Old Man's Child - 08/05/2009

Norwegian melodic black metal masters OLD MAN’S CHILD, led by guitarist / vocalist Galder (Dimmu Borgir), are about to return to the spotlight with the release of their new album ‘Slaves Of The World’. The band was founded in 1993. OLD MAN’S CHILD’s roots go as far back as 1989; when members Galder, Jardar and Tjodalv were in a death/thrash band called "Requiem". OLD MAN’S CHILD is the brainchild of Galder, formerly known as Grusom, whose birth name is Thomas Rune Andersen. Other members have come and gone, but Galder remains the driving force behind the band. "Old Man's Child" stands for "Son of the Devil", or "Child of Satan", by "Old Man" referring to the Devil. The band is rarely on tour to support their albums because of the constant line-up changes. In 1996, the band signed to Century Media. With a world wide distribution through Century Media, they gained the attention of new fans around the world.


The new opus, ‘Slaves Of The World’ was recorded at Studio Fredman in Gothenburg / Sweden with acclaimed producer Fredrik Nordström (Dimmu Borgir, Arch Enemy, In Flames, etc.), who had previously worked successfully with the band on their ‘In Defiance Of Existence’ (2003) and ‘Vermin’ (2005) albums. For drum duties and sticking to the tradition of bringing in a new exceptional player for each new album, OLD MAN’S CHILD mastermind Galder decided to enlist Peter Wildoer (Darkane, ex-Arch Enemy, Pestilence) this time around, guaranteeing a mercilessly blasting, yet technically high skilled musical punch from start to finish!



It appears there is much to talk about so we had a chat with mainman Galder. Here you can read what he had to say to the readers of Metal-Experience.com


Congratulations on your new album ‘Slaves Of The World’ which will be released in a couple of weeks! Of course we’d like to ask you a couple of questions about it.


Galder: Thank you, sure go ahead thats what I’m here for.


It’s been a couple of years since your previous album ‘Vermin’ came out, so can you give us a quick update on Old Man’s Child?


Galder: Well it’s been as you said a few years since the last album so I have just been working hard lately to finish this one off between the breaks I have in Dimmu, and it’s nice to finally have it done and ready for launch.


How did you launch into writing material for ‘Slaves Of The World’ and how much time did you spend on the songs?


Galder: I have been making O.M.C. riff's on and off for quite some time and then I started putting everything together the last 6 months or so before I went into the studio, but I also made a large part of the album at home, like all the vocals and keyboards, so I worked really hard on that.


What approach did you take to make this album, did you go for a more raw exposition.. or something more reminiscent of your previous other works, or something all together different?


Galder: My first goal was to make it sound and feel a bit more raw and dirty than the previous album ‘Vermin’ but musically I just do my thing and it turns out the way it turns out in the end, but at the end of the day I still think it’s a good mix of previous O.M.C. albums.



Did ideas come easily so that you just had to write them down or was it more of a careful composing thing?


Galder: Both I would say, ideas can come as soon as I pick up the guitar or I might wake up in the morning and have a riff in my head,

and other days I can’t write shit. But I guess it’s fair to say that it was more of a careful composing thing, I always use a lot of time arranging the songs, for me that is just as important as the riffs.


What comes first, lyrics or melodies?


Galder: Melodies always come first.


In your opinion, how was your experience with Dimmu Borgir helpful in your compositional skills and how does that affect the way you write now ?


Galder: Hard to say, but to be honest I have a structure and routine in how I want my songs to sound so I don’t think they would be completely different if I didn’t play in Dimmu.


What were the goals you had in mind when you started to record ‘Slaves Of The World’, any elements you definitely wanted to have on the album and was it a conscious decision to do it this way?


Galder: As I said earlier I wanted it to sound more raw than the last time, and I used old guitar amplifiers that other people and bands would just laugh about if they knew, but it was a choice made on purpose. The same goes for the drum sound, we didn’t want to use the best sound and really experimented to create that feeling and sound we wanted for this one.


What is the utmost important ingredient for a song according to you?


Galder: Good riffs and structure.


Could you please describe the implications of the title ‘Slaves Of The World’, what does it stand for and is there a special meaning behind it?


Galder: It's more like a "point of view" on how humans conduct their lives in today’s society, not living in harmony with nature, and being "slaves" of  human evolution and technology.



What about the lyrics, of course the main themes are clear, but can you give us a short explanation of them? 


Galder: Each lyric is about different stuff this time, and I write about anything from Aliens to serial killers, Gjengis Khan, Vikings, and of course religion. I really tried to be more open minded this time and write about different stuff, but even though I found the idea through subjects such as Gjengis Khan or serial killers or whatever it doesn’t mean it's necessarily about them, I always put my own twist on things and I always write in metaphors.


How did the recording process proceed this time, did you work differently than on your previous album?


Galder: Yeah it was different in the way that I did all the vocals and keyboards at home, I thought this would cut down the work needed in the studio but it still took me over three weeks of hard work since there were many midi and audio files that needed to be transfered and stuff. Besides all of that it all went as normal.


Your sound and production on ‘Slaves Of The World’ is excellent, the album was produced by Fredrik Nordström, what made him the perfect man for Old Man’s Child?


