Elize Ryd on the new Amaranthe album: “We’re heavier!”

Elize Ryd backstage in Tokyo in March 2017. Photo: Stefan Nilsson, Roppongi Rocks

Swedish modern melodic metal band Amaranthe is working on its fifth studio album which will also be the first with new vocalist Nils Molin of Dynazty fame. Roppongi Rocks’ Stefan Nilsson checked in with Elize Ryd, one of Amaranthe’s three vocalists, for a quick update on the new album.

You have just finished the recordings for the new album in Ribe, Denmark. Are you happy with what you’ve accomplished in the studio this time? “Yes. After two months of writing and two months of recording in Ribe with Jacob Hansen, we’re finally finished. It’s a record for us to write and record an album in four months. That says a lot. We had a lot of ideas and melodies that needed to get out. The completed master will be sent out across the world, including Japan, on Monday. Now the work continues with design, layout, translations of the lyrics and so forth.”

Elize Ryd and Roppongi Rocks’ Stefan Nilsson in Roppongi, Tokyo in 2016. Photo: Selfie by Elize Ryd

How would you describe the new album musically compared to your earlier albums? “Musically we’re heavier! For the sake of our Japanese fans, we have written the fastest song in Amaranthe history, tempo-wise. We have managed to make most of the songs contemporary sounding, which I think is what should be the biggest difference between the albums. You should be able to hear what year an album was written when you listen to it in the future. I think people will be somewhat shocked by the sound we’ve created this time, in a positive way!”

This is the first album with your new vocalist Nils Molin. How has he impacted the new album? “In the beginning, I was reacting to the ‘new’ voice and it felt a bit unusual. But when I listen to it now, his voice feels like a given in this context. We are very satisfied with Nils. He’s done an amazing job. It’s going to be extremely fun to be able to present him to the fans, not only live but also on record.”

Elize Ryd of Amaranthe on stage in Tokyo in 2015. Photo: Stefan Nilsson, Roppongi Rocks

On the last album, you had the track “That Song” which stood out and got people talking. Have you got any similar surprises on the new album? “That was the favourite song for the record label and also for many fans. I assume it was special enough that it was impossible for it to not get noticed. Regardless if you choose to worry too much about genres or the fact that my voice is quite similar to Rihanna’s at times, it was a well-written and great song that served its purpose. It needed to get out there. We wanted to show people that we are not ashamed over anything. Obviously there are serious thoughts behind every song that we write. I don’t get shocked by anything anymore. Thus I, unfortunately, have to reply ‘no’ to this question. Haha!! It feels a bit boring, but I can really say that we feel that this is musically our strongest album so far. The songs show a really serious side to the band, but also a friendly and humorous side. We’re using certain words we haven’t used before that may start a debate. We’ll see.”

When will the album be released? “I don’t know if it’s official yet, but it will be released this year, which we’re very happy about. Perhaps around my birthday as usual?”

Elize Ryd of Amaranthe on stage in Tokyo in 2015. Photo: Stefan Nilsson, Roppongi Rocks