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Thread: Interview with Mattias Eklundh

  1. #1
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    Post Interview with Mattias Eklundh

    This morning as I rolled out of bed at 3am to start my day, I was pleasantly surprised to see an e-mail from Mattias Eklundh on my Blackberry and after well over a year or so, it looks like he actually responded to the (albeit old) interview questions I sent him over a year ago! I haven't heard back from Mattias in a loong while but he did promise to answer the questions and surely enough, he did!! (a few eons later...)

    Anyways, here's the interview complete with some new pics of his new Apple Horn Yellow!

    ==================


    Q: It's been a while since the last Freak Kitchen album and I know you're currently working on the newest Freak Kitchen Album Land of the Freaks. When can we expect it to be out but importantly, WHAT can we expect from this new album?

    Ia: Well, since I managed to take small eons of time before conducting this interview in all my travelling frenzy chances are you heard the album by now. Sorry about the delay. Sitting backstage in Beijing in the Mao Live House soon about to play my lovely new Apple Horn Yellow with True Temperament frets. A stunning guitar. Hope you like Land of the Freaks. It's a 100% Caparison.

    Q: Speaking of albums, aside from your work with Freak Kitchen, you also have your Freak Guitar albums released under Steve Vai's record label, Favored Nations. Is there another album in the works? and would you ever be doing any recordings with someone who also shares a similar eclectic style like Bumblefoot?

    IA: I'd record with Bumblefoot any day. There is very much another Freak Guitar album in the works! It is going to be a double one with tons and tons of music and ideas I feel the urge to try out. Depending on how busy I will be with Freak Kitchen in 2010, which looks like it is going to be a lot, I still hope to have it released by Favored Nations late next year.

    Q: Can you tell me a bit about the "Freak Guitar Camp"? How did it start and what did you want it to ultimately be?

    IA: I didn't believe in the idea at first but was convinced by a friend of mine to at least try it. That was many years ago and I couldn't imagine a summer without it. It has become something of an institution and I love to pretend to be The Guru, showing everything I got to interested players from around the world. It is the only way to move on and learn new things.

    Freak Guitar Camp 2010 looks like this:

    Scandinavian Week 26th - 31st of July

    First International Week 2nd - 7th of August

    Second International Week 10th - 15th of August

    Registration in February! Welcome! www.freakguitar.com

    Q: Aside from your instruction video segments with Young Guitar Magazine, I understand you have an instructional CD titled "Grow Your Own Mustache", can you tell me a bit about it?



    Ia: The second download tuition album has just been released and is now available from the Freak Kitchen Online Store. Both are collections of all the tons of tunes I prepare for the camp that will keep you busy for quite some time: picking, odd time, tapping, finger-picking, weirdo riffs and lots more. Around twenty tracks with and without guitars plus beefy notation in pdf-format and a cover to wrap it all into.

    GET YOUR OWN COPY OF "GROWING YOUR OWN MOUSTACHE Vol. 2" HERE


    Q: Will there ever be an official Freak Guitar instructional Video?

    IA: Yes! I am building a new studio outside my house and there I will have the opportunity to shoot video, edit and master in full HD. I am slightly tired of all these hasty things I am thrown into without any chance to see the final result so yeah, there is certainly going to be an instructional video as soon as I can find the time. Also plan a bunch of DVDs for Rockhouse Method in Connecticut.

    Q: Typically altered tunings is something that's very common with acoustic fingerstyle guitar but not very much with electric heavy metal guitar (other than Drop D tunings). How did you start using altered tunings?

    IA: I guess from feeling I repeated myself and a will to try new things. The most refreshing when using different tunings, open and not, is that you have to begin to learn everything pretty much from scratch. New sounds and chords and fingerings. I love it.
    Last edited by buddroyce; 14-11-2009 at 08:14 PM.
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  2. #2
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    Q: I read in your bio somewhere that before you were with Caparison Guitars, you used to play a lot of 'crappy' guitars. What were they?? Do you still play any of your old instruments or just your Caparison's now?

