Richard Sjunnesson

Official blog of Richard Sjunnesson (The Unguided)

The Unguided studio update - Vocal recording, the “cyan” album

Kategori: Allmänt

(Original Facebook post 2017-05-21)

It’s been some eventful past days in Radionika Studios (Stockholm), to say the least. Dino Medanhodzic (the producer), Jonathan and I have diligently collected all our sweat, blood and tears in a gorgeous unguided-cocktail on those insignificant amount of square meters during well over 60 hours. And I’ve just now kind of landed back in life again from this very intense, creative and soul-emptying week. It’s indeed been long daily sessions and the few hours I’ve spent at home have just been functionality wise to sleep, eat (and to do my hearthstone quests hehe) basically. It’s no overstatement that after I laid down the last scream on the album yesterday I felt completely done as a human. But now when I regained some of my objectivity back and is listening to the rough fruit of our “hard labour”, it’s safe to say that you won’t be disappointed. This is good. This is in fact really good!

I didn’t spend a lot of time with the instrumental work until I got back from Spain and started to write the lyrics some 2 weeks ago. Getting more and more familiar to the songs it struck me then that there’s indeed new elements in the music and that it felt a bit adventures and exciting while still having the same integrity as the songs from the past three albums. There’s some really heavy stuff, and there’s the “standard” The Unguided songs that you all love, but there’s also some completely new aspects. I’m not even sure how we managed to get it together in this fairly short period of time and I don’t really remember how I got all the lyrics done during that week after my Spain vacation either, but all of a sudden all the pieces of the puzzle was in their correct place and all that I wanted to say with the album, lyrically, was right there.

Save from the “Brotherhood” EP I’ve not done much studio work with Jonathan or Dino in the past. So we needed to establish our method, like with every new individual you work with. It’s always a bit hard to say what that method is going to look like until you go in there and everyone start to do their thing. But I think we found a good way of working relatively early and they are both really pleasant to spend time with also in a studio environment. Towards the end of the week Jonathan and I joked about how we repeatedly came back to the same comment patterns, like two broken records, after a lot of takes. When he sang a part I always said: -“Don’t forget to do the one octave down harmony!”, whilst after my takes, he always asked: -“Can we try to do the screaming rhythm a bit more straight forward?” haha. Dino is an excellent producer and managed to get the best out of us without being “pushy” in any way. Very humble, but still attentive and there’s nothing that slips his eagle-eyes and bat-ears! Jonathan over-performed in every possible way on this record, both instrumentally and singing-wise. I’m so proud and impressed by his work on this album and can’t wait for everyone to hear it eventually.

Lastly I just want to thank everyone in the band that have worked extremely hard for this album. It’s a real honor to be among such amazing musicians and wonderful people. Everyone knew that this was a really important album and it’s been breathtaking to see how everyone just poured their soul into it in that regard.

Yours faithfully


The Unguided line-up change

Kategori: Allmänt

I suppose we owe you an explanation?

First and foremost; this is not going to be easy for anyone. It's actually going to be weird, awkward, and strange for all parties, including you, the fans. I'll try to walk you through it the best I can. You know all too well, that we are no strangers to our past. Neither are you. You have, in fact, been very clear about that detail. Perhaps we have been looking a bit too much in that direction as well. Perhaps we haven’t? Actually, it just might have been the energy that got this band to the point where it is today. I don’t think that it’s unlikely our progress was based on the lessons of old. They taught us awareness, and they made us visualize obstacles ahead before they even became a threat right in front of us.

But by now you understand that about us. We don't really leave the past behind. And we don't leave our brothers behind, nor do we abandon them. They will never be individuals to forget. They were a part of the machinery that made us. They are represented in all our history, and thus their spirit is essential to any present or future form of this band. We love them as individuals, and we love them as friends, even if we had our differences at times. (Who doesn’t? We’re only human…) However, in our case, our differences always have been our strength. It made us dynamic and diverse. We’ll always honor whoever is involved in The Unguided the best we can, and we will cherish the time we had together.

We are a group of people with very strong wills and ideas. Most of the time our ideas do not align with each other in regards to the different tastes we have as musicians. Other times we compromise. And many times we fuse our wide range of styles together to create our own unique “flavor” which you know as The Unguided. This is not a weakness, it's a strength. We can see things from different perspectives and bind it together to get a deeper dimension in our work. That’s the creative foundation that this band was built upon. Even if, at times, executive decisions had to be made to take a step forward. Everyone in this band still has a very delicate place in a complex system.

However, this apparatus is about to change for the second time in its history. There’s no easy way to say this and there are no extenuating circumstances regarding the matter. So, I’m just going to hand it to you straight. Our brother, Roland Johansson, is stepping down from his place in the band and passing the torch to the next in line; Jonathan Thorpenberg.

