We love a mixtape here at Iron Fist. The ritual of choosing the track, pressing play and record at the same time, perfectly timing songs to fit on one side of a C-90, doodling your own hand-written cover. Days were endlessly passed doing this in our youth. Bringing back the tradition we ask some of our favourite musicians to make us a tape and let you know, via the magic of YouTube, what they picked for us.
In the first instalment, JB Christoffersson of Iron Willed warriors GRAND MAGUS picks twelve songs that inspired his band’s latest album ‘SWORD SONGS’ in a mixtape called ‘SWEDISH STEEL’.
1. BATHORY – ‘Shores In Flames’ This is the opening song on BATHORY’s masterpiece ‘Hammerheart’ and one of my favourite songs ever. No one combines atmosphere with power like Quorthon did.
2. DISSECTION – ‘Xeper-i-Set’ The Reinkaos album was very controversial when it came out. Personally I think it’s a fantastic album with brilliant playing and songwriting. This is probably the fastest and most aggressive track on that album and it’s ferocious.
3. WOLF – ‘The Bite’ When it comes to proper heavy metal in the modern age, I think that WOLF is one of the best bands … Read More
Grand Magus have announced their new studio album will be titled ‘Sword Songs’. The Swedish heavy metal trio with release their eighth studio album on May 13th through Nuclear Blast. The epic cover artwork was created by acclaimed artist Anthony Roberts (No, not our photographer!).
Frontman JB said: “We put all of our sweat, blood and tears into this new album and I think that you can hear that. For me, ‘Sword Songs’ is the best Grand Magus album ever! The new songs are faster and more aggressive than on ‘Triumph And Power’ and we have also included some more extreme and harder stuff. I’m convinced that there are some future classics on the disc!”
‘Sword Songs’ was produced by Nico Elgstrand at Studio Supa in Stockholm, Sweden with Roberto Laghi at Top Floor Studios in Gothenburg taking care of recording Ludwig Witt’s drums. The album was mixed by Roberto and mastered by Svante Forsbäck in Helsinki.
We can also reveal that the tracklist is as mythical and steeped in Norse lore as we would expect from the wolfpack: 1. Freja’s Choice 2. Varangian 3. Forged In Iron – Crowned In Steel 4. Born For Battle (Black Dog Of Brocéliande) 5. Master Of The Land 6. Last One To … Read More
Swedish hard rock pioneers Spiritual Beggars have announced details of their ninth studio album entitled ‘Sunrise To Sundown’, which will be released on March 18 via InsideOutMusic.
Featuring Michael Amott (Arch Enemy, ex-Carcass) on guitars, Apollo Papathanasio (ex-Firewind) on vocals, Sharlee D’Angelo (Arch Enemy, Witchery) on bass, Per Wiberg (Candlemass, ex-Opeth) on keyboards as well as Ludwig Witt (Grand Magus, Firebird) on drums gathered to lay down eleven dynamic songs in their infamous vintage rocking style.
Speaking about how the new album came together, Amott commented the following: “We’ve been writing the album here and there over the last couple of years when our schedules have allowed us to meet up and spend a few days jamming. A few of the songs I wrote on my own, others were written by our keyboard player Per Wiberg. Our drummer Ludwig Witt submitted two tracks that are actually his first major contributions to the band as a writer – and they’re great songs too! I also co-wrote a few tunes with Per Wiberg and that was really a lot of fun as well, it’s been a very collaborative process.”
‘Sunrise To Sundown’ was tracked live and Amott added: “I’m super excited about how the album … Read More
The new issue of Iron Fist is upon us and we’re getting behind a campaign to get Germany’s great rock and roll export, SCORPIONS, to the UK. So far they’ve not included Britain on their final Worldwide Live tour and we’re set to change that. Speaking to guitarists RUDOLF SCHENKER and MATTHIAS JABS, Louise Brown discovers a band far from retirement and with plenty more to give their fans.
They’re not the only band still “hungry” for the road, Jim Martin talks to JAY JAY FRENCH from TWISTED SISTER about the making of ‘STAY HUNGRY’ and their upcoming 30th Anniversary tour. And talking of 30th anniversaries, we’ve also got a massive feature celebrating three decades of ‘PSALM 9’ and talk to both TROUBLE and THE SKULL about how they’re continuing their legacy through two different paths. We also talk to DAN LILKER on the eve of his retirement from touring about the band, and the album, that kick-started his career; ANTHRAX and the making of ‘FISTFUL OF METAL’ and we discuss getting back into the studio with JINX DAWSON of COVEN, who just released her first album in 40 years! We’re gearing up for BROFEST too, the second edition of the Newcastle … Read More
Even if yours truly’s once reliable mind was largely intoxicated and thus not fully functioning, I was still taken by surprise when, back in 2010 while visiting Stockholm, Nifelheim’s Tyrant revealed that he, David Blömqvist and Fred Estby (from the then recently deceased Dismember) had just formed a “classic sounding hard rock band à la Rainbow” and were already penning some tunes while looking for a singer. Three years later, with sadly Tyrant now out of the picture due to lack of time, but now with an actual name (Dagger, suggested by former Entombed mainman Nicke Andersson, who also designed their logo) and a first EP (‘Mainline Riders’), that unlikely prospect has become reality. And yes, it couldn’t further from the HM-2 empowered brute force of Swedish ancient dödsmetal, as if after two decades of playing ‘Skin Her Alive’ at full speed those boys had needed a break.
“Yeah, it was something like that,” confirms drummer and ringleader Estby. “After Dismember went on hiatus before breaking up for good, I did the Necronaut album with me playing most of the instruments and friends like Tompa from At The Gates or Dread from Tormented doing the vocals, but I think it was … Read More
“Rule them all/feel the grip of an iron hand/take command Rule them/to make it last and to remain/never let confusion reign” ‘Iron Hand’ from ‘The Hunt’
Earlier this year the steely Swedes in Grand Magus unleashed a sixth dose of heavy metal fury on new label Nuclear Blast. ‘The Hunt’ was a triumphant antidote to the musical ennui dominating the release schedules and put them out there as firm contenders on many an end-of-year list, including ours. A dash of old Europe, Saxon, Bathory, even WASP, ‘The Hunt’ became the soundtrack to the fertilisation of Iron Fist, its lyrics of courage, self-preservation and determination giving us the drive to get this magazine off the ground, so it made sense to check in with the Grand Magus himself, JB Christofferson, to thank him.
“Most of our albums and songs and lyrics are about power in some sense; trying or searching for the power within to make yourself stronger and overcome strife and struggle,” he told us, on his way back from his own personal daily grind, travelling home from work on a commuter ferry across his hometown of Stockholm. “That’s also something that I want to project with our music, that I want the listener … Read More
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