Das Interview mit Markus Danielsen Danjord der norwegischen Band LÜT (English Version)

Der Sänger steht Rede und Antwort zum neuen Album der Wikinger

Artist: LÜT

Origin: Tromsø, Norwegen

Genre: Rock, Punk, Indie

Label: Crestwood Records – Loud Media / Warner Distribution

Links: https://www.lutband.com/

Bandmembers:

Gesang – Markus Danielsen Danjord
Gitarre – Ørjan Nyborg Myrland
Gitarre – Mads Erlend Ystmark
Bass – Marius James Platt
Schlagzeug – Sveinung Mellem Engvik

Since they were founded in 2014, LÜT have made a name for themselves among rock fans, especially in their home country. In this short time the Norwegian rock band LÜT has established itself as one of the most exciting new rock bands in Scandinavia. They have developed a unique, tight and energetic live show based on captivating melodies and massive guitar riffs. This made me curious about the now available album Mersmak. Mersmak means “taste for more”, directly translated. Due to the distance, we conducted the interview by email.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
Hi Markus,

first of all thank you for your time. First and most important point at the beginning.
Hopefully nobody has problems with the pandemic and you are all fine?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Hi Norbert! We are all good and healthy. Our friends and family as well, thank you.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
It was going to be a year with a lot of live concerts and things turned out differently. Now your album is out and there is still no tour scheduled.
How do you deal with the current situation?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Well, it’s no secret that the current situation is a major bummer to us all, but we are constantly looking for ways to work around it until the world is back in order. I think it’s important to try to use the situation to our advantage instead of feeling sorry for ourselves not touring. We have made a lot of music videos, new music etc lately. This was something it was hard to find time to do when constantly touring with our first album. We also find comfort in knowing that we are ready to hit the road as soon as it’s possible.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
How do you perceive the success that you have now triggered in Europe? Does this also affect booking inquiries or is Corona slowing everything down?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Yes, good reviews and live shows have had a strong impact on booking inquiries for us, but it’s also true that corona is slowing things down. Some venues still book in advance, and some are waiting out the situation. We had no idea that our album would get as much attention as it has gotten and we cannot wait to work with it and see where it will get us. We got big plans for Europe when the live stages are opening up again. Many cool things are already scheduled behind the scenes.

We do of course hope that the album will help our bookings even further for the future, since being on the road a lot is our favourite part of being in a band.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
I became aware of you when you were playing at the Reeperbahn Festival in Hamburg. Is it already foreseeable that you will visit us again in Northern Germany?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
YES DEFINITELY! We love playing in Germany, and feel so welcomed over there. The last time we were in Hamburg we had one of the most legendary days together as a band and it’s still one of those shows we talk about all the time.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
Do you already have a connection to Germany? Can any of you speak German?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Well I (Markus) lived in Germany for a short period of time when I was a kid (my dad had military work over there), but the little German I learnt in my time of staying there has gotten quite rusty now. We hope to play so much in Germany that everybody in the band will speak German in a while haha. I do understand it a lot more than I can speak it to be fair.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
But first of all, about your past. In which projects / bands did you play in the past? Do your roots come from other genres? Would you like to introduce the band first?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Ørjan, Marius, Mads and Sveinung met up at the age of 14 and started the punk rock band The Wolves. They did very well on the Norwegian stage, having their first 10+ summer festival season by the age of 16. Eventually Mads joined Heave Blood & Die while Marius, Ørjan and Sveinung met up with me (Markus), Hans Marius and Viljar and started LÜT. It has always been rock bands for all of us. Even in elementary school when some of the guys started playing together for the first time.

After some years Hans, Marius and Viljar left the band and we asked Mads to join in. Luckily he did and now we are the best group that we could ever hope for. It’s a great dynamic.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
You are still very young. Are you now a “professional musician” or do you still secure yourself with studies or other jobs?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
As much as we would like to call ourselves “professional musicians” we still need to have money to put food on the table doing small jobs as Sound Technicians, Pizza Delivery, Bartenders etc. If we all rented a small apartment together we could probably live off the music for a while, but our priority has always been to invest the money we make as a band, back into the band. I think this is one of the reasons we have gotten to do all the things we have done. But regarding day time jobs we always, ALWAYS put the band first. So whenever we have gigs ready or other band related jobs we will get time off from work to do that. Our employers are very big fans of the band haha.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
At 35 minutes the album is quite short. But you should have enough songs. So why not another song or two?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
We kinda settled for the length of the album a couple of months before going into the studio. We wanted a 10 track album, and we all agreed that the type,  length and qualities of the songs on the album fit very well together. The songs that were good, but not right for the second album is set to be released on the next one. We have a few really good songs ready that we feel is much more third album sounding, rather than second. Maybe that just makes sense in our own heads, but that’s the logic behind it!

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
You bring out your new album in many special vinyl editions. Are you a vinyl fan yourself? Unusual for your age. Isn’t that something for old bones like me?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
I’m not too big of a fan myself to be honest, but Mads and the other guys in our team are. I guess at the end of the day we are very proud of whatever product we give out as a group and we thought we’d do something special with this record. I do think, regardless of using the vinyl on a record player that they just look epic. Either as a decoration piece or a physical confirmation that we have actually made an album. It really is something else than a digital copy, and it would never be an option not making vinyls of LÜT records.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
Several vinyl editions are already sold out. How is the pre-order for the album  going on CD? I ordered a red / white vinyl. Please don’t forget to sign them …

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
It’s really cool to see that a lot of people are buying the vinyls. We couldn’t be more happy with that! Our own pre-order is also going very well and we were never even close to selling as much of the first album as we are now with the second. Our merch guy Marius is working around the clock from his bedroom webshop haha! I haven’t gotten a status on the CDs yet, but hopefully they are selling as well. Lots of people still listen to CDs and I think it’s really cool that we are fortunate enough to have CDs as an option.