I think we could expand on reasons and details regarding this particular change forever but it all boils down to one fact, which is “time”. There is a shortage of time in Roland’s life currently, in regards to all the other duties he needs to tend to. This isn’t anyone’s fault or failure, it’s just how it has to be if we are to continue at all. This change happened in the best of terms and there is no bad blood among any party (as per your observation in the latest music video featuring all past and present members of the band). We love Roland from the depths of our hearts and we know the fans do too. We also know you’ll hate losing him (again) as much as we do. But his ties with The Unguided will not be severed in any way, he is free to come and go as he chooses, and involve himself as much as he wants in coming adventures, even if he’s not going to have a permanent role. We even intend to have some annual celebration shows with Roland, dedicated to the first three albums, and hopefully make that a nice tradition.

The Unguided - Nighttaker, Produced by: 11Frames

I painted a background story initially in this statement, as for you to understand our philosophy regarding our members. A mindset possibly not too common in bands, as any establishment would want to progress swiftly after a radical change. In that process there’s a pretty strong factor that also tries to suppress the past to favor the future. That is the natural thing to do from a business perspective but this is not a business. This is a family! We’d never dream about force feeding the fans any crap on how we found ourselves as a band, and how we now—all of the sudden—are creating the best music to date. We respect you, our past, and will always cherish it. (And in due time you are entitled to your own opinion regarding the new music anyway.)

Roland is a huge reason why we got this far. We will never be delusional about that constant, and we are eternally thankful for everything he brought the band and to us personally. As a matter of fact, it’s scary as hell to dive head forward into these uncharted waters. But it’s something we have to do for the wellbeing of a handful of brothers that just want to have fun, write the metal music we love, and rock out on stage together. We really hope Roland can afford, time-wise, to be involved in some parts of the continued journey ahead. As for yourself, to be honest, we don’t expect anything from you guys, or have the slightest idea if you intend to move through the hazy upcoming future with us at all. To each his own really. It will still not stop us to undertake this journey, which is do what we love the most, and have fun with writing a new album. After all, the original idea was always to walk our own path and that’s still the essential value within the boundaries of The Unguided. You are, of course, very much welcome to join in on this frightening new trip of ours. And we’d, as always, be delighted to have you!

When this band saw the light of day, the vision was always 3 albums. That trilogy is by now accomplished and materialized. There were never any guarantees or certainties of what would happen next. But now there is. It’s time to open a new chapter and take on new challenges! We welcome Jonathan to the family. A family which he has already been acting in for almost 2 years and some of you already got the opportunity to watch him perform and meet him. We, of course, hope once the initial shock has settled a bit, that you can open your heart and welcome this talented individual as well. And in the meantime; feel free to share your most precious memories of our mutual friend Roland, a very extraordinary man indeed. We are all dying to hear and relive your anecdotes! Speak your mind, share the love, and if you don’t think there’s already enough hate in the world, no one will stop you from sharing that either.

/Richard Sj, Roger, Henric and Richard Sc

Says Roland:

So, it seems that the history repeats it’s self once again... As many of you have noticed there has been a bunch of shows and also a tour without my presence. Some rumors have also occurred on social media here and there about whether I’m still a member of the band!?!

First of all I just want to clarify once again that the whole idea of this band was for it to be on a hobby level, to always do the stuff we wanted to do and nothing else. I can say that it’s been a privilege, once again, to be able to do this. Three albums we’ve managed to do and that was also the main goal of this “first” chapter of The Unguided. The Trilogy is done.

The demands and wishes (from the music business and the fans) to see us live, unfortunately, makes this equation a bit tougher to solve if you want to keep it at a hobby level. It’s safe to say that the music we’ve created together, as a band, isn’t too bad, since there are so many of you out there eagerly requesting us to tour (sorry, couldn’t help myself haha).

Don’t get me wrong, I love to be there on stage and perform for you all, and so does the rest of the band. But it also comes with a price, a lot of traveling and being away from home for long periods of time. Those two parameters are why I’m having a very hard time adapting. And that was the reason why I left Sonic Syndicate in the first place back in 2009. I just can’t find it in myself to be away from my family, and my work, to fulfill those wishes for you. I just don’t think it’s fair for you or the band. This is why they have decided to take it a step further and really meet the demands fans have in regards to touring. And that’s why I’ve decided to leave the party.

I’m so proud and grateful for everything we’ve achieved with The Unguided. It’s by far the most inspiring music I’ve done so far in my life. I thank Richard, Roger, Rille, Hank “The Tank” and also John for being a part of it….I love you from the bottom of my heart. Now the next chapter for The Unguided is here, and I really wish them all luck in the future. I think they found a very talented person in Jonathan to continue this book of metal. And please… do not do the “Roland vs. Jonathan” campaign once again…there is really no need or meaning to it.

