Take one of the world’s best ever power metal bands and then mix in tales and heroes of war and what do you get? The answer would be The Great War, the brand new album from the mighty Swedes – Sabaton. The album has already garnished five stars from HEAVY Mag and now we sat down with the band’s bass guitarist Par Sundstrom to find out about all the hard work that went into it.
“We just passed the century anniversary of Armistice Day and also the anniversary of the Great War starting,” Sundstrom explains when we start to talk about where the idea for this concept album came from. “So there has been a lot of talk about World War I and also a lot of celebrations, there have a been a lot of books published and a lot of different things. So with all these topics in the air and every day we are being bombarded by fans who have ideas what they want us to sing about and over the past year World War I has been dominant in those kinds of emails. So we thought okay there is going to be a better time when it comes to timing, at least not in our lifetime, to do this concept album. So we thought it is time to do The Great War.”
“We use the knowledge that we already have in our mind about this four years of history,” says Sundstrom when I ask him whether the band had to do much research into World War I. “What we do then is we start writing the musical parts, meanwhile while we are writing those musical parts I get together all those ideas that have been sent in to our inbox, and things I have stumbled across here and there and I make a kind of shortcut library of all the topics that we could potentially cover on this album. Then a few months later we sit together and look at what kind of musical pieces we have got, we look at what kind of mood each song gives us. If we have a fast and aggressive song then we look for a fast and aggressive topic and so on. Then along the way we pair the different topics with the different demos of songs that we have got, and sometimes we do have topics that we really want to write about but have no songs that match them and vice versa. The research for this album was not so difficult because there was so much going on at the moment with all the anniversaries.”
You can listen to our full Sabaton interview on Spotify.
The Great War will be released through Nuclear Blast Records on July 19th.