As reported by Babblermouth, band founder Michael Amott is releasing new material in the guise of Black Earth, which is a project combining former and current members of the Swedish melodic death metal band that performs songs from the band’s first three albums onstage are releasing two new songs.
In an interview with “Masa Ito’s Rock TV” from Japan, Michael Amott, the band’s guitarist and main songwriter, explained how the two new tracks came to be:
“Together with Trooper Entertainment, we’ve put together a compilation of our favorite tracks from the first, second and third album that featured these guys — with Johan [Liiva on vocals] and Chris [Amott on guitar] and everything.
“And we’ve put together a compilation album of that ’90s material. It’s been remastered here in Japan. I actually attended the mastering session last week, and it sounds incredible. It really brought the old tracks… it gave them a new life. And then we actually recorded two new songs in Sweden. So we’ve been quite busy with that.”
He continued to talk about his experience of cooperating with the rest of the band during the making of new material:
“It’s quite complicated getting everybody together to do that. But we wrote these two new songs. I wrote one with Chris, and then I wrote one myself. They’re called ‘Burn On The Flame’ and ‘Life Infernal’ — two brand new tracks that are kind of in the style of what we used to do, I think. And they turned out really amazing too. We actually went back to Fredrik Nordström’s studio, Fredman, where we made the first three records. So we worked with the original producer. And he mixed it, and it sounds really powerful — very cool.”
Amott also spoke about the atmosphere of the recording sessions themselves, that turned out to be
“very, very strange, because we just picked it up where we left off. After about an hour or so, we were doing the same kind of jokes and the same kind of chemistry.
“And the sounds as well. I was thinking maybe it was gonna sound very different. Also because of us — we all progress and change over the years, and develop. And also Fredrik, of course. He had a new studio now, with some different equipment. But actually, he just managed to get that old-school sound. And it was a lot of fun. Kind of a little bit nostalgia.”
Liiva was part of the band through the recording of the first three albums; “Black Earth” (1996), “Stigmata” (1998), and “Burning Bridges” (1999).
Liiva was then replaced by the German singer Angela Gossow in 2000. Gossow was succeeded by the former The Agonist frontwoman Alissa White-Gluz onstage in 2013, but retaining her position as the band’s manager.
Amott left the band in 2005 for a two-year hiatus, and then again, and (seemingly) permanently in March 2012.
Black Earth’s first Japanese tour ended in May 2016 but the band plans to return to Japan this May to celebrate the 20th anniversary of “Burning Bridges.”
“When we did the tour in 2016, the reaction was incredible — we had so many sold-out shows, and [we got] very, very strong feedback and a lot of love from the Japanese audience, so that was really an incredible time for us and a wonderful experience — one of the highlights of my career, I think. So we decided to come back and do it again three years later. And now we’re doing it in more cities. So we’re looking forward to visiting these places and bringing the music to the fans that normally maybe could not travel to Tokyo or to Osaka to see a show.”