Peter Tägtgren / Pain

Kenneth Beaumont
encounters PAIN
Peter Tägtgren keeps on churning out the monsters and as he has some time off from Hypocrisy and turns his attention to touring his fifth solo album Psalms of Extinction, the PAIN creator sounds just as happy to be left in his quite village in Sweden passing time with his family.

The New Album. Each album tends to take it’s own direction, are you satisfied with the outcome of Psalms of Extinction?

I’m happy, definitely. You write one song and it turns a certain way and you write another song and it starts a different way. Overall I think if you don’t try to stand in the same genre I think it makes it more interesting for the people to listen to and also for yourself to write different kinds of ways on every song. It’s not that I want to do different things every time. It’s more that when I write one song I try to do the opposite of that with the next title.

You’re pretty chronic for tracking huge amounts of music into one song, what’s your limit or how many tracks have you laid into one song?

It’s not too bad to be honest. It’s so hard to say. In general there’s three to four keyboards going, there’s the drums which is ten, maybe fifteen tracks. I have about four guitars and five vocals. It’s not too bad though, I mean I’ve done some mixing for bands where my computer will just say “too many channels”

Have you been doing much recording at the moment or are just getting Pain out of the way?

At the moment I’m just writing more Pain songs, I just got on a roll that I can’t stop so I’ll just keep on going.

So a sixth album might not be too far away?

Yeah, maybe. Maybe it’s time to start with the Pain album but I’m not ready for that. I want to wait a little bit longer. It’s a good time for me to write more stuff now.

For what I understand you play guitar live with Pain, who do you leave in charge of the electronic side of things?

We do it on backtracks, it’s the most easiest thing. The drummer plays with clicks and all the keyboards are backtrack.

It seems that you’re quite passionate about that side of the music, are you ever tempted to do all the dial turning and synth setting live on stage?

We’ve done stuff like that in the past but really it’s just a big hassle. For me it’s really about the show. We’re two guitars live with one bass player and one drummer and just try to kick the shit out of the audience every night while we play. So for us the most important thing is that it sounds good and it looks good.

So you find it a little difficult to entertain when you’re stuck behind computers, synths, keys and the such?

Yeah, we’re not really in the kind of status where we can do whatever we want and bring six or seven people on stage. That’s just impossible right now. I mean if you want to do this live you would need at least two keyboard players.

Is it true that your Dad used to build Synthesizers and Moogs? And do you have any of these instruments of your fathers?

No, he still has an organ at home that he built. It was his first project.

You often mention Depeche Mode as an influence, do you ever think that Pain will strip it’s music back that far back?

I don’t know, I tried a little on the Nothing Remains the Same album. I tried to really strip things back, more like that kind of vibe.

You’re not shy when it comes to covering songs, what criteria does a song usually have to pass before you will take it on?

It just has to be really good for my tastes. I’ve really got to love the song, it’s an important thing.

So you’re not worried about trying to make it fit into the Pain format or sound?

No, as soon as I start working on it I think I put a stamp on it as me as a producer or as a band

Working as a producer on your own album, do you ever need to get other people on board to run things past, to be sure you’re making all the right decisions?

Yeah, sometimes it’s really good to have that. When I was with Universal I had an A&R guy who I worked very close to and now these I days I just work alone and trust my own feeling. It takes a longer time to create the stuff of course.