The Norwegian band, The Lionheads, have dropped their new song, “Exit”. In 2010, when Rudi Leo J. Johansen (lead vocals, guitar) and Oistein Christoffersen (drums) met while working as freelance musicians, The Lionheads were born. After a long period of trying out musicians, the duo enlisted Knut Magnus Nordhaug (bass), Nicolai Herwell (guitar) and Haakon Oyen (keys) to round out the lineup. With a sound combining a-ha, Mumford and Sons, and Radiohead, this band is a pleasant surprise. Coming from the land of Death Metal, The Lionheads are extremely polished, beautifully harmonized, combining guitar hooks, synths and falsetto vocals with emotional themes, ranging from friendships to breakups to self-realization and beyond. I love this band so much.
1. In 2010, when you all met, did you have a vision about what type of band you wanted to form? How long had you as individuals been kicking around the music scene?
When we first started out we didn’t have a clear vision. But as soon as we started to write songs we solved the puzzle, bit by bit. We all felt a strong bond to the pop/rock-music, and that’s how it turned out. We had been playing in different bands and with different artists for around 3-4 years, but now was the time to make something ourselves.
2. Were do your ideas for your songs come from? Are they personal experiences or just general observations of the world?
Most of the songs are personal experiences, and some songs tells stories about people we are close to or people we have met. A song idea can come from anything. It can be as little as a part of a conversation, or even a word. I also tend to get ideas at nighttime. Then I get up and record it on my iPhone. The frustrating part is that you think you have this great idea late at night, and the next morning it turns out to be shit.
3. Who did you listen to growing up? I hear a little a-ha, but there are definitely other influences too. Who do you listen to now?
Great guess! A-ha is definitely a big inspiration. In the nineties I listened a lot to the big pop/rock bands around. Blur, Oasis, and of course U2. Later I listened a lot to Radiohead and Travis. So british bands have been important to us.
We listen to a lot of different music nowadays. Some highlights are Ed Sheeran, Hozier and Beck.
4. I love the resurgence of song-based music, like Mumford & Sons and especially your music. Have you noticed that also?
Well, thank you. Music history repeats itself over and over, so we hope that´s the way it´s turning now. I can never see us doing anything different than song-based music. This is where our heart lies.
5. I love the CD cover. I love crows and ravens. Any hint of old Norwegian religion with Odin there, or am I reading into it?
Thanks, it´s an amazing picture done by a Norwegian artist called Painbucket (Remi Juliebø). The CD cover is actually nine pictures in one. One for each track on the album. We did not think about Odin when we made it, but the raven symbolizes death in the picture.
6. I love Norwegian music. Where else can you get great Death Metal and beautiful melodious bands like The Lionheads and a-ha? Is it the water?
Haha, it´s all about the magic water from the mountains. No, actually I think the Norwegian nature is a great part of us and our music. When you go touring in Norway you get to see the most beautiful places and surroundings. I guess you have heard about the Northern Light!
7. Lastly, is there anything we haven’t covered that you want our readers to know, like, what type of dog would you want to be? My Barbara Walters question.
Well, it has to be the Border Collie. It´s so smart and elegant. Did you know that one guy taught a border collie 1.000 words?