Jens Westin / Corroded interview
by Rick Tilley
I really hadn’t heard much of Swedish band Corroded until their latest album, the brilliant “Defcon Zero”, was sent to Ever Metal earlier in the year. However, this is a band that has created music for a Swedish TV show and the hugely popular video game Battlefield plus has topped the music charts in their home country! Now signed to Despotz Records they are intent on spreading the name Corroded much further afield and with the ‘international’ sound they have it’s not going to be difficult to do that. Recently I was lucky enough to get the chance to chat to Lead Vocalist and Guitarist Jens Westin about the band and even though he is a man of few words it’s clear to see is passion about his music!
Rick – Hi, I’m Rick from Ever Metal. It’s great to be able to ask you some questions. Firstly would you be able to give us a little background about Corroded for those who haven’t heard of you before?
Jens – CORRODED started out in 2004 and I (Jens) am the only original member left from that setup. Today the setup is me on vocals/lead guitar, Bjarne Elvsgard on bass, Tomas Andersson lead guitar and Per Solang on drums.
Your latest album ‘Defcon Zero’ has recently been released. I think it’s fantastic but how has it been received so far?
It has been received really good by the fans and also by the critics .
It’s been five years since your previous album ‘State Of Disgrace’ was released. I know you’ve been gigging regularly in-between albums but was there another reason why it took so long?
We decided that it was time for us to change label, and it took a really long time for everything to come together the way we wanted it to. But our new label (Despotz Records) is awesome, so it is all fine and dandy nowadays.
Your music is difficult to categorise! I don’t like giving music genre tags but most readers like to know where a band sits on the Metal/Rock spectrum and the closest I could come up with was Pantera meets Shinedown! To most that might sound like an odd combination so how would you describe your music?
I usually say that it lies in the ear of the beholder. It’s very hard for us to, to say what kind of musical genre we find ourselves in. Our standard answer is Hard Rock, because I think that it encompass almost every genre within the spectra.
I wasn’t expecting your music to be so hugely catchy, to add to what I said previously, it sounds like a dose of Modern Metal mixed with commercial American Hard Rock. How do you go about writing new material? Is it an individual or complete band process?
It is a complete band process. We tend to start with a riff from me (Jens) or Tomas, and then we will take it from there as a band to a finished song.
In this day and age it’s not easy standing out, however, I cannot think of another band who sounds quite like Corroded! Who were your influences when growing up and what current bands do you like?
We have one common denominator and that is Black Sabbath, otherwise we have a lot of different musical influences within the band. For me it started with The Beatles and then AC/DC, then came bands like Black Sabbath, Metallica and so forth. For the moment I’m really in to Mastodon, Biffy Clyro, Meshuggah, Testament and Clutch.
You’ve become very popular in your home country of Sweden. Can you try and tell us what that rise in popularity has felt like?
It’s really hard to describe, because for us it has been a gradual climb up the ladder so to say. But one thing is for sure..…..It feels great J
You recently played Sweden Rock Festival to what looked like a huge crowd. That must have been a special moment?
Yeah, that was a real hallelujah moment. We didn’t think that it would be that many people there, since we played rather early on the last day of the festival. But when we came up on the stage and saw the crowd, man that was something else.
Scandinavian Countries seem to produce a vast amount of successful Metal and Rock bands. Why do you think that is?
I’m not sure. If I knew the reason why, I would sell it by the bottle and be a billionaire. I think that part of the reason is because we have a good music school for the kids, and I really think that the Scandinavian weather is a part of it too.
You’ve also recently been announced as main support on Pain’s European tour in October and November. How are you looking forward to that?
It’s going to be great. We spoke with Peter Tätgren when we played at Sweden Rock, and pretty much decided there on the spot.
Unfortunately, there are no UK dates on that tour. Are you trying to plan any UK dates in the near future?
We would really like to come to the UK as soon as possible, but as always it comes down to monetary issues.
What other countries/parts of the world would you love to play?
Everywhere. Where there is a CORRODED show going on, that is a good place to be.
Are you constantly writing new material or will you be waiting until the end of this touring cycle before coming up with ideas for your next album?
We are more or less constantly writing stuff, but we won’t do any recording until we feel that we have the time.
I’m sure you don’t want to wait a further five years before releasing another album so do you already have plans for when you would like to release a follow up or are you just going to see what happens next with ‘Defcon Zero’?
We have a couple of ideas, but nothing that we can be specific about for the time being.
The internet is now such an important tool for promoting a band and its music but it’s also a curse for illegal downloading so how do you budget how much to spend, for example, on a video or cover art knowing that some people will just download the album or individual songs for free?
That is something that our management and label takes care of.
Is there anything else you would like to add before we finish?
We are really looking forward to meet all of you out there on the road, but until we do….. Horns Up
I’d like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you for taking the time to chat to Ever Metal, continued good luck with ‘Defcon Zero’, it’s a great album, and I hope you can get over to UK shores soon because I for one will be there to see you!
There you have it! As mentioned in the interview, Corroded will be supporting Pain on their upcoming Mainland European Tour (Dates below) and if you get a chance to see them then please do! Since this interview was completed Corroded have also released ‘The Nevo Sessions’, a beautiful acoustic EP that should definitely be checked out as well! Jens may not be a man of many words but Corroded let the music do the talking and that is the most important thing!
Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Richard Tilley and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.