April 15, 2021 | By: Leeann Walters
Time for a tell all interview with amazing Swedish stoner rock band Greenleaf. Releasing their superb new album Echoes From A Mass in 2021 it is certainly an epic new album needed after the struggles coming from the pandemic sweeping the globe the previous year with us seemingly finally emerging with a light at the end of this very dark tunnel. Consisting of Arvid Hällagård on vocals, Tommi Holappa on guitar, Hans Fröhlich on bass and Sebastian Olsson hitting drums Greenleaf are definitely what the world needs now.
Thank you so
much for doing the interview for Rock Industry Magazine……..
1) Hi guys so first off can I ask what inspired you to make ‘Echoes From A
Mass’ after a long break from the 2018 release of ‘Hear The Rivers’?
Usually we release an album every 2 years but this time both me (Tommi) and Arvid got babies in June 2018 so that is the main reason why it took us 3 years instead of 2 to release this album. We are always inspired to write new music, or at least I am, usually I start working on ideas and riffs right away after an album is released and there is never really a plan in what direction we want to go, we just write songs and after a year or so you start seeing in which direction the album is going, that ́s when the bits and pieces are starting the fall into their place and you start seeing the theme of the album. The inspiration comes from riff addiction, hahaha, the high you get from writing a killer riff or song, nothing can beat that!
2) Has anything regarding the Covid-19 Pandemic had any direct influence on your most recent release or lyrics?
Musically no. Lyrically I think yes a little bit. This is the first time Arvid has written lyrics that are very personal to him. During the writing of this album he got divorced and then the pandemic came so writing lyric was therapy for him. Most of the lyrics are about the feelings he was going through during last year loneliness, anger, disappointment, depression and so on. So you can easily say that this is the the darkest album we have done, at least lyrically.
3) Who would you say are your main influences when it comes to your most unique sound?
Well, this is a hard question! We all listen to all kinds of music and music
styles. Everything from Jazz, blues, soul to pop, rock and metal etc etc and influences comes from anything that is good! A good song or riff is always a good song or riff, doesn’t matter what genre it is. But if we just have to choose one I guess it would be Black Sabbath, they are the origin of all heavy rock, the masters!
4) Can your fans expect any online shows or performances until we have the pleasure of having you play any UK stages in the future?
Sadly until this Covid-19 shit has calmed down a bit we can ́t do any live
streams. Our bass player Hans lives in Berlin/Germany and with their lockdowns and everything it has made it impossible for him to travel to Sweden. But as soon as it is possible we will get together and then we can come up with something.
5) With the prospect of gigs and festivals potentially being possible this year do you have any line ups planned?
We know already that we will not do any full length tours this year but we have a few smaller festivals booked and some weekends shows. But at the moment everything feels like it ́s too early to say what shows will happened and what shows will not, all we can do is keep our fingers crossed and hope for the best, it ́s been 14 months since we last played a shows so we are definitely ready to rock!
6) What would you say is your favourite track on ‘Echoes From A Mass’ and what was the inspiration behind it?
I can ́t choose just one favourite but Needle In My Eye is one of my favourite’s. The guitar melody thing is influenced by theme songs from Swedish children’s TV shows from the 70 ́s, happy melody with a melancholic vibe, the rest of the song is built around that riff. Lyrically Arvid is getting lot of his anger out and you can really hear his anger and desperation in his voice in this one. It ́s a great song with a lot of cool parts and lot of dynamics!
7) As you are known for thinking outside of the box when it comes to musical creativity what would you say you have in store for fans for future ventures?
We will always keep growing and try to keep things fresh and not write the same song over and over again. It ́s too early to say what the next album will sound like but I can guarantee that we will put our hearts and souls into it and write the best album we can. Hopefully Arvid will not get divorced again so we can write a bit happier album, hahaha.
8) With The album opener, ‘Tides’ immediately drawing fans in with this catchy song, what influenced you when creating this masterpiece?
I wrote the main riff(chorus) at home on my acoustic guitar. Influences? I don ́t know really, probably lot ́s of coffee, hahaha!, it was just a nice little chord progression that stuck to my head. The basic song was written together with the other guys in the rehearsal room, us just jamming the 4 chords and Arvid improvising vocals on top of that and the rest of the songs just came naturally, I think it probably took us like 30 minutes or so to have the whole song idea ready! It ́s not everyday things go so fast usually it takes months or even sometimes years before we finally feel satisfied with something, This song is more about the feeling you get of the whole song and not about complex riffing.
9) When will everyone be able to stream or download this brilliant new album and what platforms will be available to us?
The album was released on March 26:st and is available everywhere and on all platforms but if you are really cool you just go to your local record store and buy Echoes From A Mass on vinyl or cd from them.
10) Finally do you have any plans for future albums in the near future once your fans have had the time to fully enjoy and absorb Echoes From A Mass’?
No plans at the moment but we will be writing new music for sure! Before we even start thinking more seriously about the next album album we will tour tour tour and then tour some more for Echoes From From A Mass so my guess is that it will take 2-3 years before we release the next one.
It has been an absolute pleasure and I would like to thank you again for this
interview with Rock Industry Magazine and I for one can’t wait to see you live
and in person.