Dawn are the throne usurpers of Black/Death metal scene. Comes from the viking lands of Sweden, the latest Dawn's album was pure masterpiece named "Slaughtersun (The Crown Of Triarchy)". This is interview with Dawn's guitarist FREDRIK SÖDERBERG.
Interview taken by V.K. (taken September 5th 1999)

Metal Vision: Hello, First of all I heard you had some line-up changes. Could you please specify more about it?

Fredrik: Jocke Pettersson quit a few months after the slaughtersun recording because he started to work on full time in studio sunlight with Tomas Skogsberg. He choosed between DAWN or work in the studio. He choose sunlight and I think that was a good chooise because he has always been more into the technical part of the music and he is not into playing live and perform onstage, he?s more a laidback guy so that fits him better, he?s a great engineer now so i just wish him good luck!. In the end of 1997 i moved up to Stockholm because i was tired on the scene in Link?ping where i come from and i emediately started to search for a new drummer but without any good results. Then Philip alias Grave Raper and i concentrated on doing two new Cranium albums and DAWN was on ice for a while. At the end of 1998 i heard about Tomas departure from Dark Funeral and he called me up in the end of April (99) and we arranged an audition and it worked out good. He also wanted to go in the same direction musicvise as me so now he is a fulltime member. Now we are a 3-piece band me, Henke and Tomas (alias alzazmon). We are now searching for a new guitarrist and a basplayer to fill up Lars and Andreas shoes. Andreas was fired from the band for a while ago because of diffrent things: first of all it?s 20 swedish miles between Stockholm and Link?ping so it?s kind of a hard to practise together another thing was that he didn?t want to play live and that?s what i?m really into. Lars is another story, i don?t now whats happened with him actually because i moved up to Stockholm and we just lost contact that was maybe my fault or his, i don?t no. Anyway he was a good basplayer but he still lives in Link?ping so it?s the same problem with him as with Andreas so i just wish them good luck to.

Metal Vision: The latest Dawn album "Slaughtersun (The Crown Of Triarchy)" was very good melodic Death Metal album. Are you satisfied with the album itself?

Fredrik: Thanks, I had material for 13 songs for the slaughtersun album but we choosed the best and recorded 9 of them and then picked out 7 songs for the album because the length of the cd so there are two songs more that we have recorded but i don?t know whats happening with them, maybe we can release them as bonus or something in the future. On the album there are a couple of trax that are really original I mean arrangements riffs and melodies. I think I have developed an own style and type of riffing that none have ever done before and i always try to get as epic feeling as possible to every thing I do. Thats something you will notice on the next album that we have taken the riffing and arrangements a step futher. The drumming will be more complex an rytmic on the next cd as well and very diffrent from Jockes drumming

Metal Vision: What are Dawn's plans for the future? Any new albums?

Fredrik: As I mentioned in question nr 2 there will be a new album, but when? i have no idea. We will work really hard on the next album so we can show people that we are the defenders of the throne of Death/Black metal. I have just finished a negotiation with jackson guitars in Carlifornia about a deal of the old cult axe Death Angel and they have started to work on them at the custom shop a few weeks ago. At the moment i?m also working on promoting the new Cranium album "Speed metal Sentence" and it?s already released when you read this (September 99).

Metal Vison: What are Dawn's main influences? favourite bands?

Fredrik: There are only two diffrent types of music, good or bad. At the moment i?m listening to alot of classical guitar music John Wiiliams. There are alot of extreme Death metal to that i?m into like Krisiun. I also think bands like Dream Theatre they are really cool band totally progressive, Sisters of Mercy and alot of film music. The best metal band is definately Judas Priest and i really appreciate the new singer! he did a really good work on the Jugulator cd. Im also into guitar based rock and most of the guitar heroes from the 80?s like Vinnie Moore, Joe Satriani they are just brilliant. Megadeth really rocks. I?m also into the 80?s speed, thrash scene with bands like Assassin, Exumer, Deathrow (Raging Steel album), Agony (The firts defiance album), Agent Steel, they fuckin shreds!. And lots of other bands and musicians.

Metal Vision: What is your opinion on current state of Death Metal? or Metal overall? Do you feel personal belonging to the Death Metal scene as a band?

Fredrik: At the moment I think it?s really good with bands like Krisiun and Centurian wich is really bring new life into the scene, wich almost was forgotten. I think a new era of death metal is on its way but the biggest bands wich started it all will always be there: Morbid Angel, Vader, Deicide. I?m definately a part of the death metal scene because DAWN has just keeped doing albums with only one thing in mind! to create the best extreme metal and keep it that way instead of compromise. And we played this type of music long before many other bands got into the scene. We will never change the style but we will develope and take each album a step further. It has taken quit long time between the albums but i think it?s wort it as long as we are satisefied with final result. I have seen many bands come and go and especially people that just played Death Metal back in the begining of the 1990?s because it was a trend but where the fuck are they today in 1999?.

Metal Vision: The Swedish scene is one of the leading scenes in Metal nowadays. What are your feelings about it?

Fredrik: In Stockholm there are alot of bands but many real bad musicians. I know that since i have had many on auditions. The Gothenburg scene is probably the best scene with bands like inflames and Haunted as leading acts. The problem nowdays wich was diffrent from when i was a kid is that people don?t practise on there instruments as much as we did back in the 80?s but there are alot talents out there like bands from smaller towns like Darkane wich really show how to play metal as it should be. We have a great, strong fanbase here in sweden and people buy our albums so i can?t complain about that but people really have to pratice more on there instruments and find there own style instead of copie other bands music.

Metal Vision: Nowadays Black Metal took over the Metal scene and even took it to the level of commercialism and trend. What do you think about the Black Metal trend? Have you ever took part in it?

