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In Words: Manimal

- Sam Nyman - July 2009 - Claudia Ehrhardt -

© Manimal

Sam Nyman - July 21st 2009 (by email)

Manimal are out to conquer the music scene! To give you an idea about Manimal we sent over some questions, read what singer Sam Nyman has to tell!

You are around for about 7 years, please tell us a bit about the beginning of the band!

Manimal was formed when I joined the band back in 2001. Before that Henrik, Richard and Pether had been playing together for several years, along with different singers.
From the very beginning, I think we all felt there was a great chemistry between the four of us. We also had a common idea of how 'good' metal should sound.
We started out by playing some old cover songs in our rehearsal room. But pretty soon we wrote some of the very first Manimal's songs together. And the rest is history. :)

Why did you choose the name Manimal? And what does it mean to you?

I can't recall how we actually came up with the name. But when we came up with it, we thought it was a cool name for our band. And I think it describes our music in a good way. We try to assent to the animal within us by playing this kind of bestial music. After all, we're all animals. It's just our well developed intellect and way of having feelings that makes us humans.

Many bands release their debut album quite early in their career, do you think it was worth taking time to do The Darkest Room?

Definitely. By waiting, we have given ourselves the time to evolve and mature both as musicians and songwriters. Our debut album wouldn’t had come out as good as it did if we had released it eight years ago.

Why the title The Darkest Room? And what's the darkest room for you?

The darkest room is a place within each and one of us - a place hosting our darkest dreams and thoughts.
All songs of this album contain dark and melancholy elements, either lyrically, musically or both. The album artwork also follows the same theme. So we think the title summarizes and describes the album pretty good.

What's the idea of the cover artwork?

The cover art is inspired by a poem of the Swedish author August Strindberg. In the poem Strindberg describes himself standing in front of a butcher's shop, staring at a heart hanging from a hook. The heart symbolizes Strindberg's own heart, hanging there, exposed for the public's eyes. Just like the music of this album, our own creations which reflect who we are in a sense, through which we now expose ourselves to the public.

For a video you choose Spinegrinder and not the title track. Why?

I guess you have found the home-made music video on YouTube right? That one is made by a fan of ours, and it's not even we who are featured in the video, it's some other band. Haha! And also, the music is taken from the demo version of Spinegrinder, not the final album version.
In short - we have nothing to do with that video except for the music, which is ours.

As far as I know the chances are good that you will hit the road later this year... Any news about a tour?

Nothing's settled yet. But we are looking at some possibilities to tour Europe as a supporting act for a bigger metal act later this year. We have received a few requests of that kind. But as I said, nothing's settled yet.

And who would you like to tour with, if you could choose?

Hmm, that's a tricky one. But to tour with Judas Priest would have been awesome. I think their fans would appreciate our music, and Priest seem to be a bunch of nice guys also.

Which bands influence you now? And which been influences of yours in the past?

We have pretty different influences the four of us. But some, we have in common.
In the past we were a lot influenced by bands such as Judas Priest, Queensrÿche, King Diamond and Helloween. I guess you could say those bands, and a few more, laid the foundation for our musical path.
The recent years I've been listening a lot to different melodic metal bands. Among my favorites are Kamelot, Circus Maximus and Heed.

Lyrically life and everything around us is influencing us, are there any other sources of inspiration? Books? Movies?

Besides my everyday life, I often find topics for my lyrics on TV actually. For example, it could be something I've seen on the news, on Discovery Channel or Animal Planet. Things that interest me or affect me emotionally can sometimes end up in written words on paper.

What do you do, if you don't make music?

We do what nearly every man does – try to make a living, to support our families and to afford our big interest – the music.

And what's on your schedule next?

At first, we want to get the most out of this album as possible. After that we'll focus on our next album. Hopefully we’ll have a demo finished by early next year.

Sounds like they are now trying hard to catch the attention of the metal fans - and perhaps it was good that they were taking their time in the beginning. Now Manimal is unleased!

Claudia Ehrhardt


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