I’m sure you are all curious if this is the last you will see/hear from Roland? And of course it’s NOT!! Music is my life, and I can just drop dead without it. I will help out The Unguided in any way I can, any way that fits the current model by maybe producing. Surely some music writing, and surely some guest vocals. Who knows? …I might even show up to do some live guest appearances as well!

I will also make myself available for other guest appearance jobs, so just get in touch with me, and we’ll see what happens. There has also been some writing done on the side of The Unguided, which just might be a studio project as well…. Just keep your eyes and ears open ;) Also, many of you might know that I have a huge interest in the spirit WHISKY, which is something I’ve decided to put more energy into on a professional level.

Once again, I thank the band, and all its fans for the huge amount of support that made us what we are. I’ll see you somewhere… it might be on a whisky tasting event or in another location.

Yours truly,

Roland Johansson 2015, Photo by: Patric Ullaeus

Says Jonathan: 

Greetings everyone! First of all, I would like to thank the band for allowing me—a person who has never been involved with a major band, been on tours, or recorded in flashy studios—to be a part of this band’s new line-up. The task of filling Roland’s part in The Unguided will not be an easy one. Not only because I have the utmost respect for him as a musician, and a human being, but also because his style of singing and playing has become a defining factor in the band’s overall sound. However, I will do my absolute best to do the old songs justice while, inevitably, bringing my own expression into them. I have known the guys in the band for almost two years now and we have developed a sort of musical chemistry that allows us to write songs that we are very proud to present to you all. This is an exciting new chapter for me, the band, and hopefully for all of you. I can’t wait to see what the future has in store!


The Unguided 2017, Photo by: Jose Pascual

Maybe I'm not listening

Kategori: Allmänt

Send your questions to:

Q: Hi lord Richard! First I want to thank you again for being so open with the fans and sharing the story of the book of the unguided in the coming album!:D You're the best! :B
My pleasure!

Q: Anyway, I want to ask you about how you take care of your voice nowadays. You see, lately I've been sick of flu and having a lot of chough and it just seems whenever it goes away it's only a matter of days for it to come back! And yeah it's most likely me not being all too cautious now that the winter is upon us. But, since it stops me from signing correctly and do my breathing exercises, I'm sick (duh.. xD) and tired of it! So I come to you hoping you can share some of your wisdom on how YOU take care of your voice (especially in this cold times) and what is the best and quickest remedy to do when you get sick too! Please, even the more obvious detail that I might had ignore.
To be honest, I don’t really get sick all that often. So I don’t have to struggle too much with this. I however had a go with something, which was pretty bad, during a show in February. Not sure what exactly it was; but at least I had fever and a bad cold that was super focused on my throat. What I did is that I went to the Doctor and said I’ll need to go on stage and use my voice the day after basically. He got me a king’s ransom of various pills and I just followed his instructions and popped them before show. I have to admit, I barley even remember that show, but it sure took me through it haha. I wouldn’t recommend that through, since you can wreak havoc on your throat, whilst screaming, if you don’t really have the correct contact with your vocal cord and is not able to feel when it hurts hence of painkillers. However; to me it seems like when you are on tour, you go into some survival mode, and it’s not until you get home from it and you relax a bit you get sick. I’m rarely sick on tour. Tee, honey and hot water works well for my throat if I’m a bit soar. Save from my Zen of Screaming warm-ups, a determination to stay away from hard liquor before shows (and on tour in general) plus an iron will not to talk too loud off-stage, I don’t do much vocal care. But I’ve noticed some change in the durability of my voice during recent years, whatever it have anything to do with me rehearsing/playing less shows than pre-The Unguided days or it’s just the fact I’m getting older I can’t really tell haha. Life hack: BE.CAREFUL and DON’T.PUSH.IT! No need to wreck your shit.

Told ya!

Q: Glad to see I made it to the Q&A video! Happy to see your re-engagement as well. What's the model of your mouse in that video? Good for gaming?
Thanks buddy! I’m happy too haha. It’s a CM Storm Devastator. And I definitely like it! Came with the computer I bought 2014. But I wouldn’t really be able to tell whatever its super good, just good or average. You see, I’m not really a pro-gamer. Merely a gamer! But I had my fair share of slaying demons in Diablo with it so it works for that!

Q: Today I want to share with you the EP of my band, HOSTEM! It's a 4 song (homemade...kind of?) EP with 2 of them in Spanish and the other 2 in English! I'd like to know your thoughts on it, the good and the bad, what you think we can improve and so on. I wrote the melodies of the first two ("Incursion" and "Hacha Loca") and only the lyrics of Incursion! Since the other songs were made before I joined the band. Here's the link (all lyrics next to the song title).

