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Interview

Liv Jagrell Of Sister Sin Discusses Her Darker Side

Gothenburg's Sister Sin is bent on bringing back the raw sound of classic metal. Having released their last album "True Sound of the Underground," a nod to their classic metal heros, Sister Sin has landed some huge tours, like the upcoming tours opening for U.D.O. I got to talk to vocalist Liv Jagrell in between her busy tour schedule to talk about her favorite bands, an upcoming album, and how she feels about being labeled a hot hard rock chick. A transcription follows.

Buick McKane: How are you doing today?

Liv Jagrell: I’m good, I’m good.

Buick: Great. You just got off tour with Otep. How did that go?

Liv: It went well. The Otep audience was a little bit different than our audience, so we had to be a little bit more convincing. I think it went well for what it was. So, yeah, it was good. Sometimes it was very good, and sometimes it was harder to convince the audience.

Buick: Right, how was the audience different? They were younger, maybe?

Liv: Yeah, they were younger, and, I mean, our music is more of the old school rock and roll, straight rock and roll. And Otep is a little more operatic and psychedelic maybe, heavy hard rock. So it’s kind of a different audience. But Blackguard was also on that tour, and they kind of have a similar kind of audience. So when Blackguard and us were, like, popular, Otep was less popular and opposite.

Buick: Right, well those kids need to know where metal comes from.

Liv: Absolutely.

Buick: Probably teaching them a bit better. Soon you’ll be going on tour with U.D.O. which, of course, Udo Dirkschneider is from Accept which is an old band. So are you excited about that tour?

Liv: Yeah, very excited because I think that his audience…I know that his audience is the same that would like our music. And we have friends in Germany and Scandanavia, so I think it’s going to be a very good tour.

Buick: Great. And earlier this year, you went and did the Hottest Chicks in Hard Rock Tour. How is it playing on a tour where it was about you specifically and your looks?

Liv: I didn’t feel that so much, it felt like a regular tour and it was a good tour. That tour was more the kind of audience that suited us even though the other bands were more heavier than us. It seemed that audience like us better than Otep’s audience. So it was a very good tour, and the other bands were also very nice. And, yeah, maybe there were more males in that tour. The audience was more male on that tour than the Otep tour, of course. But otherwise, I didn’t feel like it was any different. But it was a good tour and it was actually a good package of the bands. And I think they should do more of those…I mean, they don’t have to put that name. It was a little vulgar. Revolver Magazine and…

Buick: The calendar they did.

Liv: Exactly. I think it’s a good tour to put on female-fronted bands together.

Buick: Maybe they could call it something more feminist-friendly, and not just about some hit chicks.

Liv: Exactly, because it’s kind of …a little bit dorky…sexist thing. But, still, I’m honored that they put me in the calendar. I’m very honored about that. And I think most people would be.

Buick: And speaking of your sound specifically, last year you released the album “True Sound of the Underground.” And in one interview you said that this album was more metal and your last albums were more rock. What do you think is more metal about it?

Liv: It’s heavier and it’s a bit rawer. And it’s definitely more heavier. And I think my singing is also more metal. It was kind of more sleazy, sleaze rock; the “Switchbalde Serenade” album. For us, “True Sound of the Undergroud” is more towards Judas Priest. And I think “Switchblade Serenade” is more towards Motley Crue’s sound. And I like both bands; they’re in my top five bands, both of them. But we really wanted to play more towards the Judas Priest, Accept kind of metal. So we are really happy with the new album.

Buick: Great, and it’s too bad Judas Priest isn’t going to play anymore, otherwise you may have been able to play with them.

Liv: I know. Yeah, that would be awesome. That would be, like, amazing to do that. Yeah, I’m kind of mad that they’re not playing anymore.

Buick: I did want to ask you: you’re based in Gothenburg. What is the scene like there because so many great bands have come out of it and you get so many tours through there?

Liv: Yeah, the metal scene has always been very good in Gothenburg, but it’s been more the kind of heavier stuff like Haunted and In Flames, Soilwork; all these bands are, like, the Gothenburg sound, and we don’t fit quite into that sound. Maybe we feel it’s a little bit harder to convince Gothenburg about us. In Stockholm, it’s more of a sleaze and glam town. Gothenburg is more of the heavier, heavier sound. And I think we are something between. If we’re happy, both cities like us. I think so.

Buick: Do you like the Gothenburg bands?

Liv: Yes I do. I really like Soilwork, they’re one of my favorite bands.

Buick: Great, Back to the genre…not genre, but sound questions, do you want to continue in this heavier metal direction? Or do you maybe want to jump back and forth or vary your sound?

Liv: No, we’re going to continue in this one. I think we’re going to get even more heavier because we like the kind of energy and rawness that Judas Priest and bands like Pantera delivered. And that’s what we’re trying to wake up again. But maybe with a little bit more modern sound. So we’re going to go for even more kind of heavier…but, yeah, in the same vein as “True Sound of the Underground.”

Buick: Great, do you have any plans for a new album yet?

Liv: Yes, we have. We’re going to try to start writing songs now while we have a bit of time off and in between the two tours with U.D.O. We’re going to continue writing songs, and the plan is to record in March. I hope we’re going to do that. That’s the plan to record in March and then release the album next year.

Buick: Is there anything else you would like to say?

Liv: Well, come and see us because we are a live band, if we come to a town close to you or something, come and see us because we live for the live appearance or for playing live. That’s what we live for, and what we want to do all the time. And I think you can really feel that when you see it live.

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Emily is an avid supporter of the New Orleans scene, often filming shows and conducting interviews with local bands to help promote their music. She also runs her own site dedicated to the New Orleans scene, Crescent City Chaos.

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