I woke up 2 am and felt I had to write here and give you a summery of the past year, my last entry here I had just come home from Mexico, were much of the new lyrics for the new album was written, and I was very excited about the year to come. It’s been an interesting time and a lot has happened, I’ll do my best to try and give you a summery.
IA and I have been working throughout 2016 with the new album For What It´s Worth and always felt very optimistic. This was the first album in over 10 years that I didn’t record partly in Robin Kalmeborgs studio. This time we did all my vocal and guitar parts in IAs studio but Robin was still heavily involved from his studio with his own parts. Robin and I live about 200 miles from each other, when we first started Mindstunt we lived 200 meters from each other and could record (and did) every day. Now he has a growing family and not as much time for our project, however he spent the summer composing string arrangements and recording piano and percussion alone for the album and it turned out great. I´m extremely happy we found a way to keep working together. This meant we recorded more or less the entire album (guitars, solos, bass, drums and vocals, mixing) in IA´s studio which gave the album a new level of quality. It was awesome producing together with IA and forming a record together from just the songs in my head, building a sound. It used to be I recorded half of the album with Robin and half with IA but this time IA and I did everything together. We also filmed most of the recording process so the next thing planed is to make a short “making of” documentary.
Morgan Ågren had agreed to record the drums for this album as well (the third album together) but we decided to let IA do play instead. This might seem a bit strange, Morgan being one of the top drummers in the world and most don’t even know IA can play drums. There where some complications and in the end it all came down to IA knowing the songs better and really wanted to the drums so we tried it and it turned out fantastic, a beefy hard rock aproach to pop/rock songs. This doesn’t necessarily mean Morgan wont record in the future.
I had moved to Gothenburg permanently to be able to record with IA easily and also started to study music, it was a fun and interesting year. I also started playing with Anton Wessman and Johan Almgren and planed to create a live act to Mindstunt. It sounded good and we were excited. We also recorded two awesome music videos with IA but Johan got a job playing for Gothenburg operahouse and didn’t have time for both projects so we are looking for a basplayer at the moment. The music videos were for the song Få Pulsen Att Slå which is the opening song for the album and Sober Day Long Gone from the previous album Bright Morning. I was happy to be able to show us playing for the first time. Mindstunt has almost ever since I began recording with IA and my bandmembers one after another moved away from Vetlanda (2010-ish) been mostly a recording project but the music is very much “real instruments” and musicianship in a time where electronic music is dominating and I was happy to make a couple of videos showing us actually playing the stuff, not to mention I think I look pretty darn sexy and cool in it 😉
When 2017 started we had finished recording the album and were mixing and all that kind of stuff. The first three months we were just waiting for the guy to start and when we got the first mix it sounded over distorted and most of the fine details I love had drowned in all the noise so we decided IA should do the mixing and because he knows the heart of Mindstunt so well he just as with the drums did an excellent job. The album is in other words made almost only by three people, me (Ben) writing the songs, producing, singing and playing guitar, IA doing half of the guitar-solos, drums, bass, engineering and mixing and Robin playing piano and arranging strings. Also Jimmy Zavalla once again graced us with some awesome harmonica playing, Torben Schmidt did a great mastering job and Niklas Månsson did the wonderful cover art.
That is more or less it, the short version of a great chapter in Mindstunt history. The album turned out truly fantastic, I’m so proud of it. I’d even go as far as saying its my greatest work. The song Bright Morning I think is the greatest song but this album would if I died tomorrow be my magnum opus. At the moment I’m studying to be a kind of music teacher at Gothenburg University and hanging out with friends and my girlfriend Matilda, just living a normal life. I’ve found there is a kind of charm in normal stuff after doing unnormal stuff for so many years. The next thing to do is the “making of” documentary, try to get the band together and hopefully some gigs and also start writing the forth album!
All the best, Ben