Of course we will sign it, with love from Norway.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
You have entered into a cooperation with Warner Music for Central Europe. Does that have any effect on the new album and any tours?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Well our reach in Central Europe has gone up quite a lot, so it’s almost hard to keep up. We hope to see this success last until the day we can go out on the road again and put on our big energy rock show. We have multiple booking teams in Central Europe now pulling the strings, making sure we get going when it’s time.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
You continue to sing in your mother tongue, Norwegian. Internationally I can only think of Kvelertak who are also successful with the Norwegian language. Isn’t it a hindrance to international success after all?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Not that we have noticed so far. Actually people from lots of corners of the world compliment us for using our mother tongue. I think it makes us more authentic in a way and I guess for us it feels more genuine to sing in our own language as well. And to be fair, people in Norway also struggle to understand what we sing, so it really doesn’t matter too much. I think the sound of the vocals, and the melody lines are more important than the language of the words. The irony is that we put a heck of a lot of work in making sure the lyrics are good and innovative, and almost no one understands a word. But we will post the lyrics for the entire album both in Norwegian and English for everybody to see and analyse.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
Who came up with the idea for your covers? Same motif, each cover a different band member. Simple, innovative and somehow different.

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
In the start leading up to the release of Pandion (first album) we used pictures of friends and family, because that is what a lot of Pandion is about.

Leading up to the release of Mersmak, we have chosen to use everybody in the band, since a lot of the lyrical aspect is about us personally. This concept probably started all the way back in 2015 when we could afford to hire someone to make cover arts, and then we just went with it and made it LÜT.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
What do you think of the current live streams that are on everyone’s lips?
Isn’t a ghost concert an option for you to show your fans “Yes, this is the new record and we can do it”?
There are hardly any live recordings of you on the net anyway, even though you offer an energetic show.

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
It’s been challenging to find a way to fully represent our high energy rock show from a perspective where you as a viewer watch it from home. But a couple of weeks ago we found a way. It will be out soon and I wont say too much about it, other than it will be awesome.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
Do you finance your music with the live performances, the merch or now also the new album or does
something get stuck there? Travel, equipment, marketing, plus a production facility in the USA –
those are also major cost factors.

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Yes. We have been fortunate enough to be able to finance everything with the band economy from day one. We won the first studio session through a band competition, and then the ball started rolling. But of course the factors you mention are big cost factors for a band of 4-6. We have spent hundreds of thousands of euros building the band over the years, but we have never spent a cent we don’t have, and have never had any debt in our organization so far. Ørjan has a master in economics and has made sure we don’t fall in the usual band economics traps. But of course, if we had taken out salaries instead of reinvesting it in the band the story would be different. We as a band know that this is the way for us until we reach a level we are almost happy with. I don’t think we will ever be fully satisfied, but that’s a part of the grind. The struggle is definitely real, but we are just gonna stick to it and work our asses off.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
You have played big festivals. Who or for which band would you like to support on a longer tour or do you have your own bigger goals?

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Tough one, we would love to tour with bands as Idles, The Hives, Arctic Monkeys, QOTSA, Ghost and so on.. But of course we have a lot of goals for ourselves as well. Both regarding touring as a headliner and festivals. We have played a lot of festivals over the years, but there are still more festivals we haven’t played yet. One thing is for sure, we can’t sit around waiting for a really big band or artist to contact us. We just have to keep at it, even if it happens or not, and do our thing. Only then will good things follow.

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
Do you read all the reviews of your album? How do you react to criticism and how do you deal with it? Do you already know my review? You can find it here: https://time-for-metal.eu/luet-mersmak/

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
We try to read every single one. It’s so much fun. Even if people hate it we get a buzz reading about it. We know we don’t make music for everyone, but the ones that like our music often like it a lot, and that’s really fun. It’s usually no middle way with us. I don’t mind some bad reviews since most of the reviews are really good and positive. If all reviews were like: “This is shit” it would probably not be so funny haha. I really enjoyed reading your review, so thank you!

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
Finally, of course, the question about what I didn’t ask, but you definitely want to tell our readers of Time For Metal.

LÜT / Markus Danielsen Danjord:
Thanks alot for checking out the music and the crazy stuff we do! We appreciate and need every single one of you to be able to play some big Norwegian rock shows in your hometown one day. Unless we come as a support band, then you are allowed to become a fan after the show. We hope everyone stays safe and healthy and enjoys our new record. Two years of blood, sweat and tears went into it and we couldn’t be more proud of the result. If you don’t like it as well we will stop drinking cheap beer, sell all our equipment and become DJ`s. Our final words are: “Takk som faen, vi elske dokker og fred på jorda!”

Time For Metal / Norbert C.:
Thanks again for the time you have taken to present yourselves in my questions. We wish you all the best
and I hope to see you again at a concert. Somewhere between Hamburg or the south of Denmark ..

LÜT – Mersmak