Illdisposed - Dropping coins for their ‘fellows’
It’s March 11th, a rainy day. I’m heading to Rotterdam, because two days before I received the good news that Metalrage had an interview with the Danish guys from Illdisposed. That day, Metalrage consisted of Carn, Buzzin Hornet and me. I was pretty excited, because I had high expectations of this band and it seemed very cool to talk to them. We got invited in the tour bus, and the first thing we had to do was “grab a beer before we start”. Well, that’s something you don’t have to tell us twice! The interview started and we got to talk to both guitar players of Illdisposed, Jakob Batten and Lasse Bak.
How is the tour going so far?
We’re going. It’s going pretty well. We’ve got our ups and downs, but mostly ups. We had to play in Switzerland on a Monday and that sucks. Nobody wants to go to a concert on Monday. Sunday is much better. And while this music is also about drinking beer and having a party, Monday isn’t the right day for a gig.
How are the guys from Ancient and Final Breath?
Hehe you really want us to answer that? Well, I’ll start with saying that the guys from Final Breath are cool. Then Ancient, this band has Italian guys, and the drummer is also a bit from the United States. But this guy, he really is an idiot! In a funny way it’s ok to talk to him but he’s this ‘rockstar-type’ of person. And then there’s the bassplayer, he’s also from Italy. But actually we don’t wanna talk about every single of these guys because after every sentence they say that they’re from Italy. But the singer, he’s the only Norwegian guy in the band. And these guys are just really annoying, every night they start their set with saying: “Elloooo, we are Ancient, from the land of deeeaaathh!” Hehehehe. And they always talk about they’re coming from Norway because they play Black Metal, how cool is that?! They all have that long black hair and those lift up noses. But to make a long story short, we’re on tour with them; I think that’s the right answer.
But the funny thing is, nobody comes to see Ancient on tour. When they get on stage, everybody is heading over to the bar. And there’s maybe ten people left in front of the stage. And they get 50 minutes playing time and they play about 70 minutes. And when somebody drops a coin they say: “hey, we’re finished now, thank you!”. And if another person drops a coin they think they have to go in there and play 50 minutes again, hehehe
What’s the most memorable gig from this tour? Why this one?
Well, I don’t have a lot of memories of the last two weeks, I think yesterday was pretty good. Yesterday we played in Hengelo, Innocent. I believe that’s FC Twente right? We always think about the football clubs when we’re visiting a town. But yeah, we played a good show there and the crowd laughed so it was pretty good.
How did you come up with the title ‘1-800 Vindication’?
The word ‘Vindication’ means that we’re back in business. We’re uprising and ready to play again. And then the ‘1-800’ part is just to make fun of those American hotlines. You know like: “Call 1-800 and get a blowjob!”. Or: “1-800, I’d like to sleep with men too.”
The video for Still Sane has been released a couple of weeks ago, how was the video shoot?
Well we were drunk. We played a concert the night before and it got really late and we had to do the video next day at nine o’clock. And then we took another box of beer, really strong beer and we did the video shoot. But the good thing with videos is that you’re not really playing. You’re just standing there, looking like shit. And the guy who makes the video puts in a lot of special effects and everybody thinks you’re a rockstar. At that point we’re just washed up Danish idiots! It really doesn’t matter how you look because the director just adds some fire and tits, and especially the last one always works out, hehehe.
How are the reactions to that video so far?
One of the guys from my old class said it was ok. But seriously, a lot of people are saying it looks very cool, but then again some cry-baby says: “ooohh, that’s a used plot! You can’t use a mental hospital for a video.” Because it’s set in a mental hospital you know. And it’s done a million times before, maybe a million and one times before, but we didn’t even think about that. The director just did it. But you know what, I’ve got the video for you guys, we’ll watch it after the interview on my laptop.
In the intro for the song ‘Jeff’ you’ve got a Japanese dialog or something like that, what does it mean?
That’s actually from the movie Wayne’s World 2. We just picked it because it’s funny and the song is called ‘Jeff’. Jeff is a cool name like Brian or Hank. We should have called the song ‘Hank’ hehehe.
How do you feel about playing the European festivals this summer?
We love doing festivals, because it’s quickly allowed. It’s not like the smaller venues where you have to do a long soundcheck in the afternoon and sit in the bus again and smell like shit.
Do you try to check out all the bands playing there?
Nooo man! We’re just drinking beer actually.
If you look at Illdisposed from the first CD to the latest one, what would be the biggest changes regarding the sound and music?
I think the last CD was like the rock bottom. It was a big change. We were a good band and then a bad one. And now were changed into a good band again. We got the perfect line-up now and we’re playing really good together.
But regarding your music itself, do you really try to involve and to change your sound or do you try to keep the same sound you have now?
I don’t think we’ve changed a lot. We just added some things to it. It’s a better production than the previous albums but the sound hasn’t really changed. And when you listen to one of our albums you can always here that we put a lot of work into it. But that’s also because of the studio, because with our previous album we had to record it in a studio that we didn’t like and we moved our equipment in the studio the night before. We were just like: “Does this sound ok? Yeah, Yeah, fuck it! Just put in on the album.” That’s the main difference with this album.
But the last album itself got pretty good reviews right?
Yeah, underground reviews.
What do you think is more important? Underground reviews or the big ones?
Basically I don’t give a shit because when we get out of the studio I know if it’s a good album or not. And I’ve read about 70 reviews about the album and only one of that said we sounded like anyone else. It was like: “these guys are from Sweden and bla bla bla and they sound like In Flames”. And I was like: “what are you talking about?!” We don’t sound like anyone else. And of course I know that every band says: “we’re different, bla bla bla, we have our own sound bla bla bla. But when you put it altogether, they do sound like anyone else. But In Flames is just In Flames.
Do you consider Illdisposed to be one of the better bands in the Danish metalscene these days? Why (not)?
The best! Hehe, no fuck that shit! I’m not even gonna answer that. No seriously, we got some good bands in Denmark but the problem there is that all bands are too much hyped up. If they sell about 400 demos, there walking on the streets like: “we’re the men!” But you can find me in the supermarket stealing things you know.
How do you guys combine Illdisposed with Panzerchrist? Do you try to mix up the touring and the recording?
No, why should we do that?! Bo is the singer of Panzerchrist, but he never did a live show with that band. They’ve never been together with all five members of the band. They really never have been at the same place at the same time together. He does the lyrics in five minutes, gets into the studio and gets out in one day. That’s just it!
And so the interview with these Danish party freaks ended. One of the guys got his laptop to show us the video, which was amazing by the way due to the incredible sound. They just had a Dolby surround system in their tour bus! We want to thank these guys for a great day (and for giving us free beer the whole day long).