“My favourite space to create music in must be the livingroom in the old 19th century family house in Ebbarp, out in the countryside of southern Sweden where I grew up. The room is very light with windows facing the south and west which bring the perfect view of the fantastic fruit garden outside. Lots of furniture is covered with blankets and pillows; carpets and paintings on the wall create a very nice atmosphere as well as great acoustic. The old wooden floor and the big wall of books bring the feeling of a storytelling and thoughts of distant generations.
In the room, there is just this fantastic Schimmel Piano from 1952, with the most fantastic sustain and tone I’ve ever played. I used to have an amp and my pedalboard next to the piano as well, but nowadays I mostly use a simple acoustic western guitar…
I have to have peace and quiet here – and not forgetting the silent company of the Icelandic sheepdog “Keli”. As soon as I go home from Gothenburg where the band is, I can’t help spending about an hour a day there. It’s never scheduled – just when inspiration hits. I mostly work alone in isolation but as soon as you get closer to finishing a song then you may need the help of another person to help you out with new ideas and arrangements. Although I enjoy making the foundations of the work alone.
The creative process can vary depending on how inspired I’m feeling. Sometimes you have a melody in your head, sometimes you find something while improvising. In both ways I always end up composing the structure of a whole song before I bring another band member to hear it. Mostly I finish the simple foundation and the chords, and sort out the arrangement in a more improvised experiment together with one or two of the guys. We bring it to the rehearsal room where everyone puts their effort to arrange and we re-arrange the song until it’s more or less finished.
When song-writing, I mostly use a simple acoustic piano or guitar; then we add the full gear in the rehearsal room. On the way there we might have tried some ideas out with MIDI software, just to see how things could sound without gathering the whole band.
What I like most about this space is the absolute feeling of being in your home on earth.”
Swedish instrumental rock band Immanu El make moving, multi-dynamic music that can swell into big emotional sound-bursts or quiver with bristling calm melodies. Their 2007 debut album They’ll Come, They Come brought them underground acclaim, inspiring many to tip Immanu El to follow in the foot-steps of Sigur Ros and Explosions in the Sky. Immanu El play Laverys Bunker in Belfast tonight, the Roisin Dubh, Galway on Thursday September 11th, Cyprus Avenue, Cork on Friday September 12th and Whelan’s, Dublin on Saturday September 13th. Tickets available from City Discs, WAV, Tickets.ie, Road, Ticketmaster For more information, visit www.myspace.com/immanuelband.