After some days a new statement from the organizers was out, saying that the festival would have been “saved” by this substitute one-day festival, baptized Saving Christmass, in the picturesque venue of Arbis Teater.
We were there to interview the band TYRANEX
Around 400 metalheads were attending the festival, the atmosphere was familiar. Throne of Heresy, Tyranex, Merciless for their last Scandinavian show, Sodom and Belphegor.
We ask Olof, the organizer of BC and its substitute SC, about the festival past and future.
· Hi Olof, and thanks for the support to Unholy Black Metal during those years.
So, did this Saving Chritstmass turn out as a good alternative to Black Chritsmass? Are you satisfied with the attendance and the outcome of Saving Christmass?
- The organization turned out very well and the venue worked really well and the crowd was pleased. Unfortunately there was too little people there to save it financially.
· The metalscene in Norrköping is undoubtly linked to Marduk. How much are they involved in the organization of this festival? And why they wouldn’t have been in the bill this year? Do you think this might have determined a decrease in the sales?
— It was me and Morgan that came up with the idea and we have always discussed very closely what line-up we gonna have, but they haven’t been involved more than that. Marduk didn´t play because they thought they had played too many time and had drained out of ideas to make a real special show. It takes lots of time to deliver a unique show year after year.
· How do you usually choose bands for the festival? If you found a magic lamp and you could make a wish about whatever band you could have (even from the past), which one would you lead to the stage of BC?
- - It´s really different from band to band. I have tried to get a mix with bands that I sell tickets on. They are easiest to choose but harder to get since they have their touring plans pretty confirmed long time ahead and are expensive, plus more exclusive ”cult bands" in combination of up and coming bands and then try to mix the genres in a good way. It´s a hard work and sometimes it works and sometimes not.
· Which has been the most memorable performance during those editions, in your opinion?
— Very hard to say. As a promoter is happens very seldom I can be able to see more than a half of a song per band. But the first one that came up is Venom playing their song Black X-mas for the first time live at BC. That was big.
· What do you think was the main reason for this low sale this year?
— Hard to say. When things like this happen, one could always point at several reasons and everyone have their own theory. But there has been a harder competition in this genre and obviously this years line-up was not strong enough to attract people.
· What are your plans for the future? Are we going to see a fourth edition of BC?
— Not as it feels now. I have lost too much money in 2 years in a row and I need to fix up my economy before I take that decision, but not as it looks now. Too bad, but both me and the organization I had around me thought this was one of the highlights of the year.
· What’s your attitude about Underground (bands, press, distros)?
—I like it. I have my roots in the hardcore scene and have always been DIY even if I have worked with bigger bands. But then is it important to have quality even if you´re DIY. I like to work with competent people, so hard to answer your question in a straight way.
· Is it a coincidence that Black Christmass has been taking place in the same weekend as Eindhoven Metal Meeting? Is such a time overlapping more a positive or a negative thing for both the festivals?
— Me and their promoter discussed it. Sometimes it´s a good thing to have festivals the same weekend so we might share for example American bands. We tried to get some over, but it didn´t work out this year. There are some people that choose between them, but not that many that it effects the result so much.
· We know you are also involved in the organization of Metallsvenskan which will take place in Norrköping this summer. How is it going with the planning of the festival? What’s the response from bands-audience?
— It´s going good. Right now am I waiting for answers from headliners, but the responses so far have been really good.
· How do you see the scene in Norrköping nowadays? What are the most interesting bands in your opinion? Do you think that organizing festivals carries also somehow the merit-responsibility for new generations of bands to come out on bigger stages?
— The scene is good and healthy. We have good bands that are ready to take the next step like Sarea, Year of the goat, Throne of Heresy for example and I think that the festivals are good for them.
· And finally, are we going to see another edition of Black Chritsmass, as we truly hope?
— Not as it looks now. Not enough people seem to think it´s needed so when I’ll see the demands are there, I will start thinking of it, but it doesn´t feel that way now unfortunately.
Interview by Katia