And before you say it; I know we are out of tempo! But the whole thing with the metronome in the band it's a whole different story and it's something we are working on. The EP was mostly recorded so we had some material to share and an example of what kind of sound we are aiming for. If you liked it here is the Live session we did of another song (the first one I wrote melodies and lyrics for the band!)

Haha this is crazy man. Very punk ;) My sheet of advice would be to try to up the production and get it mixed in a proper studio (I apologize if that’s what you did…) It might cost a bit of money sure, but it will be worth your while (and the listeners). You know, as always, it’s about presentation! If you want a real opinion from someone, the production must be somewhat close to what they are used to, so they can relate and weigh it to some familiar source. I wouldn’t really be able to tell whatever this is good songs or good musicians, which have something to them, because the production is not as good as I would expect it to be. Hence I only focus on the bad production. Sorry bro! Here’s a studio that I warmly recommend that do mixing/mastering jobs. He did everything for us at the “Fallen Angels” EP and also recorded the vocals for “Lust and Loathing”. I’m sure he would be able to help.

Q: First and foremost, I want to thank you for answering my question in the Unguided Christmas Special last year.  It means a great deal that, not only do you (and the rest of the band) release behind-the-scenes content for your fans, but you also take the time to listen to feedback and answer questions.  I truly respect the music you all release, and I am eagerly awaiting the third album.
As long as you support and respect us, we’ll always return the favor obviously. We love to get down and dirty with the fans and listen to what you have to say about the band. However since we are individuals ourselves and have 5 different wills of our own with whatever dynamic that includes, we cannot always guarantee we’ll be on the same page with everything. And as long as you, in the property of a fan, respect that; in the end it’s going to be our call with what we do with our creativity. We have an understanding! May this relationship forever live long and prosper.

Bow to thee

Q: I wanted to message you to follow-up on your response to my question about the name of the album.  When I asked that question, I was envisioning these first three The Unguided albums to be direct references to each of the first three SoSy albums.

"Hell Frost" made perfect sense as a contrast to "Eden Fire", but "Only Inhuman" took a bit more thought on my part, to make it contrast with "Fragile Immortality". On the surface, they mean the same thing, like you pointed out in the video.  However, if you think about the reference each phrase makes... to say you are "Only Inhuman" is like saying you cannot die, even if you wanted to.  Your existence is beyond that of human life.  A transcendent lifeform; and that's all you are.  On the other hand, if you have "Fragile Immortality", then you're saying that your life can be taken at any moment, without warning.  Your immortality is dependent upon an outside source.  You're transcendent only as long as the strings hold you in place.

With that thought process, it seemed like an obvious choice that the title of the third album would directly contrast LAOD, which is why I questioned "Lust and Loathing".  In retrospect, I might have been overthinking things, to get myself to that point.  In any case though, I just wanted to address the reason behind my question. Once again, thank you, and have a wonderful morning/day/evening!
Love your analysis! Great read.Originally I think I was stuck in the idea you are suggesting here. The album titles being the perfect contrast to their respectively Sonic Syndicate album. Meaning something in the lines of “Hell Frost”, “Only Human” and “Hate and Other Triumphs”. But somewhere along the line it felt more like a parody rather than an inspiring element of the albums. I indeed think it worked really well with “Hell Frost”. But on the sophomore however, I tried to be a bit more creative with the title and eventually named it; “Fragile Immortality”. And as you say it could be viewed as both the same thing and the contrast if you think a bit more into it. But what I intended for it was rather for it to have the same meaning as the old title as that made more sense tied to the story. And that went on with Lust and Loathing. Thus it both had the reference included and it was interlinked with the story. Remember; the story began with Hell Frost and “Where The Frost Rose Withers” but it wasn’t finalized until a year later or so. This changed how I had to flank this since it meant I had two criteria’s to regard rather than only the original one. 1 = Having the throwback value of the old title and 2 = Tie in well with the progressing story. So this was my reasoning on the topic and for me what took the front seat here; was the story (my present work) instead of the perfect reference (my past work). I made a compromise.

Q: Would be great if you've time and listen to and tell me your opinion about the new album of Hopelezz “Sent To Destroy”.
Haha this is funny. Since this was sent in, we’ve been on tour together with the Hopelezz guys and I even jumped in to belt out a song with them live. I like the album! Especially “Borderline” which is the song I learned and sang!

