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Silence The Foe


Undoubtely one of the most promising hardcore bands from Scandinavia is Silence The Foe. Their debut EP When Summer Turns To Sand displays excellent songs, and  recorded well. To get to know this band a little better, we send the band a series of questions for them to answer. Here are the results guitarist Roland send in.


Discography: When Summer Turns To Sand (2001). Available through: Silence The Foe. Official website: Silence The Foe. Interview by: mpo. Date: June 9th-30th 2001


Silence The Foe is a pretty young band, started just a little more than a year ago. And you have an EP out that sounds quite solid for a starting band. How come? Is it a lot of practice or do you have experience playing in bands before this one? Tell a bit about your involvement with music!

The history of Silence The Foe actually began in February 1998, when Thomas (drums), Roland (guitar), Anders (vocal) and two other friends started a band called Termos. A band known for having a crazy live show, preaching Jesus all time on stage, and not writing too good songs...:) During various line-up changes with help from different people, Termos became Silence The Foe. One year ago Thomas moved to attend a school, and our guitar player left... So, then we got Ruben and Fred from The Lionheart Brothers (now known as Lionheart on Sally Forth Records) to help us out until Thomas got back and we found a permanent guitar player. Big thanks to those guys, they helped us quite a lot. When it comes to involvement with music and the current line-up, I (Roland), Thomas and Anders could hardly play our instruments or sing when we started in 1998. Arnbjorn, our bass player has played in various
bands before he joined STF like two years ago. Marcus from Lionheart, who joined us on second guitar some months ago, is a musicgeek, in a positive way though. He is a big help for us now with his experience. We try to practice twice a week, and we have been doing that for a couple of years now. And when you practice.. you get better. On the EP we had a lot of help from the producer, Tommy, the guitar player from Silver. And I think the EP wouldn't have turned out that good if it wasn't for him.

So, three years ago you could hardly play your instrument. What made you want to do a band? What attracted you to start Termos?

In the summer of 1997, Anders and myself were at a youth-festival in Norway. It was at this festival we for the very first time talked about starting a band. We were really into punk and hardcore, and felt that it was in this scene God wanted us to do our work. At that time there were few (actually none) Christian hardcore/punk-bands in our area, and that made us see that the scene needed us. So you can say that the reason is that we had a heart that we wanted to serve God, and we really wanted to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That was the main reason for us playing in a band back then, and it is the same way with Silence The Foe today. But we can't deny that we also found the idea of playing in a band kind of cool..:), and it's something that we
really wanted to do for a long time.

On the EP you play hardcore. Now it's very easy for me to label it as hardcore. But one hardcore band is not like the other. So, how would you like to describe it and what bands inspire you? What are the essentials of your sound?

To label the sound briefly it's okay to just call it hardcore, which is in fact the style we basically play. More specific, if someone asks us we usually say that we play metallic hardcore mixed with emo. Something of the new material is much more emo than the songs on the EP. But it's not like we've become an emoband, because other parts
are really slow and heavy. It's just a part of our progression as a band.. I think that all the songs we have recorded this week are better than the old songs, and all of us are happy with the new direction we are taking. In fact, a lot of Americans who have said
that they liked us, liked us because we are not like "all" the bands that are popping up all over the US. I guess that's because of our Scandinavian sound. We are still trying to hold close to that, and not just be another hardcore band in the scene. But that's not easy when there are so many bands in the world. When it comes to inspiration it will vary within the band. But bands like Zao and Overcome have had a great influence on all of us. And the inspiration will vary after what we listen to from time to time. Taste of music varies quite a lot in the band, but most of us like hardcore, metal and emo. Well, Marcus don't like much emo at all, but he like some hardcore/metal. He's really into bands like Spiritualized, Low, Tortoise, My Bloody Valentine, Cocteau Twins, Flaming Lips and Soul Junk (you can say he is not an average member of STF when it comes
to music).

The EP was recorded independently. What were your intentions with recording it? What do you want to achieve? A label deal or just a disc in your hands to sell to the fans, or...?

I guess we can say both. It was kind of natural considering the progress we'd had after the summer. We had felt for a long time that it was about time to do a serious recording, and we didn't have a label, so we just had to do it on our own. One reason was to have something to sell at shows, etc., and another was to have something to send out to various labels, as well as zines and distros. So we do hope that this EP helps us to get a deal with a label, which would make us really happy.

I'm wondering about opportunities to play live in Scandinavia. You are from Norway but this is a huge country with long distances between cities. So, how easy is it to get gigs and is the release of the EP helpful in this respect?

The scene in our country is now growing, and a result of that is of course that there are more hardcore shows. Some places don't want us just because we are Christians, and I think it would have been easier for us if it wasn't for our beliefs. There are still people in the scene that hates us, to tell it straight. Therefore it's a little strange that of all the places we have played at during the last 12 months, only three were "christian" shows. Maybe the scene in Norway has become more unite. If so, it's a good thing. In the southern parts of Norway the cities are not so far from each other like in the rest of the country (where we live). So, when we play outside our hometown we have to drive over 500 kilometres to a town with a scene where more than 15 people will show up. I guess that places in the south that do not have a lot of money to pay bands, would prefer bands that were located closer to the venue. So we might be able to play more shows if it wasn't for that we live so far north.  The CD has helped us a lot, no doubt about that. It's easier to get gigs now, and in the time before the CD-release it was
often people we knew that put up shows for us. Now it's not unusual that persons we have never talked to contact us and want us to play. And I feel that the CD is one of the reasons for that, among playing as much as you can to spread out your name.

What is the next thing we might expect from Silence The Foe?

Well, it will actually be a release. We just finished in the studio yesterday... four new songs, some of them for an upcoming 7" release. It might be a split with a Norwegian emo band called How Cars Crash In Stories, but we don't know anything for sure yet, so we'll see what comes up. Beside that we're only planning to play three festivals
here in Norway in July, and at the Frizon fest in Sweden in August. I can also tell that we are actually talking with a label, and that's all I can say about that at the moment. So you all have to keep checking our homepage for details about that in the future (and it is not Century Media). :)