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Interview: Team Of Experts – ‘Tell The War on Drugs to give us a call’

Photo: Tue Blichfeld

Prepare to spend the night with Copenhagen-based alternative duo Team of Experts on repeat. Inspired by the vibes of the 60s – shaken, not stirred with the memories of alternative rock from the 90s.

Musically the duo – though not yet as known to the public as they should be – are inspired by The Smashing Pumpkins and the likes according to lead singer Martin Gronemann. They just released their first single ’December Moon’ from their forthcoming EP ‘Sardonique’ and have as a result been receiving rave reviews from all over the Danish blogosphere. Our colleagues from GF Rock even went as far as to include the duo’s self-titled EP on their ‘Best EPs 2014’ list – and we could not agree more.

Before this forthcoming EP release, we had a chat with 50 per cent of the duo and lead singer; Martin Gronemann.

Their forthcoming EP ‘Sardonique’ will release on March 17th.

What is the concept behind the band and why did you choose that specific genre?
»We have settled deliberately on a musical expression with inspiration from 90s alternative rock, as both Lasse and I share a huge fondness for The Smashing Pumpkins. People have pointed that out as a force of Team of Experts; there aren’t any other Danish band who plunges into that period and create the music we do. Personally I think our force is that we implement a particular sound with a retrospective awareness. We are free to pick up the best elements and fuse them with all the other stuff we listen to. There’s an unspoken rule that anything goes. Rather cocky we’ve declared that whether we wanna do an epic song like ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ or an utterly stupid primal punk song, it happens. Desire and curiosity drive Team of Experts as well as an urge to explore the ingredients we can throw in the musical pot. So we always present something enticing and exciting. Just like a delicious dinner with different sensory impressions.«

Who are the guys behind the band and what do you do besides Team of Experts?
»The band consists of Lasse Høgh on drums and myself on vocals and guitar. When playing live we are joined by Mette Andreasen (bass) and Mikki Christiansen (guitar), but the core is Lasse and I – and it works impeccable. Both of us have played in bands earlier on and learned the lesson of ‘too many cooks’. With only two people to make the key decisions in Team of Experts, things progress faster and more effeciently, while we at the same time maintain the necessary drive in the creative process. Lasse is a graphic designer and I work as a freelance writer. As with our day jobs, we have an equally professional approach towards the music. It is absolutely ridiculous to waste your time on something where there’s no ambitions and visions present.«

What inspires you and what are your influences? Perhaps a certain period, an emotion?
»Better avoid the clichés on this one. Haha! I get inspired when I know our band face something, typically a recording session. The prospect of a goal drives me and I cannot just pick up a guitar or sit by the piano and go: ”This might turn into a song.” No, it has to be ”We are heading for the studio soon, so I better come up with the fucking greatest so far!” Lasse is really great at igniting my creative fire. Even though I write all the songs, it is very much him who decides the path on which our musical direction shall venture. For instance, the song ‘One Chord Concorde’ came about when he said: ”I have challenge for you. Write a song with only one chord.” I would never have come up with that idea myself, so we are good at supplementing each other while sculpturing Team of Experts’ songs. I also get inspired when I sense somebody means something profound to me. Our new single ‘December Moon’ is about a girl I met last year and feel in love with. She’s a singer herself and there’s a reference to her band in the lyrics.«

What is the biggest dream and vision for Team of Experts ?
»At the present, it is to establish a collaboration with a PR company, management and booking agency in order to plan a strategy for our band. It could also be really swell if our music attained a life of its own and naturally spread among the masses, due to the immense power that the music posess. Haha! We would also like to play more concerts, but it has to make sense. The last thing we want, is to be part of an upcoming bill, where most of the audience consists of your own friends. Been there, done that! Support gigs for larger bands would also be supercool, so we can reach out to more people. Tell The War on Drugs to give us a call! Apart from that, the dream and vision is basically just to keep on making music, we get kick out of. But soon I don’t have any dagpenge left, so to have a song synchronized in a big commercial or tv show wouldn’t mind at all. At least to get future Team of Experts recordings, releases and expences covered.«

What has been the best and funniest experiences with Team of Experts?
»It was to hold our debut EP on dust grey vinyl with a fucking ace cover in our hands, ’cause it symbolized the professionalism we put in the band. But it was also damn great to play a well attended gig at Rust and afterwards read a review that highlighted Team of Experts as the evening’s best band. We also had a lot of fun when we made our first video ‘Nocturnal’ during a weekend that scored pretty high on the ‘party excess’ scale! The times in the recording studio also count among the greatest and funniest experiences so far. Team of Experts is still a young and virginal band, so there’s undoubtly many funny and great experiences waiting ahead of us. I look forward to look back in 5-10 years and go ”Oh my, we also did that. What a trip! Do you remember that time with the brunette on the backseat?” Haha!«

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