    IA: Nope, they are all retired. I only use my Apple Horns, they are all I need. Like to play acoustic but that's another ballgame. However, I am thrilled Itaru Kanno, the one and only, is going to start designing acoustic guitars in the future. Can't wait to see what he comes up with.

    The crappy guitars were cheap Yamaha, Ibanez, Vantage and... hrm Duke instruments?

    Q: With regards to Caparison Guitars, I know Caparison approached you with the endorsement, and I know that a guitar player of your caliber could play anything you wanted. So my question is, do you feel anything special about Caparison's that you don't get elsewhere?

    IA: You bet. I never played an instrument so much... alive. They sing and respond to you like no other guitar. The two new models presented at the Music Fair in Yokohama last week are by far the best guitars I could ever think of. Kanno-san has outdone himself once again.

    Q: Unlike most other Caparison guitar endorsees, you actually have a signature model. Do you only play your signature models or do you get some custom made ones that are different from the signature model everyone else can get?

    IA: Nope, only Apple Horns.

    Q: Your signature model from Caparison, the Applehorn, features an engraved/embossed Apple Horn in the center of the body. Does this in your opinion affect the tone in anyway? Or is it there just to look cool?

    IA: Both. Itaru showed me a diagram he had made after serious calculations back in Los Angeles before we released the first model with the engraved apple, the Apple Horn Sand Stone. I didn't understand what he meant exactly but he kept on telling me that form follows function. Form follows function. Since then I've understood that if you take away that amount of wood from the body the entire overtone series will sound much better. That it looks splendid is also groovy, of course.

    Q: Unlike many other "shred" guitar players, you actually like your action fairly high. Is this more of a preference for your playing style? Or were you just used to playing with high action with your old guitars??

    IA: You get a much better tone using a high action. I remember an article in Guitar Player a while back where they wrote I had string action that would scare any slide player... I also tend to drop the string when I am bending if the action is too low.

    Last edited by buddroyce; 14-11-2009 at 08:20 PM.
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  3. #3
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    Q: The signature Apple Horn HGS model uses a pickup called the PH-IA which I assume is your signature version of the very awesome PH-R and can't be found on anything other than that one guitar. What exactly is different with this pickup? and do you use it on all your guitars now or do you still use the PH-R for everything else that isn't extremely detuned?

    IA: Good question. To be honest I haven't got the faintest idea what is stuffed into my guitars, ergh, ergh. That's why I have very fine guitar tech by the name of Fredrik Eriksson. He is actually interested in these kinds of things! I just play. Sorry.

    Almost done.. I just have some questions from some of your fans over at CaparisonForum.Com

    Q: What's your favorite guitar? You know, the one you couldn't live without and would run into a burning house to rescue.

    Ia: That would actually be my new Apple Horn Yellow with True Temperament frets. It would be worth to burn off some of that Viking hair for that one.

    Q: If you lost your memory and could only learn/play one song, what would it be? (In other words, what's your favorite thing to play on guitar?)

    IA: More than words? Just kidding... Zoot Allures by Frank Zappa since it cools me down.

    Q: How did you develop your technique with the trem??

    Ia: Hard to say. You can't really tell when changes happen as they happen gradually of course but my vibrato arm technique now is very different from when I started. It is something that comes very natural to me and is very integrated in my playing.

    Q: I noticed that you are now using the True Temperament Intonation system. Can you tell me a bit about it and in your opinion, how does it compare to the standard intonation system as well as intonation systems like the Buzz Feiten system and the Earvana system?

    IA: It is superior (an understatement) to all the above. There is no way back now. True Temperament frets will change the way we look at the guitar in the future in my humble opinion.

    Q:What in the world is Tremologic? and do you actually use it a lot or do you prefer to just have a floyd rose?

    IA: It is a smart invention with six independent vibrato arms, or perhaps fingers is a better way to put it. Swedish idea. I really like it but it something I am mostly using when recording (the lead on OK from Land of the Freaks is all Tremologic) and not live. You got to live with for a while but it has great potential indeed.

    Q: That's about it for questions. Is there anything you wanted to say to all the readers of this interview (most likely Freak Guitar wannabe's)?

