Astrid makes music from her heart – Interview with Confidential

Confidential are a new Symphonic Metal band from Norway. Formed in 2020 by singer and songwriter Astrid K(lara) Mjøen. The debut album “Devil Inside” was released in March this year. With the lyrics, the singer talks about her life. And not everything went well in it.

It’s been quite a bumpy road for her, which is reflected in some very emotional and beautiful songs.

And there also seem to have been problems in the search for comrades-in-arms. For the recordings with Jacob Hansen (bass) and Robert Myrhaug (drums), they had to use session musicians. Let’s just ask them about it.

MHF: Hi, I’m Rainer and I write for the Metalheads Forever Magazine. Thank you for letting me do this interview with you. How are you?

Confidential: Hi! Thank you so much for having us. We are fine, we are preparing our self for our release concert these days, so it’s a bit hectic. 

MHF: You are still quite a new band. Please introduce yourselves briefly.

Confidential: We are CONFIDENTIAL from Norway: 

  • David Hovde – Lead Guitar
  • Frode Hovd – Guitar and co manager
  • Charlotte Stav – Synth/Backing Vocals
  • Astrid K Mjøen – Lead vocals/Founder/Songwriter

MHF: On “Devil Inside” you have two session musicians. Are you planning to find permanent band members for bass and drums?

Confidential: Yes, the plan is to find permanent band members. But it’s important to find the right people, both musical and social. We are not stressing this at the moment. 

MHF: Confidential suddenly appeared on the scene like that. What did you do before?

Confidential: Astrid is a music teacher in the local music school, she also is the conductor of a choir and work as a freelance musician. Frode played in Memorized Dreams back in the days, but now he has his metal opera Aldaria. You should check it out! David plays in a band called Axe Toss. Charlotte is a friend of Astrid. 

MHF: Astrid founded the band two years ago. Wasn’t it a risk to found another Symphonic Metal band? There are already a lot of bands in this genre.

Confidential: We didn’t have that in mind at all when the music was made. Astrid makes music from her heart. We simply make and play the music that we like! And hopefully our fans will hear that when they listen to the album. 

MHF: How did the Corona Pandemic influence the formation of the band and the album production?

Confidential: We were not really affected at all since this is our debut album. We of course had to delay the release date of the album due to long production time on the Vinyl. All our thoughts goes to the bands who had to cancel their tours. 

MHF: “Devil Inside” was funded via a crowdfunding campaign on indiegogo. The fans supported you very well. The self-imposed goal of 5000 € was exceeded. What were your reactions to this support?

Confidential: We are still amazed by all the support we got of our crowdfunders, the money helped us finance some of the album and for that we are forever grateful! You ROCK!! 

MHF: The album is distributed by Massacre Records. How did this collaboration come about?

Confidential: This is a funny story. We did it the VIKING way! We had of course reached out to several labels, but as you all know it is hard to get some of them to answer when you are a debut band with no sales numbers. We took the matter in our own hands, jumped into a car, drove down to Germany and the goal was to send an email that we were in town. We got two negative answers when we were in Hamburg. But Massacre did not answer us. So, we drove all the way down south in Germany and knocked on their door. We had a really good conversation that lasted about 7 minutes (The guy who answered the door, had to go in a meeting right after) selling our goals and visions for CONFIDENTIAL.  Before we reached our car, we got a “Vertrag” (Label deal) on our email! 

MHF: In the info about the album, I read that the lyrics tell stories from Astrid’s life so far. How personal are the lyrics? Is the album really something like a personal diary?

Confidential: All the lyrics is personal, written in Astrid’s living room when she was feeling down. The song writing and her kids were the only thing that was helping her survive through this period. She had no idea that this was going to turn into a album. 

MHF: How did the song writing for the album go? Did Astrid write all the songs herself or did she also get support from the band members?

Confidential: “My Kiss Of Death and My Evermore was made of Jonah Weingarthen. Frode and Astrid Made the melodies, arrangements and lyrics. All the other songs is made by Astrid. 

MHF: The album was released at the end of March. How satisfied are you with the result?

Confidential: We could not be happier with the results! Jacob Hansen worked his magic mixing and mastering it to perfection! Abstract Chaos Design did a wonderful job with the booklet! It looks amazing.

MHF: How did the press and fans react to your debut album?

Confidential: We are so grateful for all the feedback and good reviews! We must thank everyone who take their time to send us a message with feedback, share or buy our music! It means the world to us. The reviews are mind blowing. 

MHF: What will the future bring with Confidential? Will you also present “Devil Inside” live? And is a successor already planned?

Confidential: We are as we speak preparing our first live show in Oslo, more concerts are to be announced. We are actually going to start in the end of this month with Conf2. 

MHF: Thank you again for the interview. Would you like to say something to the fans at the end?

Confidential: Because we are a debut band, we need all the help and support we can from our fans! Follow us on social media, hit us up on Spotify and stream the hell out of our album! Also check out our home page www.confidentialofficial.com!

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this interview, hope to see you on the road in the future. 

Confidential are:

Astrid K Mjøen – Vocals
David Hovde – Lead Guitars
Frode Hovd – Rhythm Guitars
Charlotte Stav – Synth, Piano, Backing Vocals

Session Musicians:

Jacob Hansen – Bass
Robert Myrhaug – Drums

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