HOMETHE BANDALBUMSTOURBLOGVIDEOSWEB SHOP 

Freak Kitchen Blog

Land of the Freaks

Bandonstreet.jpg

Sip on a cup of coffee, a glass of water and a glass of white wine sort of at the same time as I listen to what versions of our tunes to edit for the live DVD on my mp3 player. A grueling job that makes you blush at times, laugh at times and wonder what the hell is going on at times. Still it has to be done and little by little it is coming together (along with new FK album, the next Freak Guitar double and a shitload of other things in the works). Oooops, turbulence. Yes, we are on our way to the USA. The Freak Brothers sit next to me enjoying a glass of Cognac to the caffeine after KLM dinner. Hooked up at the usual diabolic hour of 5:00 AM. Got to Amsterdam from Gothenburg. Had espresso to wake up some more. Now we are somewhere over the Atlantic and doing fine.

IA-lute.jpg

UK-clinic.jpg

Thank you very much for two fun clinics in Cardiff and Manchester the other week. Had a great time together with you fine people. Will be back. Can’t believe they let me do my shit in slick hotel conference facilities (they most likely didn’t know better). Thanks to Rick and everyone at Sounds Great Music and Cranes for bringing me. Thank you also to Mark Lewney who enlightened us with amazing real holograms of guitars at the Physics Department of Cardiff University. It was surreal and Rick, myself and Simon from Laney were baffled by it! (Love this life of mine. Play some freaky notes and talk/sing mumbo jumbo in the evenings and hang out with my beloved Gabriel during day time or check out an occasional hologram in Wales).

Noak.jpg
HTML Dude

In Atlanta buddy Noak a.k.a HTML Dude will fly in from San Francisco to hook up for a couple of days. Also very much looking forward to meet the splendid John Willcoxon and friends again as well as all the other freak maniacs from near and far. We had an absolutely magnificent time last year and are both happy and grateful to be back. Extra thanks go out to Glenn Harveston and Shane Dubose for inviting us back to play at ProgPower USA.

John-W.jpg
John W

Now all of a sudden a whole bunch of days have passed and it is Saturday. We are soon on our way to rehearse for some kind of all-star-jam together with Norwegian Viking buddies Pagan’s Mind. Chris and Björn are going to sing Highway to Hell and Back in Black while I play with PG. I hope we will be alright. The plan is to go out with Noak, John and the bunch and have dinner. Having a birthday today, gee, so we decided to celebrate a bit. Hopefully not too much beverages will find its find into the body. On the other hand AC/DC songs are easy (and wonderful) so… I guess it will be fine.

Birthdaybunch.jpg
Birthday Bunch

Needless to say we had an absolutely stunning time on stage in Atlanta. Since the poor guys in Vanden Plas got stuck in customs and were sent back to Europe we were able to play really long. I think the show went on for two and a half hours, at least. It was a blast and the three of us enjoyed the hell out of it. We used Dean Martin’s version of Georgia on my mind as an intro and Chris said it made all the difference in the world to cool him down a bit just as we walked on stage. Dean rules entirely!

Chris made me cry of laughter in his sing-along-part in Razor Flowers. I don’t know what got into the guy but he made up some real interesting Bruce Lee sounds together with a truly stupid dance (even the cameramen took it away). It looked insane but very entertaining! I was happy with a little improvisation in When Sam Played it Again. Brought the Yamaha Silent guitar and we did a couple acoustic songs as well along with Everything is under control, Fletch Theme, Ugly Side of Me and lots of other stuff. Grabbed yet another cell phone and talked to someone’s sleepy Mom on stage. Even managed to speak a little about the infamous hernia that I had a few years back. This topic was the show’s highlight to some and upsetting to some, I’ve understood afterwards. Whatever.

Atlanta-crowd.jpg

We taped and shot it all and I will make sure the goodies will make it to the DVD. Thank you beloved Kitchen Freaks for yet another stunning Georgia experience! We will be back for sure! (There is some talk about a metal festival in Texas next year that I know of now).

Signingbanners.jpg

Our dear Lara, designated driver of doom, took us back to the hotel and fell asleep after a couple of beers with guys from Pagan’s Mind.

Hooked up with John Macalouso to sound check my guitar for a clinic the day after. The dear Noak tagged along and we cooled ourselves at Starbucks as often as we could in between. John was doing a drum clinic before me and we were going to jam at the end of my thing, which we did and which was fun. FK toured France eons of time ago and traveled together with Ark where John was a member at the time. The clinic went fine and there were some questions asked by interested guys.

easterpromisesposter1.jpg

Had dinner with Noak, John W and company plus the Glimmer Twins. Earlier in the day Noak pretty much made me puke out of happiness when telling me David Cronenberg’s Eastern Promises featuring Viggo Mortensen had opened in the States! Bloody hell! I remember each and every Cronenberg movie I have been to in theaters: The opening of Naked Lunch when it was only myself and a gay couple checking it out (it was during daytime), the premiere of eXistenZ in Paris, watching reruns of Rabid, The Brood and Shivers in Gothenburg, realizing how scary Dead Ringers actually is on a ferry from Denmark to Germany in the early 90’s, seeing The Fly in Copenhagen and so on. David is the man. Always. Both of us enjoyed it and were floored and touched by Eastern Promises. Viggo was great and really brave in doing the part. The fighting scene in the dressing room must have been beyond tough to shoot, totally nude and all. Howard Shore delivered the goods as usual in a very tonal and beautiful score. Ahh… Can’t wait for the DVD release. Inspiring stuff!

