Before I say anything I need to say this, Moonshield! Someone finally mentioned Moonshield song from In Flames. Oh man, this is definitely my favorite In Flames song of all time and it makes me super excited when someone mentions it (find out who in the interview below).
I am wondering if I will still be as excited as I am right now when I get a chance to do a new interview with a band, when I will be 100+ interviews deep. I think so!
Anyway, today I would like present you a Swedish blackened death metal band Helvegen. They are Robin, Ludvig, Anton and David and they are located in Västerås. They were previously called Casus Belli, but later changed the name to Helvegen which is also a song from Wardruna and means “The road to hell.”
Find out more about the guys in the interview below.
(PS: Thanks guys for mentioning Wardruna. Never heard them before and I instantly fell in love with the music.)
1. First things first. Tell us who you are, who are band members, how old is the band where do you come from?
We are Helvegen, a bleckened death metal band from Västerås, Sweden. The band members consist of Robin Axelson on bass guitar, Ludvig Zettergren and Anton Grönberg on rhythm and lead guitar and David Döragrip is on the vocals.
That’s the original members, but we also use Germán Nero Echiburu as a session drummer.
The band was formed in the late year of 2013.
2. You said you are a blackened death metal band. What made you decide to play this genre of metal or it came instinctively?
It was a rather mutually decision to play in this genre.
Anton and Ludvig has been touching the genre of black metal for some time and Robin have some experience in playing the oldschool death metal.
Combining the two makes the genre pretty much.
3. Before Helvegen you were called Casus Belli. Tell us, why you changed your name and how long do you guys know each other?
The main reason to why we decided to change the name is because there already are a few groups in different genres with that name.
And also because we didn’t really care for the name to begin with. Ludvig and Anton are the ones knowing each other since they were kids. They’ve been playing with each other in another band called Stigmatic before. Later Robin and Ludvig met at work and have shared interests for music. David came along much later, but we’ve all just connected right from the start!
4. Was it hard to pick up another name? What is the origin of the name Helvegen?
It took some time to come up with the name for sure. Many suggestions back and forth until one day we heard the song Helvegen by Wardruna. The name itself can be translated to “The road to hell.”
5. Who introduced you to metal music? Did you seek it out yourself?
Robin: My very good friend Joel introduced me to Iron Maiden and Pantera when we were kids. I had already begin listening to some Kiss and Black Sabbath by myself before then though.
Anton: I was really young when my father introduced me to Ozzy Osbourne and it kind of evolved from there. I remember all the scary riffs and effects from the “Down To Earth” album and the joy it gave me when I accepted the beauty in the scary sounds. It was kinda like “over come” the scary music, it made me feel strong and… grown up.
David: I’ve always followed my brothers footsteps, he was the fucker who introduced me to metal.
Ludvig: I really have no idea when it all started, but I have strong memories sharing bands and experiences with Anton back when we were young. I guess my first encounter with metal would be bands like Hammerfall, Helloween and other Powermetal groups.
6. Do you ever play covers? Why yes, why no?
We’ve considers doing a couple of covers on shows. As a band like us who doesn’t have that much of a fanbase yet could do a cover just to get the audience to relate to you if they hear a song they know.
7. How has you family reacted to what you are doing?
Robin: My parents don’t reall care, maybe they’re just glad that I have such a huge interest for something. My girlfriend is proud.
Anton: My mother have nothing against my taste of music, but she does not understand it at all. I am actually fine with that. This is an extreme genre of music and it’s not meant for anyone.
David: My mother works in church and she’s always woried about me. Especially now when I’m playing “the devil’s music.”
Ludvig: Growing up in a family full of musicians, my choice to pursue music haven’t really surprised anyone, and neither have the choice of music.
8. Tell us more about the song “Minions.”
It’s about a higher power that needs to destroy the infidels who doesn’t worship him as he wants.
9. What advice would Helvegen give to fellow bands in terms of promotion?
Don’t be afraid to be persistent. Social media is your friend!
10. What was the first ever album you bought?
Robin: Kiss – Psycho Circus
Anton: Ozzy Osbourne – Get Me Trough
David: Jerry Williams – Greatest Hits
Ludvig: Kiss – Greatest Kiss
11. What is your favorite Swedish dish?
Robin: I don’t know if it’s considered a Swedish dish, but sausage stronganoff.
Anton: Something with lingoberries. I’d say meatballs with mashed potatoes and lingoberry jam!
Ludvig: I would have to say Kroppkakor.
12. What kind of music do you like outside metal? (No secrets here!)
Robin: I listen to a lot of the old 70’s progressive rock. I can listen to all kinds of music really, I’m a fan of music, not a genre.
Anton: I like all kinds of music! Traditional music, like folk music, classical, irish jigs, choir music, and a little bit of house too.
David: A lot of 80’s pop/rock.
Ludvig: Like Robin, I am also a fan of music in general, as long as it’s well written and well performed. But I do have a soft spot for Irish folk music.
13. Finish this sentence: If I were a wolverine…
Robin: … I would be even harrier than I already am.
Anton: … I would scare people to insanity, haha. But not all the time… I am a nice guy.
David: … I’d eat bloody beaver once a month. Huehuehue, get it?
Ludvig: … I would be a member of the X-Men!
14. What are your current top 3 most played songs on your iPod/mp3 player?
Robin: Behemoth – Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer, Bloodbath – Famine Of God’s Word and Bombus – Enter The Night.
Anton: Dying Fetus – Invert The Idols, Cannibal Corpse – The Time To Kill Is Now and Cattle Decapitation – Kingdom Of Tyrants.
David: In Flames – Moonshield, In Flames – Embody The Invisible and Dimmu Borgir – Blessing Upon The Throne Of Tyranny.
Ludvig: 1349 – I Am Abomination, Valkyrja – Oceans To Dust and Troll – Til Helvete Med Alt.
15. What can we expect from Helvegen in the future? What plans do you have for 2015?
Our goal for 2015 is to release our first physical EP and do some shows. And to continue writing more songs for our future debut album.
16. Anyone special you’d like to wish a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year?
Robin: To my nephew who’s gonna experience his first Christmas this year. And the rest of my family.
Anton: To all friends and family maybe? …. Man that’s lame… But yeah, cheers guys!
David: My mother.
Ludvig: The Blek Goat!! Merry Sh*tmass!!!