"We’re trying to write about thirty new tracks, ten at the time, and in the end we will choose the fifteen best to work with for the album"

Read the latest interview with Kiethevez from June 2003, written by J Andersson for Kiethevez.com.

Your latest album titled Opium was released in 1997. Is there any new material out soon?

Hopefully we will release a new album (not yet titled) in 2005. It may seem lazy that we haven’t released any new material for almost six years, but after the Opium album we were drained of creativity and inspiration. A lot of touring, singles, videos and so on created some kind of emptiness. As a band we need that extra energy, the special need to create and express our self’s – and we can’t compose without it. It took maybe three years before we felt that we had the need to create again. So two years ago we started to write some new songs, just to get the feel of it again. Some moths later we decided to make a new album. Everything felt right to start writing together again.

So your working with a new album. Can you try to describe the new material?
During those years since Opium was released we’ve got some new influences. As always we’re trying to create something new on each album, we’re trying to develop our sound, lyrics and arrangements. So we have experimented a lot with our sound over a period. We wanted to develop a more organic sound, something that feels more honest. Our melodies have always been very important, and it will be important for as long as we write. Just to add more feeling to the melodies we developed that more organic and acoustic sound. More guitars, samplings, odd instruments and so on made the job. But the melancholic touch and brilliant lyrics will always be our compass. We’re convinced that the new sound is what we always searched for – but we needed that break for a few years to realize what was missing. There are both up- and low-tempo songs ready so far. Really dark pieces but also some “melancholic happy” ones. We’re trying to write about thirty new tracks, ten at the time, and in the end we will choose the fifteen best to work with for the album. About twelve of them will end up on the CD. The rest will be used for B-sides, collections and so on.

It seams like a very long process...
Yes, absolutely. But we need that process to be satisfied with the result. And we need that process to really get into what’s good, and what’s not so good. It’s all about getting to know the songs, then you really now which ones that fits on the new album – and which ones that don’t. Sometimes the melody and the lyrics is really great – but we don’t get the arrangement right. Some songs are rearranged about fore or five times just to get the right feeling. Thirty songs takes about two years to write, and after that two years passes by before we have the ten or twelve best songs for the album. All songs must fit the new concept, and the album is a concept – not a collection of songs. It’s a long process – and we’re that kind of band that needs time to create what we want.

How do you work in the studio?
We have always worked in teams of two. Sometimes all four of us get together to take a song a step further. During the years we’ve worked together we have just positive experiences of working in pairs. We achieve some kind of dynamic creativity, and when we don’t get this right – we just switch members in the duos to get new points of view. We also share early ides via e-mail – mp3-files, chord analysis, lyrics and so on. Constant communication. Frequently we meet all four during a weekend to work with new songs and share new ideas.

And how do you compose?
It’s very often someone that comes up with an idea, some lyrics, a refrain, a beat, a sound or just anything. From that we’re trying to build a complete song. We also compose complete songs with just a guitar, or in the front of a piano. When we’re arranging and producing we experiment a lot like making an odd chord change, reversing the guitars, adding an extra bar before the refrain, using live drums and percussion. An of course we work a lot with the backing vocal parts. A song is a never ending project, the first versions of the arrangement is very simple, and then we’re adding more and more instruments, sounds and layers until we reach a critical mass of sounds. Then we strip the arrangement until satisfaction. Therefore we always have the possibility to add or remove layers and sounds from the arrangement. After maybe six months the production is fairly finished. We usually write the lyrics in the end because then you got a lot of time getting to know the melody and it’s easier to focus on what you want your words to say.

And what do you do right now?
We’ve right in the middle of the process of writing the new album. We hope we have thirty really good songs sometimes in the end of 2004. We’re very satisfied with the material so far, and we’re absolutely convinced that this album will be the best so far. It’s a long way to go until we’re finished, but we love the process and it’s worth all that effort to gain want we want. Hopefully the new album will be out in the autumn of 2005 – and it will be followed of some heavy promotion, videos, performances and so on. We hope to tour the US and some larger cities in Europe and in south America. We really longing for meeting all the fans again after those years.

(c) J Andersson, June 2003