One month after the release of their impressive debut full length “Through My Darkest Infernal” on Demons Run Amok, Anders Löwgren of metal/hardcore hybrid AKANI teamed up with IDIOTEQ to share some of the details behind the record, dive into the details of the project, its crossover between the distinctive styles of New York and Göteborg, and plot plans for their upcoming schedules.
AKANI was formed in 2012 by singer Jorge Rosado from MERAUDER fame and DEAD REPRISE’s drummer Anders Löwgren with the aim of merging the rage of NYC hardcore with heaviness of Swedish death-metal. Joined shortly thereafter by guitarists Anders Björler and Daniel Antonsson, from AT THE GATES and SOILWORK respectively, and ENTOMBED bassist Victor Brandt, the group soon recorded four songs for an EP titled “Santa Muerte”, which was released in 2014 by Demons Run Amok and is now completely sold out. With Daniel Cederborg formerly of PATH OF NO RETURN replacing the departed Anders Björler and Daniel Antonsson taking over the bass as well as guitars, AKANI are back with their first full-length and they sound more potent and heavy than ever before.
Captured between Gothenburg and New York, “Through My Darkest Infernal” sees AKANI confidently blending the straight-up, intense rage of hardcore with the crushing heaviness of metal, yet this time they’ve included some new twists and ideas to make this 14-track album a thoroughly rewarding and interesting listen. This album is a must for all aficionados of MERAUDER, HATEBREED and EARTH CRISIS, but will also appeal to fans of SEPULTURA, OBITUARY and THE HAUNTED.
Hey guys! Thanks for stopping by at IDIOTEQ. How are you? How’s this fine Summer been treating you?
Hello! I’m good thanks. Im on tour with REFUSED and DEFTONES in the US right now. Got to see Jorge in Coney Island on his 47th birthday last week!
Wow, ho how cool is that? One month after the release of ‘Through My Darkest Infernal’, how does it feel to have it finally out? What feedback have you received and how satisfied are you at this moment?
We worked really hard to put this album together so it’s always a great feeling when its finally out! So far the response has been fantastic and over our expectations. We’re very happy with how the record sound and how it came together with the artwork and everything, I’m happy people are into it!
For those unfamiliar with the band’s lineup, please drop us a couple of lines how you formed AKANI and how hard was it to form it with members located in so distant places?
AKANI started as a project between me (Anders) and Anders Björler from AT THE GATES. I work as a drum tech for AT THE GATES and we usually jam hardcore songs at soundcheck and on the way home from Wacken we started talkin about doin a demo of hardcore songs together, we were listening to “Master Killer” of MERAUDER in the van and I said, let’s ask Jorge if he wants to sing. We both knew him from touring… He was super excited right away so we started emailing riffs and ideas to each other. We had Victor Brandt from ENTOMBED on bass at the time and everyone came up with songs real fast so after a few months we recorded the first tracks and released them on a 7″ EP. It was a great experience making songs with your favorite musicians and the response on these first songs were fantastic so me and Jorge decided to keep going. Anders had to focus on writing the new AT THE GATES album and touring cycle and same for Victor so they took a step back… Thats when we got Daniel Antonsson and Daniel Cederborg into the mix and started writing for our first full length. With the technique today the distance doesnt really matter. We managed to write and record over 14 tracks within a couple of months and make a video for one of the tracks.
What’s the story behind your teaming up with Demons Run Amok back in 2014?
My other band DEAD REPRISE have worked with Marcel earlier as he put out our last LP, when I told him about this new band he got really excited and he has the right attitude and passion for our type of music so he’s easy to work with. He teamed up with Rene and they hired some good promo dudes to push even more for our record so we’re happy so far! Theres a lot of shady people in the business so better stay with the ones you trust, you know.
What has led to the lineup change and the addition of Daniel to the AKANI crew?
Like I said earlier, both AT THE GATES and ENTOMBED were both really busy making new albums and went on a long touring cycle and AKANI was only meant to be a little side project in the beginning. Daniel and Daniel didnt have much going on at the time and me and Daniel Antonsson talked about doin a hardcore band together for many years so the timing was just perfect.
What does Daniel bring to the lineup?
Both Daniel’s are awesome guitarplayers and they both bring great riffs to the table. Daniel Antonsson also runs a studio and got amazing skills as far as recordings and mixing goes. He pretty much recorded and mixed our whole album and its one of the best sounding hardcore metal records Ive heard in a long time, so… We’re just group of friends who I like making music with, we had a lot of fun making “Through My Darkest Infernal” and I can’t wait to write the next one and play shows with these guys! Me and Daniel Cederborg go waaaay back and he’s been with me in DEAD REPRISE for many years and he was always a bit more “metal” so his ideas that doesn’t fit in DR fits perfect in AKANI.
Ok, so how do you keep it going, both contact, rehearsing and touring wise? Is it a struggle to be a multi-continental band captured between NYC and one of the greatest cities in Sweden?
We haven’t rehearsed full band yet. We keep in touch through the internet. Theres many bands that have members living far apart, in 2016 this is pretty normal. We’re planning to do shows and when we finally book something I’m sure we’ll find a way to rehearse and get ready, either in the US or in Sweden.
In terms of their local music scenes, can you compare and contrast New York and Gothenburgh?
To me, New York was more about the groove and Gothenburg more about melodies. I’ve always been a huge fan of New York hardcore and hip hop, while Gothenburg always has been the source for great metal. There are too many bands to mention but I’m sure most people in the scene know about the bands that formed NYHC and the “Gothenburg sound”. I’m a big fan of both and it’s interesting to crossover between both styles, I think you can hear the mix in Akani’s music.
Ok Anders, so what are your touring plans? Can we epect a European run sometime soon?
As Jorge is finishing up MERAUDER with a Euro and a US tour this fall and Daniel A is havin a kid, it will have to wait until next spring. Nothin is booked yet but we have been talking to some promoters and other bands about possible shows and tours. We will hit the road when the time is right!
How does AKANI relate to other projects you’re still involved in? How do you balance between these worlds?
Since AKANI ain’t touring or rehearsing it doesn’t take much time, you know.
Ok, back to ‘Through My Darkest Infernal’, lyrics-wise, can you tell us about your inspirations? In the world of harsh politics, dozens of global social problems and all kinds of pressures, what makes you comment it through your music?
Jorge writes about anything that cross his mind, obviously there’s a lot of crazy shit goin on in this world that can’t be ignored and he writes about some of this stuff. The title is actually something that Tompa from AT THE GATES came up with after hearing the demos and we feel that it sums up the record both musically and lyrically as we all went through some rough and emotional times during the writing/recording process. Jorge is a very spiritual guy and deals with some deeper subjects in some of the tracks as well.
Ok Anders, thanks for your time! Feel free to add you final words and take care! Cheers from Warsaw!
Thanks, check out the new album and follow us on facebook for the latest updates! Peace!