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Written by Béa   
Monday, 14 July 2008 05:32

Hello I’m Beatrice from Metal Heart Webzine (France), would you like to present yourself and your group?
I'm Stud Bronson from the Norwegian band The Batallion , and we play bad ass 80's deathened thrash metal the way it should be, allright!
What are the musical backgrounds of each of the members, you are all coming from different groups?
I used to be in Old Funeral from 1988 to 1992. I also play in a Motorhead tribute band called Bombers (www.bombers.no). Lust Kilman used to play in Grimfist. Colt Kane used to play in Borknagar on the 2nd and 3rd album. Mr Morden played drums in Taake,Deathcon,Amok etc. We are all old motherfuckers from the old scene. Our backgrounds are ,as you might observe, from the old times.
Why this title for the album “Stronghold Of Men”?
Because it sounds good, and suits us and our music well. We play tough music with a masculine taste, and we defend the old spirit of metal. And our songs are a unit that works as a stronghold. And as we are all men in the band, it turned out to be a "Stronghold Of Men"! Yeah! We are a wall of sound!
Would you like to talk about the lyrics of the songs? Are they all talking about war?
They are not all about war even tough you might interpret many of the titles that way. The war can also be in your mind, not only on the battlefield. "Born In A Grave " is about my observations of planet earth and the stupid human kind ,and they way I sense it.
"Victims" is about modern people who go with the flow with their eyes and mind shut. "Smoke 'Em Out" is about tracking down your enemies. " Man To Man" is about a good old fight like they had in the classic western movies. "The Spirit Of Masculinity" is my desriciption of simply being a man. I am very primitive in my way of thinking, and the song is about the primitive instincs you have as a man. The rest of the songs on the album describe different aspects of war, written in an entertaining and brutal way. I like more primitive lyrics and not the kind where you need a fucking dictionary to understand them. Our music is "in your face" and so are the lyrics.
Your songs are direct, powerful and melodic, is it important to have such a mix?
For us it's important to have the elements you mention. We try to combine aggression, power and groove. It's often boring if the music is just aggressive, or just technical, or just primitive. We attempt to create catchy, yet brutal, timeless metal. You will find elements from black metal, death metal, thrash metal, even punk and rock n roll. I like to think of us as a band you can listen to if you are into any of the mentioned categories.
What is your creative process?Stud Bronson
Get together in the rehearsal room and jam the riffs and arrangements out. We do everything the old school way. If one of us has a riff we play on it until we have the right drum beat for it. Then we put it together with other riffs until it fits. Once the structure is ready, I rehearse the song in my head , and get the lyrics to suit the riffs. Sometimes an arrangement will be altered a bit as the lyrics come down to match the vocal lines.
If I tell you that I define your music as “true”, “authentic” what do you answer to that?
Then you are absolutely right! There is no theatre in The Batallion. Everything you hear is from the heart and the way we like it. We all have had a passion for metal and hard rock for many many years ,and it's the inspiration we have gathered from that life which you will hear trough our music. Bands that are not true to themselves will go under very fast.
You have signed with Dark Essence Records, are you satisfied of the label?
So far so good. We all live in Bergen, so the communication is easy and personal. We have also known the 4 persons running the label for many years. They are fast with updates on what’s going on with reviews, Interviews, gig proposals etc. They are also great persons to drink with! Hah!
Bjørnar Nilsen is the producer of the album, how did you get to work with him?
We used him on our first 4 track debut demo/ EP. He turned out to be a person easy to work with on both personal and professional levels. He is also involved in Dark Essence Records. Also he has reasonable studio rates. But above all he understands our music.

You are coming in France in august, how do you apprehend this gig? It is the first time you come to France?
We got this gig after the organizers of La Ferme Du Rock saw us at the Inferno Festival in Oslo this year. They immediately got hold us after the performance and asked if we would come to play in France. Of course we wanted to. We wanna play as much as possible. So we worked out the conditions, and then they booked us. Yes, it's the first time in France with The Batallion , but we have all been to France before on private basis or with other bands. I have been there 3 times before working as the merchandise guy for Immortal. But I have never seen the Eiffel Tower, ha ha ha! You have good wine in France I must say, and bloody crazy audience as I recall from the Immortal gigs.
Is it hard for a Norwegian group to be known out of your country?
The music business is always hard no matter which country you come from. You have to get out and play to get somewhere and we are trying our best. We just got a new booking agent trough www.photograve.net . It's the same company as Immortal, Emperor etc, so hopefully that will get us some more gigs.
What do you think of the French metal scene? Do you know some groups?
Like I said, I know the audience is crazy as hell. Just the way we like it. I just got a CD from a French band called Resistance. An album called "Bang Your Fucking Skull". Good old stuff even tough they are a rather new band. I know a few bands from the old times when we traded tapes in the underground with Old Funeral, but I don't really follow the modern scene that much I'm afraid. When I wanna check out more music I usually go back in time.
The word of the end is for you, what would you like to add?
Thank you for your interest in The Batallion , and if you get the chance, come and see us at La Ferme Du Rock the 24th of August. Let's raise hell together!
It's gonna be great to play there together with Nifelheim. Also, go and get our CD. It will also be released on vinyl in august. If you cannot afford it, steal it ! AAAARRGGHH ! Allright !


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