Five Records That Changed My Life, Part 8: Charlie Granberg

Vocalist and songwriter Charlie Granberg co-founded the Swedish rock band Hellsingland Underground in 2006. They have released five terrific full-length albums. The latest one, “A Hundred Years Is Nothing”, was released in 2019. When he is not fronting the band, he is a visual artist that has created album covers, posters and merch for bands such as Electric Boys, The Kristet Utseende and many others. In recent years, he has been painting some stunning murals in Sweden and Spain. Roppongi Rocks boss Stefan Nilsson checked in with Charlie to find out what records changed his life.

Noice “Tonårsdrömmar” (1979)

“I was eight years old and living in Ljusdal, my small hometown in the north of Sweden and these guys sang about being rebellious teenagers in Stockholm. Which, at that time, felt like another planet to me. It was the first album that I learned all the lyrics to all the songs.”

Motörhead “Motörhead” (1977)

“A guy in my class had stolen this album on cassette from his older brother and brought it to school. Just looking at the cover made me excited. And when he put it in the cassette player in the classroom during the lunch break, I was hooked. I had heard nothing like it before. I asked him what kind of music this was and he said ‘heavy metal’. That put me on a hunt for more of the same thing. I soon discovered Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Saxon and other stuff too.”

AC/DC “For Those About To Rock” (1981)

“This was the first album I bought for my own money. My family was on a caravan holiday on the west coast of Sweden and we stopped at this huge discount store called Ullared on the way home. My family walked around shopping for what felt like an eternity. I was bored and kept complaining. After a while my dad handed me 50 Swedish crowns and said ‘Go and buy yourself something’. I found a record section and this album was in the new releases section. It cost 49 Swedish crowns. I will never forget dropping the needle on the title track for the first time. I still get goosebumps just thinking about it.”

Guns N’ Roses “Appetite for Destruction” (1987)

“My friend and idol, Jörgen ‘Sigge’ Sigvardsson was eight years older than me. I was 16 and still living with my parents. He had his own apartment, was a local rock star with his band Angeline and had just returned from a trip to Los Angeles. He had this record with him saying ‘This is the band everyone is talking about in LA. It’s gonna be huge’. And that’s of course what happened a year later. But during that year, this album felt like Sigge’s and my little secret. Everyone else was listening to Bon Jovi and Europe.”

The Doors “The Doors” (1967)

“I don’t remember how I first discovered this album. But I was in my late teens and it became a gateway drug to other things than metal and punk, which was all I knew at the time. Through this album I started to discover older records with Bob Dylan, Neil Young and the Allman Brothers and so on. It really broadened my horizon.”