About Me

Interview with Pre-Human Vaults

Swedish / American supergroup Pre-Human Vaults first saw the light of day back in 2014, but it wasn’t until late 2019 that things took off for real. Originally formed by Ronnie Björnström (Solution .45, ex-Aeon), the band today also consists of Christian Älvestam (Solution.45, Miseration, Svavelvinter, Ex-Scar Symmetry), Patrik Gardberg (ex-Solution.45, Torchbearer, The Few Against Many), Peter Nordin (ex-Meshuggah, ex-Calipash) and Michael Gomez (ex-Black Plague).
The band released their debut EP “Allegiance Divine” via Discouraged Records on the 10th June 2022.
The EP includes 4 tracks and lyrically slams the sickening and cowardly wrongdoings of political and religious terrorism. Get to know the band a little better in this interview with Ronnie.

M.I. - Pre-Human Vaults is a Swedish/American supergroup, featuring Christian Älvestam (Vocals), Ronnie Björnström (Rhythm Guitar), Patrik Gardberg (Lead Guitar), Peter Nordin (Bass Guitar) and Michael Gomez (Drums). How did you guys decide to form a band?

We have all been involved in awesome metal bands, but nothing that has sounded like PHV. It's like a hybrid of all genres we all have been playing and thought it would be cool to make this project into a band.

M.I. - Why have you picked the name Pre-Human Vaults?

Pre-Human Vaults is something Älvestam came up with. I thought it sounded killer and we just rolled with that.

M.I. - Pre-Human Vaults was formed in 2014 by Christian Älvestam and Ronnie Björnström and, after seven years in the making, "Allegiance Divine" — your debut EP, was released on June 10 via Discouraged Records. Why has it taken 7 years?

Well, it all started with just me. I was between bands at that time and just wanted to record some riffs that I had. That´s one of the benefits of having your own studio, just record whenever and let the riffs grow.

So, I made four songs in a demo stage with programmed drums and just rough guitars and bass. After those were done, I sent out some songs to buddies to let them hear what I had been cooking up. Christian Älvestam said, after hearing the tunes in a very early stage, that he wanted to sing on them.

With Älvestam on board it just kept rolling. On the first demo versions, I had a guy called Allan Marcus that played lead guitar on a couple of the tracks. Älvestam asked Patrik Gardberg if he would be interested in recording solos (this guy is insane on leads!). After hearing the songs he jumped on the ship as well.

Peter Nordin is an old friend of mine. He used to stop by the studio from time to time just to hang out, drink beer and jam on some songs. I showed him my demo and asked if he could play his signature “tractor” bass on them. A few hours later all songs was recorded.

Mike Gomez (Drums) was on a holiday in Umeå and I heard he was amazing on drums, so I  invited him to the studio, asking if he would like to record drums on those four songs. Two days later I had a complete EP!

These songs were stored on a hard drive and were almost forgotten in 2014 until one day when I was going through my drives and I found the original recording sessions. So we decided to re-record the guitars and all vocals and make it to a real band and the result is what you hear on the EP.

M.I. - The EP features four songs, including "Whirlwind Reaper" (originally released back in May 2020), “Close To All, Next To Nothing”, “When The Trap Is Set” and “Shadow .44”. Of all these tracks which one do you think will have a heavier impact on the public? Why?

I think all the songs are strong, but if must choose one I would go with “Close To All…” it has all the elements: chunky riffs, great arrangement, awesome vocals and musicianship.

M.I. - Lyrically the songs deal with terrorism in general, political and religious terrorism especially. Why have you focused on these topics mainly? Do you think these are problems that the world faces daily and should be addressed?

The lyrics - as a whole - is Christian’s way of transforming his own fear of terrorism in general and religious terrorism in particular, into words.

M.I. - Who’s responsible for the lyrics? Are they based in true events/stories?

Christian Älvestam has written the lyrics and they are all based on and revolve around true events.

M.I. - The cover art is pretty self-explanatory. Do you think the artwork should be as straightforward as yours is?  

In this case we had a pretty straightforward theme, so the artwork was a no-brainer for us.

M.I. - The band signed with Discouraged Records. Were they the ones who offered you a better deal? Did you get other offers? Were you the ones who contacted them or did they get in touch with you?

To be honest... This was the first label we sent the songs to and they gave us a great deal, so we signed with them!

M.I. - What are the band’s plans for the near future? Recording more music? Playing live?

Both! We want to play live and record a full length album asap!

M.I. - In your opinion, what should the sentence for terrorists be? What should they be subject to?

A lifetime in pure pain and devastation.

M.I. – A few months ago, there was a massacre in the US involving young children. Do massacres that affect the innocent make you sicker than the others? Has age and maturity helped you view things from a different perspective regarding these issues?

This is sick! Killing innocent children is just madness… it makes me sick. How about gun control in the US? I think that's one of the problems in the States... It´s way too easy to get ahold of weapons and that they get in the wrong hands…

M.I. - Do you believe people’s mental health has been affected by the pandemic and it has caused more terrorism?

People aren't used to be in quarantine. Some can handle it and some don't. But I think it’s important to listen to the government and follow the recommendations so we can go back to a normal life style.

M.I. - All the best for your debut EP and may Pre-Human Vaults keep on impressing us with great music. Could you please share a final message with Metal Imperium and its readers?

Thank you guys for all the support! Keep an eye open for more Pre-Human Vaults content in the future. And keep supporting metal!

Listen Pre-Human Vaults, on Spotify

For Portuguese version, click here

Questions by Sónia Fonseca