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Tom Nilsson – Stoneface songwriting and guitar playing.

Being creative has always been easy for me. It’s like opening a faucet. When it’s time for new material I just open the faucet and the ideas pour!


And when not to be productive I just turn it off. -It’s as simple as that! I don’t mean to blow my own horn, but guitar riffs have always been one of my strongpoints. I like to come up with them and I like to play them, both quite obvious on this album….


And my solos? Well, I’ve never been an equilibrist, but I think there’s been some decent solos along the way. Maybe even more so on this album.


By the way! If anyone think there’s too much wah wah, it is because there is much wah wah hahaha! There can never be enough of that sweet little pedal.


On this album (which will be my last) we thought differently. On the previous album we didn’t have any keyboards, except an intro in the song Madness of Man.


So, for this album we wanted to change that. I contacted Johan Chasseur who was the first keyboard player in Motherlode in the early eighties. Johan hadn’t done any band playing for a long time, but it didn’t take him long to get in his usual “ALL IN” mode and get fully equipped. Awesome!


As a signature in our music Peter and I often play in unison. It’s a shared Black Sabbath influence, but also a nudge to Dream Theater who must be considered today’s masters of this. There’s more impact and power when you weave your web around the chords like that. Of course, we’re not only playing in unison. Peter is brilliant bass player adding his fantastic bass lines to my, sometimes unconventional chords and rhythms.


Another thing we’re definitely not the only ones doing is tuning down the whole guitar a semitone and then dropping the E string to D (or D-flat if you want to be fastidious). It gets a bit meaner when you do that and want that sound.


The reason for this being my last album is because as I write this, I have decided to stop my chemotherapy. My life, my decision. Subsequently, two of the songs on the album are also about cancer. Thank you for the lyrics Hellis!



THE SONGS

Why Does It Happen?

I’ve borrowed pieces from both Deep Purple’s Stormbringer and some Van Halen. The verse is a bit funny since the bass stays on the D a bit and then follows me. There’s also a bit of Judas Priest in the chorus. And I wouldn’t be surprised if someone smells Kings X in there too.


Power

Starting a song on the 4 and... in the beat is fun! Most people have to restart the song to find the first beat in the bar, as a little mindfuck… just ask Peter! Other than that, it’s a song where Peter and I mix and match our ideas. I’ve always appreciated when we create music together. Unfortunately, or thanks to (depending on what angle you’re have), I’ve always been faster to come up with ideas. So, I’m leading the song writing race, hahaha!


Bad Luck World

I start a majority of our songs, but here a drum intro came to mind. And talk about drums, Martin at his best! Peter and I mix our ideas again. And finally, some air in the music. I love the chorus, so much grunge. To put it straight – A smokin’ song!


Never Ask About The Bones

Or Judas-ish which was the project name for the song, but I don’t know what remained of Judas in the end. It is one of many songs without a conventional bridge before the chorus, considering the average playing time for our songs (6 minutes) maybe an advantage? Again, a lot of unison playing between me and Peter.


Change Of Times

I think this was the first song we wrote in the summer 2014 where Peter and I mix ideas again. I play the same rhythm on the verse as I do in the B-part (then with another rhythm part behind it), and it turned out pretty cool. I’ve always liked to play with different signatures and measures. This one is however a straight 4/4.


The Last Days

The heaviest song on the album. It was supposed to be recorded for a Motherlode album 2014, but I left the band and started Stoneface instead. And I brought some of my songs with me and rearranged them to get them finished. In the end several of them ended up on the previous Stoneface album. On The Last Days I play one of my favorite solos on this album.


After B

Probably one of my heaviest riffs ever. A song that has it all, I think. Good verse and bridge, and a strong chorus. A B-section and another mellow section with a pretty good solo. I think we tie this one together nicely.


Afraid To Love

Oh well, a love song in the middle of it all… There’s some Rush in the chorus. A band that has been a huge influence on me, all the way from the early eighties with Motherlode to now. The solo is fun too with some Lifeson influences.


Evil Is What Evil Does

Starts a bit AC/DC. Not that common for us but it works. And then all hell breaks loose! We’re juggling signatures again, fun with 4/4 to 6/8 and back again. A short rhythmic solo that turned out well, I think.


Next Time

One of the longer songs. Again, with mixed signatures. This time from 6/8 to 4/4. A ballad you might think… well, at least for the first 1:40 minutes. One of my best solos ever.


Fare Thee Well

When I read the lyrics, I started to cry. So very, very personal! The song was actually meant as a bit of fun originally. I’ve never flirted with this type of Power Metal, before, but why not? It ended up being a bit of Rainbow meets Yngwie Malmsteen (no other comparison). I finish off with a long guitar solo. Hey, why not go out with a bang?!



This album wouldn’t be what it is without the exquisite vocals from Stefan Nykvist, the lyrics from Christer Hellström and keyboards from Johan Chasseur. And drums from Martin Hedberg, plus bass from Peter Rundström - The three of us also arranged the songs during rehearsals.


//Tom Nilsson Stoneface

2020-02-20

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