Swedens masters of epic doom, Sorcerer return with their new album The Crowning Of The Fire King and we caught up with bass player Johnny Hagel to get the lowdown on it as well as tales from the bands past and what the future holds for them.
Your new album The Crowning Of The Fire King is out now. How did the recording of the album go?
Except the fact that we change drummer it was really good. I think we have found a really good way to work with both the recording and writing our music. We also feel that we took another step towards something better, as we always try to do everything better every time.
Is the new album comparable in sound with your last album 2015s In The Shadow Of The Inverted Cross?
Yes, I think so. We don’t want to repeat ourselves and I think the new album represents what Sorcerer is about. Maybe the sound is updated and I think it is better than on In The Shadow Of The Inverted Cross.
You worked with Ronnie Björnström again on this album, what does he bring to the Sorcery sound?
I think he is Swedens best mixer, at least for us. He brings a clear and powerful mix to our songs. More bands should hire him, I can really recommend him to everyone and he not only good for a doom sound.
What subjects are the songs on The Crowning Of The Fire King about?
Almost every songs is fiction so if anyone is interested in what they are about, they must listen and read the lyrics.
What inspires you to create such massive sounding songs?
Everything from great music, movies, tv-series, nature and everyday things. I would say life in general.
Is the album a concept album at all?
No it is not. Maybe next time, let´s see!
Despite a long and storied history but with only the release of several demos and compilations, The Shadow Of The Inverted Cross was Sorcerer’s debut album. Do you still feel like a band reborn with this album?
Yes and no. After so many years we tried hard to get the Sorcerer sound and feeling but in the same time don’t repeat our self. We will always concentrate on writing good songs and don’t look back.
How has the album been received do far?
Really good. We thought it would be hard to come even near the reactions that we got for the first album and luckily the reactions for the new album is even better.
The band have shared the stage with such legendary bands as Count Raven, Carnage and Therion. Who has been your favourite band to play with?
It doesn’t really matter. We play to promote Sorcerer and we can play with any band.
Who would you love to play with in the future?
Maybe a reunited Black Sabbath with Tony Martin but hopefully we can headline and play longer instead of supporting other bands.
You also played with Entombed at their first ever gig. Do you have good memories of those early days in the Swedish metal underground?
In those days death metal was 99% of the underground. As a doom metal band it was hard to get any attention.
What have been some of the highlights of Sorcerers career so far?
Releasing our first demo, playing the reunion gig at Hammer of Doom and releasing our debut album I would say.
What are your touring plans for the new year?
We have some festival booked and we will start writing new songs for another album.
Which festivals will you be playing in the summer?
So far we are only booked at Metal Camp in Slovenia but we hope for more to come.
The doom and metal scenes in Sweden were closely linked, is that still the case today?
I don’t think so. Some bands has inspired other bands but I don´t think it is because of that they are from Sweden. There is a lot of great doom bands from Sweden like Candlemass, Goatess, Below and many more.
How do you feel about the worldwide doom scene today?
There is a lot more doom bands out here today which is great. Back in the days there was only like Candlemass, Trouble, Solitude Aeturnus and some more.
Are there are new bands that you could recommend to us?
Darkher, Goatess, King, Katla to name a few.
How is life on Metal Blade Records?
It is great for us to be on a label that cares about what we do and support the physical album and not only concentrates on streaming.
What are your favourite doom albums of all time?
Candlemass – Epicus Doomicus Metallicus
Solitude Aeturnus – Alone
Darkher – Realms
What were your top three albums of 2017?
Roger Waters – Is This the Life We Really Want ?
Katla – Modurastin
Attic – Sanctimonious