ARCH ENEMY INTERVIEW
ARCH ENEMY - interview with Chris Amott, August 2008
With their latest album Rise of the Tyrant, which is praised by press and fans, Arch Enemy enter the festival stages 2008. After their gig at Summer Breeze Aziza Schwenke and Audrey Dujardin question them for Tartarean Desire. Actually it was said the interview is going to be with bassist Sharlee, but then the plans are changed and guitarist Chris Amott tells us about the band, the festival and his solo project.
Hi Chris. Itís nice, that youíve got the time to answer some questions. So, first question, something general: The covers of magazines sometimes show only Michael and Angela, when they write about Arch Enemy and sometimes the two of them are in the foreground of pictures. I guess they are the faces of Arch Enemy. How does this feel for you and what does it mean for the bandís image?
How does it feel... Feels good. Itís got to do with the bandís history. Michael has been the only member who has stayed with the band all the time. And Angela is of course in front, 'cause sheís the vocalist. I mean, if I wanted to do more, I could do it. But we want it to be like this. I donít have to do interviews all the time.
(smiling) So you donít like doing interviews?
Well, if the questions are interesting, sure.
Okay, letís hope so. Back to Arch Enemy. How is the band organized, do you work democratically?
Oh yeah, yeah.
So everyone has the same right, when there are descisions to make?
I think, thatís quite what is shown on stage. A quite powerful show with equal members, all showing stage-presence. Today all the instrumentalists wore this black chemises with one red armlet. Why did you choose this outfit? What meaning does it have?
It looks good... And it brings us together... Basically we just wanted to dress the same. This was no big thing.
Okay, some things about the festival itself. Howís the backstage situation for the bands here?
Oh, itís good. German festivals are always very well-organized. Itís always a pleasure. And the foodís okay.
Ah, nice. And what about your time schedule here? Do you have the time to see other bandís shows?
Well, actually thereís nothing I really wanna see.
Really? Then about your show: What did you think about the audience?
It was good... But I prefer playing at night.
Youíve played various songs of the new album. (editorís note: "Blood on you hands", "Revolution begins", "The last Enemy", "I will live again") How did you choose the songs which youíre going to play?
Erm... We just chose the ones we like, I guess. I donít know... I donít know...really (laughs and thinks some seconds about it) Oh yeah, but we like playing new songs. I mean, before we play a tour someone says: What about that song? Just by brainstorming, you know. Everyone can throw in: Are we gonna play that song?
Do you plan a headliner tour soon?
No, no. Maybe November or December (editorís note: thereís the ĄDecember Tyranny Tourď). Iím gonna have a break now. Then Daniel and Michael play with Carcass. And Iím off.
Okay, are you looking forward to that time or are you rather sad, I mean, will you miss touring then?
(ironically)I'm so sad...no.
Talking about Michael and Daniel playing also in Carcass. What I'm wondering about is, if there are any problems appearing. Do you have a personal viewing about it?
Oh, erm... No, I donít really think about it. I mean, Iím not angry about it or anything.
Oh no, I just meant...
Yeah, it's okay. Thatís not bad. You know, theyíre reunited. Itís cool. Itís a good thing. Itís fun. Iím gonna see them on Saturday. Iím a fan. And I donít think itís a big issue, you know.
What will you do, when you've got your time off?
Iím gonna do a solo record.
How did the idea come to you? When did you decide to do that?
Oh, a long time ago. I just carried it together. Iíve been writing lyrics and music for years, but well, this is basically gonna be more the singer-songwriter stuff.
Last question. About your instrument: Which is your favourite guitar?
The one I played today. A Japanese guitar, a Caparison. A real good company. (editorís note: Chris has got a signature model by Caparison)
Okay, thatís it. Thank you very much. And good luck for the upcoming gig.
- Aziza Schwenke