Hopelezz feat. Rich

Q: I've got a question about lyrics in The Worst Day (Revisited). Could you please explain what does the line "Only a varied haul before the bad one" mean? I don't know if my English's not as good or it has a figurative sense, but I can't seem to understand what it means :(
In its context it means that the bad end will come eventually and that there’s no such thing as a happy ending in a greater perspective. If not a series of inconvenient events happens in your life, good for you! However; death will find you eventually, which must be equal to “bad” in the majority of the population’s book. Well, the ones with any sense of self preservation.

Q: Also, great job on the song Enraged. The video seems a bit overloaded with particles and flashing lights to be honest, but the song turned out to be pretty great, the important thing being that it's easily re-listenable, and each time you listen to it, you can notice another interesting little things about it that you didn't realize before.
Cool that you like the song and the video. Regarding the particles and stuff, there was an idea from our side, that the band’s faces wouldn’t really be visible until the last chorus of the video. To make it a bit more arty and not following the rules of the conventional music video. I think Patric did what he could with the idea, but eventually scrapped the “show no face” thing, since it would make the video too annoying and the viewer is not really getting what he or she expect (thus making them enraged? HA!) But I still think the particles adds to the value of it being a bit subjective and how it’s such a release when it opens up in the end. I’ve read some comments about people not liking the effect and “blames” Patric for it. But if there’s someone to blame, it’s the band’s silly ideas. Patric did an outstanding job as always!

Q: ENRAGED! I love just the fresh sound it has! I said before it remind me of old SS, but that's probably just Roland’s voice on the verses It kind of sounds like the way he sang Jack of diamonds acoustic :b. My favorite parts are probably the solo and the lines you sing after it! “All is fair in love and war, all is fair in love and waaaar!!" I just love that melody! I kind of wish it was twice as long xD And the change(?) of melody in the chorus, when you sing "IN LOVE AND WAR" It just adds a fresh touch to all the other material we've heard before! Not only on ENRAGED but on The Worst Day too! And listening to the FA EP and this two songs, I feel closer to the full picture already! :D
Great that you enjoy Enraged! We like it a lot too.

Q: I'm having a hard time trying to understand the lyrics perspective of Enraged! Even though the artwork of the song helps, there's a few parts that get me confuse since it seems only the second verse corresponds to this guy's perspective. Am I right?
The character on the single artwork and the Enraged song itself does not have much in common actually, save from the fact that are entangled in the same story. The artwork is more a reference to the song Phobos Grip. "Enraged" takes place chronologically straight after “Oblivion” and it’s mostly sung from the king’s perspective.


Q: Is the “Enraged” guy another fallen angel too?
The character on the single artwork of Enraged, also featured in the “Inception” video (hooded figure doing the experiments on the female) and in one of the sketches where he’s ripping out the heart of some random mortal during the final resistance, is not a fallen angel. He’s a synthetic being.

Q: On the artwork of ENRAGED I saw the signature of K.H. Is this signature on the other artworks as well? I've been searching for it, but I’m afraid I might need a picture with higher resolution of them!
Haha good eyes! I’ve not noticed it on the other artworks. The wallpapers on the official website it good resolution pictures of the three artworks. Go fetch!

Q: I've read the novel, and tried to learn most of the lyrics a few hours ago (I'm almost there!;D) Straight out of the story here are a few questions I have for the blog. Is the Syndissiah (The robot on the cover of the album, carrier of the COG) the same character as the one standing on the ENRAGED artwork? If it's not, who is the one on the ENRAGED artwork?
They are not the same character physically. But as Syndissiah was connected with all the other synthetic beings, they do not really have a mind of their own either. So they are all the same individual, even if they are not bodily the same objects. They are like slave nodes to a master. But you know; historically, slaves have risen against their masters successfully and created a will of their own…

Q: In the story there's no mention of the Female character of Inception/Unguided Entity/Phobos Grip So it kind of leaves the doubt of; why did they cut her up? Is this one of those doors you mentioned to expand the story later?
This is one of the doors! But I think it was pretty obvious in the 2 songs, why there was experiment’s going on at the female character as she deviated and survived the initial nuclear cleansing. There’s something odd about this one!

Dude, you didn't have to cut me up?

Q: On Phobos Grip lyrics, the verse; "What information he retrieved of me, I do not know but they needed it badly. Know this, I’m not human, only human enough, but I’m wired directly to the core of this world" I can't tell if it's from the female character’s perspective, or the Syndissiah when the wraiths found out he had an adamantium shell, any help?
That’s from the female’s perspective. Suggesting a successful extraction of data during those surgical procedures portrayed in “Inception” music video. Astonishing!

