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The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world
Alexander Hagman Raised Fist - Interview
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Raised Fist

Blunt, brutal and relentless - the only way to describe Sweden's hardcore powerhouse Raised Fist whom are heading back down under this December for their first tour in over four years to support their sixth studio album, "From The North". Andrew spoke to frontman Alexander "Alle" Hagman about the tour and shares a story about a hilarious incident that happened to the band at one of their live shows.



Andrew: So are you guys on tour at the moment?

Alle: No we're back home. We're flying into Germany next week, we have a couple of shows after that and then we're going to take it easy until it's time for Australia!

Andrew: Yes end of the year in December, it's good to see you coming back to Australia. When was the last time you were over here? Maybe 4 or 5 years ago?

Alle: Yeah something like that. I think it was Soundwave but it sounds like about 4 or 5 years ago.

Andrew: What do you remember from that tour? Do you remember much from it at all?

Alle: Yeah of course! I remember the last headline tour we did as well, that was 7 years ago or something like that. But yeah I remember it's always fun being in Australia, we were there 10 extra days after the shows as well so we flew down our fiances and girlfriends and spent a vacation there. In December it's very cold where we live so it's perfect being in Australia at that time, there's a big difference!

Andrew: Oh yeah December is pretty much the beginning of our summer. When you took the time off during those days here, what did you guys get to see and do?

Alle: We just stayed in Sydney and went to the beach and had good food and just enjoyed our time there. It was a very calm and relaxed vacation, no fucking around getting mentally ill around Kings Cross [laughs]. It was an easy time at the beach and to relax a bit after the tour so yeah, that was really nice.

Andrew: And are you planning on staying around again this time?

Alle: I don't know, we haven't decided yet so we will see. My daughter now is 2 so I don't want to stay away from home more than I really have to, I can't bring them over so I'll probably just go back home. I think I will miss them too much to stay on vacation. That's my personal opinion, the other guys might stay but I don't know about them.

Andrew: Yeah that's fair enough. I have a year and a half old so I definitely know what you mean when you spend too much time away from them that you start missing them. What can we expect on this tour this time around? You have an album that came out last year so I guess we will hear a lot of the newer stuff?

Alle: Yeah you will hear a little bit. It's hard to put a play list together, I mean we've been playing it for almost 2 years even though we haven't released any new albums during that time. I think we have a lot of songs, that's the problem when we play live so I think we will try to pick some suitable songs mainly from the playlist right now. I think we will stay to the setlist that we have right now but we're going to put in some extra [songs] that will be suited for Australia as we don't play there as often. So it will be nice, we haven't decided yet but it's always a hassle deciding what kind of songs to play because everyone wants to hear their own songs so it's always a bit of a problem. But I think we're going to do something good there.

Andrew: Yeah but I guess it's a good problem to have as a lot of bands that have been around as long as you have come across that problem at some point in their career.

Alle: Yeah it is and still you don't want to play covers of yourself, you want to play the new songs because that's where you are at this time, but we play old songs as well. As long as they are good and gets intense, if there's a song that you can get crazy to, it can stay there forever on the play list so there's a couple of them as well.

Andrew: How do you find the Australian audiences compared to other countries that you have played at?

Alle: I think people are the same everywhere, they are pretty similar to everyone else. I mean it doesn't have anything to do with countries, it's more about the area you play or what kind of situation or show you play. A festival is a festival, day time, the last date, at 12. It might be a bit calmer than if you play a Saturday night at 1am when you have lights at the show so there's always differences there. A small punk rock show can be very intense whereas a 1200 or 1500 capacity room can be a little bit mellow, so it depends but people can be the same. Also it's not like a teenage show where people just go fucking crazy and forget about the band, what I've noticed when people come to our show is that they want to listen and they want to see what is going on stage and they let other fans get up on there too [laughs]. Sometimes when we play festivals and things like that, a lot of different people show up just to get into the pit.

Andrew: Do you have a preference of what kind of show you prefer to play at between a festival or a club show?

Alle: Both are fun but in a different way and it varies. Sometimes it's fun playing a huge festival show with pyrotechnic and everything going on there but small shows are intense and when it's totally crazy, it's hard to beat. So it depends on the mood but both are really good when they are good.

Andrew: What is the craziest thing you have ever seen at one of your own shows?

Alle: I've told this story a thousand times but we played in Canada and I saw the bass player (Andreas "Josse" Johansson) ran away back stage and I was like, 'What the fuck is happening?' I heard the bass and we played the next song and then we played the last song and I heard him play and I was like, 'What the fuck is he doing?' Then he came back on stage at the end of the last song and he looked really fucked up and after the show I asked, 'What the fuck did you do?', and he said, 'Something happened and I was about to faint and I felt really bad in my stomach'. So he ran back and he puked and he shit liquid water from both his mouth and his ass [laughs]. And he [kept] playing the bass, he didn't lose a single note while he played at the same time as he sat on the toilet puking!

Andrew: [laughs].

Alle: That was the craziest thing that has happened live! Crowd wise, we played a show in Sweden one time and this was before we could go up on stage because there was a 40 minute delay because the crowd destroyed the fence upfront. They wrecked the whole thing, it wasn't like sabotage, there was just such pressure in the crowd and they were screaming 'Raised Fist! Raised Fist!', the movement was too much for the barrier and that was a big festival stage as well so there was proper equipment there. But it broke down so they had to clear the whole area and rebuild it so that 40 minutes later we could go on stage. That was probably the craziest thing that I have seen.

Andrew: Wow! I guess when things like that come up, that now you are seasoned veterans that you know how to handle situations like that.

Alle: Yeah there's not much to do, you just stay back stage and you get a little off beat when warming up but it's just waiting and then you go on stage. You just don't care about things that are beyond what you can do.

Andrew: Well we are looking forward to seeing you guys in Australia again as these shows will be amazing by the sounds of it. Do you have any last words or message for the Aussie fans before you come down under?

Alle: Yeah we are looking forward to coming down there in December, straight from the city of cold and winter here and we are going to bring it because we are not going to play a show between September and December probably. So we're going to have a lot of energy within ourselves that has to come out so hope to see you there!

Andrew: Thanks again for your time, it's really appreciated and we will see you in December!

Alle: Thank you very much, take care!


Tuesday 29 November - Kings Arms, Auckland
Thursday 1 December - The Cambrige Hotel, Newcastle
Friday 2 December - The Metro Theatre, Sydney
Saturday 3 December - Max Watt's Melbourne
Sunday 4 December - Max Watt's Brisbane
Wednesday 7 December - Fowlers Live, Adelaide
Thursday 8 December - The Rosemount, Perth

Tickets and tour details can be found at Select Touring.

Interview by Andrew "Schizodeluxe" Massie on July 18th 2016