AMON AMARTH Guitarist: Heavy Metal Is 'Way Bigger Now Than It Was When We Were Kids'

AMON AMARTH Guitarist: Heavy Metal Is 'Way Bigger Now Than It Was When We Were Kids'

In a recent interview with Germany's, AMON AMARTH guitarist Olavi Mikkonen and bassist Ted Lundström were asked if they think "harsh metal is more mainstream nowadays" compared to how it was when the band first started out more than two and a half decades ago. Olavi responded: "Probably harsh metal is more mainstream, I would say. 'Cause I think traditional heavy metal has always been very big, at least in Sweden. But, of course, I think metal even is way bigger now than it was when we were kids. If you look at IRON MAIDEN, when we were kids, they played a hockey place that took seven and a half thousand people. And nowadays, IRON MAIDEN, if they do a show in Stockholm, they will play for fifty thousand. So, obviously, the whole metal scene got bigger. But in the '80s, metal was new — there was not old people listening to metal; it was only the youth. But [as] time [went on], the youth, they grow up and become old men, but they still like to go to the shows. But there also came in a lot of new [fans]. So I think it's a natural progress why metal became bigger. It's not rocket science."

Added Ted: "But at the same time, it's kind of fascinating, because in Sweden, [there's] not very much of our style of music — death metal — that's actually on the radio, for example, and there's no MTV anymore, with 'Headbangers Ball' or things like that. It's still growing. It's alive. It's really doing well. And it's kind of cool that it's continued to grow even without support from a lot of the main media stuff. At least in Sweden, that's the case. We have a few rock channels on radio, but not really anything on the main channels. I think that's really cool. It shows the strength of the music style."

AMON AMARTH is continuing to tour in support of its latest album, "Berserker", which was released in May via Metal Blade Records. The disc was recorded at Sphere Studios in North Hollywood, California with Ruston, who has previously worked with ANTHRAX, STEEL PANTHER, URIAH HEEP and STONE SOUR.


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