on facebook that ”The Metal Opera” with Avantasia was the album that made you wanna write your own music. My first feeling was wait a minute here, what about Accept and Iron Maiden? But right there I understood that you must be younger than me and indeed so it is.
-Yes that’s true that ”The Metal Opera” is the album that really made me wanna think about writing my own music. I started play in bands in the 6th grade and I’ve been listening to Edguy since 1996. After that I also found bands like Accept, Gamma Ray and Helloween.
Right now you have two songs on the Stargazed Magazine Chart. Is it important to reach the charts or is that less important?
-It’s extremely fun that people want to have us on the Stargazed Magazine Chart but for me the most important is the feedback we get from people around the world. Talking to people and finding out that our music are appreciated out there is great for me as a musician. People tells me how they are reading my lyrics and it turns out to be some very interesting discussions.
One guy told me that he finally had found a song he can relate to. The song was ”The Beast Inside Of Me” and it turned out that this guy was schizophrenic but it doesn’t really matters, this was the song he could relate to. I love discuss with new people and of course it’s fun being on music charts but in the end the most important its writing music that people like and can relate to.
What about the future? Have you start working on the second album?
-Yes I have and right now four songs are done. The story from the first album will continue but this time I will have one song that is a personal one with personal feelings. The music will be the same and right now I don’t know when the album is coming out but hopefully it will be released in 2021. If I have the time the first single will come out in January and I am doing the mixing right now.
If we talk about you as a guitar player, who is your biggest influence among guitar players out there?
-I’ve been thinking about that and my first idol among guitar players was Kirk Hammet in Metallica, after we’ve heard things about who’s playing what on the Metallica records I can say it isn’t Kirk anymore. I think Wolf Hoffman from Accept is really, really great but I’m more into melodic guitar players instead of fast so I have to say that Leo Leoni from Gotthard is my favourite guitar player and he is a big influence.
At last I want you to pick your favourite album and song?
-That’s almost impossible but if we talk about studio albums I must say ”Heading For Tomorrow” which was the debut album from Gamma Ray. I have to say though that I’m weak for live albums because it’s fun hearing the energy the bands have on stage and my favourite among live albums is ”Stayin A Life” with Accept from 1990. I think that album is so great and it really separates the chaff from the wheat so to speak.
When it comes to songs I think that ”Fast As A Shark” with Accept is the natural choice, it’s THE Heavy Metal song. But to be honest this is extremely difficult to answer to because there is so much incredible music out there. I can pick something with Avantasia, the two ”Keeper Of The Seven Keys” albums with Helloween or ”Renegade” with Hammerfall which is a masterpiece. It’s tough…….really.
I think you nailed it pretty good in the end.
Yes I think so.
I wanna thank you Lars for this conversation and I hope to see you and the band out there in the future playing live.
-Yes we hope the same. I say thank you and stay safe.