Birthdayboy.jpg

Saturday the 6th I turned 38 and was celebrated by the Freak Brothers, Noak and John, Jimmy and Tom! Had a great American birthday, my first one. Besides going out to a nice dinner (Disco Fries anyone? John?) with the gang we also had groovy Champagne at our US friends’ hotel plus got tons of gifts for both myself and Gabriel (Sindre also got presents). It was lovely and funny and I think I got slightly drunk from the whiskey sours, the beer and Champagne. Thank God we played AC/DC at the all-star-thing later in the evening. Björn and Chris went nuts on stage while I fought to keep time and don’t goof. I usually never ever play under the influence from any fluid, except water, but it was my birthday after all, so…

Vikings.jpg

Discofries.jpg
Disco fries…

Left for Sweden the day after and continued to work on tune choosing on the plane. Bad turbulence over the Atlantic and for the first time ever I got a little uncomfortable with it, thinking of Gabriel at home and feeling the Dad Thing. What if shit actually happens when you’re up there? Ah, better not pay attention to thoughts like that. It will mess you up. On with the show dammit.

Now I find myself on a plane again, bound for Paris where I have a few hours to kill before taking off for Verona, Italy. Will do a clinic there tomorrow.

Bandjetlag.jpg

Ladies and Gentlemen, I feel this is the time to present Land of the Freaks, the new Freak Kitchen album we are working on. A couple of days ago I had virtuoso Indian violinist Radhakrishna over at my house to lay down real cool playing on a couple of tunes. Next week we will record the drums. All guitars are done and lyrics are being written around the clock when yours truly’s intellect is in the mood. I am very, very thrilled with the record. I believe we are moving onward. This has been by far the easiest release to compose and arrange. It is usually the other way around when you have produced a whole bunch of albums, but… It was meant to be. Total breeze. Will mix it with the trusty Roberto Laghi in my basement when the time comes. Chris has contributed with a great tune (that I stole from his Eaglestrike project shamelessly).

Band-Atlanta.jpg

Radhakrishna.jpg
Radhakrishna taking it away

A kick ass drum sound has been set up, again the best we’ve ever had. The same with the guitars. GH100L, all Laney. Lots of Silent guitar to add texture next to the heavily distorted Caparison inferno. I think this is the heaviest one we have done. It is also the most complex and the most straight forward. These are the Land of the Freaks tunes:

God Save the Spleen
Teargas Jazz
Death by Hypochondria
The Smell of Time
OK
Do Not Disturb
Murder Groupie
Honey, You’re a Nazi
One Last Dance
Clean it Up
The Only Way
Hip Hip Hoorah

Björn came up with the album title by muttering in the tour bus a while back. I thought it was brilliant and so did Chris. It sticks. We will not present any release date before we are done but it should be out first half of 2008. Ahh… Can’t wait for you to hear it. Hopefully we will have the great Magnus Ericsson Sommen of LJO orchestrate a song or two for the huge Metal meets Brass gig 1st of March. We’ll see… More news soon, friends. Need to finish my coffee before they take it away since we are approaching the capitol of France.

Roberto.jpg
Roberto

Franco.jpg
Franco

Now I kick back in a vineyard here in Verona, a fabulous place, where my friends Roberto and Franco have set me up. It is late and I am going to bed soon. Had a bunch of glasses of absolutely stunning white local wine. Northern Italy is beautiful and my view from the window is lovely: grapes, grapes and grapes everywhere you look. I am thinking of the nice Kenneth Brannagh film, Shakespeare’s Much ado about nothing. Weather is more to my taste than the south as well.

(A couple of days later, six in the morning at Villafranca airport…)

Wiping sleep from my eyes as I wait for my boarding after a groovy weekend. On the way back to Sweden, again via Paris. Verona is amazing with its Roman vibe. We did an intense sight seeing tour of the city before my clinic and I was baffled. Even got to say hi to Dante. He didn’t seem to be in an infernal state at all.

Verona-Clinic.jpg

The clinic went well. Three Freak Guitar Campers showed up to listen to the Guru’s mumbo jumbo. Speaking of the camp, I just got the dates of next year. The Scandinavian week will be between the 21st – 26th of July. The first international week between the 28th of July to the 2nd of August and the second international week between 5th and 10th of August. Registration begins in February on this very site. Stay tuned.

Verona-tree.jpg

Anyway, had a tiptop time explaining my zany style. Roberto did his best to translate my nonsense and very well so. Signed CDs and shirts afterwards before heading for One Music School and an interview. Franco and the bunch had prepared a gorgeous dinner at the vineyard that I really enjoyed. Acoustic guitars were brought out and we were jamming the night away, getting more and more sloppy for every glass of Franco’s delicious wine. Stuffed from head to toe I fell asleep around midnight. Thank you Italian friends for a fabulous time, very well organized and awesome in every way. Hope we can bring Freak Kitchen after the new release. Grazie, grazie. Got to board.

On plane I got beyond first class service by the steward. Lucky for me he was a guitar player and recognized me from some guitar magazine. Croissants… Line them up. Air France coffee… Not bad. Some more? You bet!

Spent time shooting cloud footage with my video camera while listening to Joni Mitchell’s Shine. You never know when you might need a few minutes of clouds in HD quality. I find Mother Nature inspiring to capture. You can bust your ass with creating this and that in Photoshop or whatever software. Go outside, shoot a tree and you got the most amazing patterns you can imagine. It’s all there right in front of our blind noses.

Studied a little Beethoven Triple Concerto before descending for Paris. The concert will most likely take place in the city of Västerås August 2008 after the Freak Guitar Camp. I read the score and listen to the music time after time to get into my system before I will break down the chops and turn it from violin into guitar. Challenging to say the least.

That’s it for now friends. As usual, thanks for reading. Stay freaky and remember to grow your own moustache whatever you do.

IA

Comments are closed.