Dark Tranquillity “There’s No Place for Racism in Metal” – Anchors to Asphalt

Towards the end of the 90’s and the beginning of the Bush (W.) era, I got really into all the great bands coming out of Sweden. Both the Gothenburg scene and the Stockholm bands. One of my favorites from this era was DT. And by DT, I of course mean Dark Tranquillity (though the other DT normally applies for me as well =-)).  Their mix of power and melancholy was new to me and I absolutely loved Mikael Stanne’s vocals, clean and scream. I think Projector was the first record I knew from them, but it was 2000’s Haven album that really made me a fan.

Fastforward 17 years later and I got to sit down with one of my favorite metal singers to talk about life on the road, the realities of trying to make a living with metal and of course, to talk a little about current events. It was weighing on him what he saw around him in the world and he makes a comparison to how, when you tour the world, it becomes harder to be narrow-minded and hateful of other cultures. He talked about the shifting views in small towns around his native Sweden and how he was sad to see his fellow countrymen turning more and more inward and isolationist to the larger problems in the world.

But what surprised me more was the comments that flooded our Youtube video for this clip. The usual, “Stick to metal, stay out of politics” lyrics were flying high against Mikael and the band, and those were the tame comments.

We are not a political site and I doubt that DT would call themselves a “political band”, but of course peoples thoughts and ideas and feelings get written into their music and words. Since when did someone need a degree in International Policy (which I am sure most of the folks citing this don’t have) to voice their concern for their fellow human beings? Mikael isn’t talking about policy. He’s just a concerned neighbor.

Remember to be good to one another, look out for each other and don’t let fear guide you. DT4Life.

p.s. We also made a making-of video for this episode!

Randy M. Salo

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What do you think, Freqs?