    Ia: Thanks a bunch for reading! Keep on playing those Caparison Guitars. You and me know they rule!

    Thanks again for your time IA, I think it's time to get some beer and maybe figure out if there's a connection between the Swedish beard and the Freak Guitar style.

    Best Regards,

    Budd
    CaparisonForum.Com

    For those of you who are new to Caparison and Freak Kitchen/Mattias Eklundh, the latest album titled "Land of the Freaks" is currently available online at iTunes



    Check out more Mattias Eklundh at

    www.freakkitchen.com
    www.freakguitar.com
    www.myspace.com/freakkitchenmusic
    www.myspace.com/freakguitar
    www.facebook.com/freakkitchen
    www.facebook.com/mattiaseklundh
    Last edited by buddroyce; 14-11-2009 at 08:21 PM.
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  4. #4
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    Caparison Accoustic you say? *spaff*


    Good work as per Budd

  5. #5
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    Oh yeah, I promised you guys pics of the new Apple Horn model too..


    New Apple Horn Logo. More of a cartoony/comic book font


    Full body shot of the Aplpe Horn Yellow


    The new IA inlay.


    Apple Horn Jazz. Loosk like it features the same custom manufacturered Bridge as the Dellinger FX (Bridge6).
    Last edited by buddroyce; 14-11-2009 at 07:57 PM.
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  6. #6
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    Spec Card

    Here's what it says just in case anyone has a hard time reading it (and reading the Japanese text)

    Apple Horn Yellow/TRUE TEMPERAMENT Fret System with Hard Care
    List Price JPY367,500 (without tax JPY 350,000) Approx $4100USD/$3900USD (w/o tax)
    NOTE: Real street price for an Apple Horn Yellow with the True Temperament system is more like $3300-$3500

    Specifications:
    NECK JOINT: Bolt-on Neck
    NECK SCALE: 628mm (24 3/4") 27 Frets
    HEAD STOCK: Devil's Tail w/ "Apple Horn" Inlay/Ivory Binding
    MACHINE HEADS: Gotoh SG351 H.AP.
    NUT: Schaler R2 Locking Nut (42mm)
    NECK MATERIAL: Hard Maple/Oil Finish
    FINGERBOARD: Rosewood with 12F "IA" Inlay (Designed by Anders Nyberg)/Ivory Binding
    FRETWIRE: True Temperament Fretting System/Jumbo Frets

    BODY MATERIAL: Mahogany
    BRIDGE: Schaller S-FRT II
    NECK PICKUP: Caparison SH27F
    BRIDGE PICKUP: Caparison PH-R
    CONTROLS: Master Volume w/ pickup selector switch (same as the existing Apple Horn and Horus models)
    BODY FINISH: Apple Horn Yellow
    HARDWARE: Schaller-Black, Gotoh-Gosmo Black
    Last edited by buddroyce; 14-11-2009 at 08:07 PM.
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  7. #7
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    Annnd... since our man Mattias was kind enough to take some pics of Itaru, here's a pic of Itaru for good measure



    note the Freak Kitchen T shirt. You could say that Itaru's a fan
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  8. #8
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    Hey Budd, AMAZING stuff here!!! Just awesome!
    Mattias is a VERY busy cat but I've always had the best of himpressions of him and all this confirms my point! Can't wait for the 2010 Freak Guitar Camp!

    Btw, all I have to say about Caparison is the best but I have to be honest about this and tell that the Apple Horn font at the headstock is not suitable for any guitar (yep, I'm a big Comic Sans HATER!!!), but I think it was intended to match the cartoonish style inlay at 12th fret.

    Great interview as always! As I usually say, better later than never!
    flat5 guitarworks
    www.flat5guitarworks.com
    www.flickr.com/photos/eduardosantosphoto/

  9. #9
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    REALLY not into that inlay or headstock txt

  10. #10
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    The inlay reminds me of that ABC Becker Paradise Model. Anyway, Land of Freaks is awesome. Best ever, IMO. Freak Kitchen is awesome. IA is awesome.

    I'm glad he finally responded. If he goes with Dean, I'll just quit guitar forever ;-)

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