These warriors from the North have been quiet of late, but it seems that Odin has smiled upon the local metal scene lately and Ridarre Av Koden are no exception. Vocalist and axe-man Heimdall Av Koden shared some very exciting insights into what they have in store and how they’re preparing for battle.
M4A: What are the plans for the new album and Riddare Av Koden in general?
Firstly, thanks for the opportunity to talk about what’s been going on with Riddare Av Koden. We’ve been out of the scene for a good couple years now. We kinda fell apart after the Ensiferum tour. They are so good and set the bar so high for what a live metal band should be. We had to go back to the drawing board and re-evaluate everything. Live performance, sound, appearance, touring strategies, financial strategies – everything. Touring with that band totally changed the course of our lives.
Nathan (Wilson, guitarist and founding member) and I put together a comprehensive business plan to bring some big bands down, but I have to be honest, we weren’t ready to take the financial risk. I think we achieved a lot behind the scenes though, and I’m glad that other, more experienced people like Dawid Fourie from Ram Touring and the guys at Witchdoctor are making things happen. Nergal (Behemoth) and I had been talking about South Africa for a while so it’s great to see that Witchdoctor are bringing them down in November. I truly believe that this is the way forward and will open up the doors for international exposure. Louis Du Pisani is another person who is making big things happen for SA – I’m excited to see what the future brings.
I got offered a really great job directing a major property portfolio, so that’s been taking up a lot of time, but it’s also helped to finance the steps necessary to get to this point. Steven (De Pina, instrumentalist) and I have been writing new material and we’ve been working with good folk up in California. Surprisingly we already have some offers on the table label-wise, but we’ve decided on Warner Bros. Records. They’re a trademark that’s been a part of my life since I was a kid, so it feels like home. I also want to get into the corporate side of the industry, so signing with them aligns with that goal. The pre-production we’re working on is being recorded by our new 3rd guitarist – Ruan Graaff, and we asked Andols Herrick (Chimaira) to play drums on the single “Mjolnir”.
M4A: What is the new preview song Mjolnir really about – or is it just about badass Vikings being badass?
Norse Mythology has always resonated within the Riddare family, and it influences almost everything we do and write about. The song is about the ancient power of the symbol to influence reality, and what it means to us as a band and individual souls.
M4A: How is preparation for the new album coming along?>
Right now we’re about 2/3rds done writing our major label debut, but we aren’t sure when it will be completed. It’s definitely going to be worth the wait, and I hope we’ll do SA proud when we drop it internationally. The flag is going on the record next to the WB Records logo. When we’re done writing we’ll be heading to LA to ink the deal and re-record the album with Andy Sneap (Opeth, Arch Enemy, Killswitch Engage) in the UK. We’re then going to push as hard as possible internationally. Play as many festivals in EU and The US and maybe get on a support tour with one of the other Warner bands.
M4A: You guys probably get asked this a lot, but will we see you on a stage again anytime soon?
We want to start rehearsing again with Thomas Hughes (Fuzigish), so we’ll probably be playing some shows in the near future. We keep getting asked to play festivals but we aren’t ready yet. The line-up at the moment for live performances is myself, Pepi Petkov, Ruan Graaff, and Thomas Hughes, Steven De Pina and hopefully The Bishop (William Bishop – Fuzigish).
As you can see, a storm’s a brewing and we can’t wait to hear the thunder!
Listen to the preview of “Mjolnir” below: