Unite In Pain (Part I) – Anders Nystrom of Bloodbath

It has been a most eventful year in the Bloodbath camp, with a brand new album in Grand Morbid Funeral (Peaceville) and the shocking and welcome news of Nick Holmes taking the chalice left by Mikael Akerfeldt and returning to his Death Metal roots. In the first of a two part feature, Anders Nystrom chatted to Ghost Cult about how the new album came together…


“It’s basically an impossible task to get all the members of the band together, that’s probably why it is six years between the last release and this one. Just scheduling, booking studio time, and getting everyone together is one crazy mission. Even though one member may be available another won’t be, and when he is available the first one isn’t and it’s just a never ending cycle, an impossible journey.

Bloodbath has never been the kind of band that needs to be a collective unit with the same spark to write because we always divided the composition individually between us anyway. The way things work is we make a conscious effort to have group sitting down first and deciding what the vibe is going to be, making sure everyone is on the same page, and once we are we can pretty much fuck off you know?”

Despite the immense difficulty in finding moments of writing, the process itself was relatively quick once the foundations had been made.

“Real writing started January this year, and I think I heard demos from everyone within a few weeks. So, yeah, it took a month, but it’s something we had been planning since six years ago, like lyrical ideas, conceptual ideas that sort of thing, but the actual songs weren’t until January this year.”

Ester Segarra

Grand Morbid Funeral shows a departure from their previous album…

“There were certain elements we wanted to pursue, like a certain approach on the album we hadn’t done fully on an earlier album which was basically to make it way more organic, way more raw, stop overdoing things, stop editing things to death and just go old school. That also involved taking things down a notch. I think the more sludgy, doomier and heavier approach of death metal goes better hand in hand with that kind of sound. Also the last album was a pretty technical affair and we wanted to do something different opposed to that as well.

“We are like a chameleon in a sense, we can change on each album and do something that we like that reflects different kinds of death metal, so no I was never really worried but I kind of expected a bacjlash to happen but it doesn’t bother me, I am so proud and so excited about the album that I can’t be bothered about it”.

How do you feel the fans have taken to a Bloodbath without Mikael?

“I think some of the more conservative fans, they would have just preferred Mike to stay, but you can’t force someone to be a part of a band who has altogether lost his interest for death metal. When that interest decays you have to be true to yourself, otherwise you’re going to be a fraud, a hypocrite. It’s not fair to yourself, it’s not fair to the band and it’s not fair to the fans, if you’re doing something where your heart isn’t in it anymore.”

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