Galder: He lives not too far away from me so it was a very practical choice, but I also needed someone that is good at transferring music files from my computer and those needed a lot of work. I knew he was a good choice for that.


In which things/songs on the new album can one clearly hear his vision and ideas?


Galder: Not one I think, he only mixed the album. We pretty much worked by ourself during the day and he showed up doing some mixing here and there during the whole thing.


How important is producer Fredrik Nordström for you?

Galder: A good studio and engineer are very important of course, and it does also help that the people know each other, it just makes things easier when it comes to making a good sound.


Do you have any favourites on the album?


Galder: I usually never have a favourite ‘cause each song has strong and weak sides to it, but I do like "Saviours Of Doom" just because it’s a bit different than what I normally write I guess.


Have you received any feedback on the album yet?


Galder: Some, so far it seems to be well received I would say.


Are third party opinions (press, fans, etc.) on your music important to you? Or are your music and band the only things that matter?


Galder: Of course it’s important, but it’s not like I make music to please the press or anything like that, I make the music I like personally and just hope that the people out there will like it too I guess, if they don’t it doesn’t mean I will change my style or anything like that.


Overall, are you pleased with the outcome of the songs or would you have liked to have changed anything in retrospective?


Galder: I’m never 100% satisfied with any album, I think there is always room for improvements, but I think that that is a good quality to have in music and will eventually make it better and better.



Who are your greatest influences - both in terms of composition, as well as your guitar playing?


Galder: I have never been a big fan of the so called "guitar hero's" out there, I more like guitarists like Angus young, James Hetfield, Mick Mars and such. Not too impressed really by the "lead gods" out there, there’s more to guitar playing than playing fast leads, a good guitarist is a versatile guitarist with groove.


Can you tell us a little about yourself and the kinds of things that motivate you in your writing, your poetry, and your lyrics?


Galder: I think the metal life style in general is my main motivation, not any specific bands, my life is music and that’s how it’s been for a long time and that is motivation enough, but of course receiving good feedback from fans also gives a very good motivation boost I think.


With several albums under your belt, how far has Old Man’s Child surpassed your original dreams and what would you say is the most rewarding part of being in this band?


Galder: When I first started, the dream was just to record a proper demo, so in that case the dream was surpassed a long time ago. To have been able to release a total of 11 albums up to now plus a couple of guest appearances on other bands’ albums is more than I could ever have dreamed of. As far as the most rewarding thing goes, that must be every time you release a new album I think.


What were the highlights and low points throughout your career?


Galder: Can’t really say there have been too many low points, if things work against you in periods it will only make you stronger and a better musician in the end. The highlights as I said are every time you release a new album.


Regardless of the albums you have under your belt, do you feel you have to prove yourself with each release due to the climate in metal right now?


Galder: I only make the music I want to make because I personally like it, so I don’t think I have the need to prove anything else than to try to make the albums as good as I can make them basically.


What is your opinion on the metal scene these days? What do you think about the overload of bands at the moment and is there anything missing in the scene?


Galder: Don’t really have an opinion about it, I only listen to the bands that I want to listen to, if I don’t like it I don’t buy it. But as far as the "scene" goes it could always be a bit more as it was some years ago, when everything was sort of "new" and mystical. These days, metal is more or less like any other music style, which has both good and bad aspect to it. I feel that the metal scene in general is stronger than ever, so that’s a good thing.


What can we expect from Old Man’s Child in the near future, any touring plans?


Galder: Not in the current situation I’m afraid, but maybe I will hook up with some more members in the future and do some shows. But to be honest I’m quite happy with the current situation, I use all the time I have beside making music and touring with Dimmu to focus on making albums instead, and giving that 110% effort. Doing this and touring a lot with both bands would be hard to do without compromising one or the other I think.


Where do you see the band going within the next couple of years, and where do you see the band’s musical direction going for the next album?


Galder: Too early to say at this moment, I need to release this album first and see if I still like it after listening to it a hundred times. But to say that I will do something completely different musically in the future would be a lie, O.M.C. is all about being a mix of black, thrash and death metal so that’s the way it will always be.


Thanks for the interview!!

Eugene Straver




Band members :

Galder - Vocals, Guitars, Bass, Keyboards

Former members and session musicians :

Reno Kiilerich - drums and percussion

Jardar (Jon Øyvind Andersen) - guitars and backing vocals

Nicholas Barker - drums and percussion (2003)

Tjodalv (Kenneth Åkesson) - drums and percussion

Grimar (Jan Roger Halvorsen) - drums and percussion

Memnoch (Håkon Didriksen) - bass 

Tony Kirkemo - drums and percussion

Gonde (Frode Forsmo) - bass 

Brynjard Tristan - bass 

Gene Hoglan - drums and percussion

Stian Aarstad 

Peter Wildoer - Drums 


Discography :

Born of the Flickering (1995)

The Pagan Prosperity (1997)

Ill-Natured Spiritual Invasion (1998)

Sons of Satan Gather for Attack (split EP with Dimmu Borgir)  (1999)

Revelation 666 - The Curse of Damnation (2000)

In Defiance Of Existence (2003)

Vermin (2005)

Slaves Of The World (2009)