Niclas Müller-Hansen of Sweden’s Metalshrine recently conducted an interview with guitarist Herman Li of British epic power metallers DRAGONFORCE. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Metalshrine: The [latest DRAGONFORCE album, "The Power Within"] been out now for a number of months. How do you look at it now? Did it turn out the way you wanted it to?
Herman: Yeah, I really like the album and I listen to it myself all the time and I really like the energy of it. It’s different from the previous albums in terms of the dynamics and the energy and in the way it sounds. I really like it and playing the songs is also very exciting. We’ve got some songs that are shorter and some songs are a bit slower and it actually adds to the dynamics of our show, because usually in the past, every song was really fast and really long. Now we have something to kinda put in there which we didn’t before.
Metalshrine: When it comes to the show, are you a band that mixes up the setlist a lot or is it the same one night after night?
Herman: At the moment we’re at the stage where we can change it every night if we want to. We do experiment and change stuff and we always change things depending on where we’re going to. Like in certain countries, it’s like, “Oh, we’ve already played that song three times last time we were there!” Of course we’re also gonna play songs from all the DRAGONFORCE albums. It’s never that you go in and you only hear the new album and just two old songs, you know. We try to put as much in so to keep everyone happy.
Metalshrine: On the road, even though the album is still fresh, [is there] any time for coming up with new stuff like at soundchecks or things like that? Are you already putting ideas into the song bank?
Herman: Yeah! Of course, like you said, the album only came out a few months ago, but we already have some ideas that we started working on, but the main concentration is on the tour and the live shows because we don’t just learn ten songs and only play those. We’re learning songs all the time, so we can change the setlist whenever we want to. Last night in Dublin, we played a song with Marc [Hudson, vocals] that he’s never done before. “It’s time to do that one,” that kinda thing, you know.
Metalshrine: This label of yours, Electric Generation Recordings, is it turning out they way you hoped it would? Is it doing better than you hoped for?
Herman: One thing for sure… it’s doing well for us, but one thing for sure is that it’s way more work than we originally had envisioned. Oh man, it really was a lot of work to get the label going and to get the album out. We did everything we were supposed to do, but it was hard work and it’s still ongoing.
Metalshrine: But it is something you will continue working on?
Herman: We’ll see, you know. It’s hard to say at the moment. We just released the album and we’ll see at the end of the performance if we’re gonna sign a new deal or not. Like, in America, we’re still signed to Roadrunner and that’s our last record deal. Now we might find a new deal and might do everything ourselves again. We’ll see. It’s pretty brutal. [laughs]
Read the entire interview at Metalshrine.