For fans of punk and hardcore music, Dennis Lyxzen is a name that is easy recognised. Most notably for being the front man of punk pioneers Refused, but also as the voice of The (International) Noise Conspiracy and many other various projects. The latest one being AC4, which sees Lyxzen teaming up with Refused drummer David Sandstrom for some straight forward hardcore punk fury which will soon be visiting our shores. Kill You Stereo had a chat with Dennis to hear all about AC4 and his current mind state in general.
Initially, AC4 would not do interviews with anyone other than fanzine writers under the age of 18, what made you decide to do this and then ultimately decide to open the floor up to anyone?
Well, at the time when we started the band it felt like a good position to take. To avoid the ex members of factor and to actually have the band become and entity of it’s own. Plus most people that do interviews, and this is mostly aimed at Sweden, are fucking idiots. They have little understanding of the historical references and the background of our group and we just wanted to avoid that.
When we figured that we were going to take this band seriously and start touring and such we realised that it is a good idea to actually let people know that you are riding into town. So, hence our changed attitude towards media.
Were you worried that many people might think of AC4 as “Refused part 2” due to the involvement of yourself and David?
No, not at all. I mean the music and the ideas the AC4 represent are pretty far removed from Refused. I guess with some goodwill you could say that both bands are hardcore bands but that would be the only similarity. The only thing that sort of worried us is that people will be prone to compare us with Refused based on our past which is a bit harsh. The ambitions and the motivation of AC4 differ wildly from Refused and sometimes it can be frustrating when people don’t understand that.
What made you guys decide to tour Australia and what can fans expect from the up coming tour?
Australia demanded that we come down there and cause trouble. Depends of what people’s expectations are. We aim to deliver the goods and then it is up to the crowd to respond and to make up their mind.
There are some AC4 videos on the net that chronicle the realities of touring which isn’t the pleasant vacation that many think it is, you have been touring in various bands for awhile now, how much longer do you think you can do it for?
Maybe another week or so and then never again. The only problem is that I have no education and no real desire to learn anything else so I am pretty doomed to doing exactly this. It is a hard life sometimes but at least I don’t have kids and money and a family and a steady income and a healthy body and a strong mind.
Your last release was an EP, can we expect a new full length album from you anytime soon? If so, do you have an idea of what you want it to sound like?
We are working on new songs right now and we are trying to get our shit together so that we can record a new full length. Unfortunately we are a bit disorganised and some of the new songs we have written are not very good. But hopefully we will have something out after the summer. Our summer that is. The real summer.
What other projects are you currently working on?
Right now I am beside AC4 doing another band called Invasionen. It sprung out of my Powerpoppunkband The Lost Patrol. Same people, new language and new sound. We just finished up our 2nd record. I am also involved in a new musical collaboration with the Bloody Beetroots. We are doing an EP together called Church of Noise that will be out in April. Some sort of revolutionary dance/punk/electro/chaos crossover. And then I am always working on the label Ny Våg. Try to stay busy and creative.
In your travels do you notice significant differences in the hardcore scenes around the world, as opposed to the one in your hometown?
Nah, not really. Punks are punks you know. Some places people are more into this and some places people are more into that. But in general we are a simple kind. Narrow minded and stupid and judgmental. Everywhere.
How do you manage to make a living from music in the current climate of the music industry?
Hmm, that is a good question. Every year the margins shrink a little more. It becomes harder and harder to live of off playing music. I get by cause I have very little costs in life and I am used to being broke and hungry. In general you could say that a whole new generation of people has grown up expecting to get everything for free and it is hard to create great music and art when it is pretty much impossible to make it your life. I will give it a year or two and then I will tell the world to fuck and I will go into exile and start a new life.
You have always been involved with bands that work in very collaborative ways, have you ever thought of releasing solo material so that you create something of which you have total control?
No, never. Total control is for egomaniacs such as David. I am also not really talented enough to be able to make it on my own. I always rely on my friends to make my ideas into better ideas then they originally were. I am also still a socialist and I think that anything that you can do alone will be better if you do it together with amazing people.
What does the rest of 2011 hold for AC4 and yourself?
Tour Australia. Record a record and then do some touring once the record comes out. I will tour a bunch with the Bloody Beetroots and I will hopefully release that Invasionen record soon. I have a pretty busy year ahead it seems.