Q: On Phobos grip and Operation: EAE there's a few mentioning about "souls". Phobos: “They must not establish an uplink, to this planet soul.” Operation: “All places, all things have souls, all souls can be devoured.” Is the whole thing with "souls" just a metaphor of THE COG or is there something else going on?
In Operation it’s subjectively speaks about how the most rigid and steadfast organism still encase a soul. In this case Syndissiah (including the cog). Remember! All souls. Can be. DEVOURED. haha In Phobos Grip there’s something else going on. Another one of those doors.

Q: On Mercy the lyrics seem to be more about the "act of mercy" that The Unguided King had towards the betrayer (before cutting his head off) than on the character Mercy himself. While Judgment on the other side seems to be about the character perspective after the execution of the betrayer and on his way of thinking once he has his throne on Zion. Am I right?
That’s not really true. Mercy and his motives is very little spoken about in the story itself. The lyrics however reveals more about his personality. It’s his view entirely and have nothing to do with The Unguided king. Even if the same perspective could be in line with the King. And at other times his mind is bent towards Judgments reasoning. It’s like a little angel and devil on either side of the brother’s shoulders.

Q: On the whole artwork of FA EP/LAL ALBUM, there's a few weird organic things on the ground as well as on Judgment's body, they kind of look alike to the "Heaven's Bane" Hammer are these things something in particular? Or just something K.H. added to fill in?
This is Kuang’s portrait of the metamorphosis process our wraith army is undergoing before turning to dark angels, which is described in the very end of the story. Even if it’s a bit “early” chronologically and the cocoons might be a bit out of scale. He still wanted to include them in the illustration. If you think about it, the wraiths and their development have been featured on every album illustration. Also, if you remember the booklet of “Love and Other Disasters”, cocoons kind of make sense as well, as some already appeared there. I like the detail. New life is evolving and I think that was the original idea why cocoons was featured at the LAOD album, you know from the Only Inhuman moth into the more humanoid being at LAOD, and that mindset is easy to apply here also. Perhaps you’ll eventually see what the wraiths hatch into and what a dark angel is like. 


Yes. Wait for the next album!

Q: I think those are all the questions regarding the story, I can't tell you how happy I felt when I got to read it beginning to end such a satisfying experience! I honestly don't want the conceptual themes to be gone after this. (Especially since at this point The Unguided King is kind of the mascot of the band! xD) But I guess it's up to the whole band to decide that, after all, unguided we were, unguided we will be...
It’s been decided that the story will be carried on at future albums. I’ve already written a new short story and have the key storyline figured of 2 more. 1 for each album in a new album trilogy.

Q: Coming from a lot of metaphorical lyrics, it was kind of weird to read things like: "when the fat lady finally sang" & "Forever looks awfully much like 4 years, 4 years 3 months and 9 days to be more precise, now you know kids" on Heartseeker, so did you feel those kind of lines were needed to be mention to respect the story of the song? (Without getting into your personal life or whoever's story this song is based on)
Haha not really. But it was sort of a relief to once again mold some humorous aspect into my lyrics. Which I haven’t been doing for quite some time and I used to do all the time in Sonic Syndicate. I think those are two pretty fun lines and I don’t mind them. But I’ll doubt you’ll be seeing much of it in the future even if you might see traces of smart assery and ironic elements. As always, I do not use profanity in my lyrics. I abruptly ended with it after Love and Other Disasters since I sought it a display of a limited vocabulary. Really, you can be more creative as a lyricist than that. But at times there’s fun to make some twists to your style. I can assure you something like this, hereunder, won’t be generated from my side again however haha:
“And she said I wish I could gather all my tears
And fucking drown you in them
Oh honey, I'm sorry you feel that way
I'll be sure to bring my scuba gear”

- Sonic Syndicate – Mission: Undertaker

Q: On King of Clubs, I can't understand if the lyrics are simply about this dispute between two persons or about a relationship that failed, or both! And what exactly does the nickname "King of clubs" means? (Again, without trying to get into your personal life)
On your first question it’s both really. The title; “King of Clubs”, is sometimes mistaken to have anything to do with nightclubbing, which I think is an outrageous interpretation. What it’s supposed to be symbolized is rather it’s meaning in fortune telling, the card; King of Clubs, is a symbol of loyalty among other things. The card said to be one that have great power but is not really aware of it. Outwardly cheerful but inwardly reserved. I think that added a good feel to the meaning of the song. I originally intended this song to be a conceptual song to the story and the King of Clubs, would be a reference to our main character. Which undeniably went really well with the meaning of the playing card itself. But I already got the key happenings of the story across and captured in other songs. When I listened to King of Clubs musically, it gave me a bit more personal feeling and during the time I wrote the lyrics it was really important to ventilate that side as well, so that’s what happened.

