Updated: May 17, 2019
Hannah Turek, LPFCW, Spring 2019
In a recent interview with EMQ, Danish nu-metal band Walking Rumor spoke about the band’s main inspirations, one of which was Linkin Park. We at LPFCW wanted to find out further just how Linkin Park inspired the group, so reached out to vocalist and pianist, Kenneth Gustavsson [Kenio] to ask more about the influence they had on the band.
So you said that Linkin Park was hugely influential for your band, is that in terms of lyrics, instrumentals or a combination of the two?
It’s actually more their way of acting as individuals and how they run their band. The connection they have with their fans and what they are able achieve with just their passion for music. Of course, they have elements within their music that we as a band find interesting to work with, but we are more intrigued by their way of acting as individuals.
In the interview, you stated that Live In Texas was a sort of catalyst for what you wanted to achieve. Do you feel like you've achieved that yet or is there more that you want to do?
There is always more to achieve. Success is more about staying afloat than reaching the top these days. I’ve been playing music since I was about 9 years old and I loved playing music since before I knew about Linkin Park, I just didn’t know what to do with it. Was I going to be a teacher, perform as a solo artist, was I going to be in a band, I had no idea at the time. I remember watching the Live in Texas DVD at my friend's house one day and that moment was really a tipping point for me, because in that moment I knew what I wanted to achieve. It wasn’t as much the experience of playing in front of a big crowd, but more to reach that same connection with people despite the distance to such a huge stage.
If you do get the opportunity to work with Mike Shinoda, would you want it to be in a studio or live setting, or either?
Doing literally anything with Mike Shinoda sounds completely surreal and would be a dream come true. Mike is an amazing artist and entrepreneur. Working with him in the studio on something that eventually would become [part of] a live act, to get out there and experience his connection with the fans on a front row seat, that would be really inspiring in so many ways.
What was the first experience you had with Linkin Park's music?
Linkin Park was one of those bands who were unavoidable when we all grew up, so their music is basically a common interest of ours. I had a classmate who was a foreign student from the Netherlands and she introduced me to the band at school. I was immediately intrigued by their music and I was allowed to borrow her copy of the album Hybrid Theory. I kept spinning that album on repeat so many times, I bet I almost broke it. My parents had to buy me my own copy because I wasn’t that interested in giving it back. Looking back it now, it was kind of mean of me. They bought me a copy along with the Frat Party at the Pankake Festival DVD and I’ve been a fan ever since. Even joined the LPU at one point.
Do you feel like more has to be done to help musicians with mental health?
Why stop at musicians? Mental health is something that is a very serious topic and everyone struggling should be able to get help in one way or another, but on their terms. Knowing the signs and knowing when to help is really important when you have someone around you who is having a hard time dealing with these issues. There are a lot of organisations out there and they need more exposure for sure, but maybe it's more about learning how to handle these situations rather than just sending people away to some locked office with a desk and a couch. Mental health is seriously important and no one should feel that their limits are being pushed for someone else’s gain.
Their five track EP, The War Within, has songs that succinctly address mental health issues in a raw and beautiful show of vulnerability, giving a stark and complimenting contrast to the sharp percussion and biting guitar riffs that underpin the vocals, further emphasised by the balance of agile and growling vocals. There's an ineffable honesty about the tracks that feels fundamentally human, allowing for an indulgent and emotional connection to be made. One of their latest singles, Tears Me Apart, is dedicated to Chester [Bennington] and suggests that pure honesty will continue to be a strong lyrical point to lay atop prodigious and passionate instrumentation on their upcoming album, Symbiosis. Dedicate To This is more uptempo and aggressive without lacking any of the heart of previous tracks and shows how dynamic Walking Rumor can be and is reminiscent of the Linkin Park demo, Dedicated, without being an imitation. The influence is clear, yet it's its own entity entirely and that ability to define itself as something new showcases the heart and talent in Walking Rumor's music.
Find the band's music on Spotify at https://open.spotify.com/artist/4SReRO2yeGmiwygeogDcFJ and watch the Tears Me Apart music video below.
If you have been affected by any of the issues raised, help and resources can be found at http://www.buddy-project.org/