It’s been almost two weeks since Saint Deamon announced their comeback, ten years after their last album. Why did they take a break, what have they been up to, what can we expect from the comeback and what does Toya and Celine Dione have in common? We’ll let Toya explain it all!
After ten years in silence Saint Deamon is finally back! First of all: why the long break?
Toya: Yeah, that is a natural question, hehe! It’s a long story, but I will try to condense it a bit: After the promotion tour with our second album, Pandeamonium , some disagreements within the band turned out to be difficult to handle. We tried really hard to work it out, but we came to a point where the drummer [Ronny Milianowicz] decided to leave the band. Obviously, this complicated things for the band. We needed a new drummer and found Oskar [Nilsson], who today plays and tours with Engel. He was perfect for us, but given the fact that we hardly had any gigs, he chose to join Engel when the offer came up. The band fully understood this, and there were no hard feelings. In a way we work even more closely today, when he is out of the band, because he is the one who mixed our upcoming album! Still, him leaving was hard on the band spirit and we were pretty much on the verge of quitting when Jan Thore suddenly recalls a great Norwegian drummer, Jarle Byberg. And here we are now: A new album waiting for its release and Jarle is the reason the band did not «die» back then.
And secondly: what have you guys been up to since your last album in 2009?
Toya: We have done some Saint Deamon gigs, but mostly we have worked individually on different music projects. Jan Thore went solo on Norwegian Talents, I play temporarily in many different bands and work as a session guitarist in a recording studio where I, among other things, got the opportunity to play on a Celine Dion album. Nobby [Magnus Noberg] played a bit with his old band, Nation. They go way back to the time before he played with Dionysos.
What made you get back together again?
Toya: As I mentioned earlier, we owe it all to our new drummer, Jarle, who also plays with the Swedish band Shining, by the way. He brought exactly the kind of energy we needed for a serious restart in Saint Deamon.
In the video posted on Facebook, you said that you have been in rehearsal rooms the last years. Does that mean you have been writing for a new album?
Toya: Oh yeah! The album is actually finished. The reason it’s not released yet, is that we haven’t yet reached a complete deal with a lable. We work closely with our management Guilty Gorilla to find a long-term partner for us.
What can you tell me about the upcoming album, then?
Toya: So, on this new album I have written all the music and Jan Thore is the man behind all the lyrics. That being said; listeners will hear a slightly different sound compared to the first two albums where many songwriters were involved. I am very inspired by the musikal sound of epic movies, and I think it will show.
You mentioned a different sound; it’s ten years since the last album: have the band, and you as musicians, changed? Will there be a new band rising from the ashes?
Toya: Yeah, you will definitely hear a new kind of sound. At the same time, Jan Thore’s magical voice itself is a kind of ID that will make the listener sure about the fact that this is Saint Deamon.
On the first two albums, myself and Ronny were deeply involved in the arrangements. This time, Nobby and I worked intensively with sound, rhythm, string arrangements and beat.
This time you will hear a power metal album with heavy, epic references and many progressive pieces of music. We worked particularly hard on the beat and the rhythms behind Jan Thores vocals.
What do you feel and think about the future of Saint Deamon; does this mean that you are back for good?
Toya: I sure hope so! We love doing this! Writing songs, recording and touring is the best, right? And meeting all the amazing people who like our music – we just love it!
Are you planning to tour next year, and do you have plans for the summer festivals?
Toya: We are eager to do this, but it sort of depends on when and how we will release the album. Playing at festivals is something we love, so if anyone reading this is on the outlook for a great live band do not hesitate to get in touch!
Any comments to the fans that are really excited that you are back?
Toya: Oh, hang in there guys! We have a great album coming up! Hope to see you soon at a live show followed by a great party all night long! Cheers!