King of Clubs

Q: In the making of LAL, you mentioned that this time the melodies were going to be done after the instrumental is recorded and hopefully the whole band would sit down and together figure them out. Can you share how it was like? Did it turn out more difficult than the other way, or more natural? Did they all shared melodies they had in mind or was it more like you bringing them up and checking with them just where to put them? Was it more difficult having to match the lyrics to the melodies than the other way around? And do you think this is going to be the way to go in the future?
I’m pretty sure it’s almost 100% Roland’s melodies with some tweaks here and there. But what happened was that he send a reference of the melody before I wrote the lyrics, and not the other way around. This made way for a lot better chorus melodies that flowed better with the lyrics than if you work in a reverse way which is more about being lucky. I mean you have a strong melody, you know that for certain, and you can just add lyrics to it. Whilst if you have lyrics and try to base the melody around it, the melody might suffer a bit hence of it. Roland is such an amazing melody-generator haha. Extraordinary capability there! However we’ve been working a bit on new songs, and for those everyone have been working with the melodies, and we’ve tried everyone’s ideas to pinpoint the best ones. It’s pretty cool actually!

Q: Before I go. I want to share my thoughts on the album. I think the more important thing is that it sounds fresh and more varied than the ones before it I love the vocal arrangements, the way you mix the tones on Phobos grip screams and the way the screams sound very melancholic around some songs like Black Eyed Angel & Operation: EAE. Lyrics as always are MIND-BLOWING! It's hard to choose one song as favorite after Hate (and other triumphs) and I can't believe how perfect the first verse of that song is! It fits in my life at this very moment so well, it just reminded me of 2012 in January when you played WTFRW for the first time live, and on the day it got uploaded on YouTube, that day that song became one of the most meaningful songs in the soundtrack of my life! And now, 4 years later, here we are, with this grand finale and a chorus with words that touch deep and give the sensation of accomplishment to my heart! (I know, I get really emotional with this stuff xD) Thank you Richard and everyone else in the band for giving the best of each one of you on everything you do! Without your care and music, my life just wouldn't be the same.
Wow, this was a heartwarming read. Thanks bro! So glad our music inspire you this way.

Q: With Lust and Loathing released, I've got another few questions I'd like to ask. Don't worry, this time, I've got less of them, more related to The Unguided future and the album itself. So, here we go! The trilogy has ended. What are your plans for next releases? Are the songs again going to have some sort of story in it, or are they going to be about more or less random stuff?
The concept of having a story to base the lyrics on will carry on into upcoming albums, as said previously. I think Lust and Loathing had pretty good balance on conceptual songs and various other topics. It’s motivating and fun! So that’s definitely here to stay.

Q You mentioned that Lust and Loathing had more composers. Who made which tracks? Whoever composed Phobos Grip and Boneyard deserves...I don't know, but definitely something really good!
Hmm everyone is eventually getting their dirty fingers into each other’s material I’d say (did that come out weird?). But the very first shape of the instrumental songwriting, presented to the band, was as follows (if my memory serves me correctly): Roger = Enraged, King of Clubs, Phobos Grip, Black Eyed Angel, Operation E.A.E. and Mercy. Henric = The Worst Day (Revisited) and Boneyard. Rille = Heartseeker and Judgment. Drunk Roger and Rille = Hate (And Other Triumphs). We have to get the two of them drunk together more often!

Get to it!

Q: Can you tell me what bass Henric has used on Lust and Loathing? Is it the same as listed on your site, or has he got a new one? Well, that's all. I hope your next records will keep kicking asses. See you (hopefully) in April! :D
According to Henric it’s a Fender American Standard Jazz Bass. Whatever that means.

Q: I've made a new cover. This time War Eternal from Arch Enemy. I took this since I wanted to scream a little bit deeper and see how this sounds. Could you please give me a little feedback, because you know exactly if it's good or bad. :)
Listened and I think it sounds cool man! The only thing that bugged me a bit was it felt like there was some “plate reverb”-effect going on which was a bit annoying. Could be some sort of feedback of the mic as well. But yeah I’d look into that if I were you, it distracted from a more warm and crispy feel. Not sure what kind of equipment you have, but there were some dynamics that made it sound a bit demo-ish. Like you were moving away and around the mic. If you are not using any kind of compressor, you might want to look into that, to get the screams better balanced.

Q: I am a big Unguided-Fan from Stuttgart, Germany. Love the new Album, keep up the good work! Unfortunately I am still in the US until June for a study abroad semester, so I will miss your Germany-Tour, hope you'll come back. Now for my question: I know you're a huge Power-Metal Fan, therefore I guess you know the Band Firewind. What do you think of them? I stumbled across them a while back and think its great music.
We are coming back to Germany this Xmas! See you there ;) I’m not too familiar with Firewind to be fair. I’ll check them out!


