AT THE GATES - Anders Bjorler

At The Gates is a huge chapter for Swedish Death Metal scene. Recently they announced their reunion, after many years, which includes some shows over Europe. We contacted Anders Bjorler, the leader of At The Gates (also guitarist of The Haunted) and here is what he told us. Anders was simple with his answers but I think that there are many important things to mention here. \r\n

\r\nHello\r\nAnders! This is Vassilis of the Greek Metalzone. Thanks for accepting my\r\nrequest for the interview! It’s a great honour! I always was a great fan of\r\nthis mighty band and you know, an At The Gates reunion was a crazy dream for\r\nme. Now this dream became true so I have no words to say... Tell me how does it\r\nfeel to be together again and play music under the name of At The Gates?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: Well, we haven’t played yet so it’s hard to tell. Hehe! On a personal level just meeting the guys was like going back in a time\r\nmachine.
\r\nIt was a lot of fun. The way a reunion should be.
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\r\nLet’s start\r\nwith the reunion shows. Will you be the headliners at Wacken Open Air? I have\r\nalready booked tickets.. hehe! Is there a plan for a European tour or\r\nsomething?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: No, we won’t headline, and the festival running\r\norder is not yet put together until late next year. You have to wait and see. In Europe we will mainly
\r\nplay festival shows, but there might be some club shows in some countries. We\r\nhaven’t decided yet. More info will come soon...
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\r\nIs there\r\nany intention of releasing a DVD including those shows?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: We want to release a DVD, but no plans are made\r\nyet. It would be a good ending to the reunion and also a good chance for people
\r\nwho can’t see us next summer to at least watch something interesting on DVD.
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\r\nMany people\r\ncould believe that because of the reunion, you will release a new album as\r\nwell. What about it? Are there any intentions of releasing the "Slaughter Of\r\nThe Soul" no.2?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: No, we will not record another album.
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\r\nAs it is\r\nknown, your relationships with Tomas Lindberg were not so good. Some years ago\r\nI had a conversation with that guy and when I told him about an At The Gates\r\nreunion he didn’t say a word. It seems to me that he became angry with my question.\r\nNow we are in front of a reunion, so as it is logical, your relationships might\r\nbe very good. I will ask you straight the question that haunts the mind of\r\nevery fan of the extreme sound. Are you good friends or you think that an At\r\nThe Gates reunion could be a good opportunity to earn more money?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: We are good friends today, and the reunion is\r\njust about that.Doing something final. Where we left off. Like a closing couple of shows. If I would have played music for the sake of money, I would start a pop band or write songs for Britney Spears. This is about "Death Metal". We still love\r\nwhat we do (we have played and toured with our other bands since 1996 constantly) and that’s what cares. We are poor musicians, and a couple of festivals won’t\r\nchange it. The real sell out would have been to do a new world tour and a new\r\nalbum. We don’t want to, so we don’t do it.
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\r\nIt is a\r\nkind of "trend" nowdays to have many reunions from dissolved bands. Take a look\r\nat Carcass, Immortal, Cynic, Celtic Frost, Candlemass, Atheist etc etc etc. The\r\ntime for an At The Gates reunion is here. Don’t you think that this is\r\nsomething usual for this era? I mean I am very happy for this reunion because I\r\nam a great fan of the band as I told you but someone else may say "ok, this is\r\nanother reunion, so what?" What is your\r\nopinion?
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\r\nAnders: Yes, but for most of the bands it’s for the\r\nsame reason. Getting back on a personal level as friends. And also a sense of nostalgy. I respect what\r\npeople have to say. A reunion doesn’t\r\nhave to be good in itself, but I am confident that we will give people a good show. We have a lot of good songs to pull it off. I like all of the above mentioned bands \r\nand I think it’s cool that reunited. If you don’t approve as a fan, you will always have the old albums.
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\r\n\r\nWe are 12 years after the release of "Slaughter Of The Soul" and it is still a\r\n"hot" album. How does it feel to be a member of a historical band, a band that\r\nestablished the Swedish (melodic) Death Metal sound?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: It feels good, but I don’t consider myself to\r\nbe some sort of leader of the Gothenburg sound or something. I enjoyed what we did and look back on it with\r\njoy. I am proud, but I am just a regular guy.
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\r\nWhich album\r\nof At The Gates you think that it’s the most important for you? OK, Slaughter...\r\nis the most well known and the most successful but this band has more things to\r\noffer than some good riffs in this album...
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\r\nAnders: My personal fave is TERMINAL SPIRIT DISEASE. It’s the ground breaking album where we\r\nchanged style (after Alf left the band).\r\n

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\r\nAre there\r\nany expectations concerning the reunion shows?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: I look forward to them. The reaction from fans\r\nis insane. Very positive. it’s nice to see.
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\r\nWhich is\r\nthe main reason, in your opinion, that At The Gates is still remembered 12\r\nyears after the last album?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: Tragically I think we are most remembered\r\nbecause we split-up at our peak. That started the whole "cult" thing which led to that people got interested.\r\nBack then the response wasn’t always good. We underwent tough tours and very frustrating experiences along the way. It’s good though. You learn as you go along.
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\r\nWhen you\r\ncreate The Haunted you had in your mind that this band will be the next step\r\nfrom At The Gates? I mean is it a band generated from the ashes of At The Gates\r\nor it was something new?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: No, it was actually a band before AT THE GATES\r\nsplit-up. Adrian\r\nstarted it (together with JENSEN) the same year as a side project to ATG. When\r\nJonas and I joined we of course took our style to the sound of THE HAUNTED. So,\r\nof course some\r\nsongs are reminding people of At The Gates.\r\n

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\r\nAny news\r\nconcerning The Haunted?\r\n

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\r\nAnders: We are writing new songs for our next album. It will probably be out Late next year (2008).
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\r\nThere are\r\nmany things that I wanna ask you but I think that all the above was the most\r\nimportant. It’s very difficult to arrange an interview with a veteran band cause\r\nthere are many questions... So I think that the things you told me are enough for\r\nthe time beeing. If you want to say something to your Greek fans you can do it\r\nthrough this interview, and believe me, there are many fans who wants to see\r\nyou live! All the best and thanks for your time!
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\r\nAnders: Thanks for the interview.\r\n

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\r\nVassilis Mazaris\r\n

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\r\nWatch out the classic video "Blinded By Fear" taken from the album "Slaughter Of The Soul": \r\n

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