Einherjer interview from Qvadrivivm #3 (2000)

Interview: Kuronen

Ragnar Vikse, the vocalist of Einherjer and the head of Native North Records thinks he is far too fresh to answer question number one (in my Einherjer inquisition, March 2000) which he says is »far too mature» for him, being the new kid in the Norwegian band. What I asked was if he thought the Viking stomp Einherjer perform had already run dry for recycling activities, and does he believe Einherjer are only hailed nowadays because some say they were some kind of grandfathers of this Viking poop.

amalgam of Norwegian Native Art (Native North Records 2000) can’t really be called sour grapes, but doesn’t it, Ragnar, kind of seem that there really is no way for you to go on anymore? Because you cannot play this same quasi-heavy metal oriented music until the very end, can you? It’s merely rational that some of your fans are bound to leave you eventually, will everything be the same with the next album, the one after that…, no? Would it not be sensible to consider taking some of the old norms back in again?

»Well, our cliché-album Norwegian Native Art has set the standard for what Einherjer will sound like the next ten years, so hopefully at the end of the decade we’ll only sell two albums. One for my grandmother (since we are the grandfathers) and one for my deaf neighbour who loves watching George Michael videos while he stuffs thick candlelights up his ass.»

I might think there’s need for substance worthy of more than that so did the recording of the new album serve the band with any fresh ideas for the next one?

»No, we tried out some new ideas, but suddenly everything sounded new and original, so we decided to stick to our old clichés.»

All glimpses of underlying beauty put on Norwegian Native Art seem to have gone to the concluding two songs, Draconian Umpire and Regicide. Was that a matter upon decision or did you simply not come up with material more of the lovely side?

»We decided to save all our love song material for our next album, which will be called Romantic Ballads of Love. It will contain 6 new Einherjer love songs and cover versions of 16 old Nazareth and Scorpions ballads.»

Sounds rather tasty. I have been told that you’re fond of George Lucas, the film-mogul. How much of an inspiration was he concerning Norwegian Native Art? Would you, Ragnar, change your label’s monicker to Native George Lucas Records if a substantial reward of fast-and-easy money were held above for you to do so?

»I’m in love with George Lucas. He has such a cute ass. I would change the company name immediately, and then I would re-release Norwegian Native Art with the new title Smell George Lucas’ Fart

Now, now… The movies of Mr. Lucas – what’s the best thing about them? Do you fancy more the pre-1977 stuff or…?

»The best thing in his movies are all the helmets. I love helmets. Mr. Lucas is actually a very metal person. He is known between his friends as Mr.G ‘the black metal bunny.»

Ah, someone’s turning green with envy on this side of the interview… (how can one become a friend of George Lucas?!) That left for tomorrow’s sorrows, a theme that has bothered Einherjer already previously is the production and sound of the albums. Especially the two latest incarnations. Was Los Angered equipped with Andy La Rocque the right choice after all?

»The only reason we went to Los Angered in the first place was to get our King Diamond albums signed, but since the soundscape turned out as crappy as it did we decided to return for another crappy recording, and hip hurra, crappy it became.»

Well, the bio still includes gemstones such as »Einherjer have with their new album moved to a more different musical landscape where the dismal and agressive atmosphere are conspicious.» (sic), so basically it should be no effort at all for you to attract some more »dark-adorned» population to cover all the people who get bored of the »heavy metal» sound and cosmetics employed now… Have you written the bio by yourself, by any chance? Could you tell me more about the so-called »dismal» character of Einherjer?

»Actually, we paid a five-year-old to write it for us. He is now our manager. Every decision regarding Einherjer is done by him. He is a very dismal guy. The character of Einherjer is now exclusively based on this kid. We’ve actually stopped rehearsing for an indefinite period. We only eat candy and ice cream.»

Aha. I had no idea that you rehearsed even prior to Norwegian Native Art, based on the musical evidence. By the way, what’s the story behind Native North Records? Is it only created to release Einherjer and if not, who are some other artists that you are planning to release or have released through Native North?

Ragnar: »Native North Records was originally formed in 1922 by my great-great grandpap. His intention and goal was to spread the message of love and the true Viking culture in Finland. Good ol’ Charlie didn’t manage to do that, so unfortunately Nazareth and Scorpions decided to sign to bigger labels. Good ol’ Charlie’s heart was broken. But now we’re here to maintain his dream.»

Actually, I went on the Native North Internet-page later on to find praises on Qvadrivivm that weren’t there, and apparently at the time of being, also Tyrant are on the label’s roster. Which one of the four Tyrants it is, I can only guess… Ragnar, you’re a liar liar with your greasy pants on fire… Anyway, what exactly were the problems dealt with Napalm Records that made Einherjer abandon the label?

»There were no problems at all. Napalm are our blood brothers in Valhall-lia 8, 3266 Nedre Kolbotn.»

The split up of three members of »the old Einherjer» is explained in the recent biography as indifferences within the band regarding how much effort should have been put into Far Far North, if I’m correct – so any further explanations on how they were not satisfied with the projection of Far Far North?

»They weren’t in love with us anymore.»

And who could judge them for that. But Mr. Vikse, any parting words before we leave you enjoying yourselves and let you ride on the supposedly on-going Viking/folk/heavy metal bandwagon success alongside Norwegian Native Art?

»Your mag is the greatest. Thanx a lot for your outstanding support. We love you. Kiss, kiss, kiss from Einherjer.»

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