Q: Wanted to ask you if you could maybe send me one or two instrumentals of the new songs. I really would burn for make a cover. I love the new Album.
Unfortunately there’s no instrumental tracks available of the new album.

Q: So I'm here to do the final push to that coming Q&A entry where I hope most of my doubt's will get clear xD And to do that I'm bringing one that could be my last question (before the next entry of course xD) - On the song Black Eyed Angel, after Roland sings "You know her..." What does the whisper voice says? (I believe it says "You've known forever...") And in the next line, does Roland sings "You've always known her" or just "You've always known..."? Anyway I guess that's it! See ya after the next blog xD
The whisper is a repeat on “Know her” and the second line is “You’ve always known her”. This verse is the best moment, for me, on this album. I love it!

Q: Hey Richard. My name is Tony Erlandsson, and I’m a big fan of yours from Norway. I went ahead and got my arm tattooed with an slightly altered version of The Unguided symbol.(Still a work in progress) I`ve been a fan of you since your early fallen angels days, and I hope you will keep making this amazing music for us. Now, to the reason I’m contacting you. I’m probably not the first to ask, but I was wondering if we were drawing any closer to the unraveling of the meaning of the Unguided Symbol. I know a lot of people are eager to know the meaning behind this awesome logo and would like to spread it out and know what to say when asked about it.
Loved the tattoo! Next album, the wait will be over!

Tony, I salute you!

Q: I just wanted to let you guys know that I enjoyed your show at Gorinchem. It was awesome! I also have a question for you. I'm planning to get a tattoo on my chest and I think the font of the band looks cool. Can I use it? If yes, where can I download the font from? Looking forward to your answer and seeing you perform again in the future! I wish you guys the best of luck!
Glad you liked the show! The font is a custom made one by Leah Eropkin. So there’s no entire font of the letters, just those letters I’m afraid. So if you can combine those to whatever it is you want to write, that would work. OR you simply just write The Unguided across your chest and everyone will be happy haha.

Q: I just want to say I really love your songs, every album you've done has been even better than the last, and I really love Hate (and other triumphs). But I was wondering, do you guys have any guitar tabs or tab books I can get/buy? I'd really love to learn a bunch of your songs, but a lot of the tabs online aren’t exactly accurate, and what better a place to get the correct ones that straight from the artists themselves^.^ Let me know! Thanks for your time, keep rocking!
I’m sure can help you with this!

Q: Long Time ago since I wrote last time. Only wanted to thank you again for the incredible shows on tour, your music and the new album which is with me every single day. When I hear the black eyed angel and "remember her how she should be remembered" (Eden Fire) it's a wonderful feeling. Or the meanings of lyrics of Boneyard. And so on in every single song of the album. The same happened with me in 2014 and 2011. You showed me how to love music! And I wanted to thank you and the whole band for that. I think this has to be done more often.
Getting words like this from the fans, which dig into our material and decipher the meaning of it, is like fuel to our creativity. Thanks for this! Cool that you got the Eden Fire reference.


Q: Hello guys! I'm a little YouTube who make World Of Warcraft PVP videos, I was wondering if I can use your Songs in them, as the Mekanism too songs, Ofc I will put your Facebook page in the description for the support n.n As I said I am a little you tuber who likes edition, music and PVP xD... So I wanted to have your permission to use some of your Songs in my videos, ofc I usually write the name in the video, also in the description of the video, a little band named "Ashes of my regrets" Already gived me the permission with that condition, show their Facebook link, so I did n.n Your songs really fit the ambient of the videos and At the moment I have 1.226 subs, You can check the YT Channel.
Well as YouTube is regulated now. I don’t see any reason why you can’t. You might want to ask the rightholders first meaning Despotz Records (Hell Frost) and Napalm Records (Fragile Immortality & Lust and Loathing) to not get your clips flagged or whatever, but from the band’s side, it’s cool!

Q: Love your work!! Really digging everything you guys have put out. I need some help and was hoping you could steer me in the right direction... I had one of your band shirts that I bought I think about 18 months ago... It had like an Arch Angel on it and was my fav shirt in the world. Anyways I have been doing a lot of travel for my job and have just moved house and can't find it... fucking devastated so much so this is my last resort. I have looked everywhere to try and buy a new one but am guessing it's no longer being printed. Any ideas on where if any where I could find one.

Sorry you lost your shirt! The “Defector DCXVI” shirt you are talking about was printed in regard to the “Fragile Immortality” album. And now when that album cycle is over, we do not reprint those shirt unfortunately. But if there’s any kind soul out there that want to sell his one to you, I’ve left your mail contact here ( get in touch! Best of luck.


Song of the day: AWOLNATION - Sail