Fredrik: No definately not!. We can just take an example Dimmu Borgir. I think they did the right thing because they wanted to be rockstars and they had a huge label that was behind them 100% and they toured alot to get the huge respons they got. If i had the back up and timing i had done the same thing but DAWN is something diffrent. We are more extreme then any other band and we want to keep it that way! and i think thats better in the long run to be honest to your self and don?t create something thats doesen?t works in the long run. If you are into this buisiness to make money it doesen?t matter if you play in Dawn or Dimmu Borgir you will never earn a quid! if you are into metal and you believe that your gonna make some money out of your music then you definately choosed the wrong type of music. Take for example Satyricon wich does the same thing as we do, keep doing albums and don?t care at all whats happening with other bands! thats true metal. For me is not about money! it?s pure art and to have a great contact with the label instead of having a fuckin label that just tells you what to do. This business sucks if you don?t know how to handle it.

Metal Vision: How about Dawn's concerts? What is the usual atmosphere going on?

Fredrik: We have done a few gigs but not so many but i hope it will be more in the future. Usually we have had an intro "the imperial march" and alot of fuckin smoke onstage and we have been covered with blood. I bought a huge backdrop with DAWN logo on wich we have used a few times wich is awesome. Henke has always been totally crazy on stage and have stagedived into the audience. I think stage-diving is a long forgotten art wich we definately will introduce if we play live again. Thats metal!!. We often where alot studs and shit and thats cool and it gives the show an extra spice. This is another thing wich is really important how the band works live! then you know if a band are as good as they where on the record.

Metal Vision: Does dawn associets with any kind of religion? or personal beliefs?

I think religious beliefs are just a lack of self confidence. I am my own good and i can think for my self. The world downfall of the church is near. I mean who wants to go to the church? it´s embarrcing especially here in sweden because everybody knows who built them back in the 1600´s rich warriors and priest´s that sucked out every fuckin farmer on the countryside on there money and thats my ancesters. Thats pathetic. I don´t like it when the government can spend all that money to the churches instead building universities or apartments or whatever.

Metal Vision: Does Dawn has nas any plans on doing a tour through North America?

Fredrik: Back in 1996 Dani in Cradle of Filth was in contact with Necropolis about having us as an opening act for them on their european tour but we had at that time changed drummer and we where working on the slaughtersun album so we couldn?t tour with them at that time. In the autum of 98 we where going on tour but something happened with the arrangement and there where some other problem with the booking agency metalyssee. But i have heard so many roumurs that everything on their tours just don?t work. If we are going tour we sign a contract first of all, about what?s happening on the tour so we at least can get warm food a hot shover and great bussdriver that don?t smoke mariujana when he?s driving. If the booking agency dont send contracts dont go on tour!!, then they are definately a crap firm. About the North America i don?t know it depends what they can offer us. The best thing to do is to make smaller weekendgigs down in europe instead of tour around in the middle of the week and having a small audience. We are interested in touring but under the right conditions.

Metal Vision: Everyone probably heard by now about Dissection, the murder and etc. Have you ever been in contact with Jon from Dissecion or his murder partner Vlad? Do you have any view about the whole thing?

Fredrik: I met Jon in Str?mstad in 95 and just talk with him over a beer and he seemed to be a nice guy. I haven?t followed the the trial or anything so i don?t know so much about it so i don?t have a view about it.

Metal Vision: What are Dawn's musical skills? what level they are on?

Fredrik: I have been playing guitar and writing songs for 15 years, Tomas has been playing drumms for 18 years, Henke don?t practise on his voice at all, he just screams in the studio ti?l his blood throated and he pukes as all other vocalists in this scene.

Metal Vision: What bands, album's have you been hearing lately?

Fredrik: I have been listening to King Diamond, Vinnie Moore, Testament, John Williams, H?ndel, Grieg, old Star Wars sound track.

Metal Vision: How important is the image for the band? spikes, black clothes?

Fredrik: If you want to be no 1 it?s really important if you will be no 2 it?s not important.

Metal Vision: For the recording of "Slaughtersun (The Crown Of The Triarchy)" you went into the Abyss studio. Was the result satisfying? Did you get the sound you wanted?

Fredrik: I think the Slaughtersun is one of the best recordings Peter has ever done but i dont?know if we will use Abyss again. I would like to try another studio and see how it works out. The sound mainly comes out from the musicians and how they play on there instruments and what kind of equipment they use but working with Peter gives you an extra spice so if don?t find another studio we will continue the recording at Abyss.

Metal Vision: You are currently signed to Necropolis Records. Do they treat the band well? are you on of the best bands of the label? how does the promotion works for you?

Fredrik: We are not signed to any label at the moment but we will negotiate with some diffrent labels when we are ready with the record contract i?m working on at the moment. Necropolis has done a great job for us and they really know how to promote a band and take care of them simce they are really into it 110%. In May i made a promotion tour in Carlifornia for the new Cranium and i also made alot of interviews for DAWN so they really support us. I don?t know if we are the best band on the label but we definately have the first priority on the label. The label that gives us the best offer is the label we continue to work with in the future and Necropolis is definately one of them.

Metal Vision: Thank you very much for this interview and I wish best with Dawn. Do you have any last words to our readers?

Frdrik: Why not visit our new webpage at http://www.swedish-metal.com/dawn/ and find out more about the band and the current situation. The webpage is alwys updated with latest news about the band. There will also be a Cranium webpage and it?s up in a few weeks probably on http://www.swedish-metal.com/cranium/ .
FREDRIK SÖDERBERG Contact: mail to: dawn-hq@swipnet.se