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Draconian (II)
Interview mit Anders & Heike [Draconian], 05.03.2016, Oberhausen/Helvete

Das letzte Konzert ihrer Co-Headliner-Tour mit Omnium Gatherum absolvierten die schwedischen Dark-/Doom-Metaller Draconian am 5. März 2016 im kleinen Club Helvete in Oberhausen. Vor der Show traf ich Growler Anders Jacobsson und Sängerin Heike Langhans zu einem kleinen Gespräch über Tour-Highlights, peinliche Momente auf der Bühne sowie das Thema Seuchenverbreitung im Bus.

Today it’s the last show of this tour: Are you relieved or sad?

Heike: I think, I’m a little bit relieved, because it has been a bit chaotic. But at the same time I know, once I’m back at home I’m gonna miss the experience and hope there was more time to hang out and see countries. This tour was only for ten days, it was just a test to see how we can handle it. Some people have families back at home and I miss the cats, you know. [laughs] But it’s only ten days and they pass by quicker than you think…

Anders: …especially when you have no breaks, when you have no free days. So everything is on a tight schedule.

No day off at all?

Anders: No. As a growl vocalist it would have been good for me to have that. I’ve been struggling with that…and people have been a little bit sick on tour. But considering the situation all has been good. All the shows have been different experiences, different sounds, different energies… The problem is – as Heike said – I’m gonna miss it when I’m back at home. I live alone. It’s gonna be very silent when I’m back in my old familiar quite boring life.

Heike: It’s a small town.

Anders: Ja, it’s a small town, Säffle. When you get out of there meeting all these people, you realize how small this bubble you’re living in actually is.

Did you have the time to walk a little bit around in the cities you’ve visited on this tour? Doing some sightseeing?

Heike: Well, there were opportunities to walk around in Poland and also in Vienna we had some time, but it was exactly the time when I was sick. The rest of the guys went shopping in some record stores…

Anders: I slept more than doing sightseeing.

Heike: Ja, sleep is important when you’re a vocalist. If you don’t sleep enough, it’s really hard to sing. Sleeping is a little bit more important than sightseeing, if you only have ten days and no breaks. [laughs]

Are you all travelling in one bus?

Anders: We’re sharing the nightliner with Omnium Gatherum. The other two bands have their own mini vans and they’re staying at the hotels.

So they have the proper beds…

Anders: Ja, but they have no possibility to lay down during these long trips, so in a way it’s better to have a nightliner.

What have been your highlights so far on this tour?

Heike: I start forgetting the names of the venues and cities…mmm…which was the one that had a really good crowd?

Anders: Vienna.

Heike: Ja, that was Vienna. It was quite a small venue, but the crowd was amazing. It was magical, they were sooo into it. You could feel the energy of the people, they fed us. It was really an intimate gig. And even though I felt sick and dizzy on that day, the crowd made it better. So that really was a highlight.

Anders: Ja, that was definitely our highlight, a big surprise. But also Weinheim and Berlin were good, it’s been magical there. In Berlin I met a very good friend – Mathias from Cemetary.

Did you also have any embarrassing moments?

Heike: In Berlin I had a great embarrassing moment. I was rocking on stage and my skirt kinda like slipped down a little bit. And I didn’t notice until, well, I don’t know how long it was like that. [laughs] I quickly pulled it up again. But I can only laugh about it, because I’m sure there have been worse things happening to people on stage.

Anders: The whole Bratislava show was more or less a disaster. We had some technical issues, all of us made mistakes and I forgot lyrics more than usual. [laughs] That was probably the worst show of this tour. But I have a good feeling about the show tonight. There will come people we know as well.

How do your fans react referring to the new songs that you’re playing live on stage?

Heike: Really well, it’s so nice to hear when I sing along that they know the words already, even though it’s new material. It’s also nice afterwards when people tell you how much they like the new album. As I’m a vocal replacement, that’s a very nice compliment and very motivating for me.

Anders: After yesterday’s show the fans were amazing.

In Munich?

Anders: Ja, in Munich. I met a guy who couldn’t stop hugging me, and there were people buying me drinks and I had to say no after a while, because I started to get drunk. [laughter] I also met a disabled person, he couldn’t walk, and I’m working with disabled people back at home. It was so nice to see that he just came to see Draconian. And 15 minutes ago I got a mail from him with a picture that we took together – he was very happy about that.

You’re touring with a little bit different line-up this time. What happened?

Anders: Fredrik left the band, already a while ago, but we made it official a bit later. We’re still looking for a new bass player. Daniel [Änghede; Crippled Black Phoenix] was kind enough to jump in and learn the songs. And since our drummer Jerry got a kid, he wanted to stay home. But Tarald from Tristania offered his help.

As this is a co-headlining tour together with Omnium Gatherum – who is always playing at last? Are you switching every night?

Heike: Ja, we’ve been switching between the two bands every night. Today it’s Omnium Gatherum being the last one on stage.

Any tricks or treats planned?

Anders: I don’t know. If there is time, maybe…it’s not really up to us, especially as the other guys are headlining.

Heike: And we’re always on schedule, we have to be on our way in a certain time, because tomorrow we’re going back to the airport – so everything is very planned and scheduled. And if people do something what they are not supposed to do, you’ll hear about it… [laughs] So it’s always better just to stick to the plan.

As there are two Swedish and two Finnish bands touring together – is there in general a lot of partying?

Heike: Less than I thought. The first night was quite rowdy, but I think, everyone takes this tour very seriously and they know that you have to maintain a certain level of health in order to function every day. Sure there is drinking. I don’t think anyone wants to be completely sober constantly being in this chaos. I’m considering we’re here with two Swedish and two Finnish bands, me being the objective outsider person I honestly expected more drinking. [laughs] So I’m quite impressed.

And all alone with the men…

Heike: No, actually there are two other girls on the bus. I thought I would be the only one, but luckily there are these other girls and they are very nice.

And you’re still a vegetarian, Anders?

Anders: Yes, I am. But it is really hard to be completely vegan on tour. The catering has not always been great.

I’ve heard something about food poisoning within the bands and crew…

Heike: We established that it wasn’t really food poisoning. It was more like this winter stomach virus. We thought it was something meat related, because the vegetarians were not getting ill. But after a while everyone started to feel sick, just one by one. Our tourmanager is even in hospital now. Filip left last night and can’t join us for this last show. But within the last four or five days almost all of us got sick at some point.

Do you always have a little bag with medicine with you?

Heike: Actually not even that helped. I have colloidal silver and olive extract which is amazing for killing all kinds of bacteria, but it’s really impossible to avoid getting infected on a bus. We had constantly to disinfect everything [laughs], but it just wasn’t enough, especially when it’s airborne. It got us all.

Anders: In nightliners it’s so crowded, so hot, you can nothing do about it.

What’s the first thing you gonna do when you’re back home?

Heike: Playing with the cats.

Anders: Yeah, the same actually. My cats are at a different place, so I just fetch them and then I will sleep, I guess. On the 8th I have to be back at work.

What can we expect from the show tonight here in Oberhausen?

Heike: It’s a very emotional show, but also we respond to our fans in the crowd. Personally for me it will be a little bit more emotional today, because it’s the last show and there are people here we know. We just hope it’s gonna be great. You never know about the sound and technical stuff – it’s always depending on those little things.

Interview & Fotos: Lea S.
Website Band: www.draconian.se

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copyright: Aurora Borealis 2007-2015
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