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Swedish band Holograms may have won plenty of critical acclaim for their debut album but that didn’t translate into a comfortable living. Vocalist and bassist Andreas Lagerström talks about living on the breadline to create new album Forever.

Given the difficult financial circumstances you’re in, did the creativity and writing process for this second album suffer?
It was never on our minds when we were doing this album. Me and Anton [singer] had both been writing songs simultaneously while touring for the first record. I think the attention and the touring tore us up a bit and probably contributed to the mood of the record. But on the other hand we felt more comfortable and confident going in to this record. We knew we were making something great.

Anton, how important is it for you to have a connection with the crowd during gigs?
I don’t think we try to connect with the audience. We don’t feel like we have to be in some kind of symbiotic relationship with them. But a show is always a lot more fun when there’s a big crowd and they’re really into it – you play a better show.

How important is it for you to get your music heard beyond Sweden?
We are not a popular band in Sweden, not before or after the first record at least. Things might change now but we knew from the start that this is not the kind of music that will get a lot of attention here. Our goal was never to do this in the scale that it is today. We came from a bunch of small bands and our ambition was maybe to release a 7” inch and play some youth clubs in Germany or something. It isn’t important what the audience or critics think of our music – personal development comes from making better music that we are happy with.

Your lyrics are quite cryptic. Is that deliberate?
We don’t discuss lyrical meanings as we want them to be open for interpretation. I don’t want to ruin people’s image of a song, or a mood that they feel when they listen to it with some breakdown of exactly what me or Anton mean.

Why did you use a William Bouguereau painting for your artwork?

It radiates beauty, violence, struggle, eternity and frustration, among other things. We all fell for it.

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