A couple of months ago the swedish label The Sign Records released "Débris and Rubble", the debut full length album of HEAVY FEATHER. On this record, the band has perfectly recreated the end of the sixties / early seventies bluesy sound inspired by Cream or Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac but with a twist of their own.
What sets HEAVY FEATHER apart from the rest is not only the riffing science of guitar player Matte Gustavsson or the soulful vocal performance of Lisa Lystam but also their excellent songwriting that puts them immediately in the league of bands that will matter in the next coming years.
So it was time for your truly to have a conversation with guitar player Matte Gustavsson. Here is what he had to say:
Heavy Feather is a rock band from Stockholm, Sweden with classic jam band influences. It’s the 60’s styles with bands like Cream, Mountain and Free. High volume and improvisations parts like that, busy drum and basses. But always a little bit of blues. Me (Guitar), Lisa (vocals and harmonica) and Morgan (Bass) did talk a long time creating a real rock band like the super groups in the 60’s. We love to play that kind of bluesy rock…. But we needed a drummer and then Ola Joined the band after jammin’ together. The band was created, it was in early 2017 and is featuring Matte Gustavsson - guitar; Lisa Lystam - vocals, harmonica; Morgan Korsmoe - bass and Ola Göransson - drums
2) About the newly released full length record "Débris and Rubble", what can you tell about the recording process? Was this a "live" in the studio recording or a track by track recording with lots of overdubs?
We had an idea that we wanted this album to sound like we do in the reality. So we decided to play everything live, also the vocals. And we did. Of course the backing vocals and some small stuff are played afterwards but in general it’s totally a live recording in 3 days. And I think you can hear it, the live feelin’. I’m very satisfied with the results.
3) Do you use the nowadays digital recording technology or do you guys only work with analog machines in analog studios?
It's actually not an analog recording but we worked like it would be. I think analog recording is more about the psychology than the gear. You only have your 2 or three takes and if you think like that in a digital recording you can have a great and organic sound too. But I love to record totally analog too so maybe the next record…
4) Is there a main composer in the band or is everybody involved in one way or another?
We all are very involved in the writing process but Lisa is writing all of the lyrics and I made most of the riffs and parts but I’d say everyone is composing.
5) What is your favorite topic/topic that comes easily when you write a new song?
Lisa writes about our lives and relations/relationships and stuff like that. I like that. I’m bit tired of this Satanic thing and all the stuff about beer and bad hangovers…
6) Heavy Feather is sometimes described as a "Classic rock" band. Do you agree with this? Are you proud of it or do you consider there is way more than that?
Of course I agree that Heavy Feather is Classic Rock. But for me Classic Rock is the 60’s style as I described it in an previous questions. Not the cliché of rock if you know what I mean.
7) Do you have a new video on youtube featuring a track from the new LP??
We have our first single “Where Did We Go” as a Official video and then a couple of official live video recordings but I we will do a new one this summer.
8) What can concert goers expect at a Heavy Feather gig? Are you playing any famous cover songs?
On this first tour we of course play the songs from the album and some covers. Not the most famous one, more our personal favorite songs. Some people know it but not everyone.
9) Are there any bands in Sweden today you consider yourself close to, musically speaking?
Of course there is a lot of bands in Sweden that play old school rock but not exactly this type. We have much more blues influences then everyone else. Many 70's retro rock bands today are coming from the metal and hard rock scene. We are the opposite and we have played mostly blues, just like the bands back then. I think you can hear it.
10) To what kind of music did you listen to as teenagers? What were your favorite bands as a teenager? Name 3 bands that you consider still have an influence on your own work today.
For me personally it’s Kiss and Cream and that is still a big influence on me. The whole British Blues boom from the 60’s with Fleetwood Mac etc.. We have our common favorites but we listen to a lot different kind of styles too.
11) What are the plans for 2019 as far as Heavy Feather is concerned?
In September we’re going on a German Tour for two weeks and in the end of this year we will record our second album.
German Tour dates for September:
05.09.2019 - DE Duisburg, Steinbruch
06.09.2019 - DE Münster, Rare Guitar
07.09.2019 - DE Wredenhagen, Café Scheune
08.09.2019 - DE Norderstedt, Music Star
10.09.2019 - DE Nürnberg, Z Bau
11.09.2019 - DE Bielefeld, Potemkin
12.09.2019 - DE Berlin, Zukunft Garage
13.09.2019 - DE Jena, Kulturbahnhof
14.09.2019 - DE Frankfurt/M., Burg Herzberg Festival Party @ Das Bett
Purchase a physical copy here : https://freighttrain.se/en/the-sign-record/heavy-feather/
Purchase a digital copy here: https://heavyfeatherofficial.bandcamp.com/album/d-bris-rubble