Bad Habit have a new album called Atmosphere, it's their 10th album. I took the chance to talk to guitarist Hal Marabel about the album by email.
Atmosphere is your 10th album, in a way special. Are you happy with the way the album turned out? With the feedback you got so far?
We are very happy with the result... The new album captures the core Bad Habit essence in a very good way, combining our melodic approach with slightly heavier guitars and rhythm section than in some of our previous productions... The feedback so far has been amazingly good actually... it seems that we've hit a 'sweet spot' with many of the fans... which is of course a very good feeling... It makes all our efforts wroth while... ; )
You started back in 1987, meanwhile the scene changed but every goes in circles and it seems like the 80's sound is getting more popular again - at least in Europe. A second chance for you?
Well, we never worried too much about the trends... As we've always done what we've felt like as far as musical style... experimenting a bit sometimes but in general staying true to our interpretation of melodic rock...
For Atmosphere you hooked up with some outside songwriters, who did you cooperate with?
We chose to work with some outside songwriters this time because we felt that it would add a new flavor to our sound... These are people I write with for other projects as well, so it felt natural to bring some of this into Bad Habit... They are Ulrick Lönnqvist, Morgan Jensen and Peter Alpenborg...
The production was in your hands and the mix was done by Jonas Reingold. Why Jonas?
We have worked with Jonas on the last three albums and this collaboration works really well... He's very good at separating the various instruments and sounds, so that everything fits together in a good way... Also, we complement each other well as we are very different as individuals...
The cover shows a sun, how is it linked to the album title?
The album title Atmosphere refers to the four basic elements – Earth, Air, Water and Fire... That form, the very foundation of the world we live in... And that we need to take good care of... Also, it ties in well with our sound which is both airy, heavy and has a lot of fire and passion in it... ;)
You did some video clips during the recording sessions which you presented the fans via YouTube. Can fans expect more stuff 'from behind the scenes'? Or a video clip?
We're thinking about making 1-2 videos... But sometimes we get the urge to film something funny or so... And then we might post it on the web... You never know...
What about live shows? Anything on the way?
It's hard for us to plan full tours as most of us have quite active daytime careers going on... As well as small children... But we will play some key gigs here and there and really make them count...
You have a DVD called Ultimate Collection 1987-2009, glad you could share the video clips and 'specials'?
Ha, ha, ha... Yeah, it was a release more geared towards the 'hardcore' fans, rather than focusing on the commercial perspective... Except for some of our music videos, we only had hand-filmed material... So it was more a question of collecting what we had and try to tell our story, in a representative way for the band... in a fun way... which is how we are as individuals... ;)
Last October you played at H.E.A.T. festival, how was it? Did you capture parts of your performance? I'm not talking about pro recordings, just something for YouTube, etc.
Yes, three songs were actually filmed professionally (5-6 cameras) and I will get the clips soon, so stay tuned...
A different topic... Hal, you took part at The Swedish Championships for Athletic Fitness in 2009. To get that far in a competition needs a lot exercise. Do you need the exercise as a counter part to the music?
Yes, the exercise helps me to stay balanced and focused... But in 2009 when I competed, the training level was ridiculously high... Since it was needed in order to meet the high standard of the competitions... Nowadays I work out 3 times a week and that works well for me...
What are your plans for 2011?
Well, the plan is course to promote the release as a first step... But then to play some supporting gigs based on where we receive the most positive feedback...
It will be interesting to see the clips recorded at H.E.A.T. festival, so keep your eyes and ears open! And if you get the chance to see Bad Habit live, don't miss it!