Well, what's in a name? DoomDogs? Are they a Doom band then? Jesus, yes they are ... you can bet your life on it. The were formed in the lovely city of Gothenburg in Sweden in 2006 by guitarist "Chris the Riff" and have just relased their first vinyl longplayer on High Roller Records. Christer alias "Chris the Riff" fills us in on the band history of DoomDogs: "I started the band in 2006. Me and this drummer Thomas left the rock cover band we were playing with and then said to ourselves: 'Well, so what are we going to do now?' I said: 'I really like Black Sabbath' and Thomas replied: 'Yeah, me too.' So I dropped my low E-string to D and then downtuned to C# (drop B tuning) and then the Doom/Stoner riffs just started to 'pop out by themselves'. Bassist Victoria Larsson (former Ice Age) and Vocalist Tomas 'GG' Eriksson (original drummer with Grotesque) joined forces, and I then wrote the two first DoomDogs songs 'I'm Sure' and 'Calling'! Back then we called the band 'Dogs Of Doom' (from the Led Zeppelin song 'No Quarter' ... and Zeppelin sure borrowed it from Tolkien). After about six months Vicky left the band and Patrik took her place as the band's bassist. One of the first things he made us agree on was to change the band's name to DoomDogs, and he then helped to rearrange our songs to 'the better' (Patrik is a great bassist, but he's also really awesome when it comes to 'hearing' what should 'go or stay' in a song, and he always also comes up with great new ideas and parts in a song to make it more DoomDogs). Well, DoomDgs had its share of ups and downs, and after about a year the drummer,Thomas, left the band ... so we did put in an ad, and then we tested a bunch of drummers, but it wasn't until Anders 'Nanne' came down to our rehearsal room and sat down behind the drumkit, and started bashing them drums, that we said: 'HELL, YEAH ! THIS IS THE GUY THAT WE HAVE BEEN LOOKING FOR!' That was in September 2008, and we played our first show with the current line-up in February 2009 at Sticky Fingers here in Gothenburg. And after that, things just started to 'happen'. We recorded our debut album in April/May 2009 ... and in late autumn 2009 we signed with High Roller Records (for the vinyl), Doomentia Records (CD) and the music publisher company Misty Music (Black Eye Media Doom also help us with promotionin in the US)."
As you might have guessed already, the named musicians have been active in other bands before forming DoomDogs: 'Most of us have played in a lot of different bands before, but it's 'GG' who has the most 'famous history'. He was the original drummer in the Death/Black Metal band Grotesque, a precursor to At The Gates, one of the original creators of the 'Gothenburg sound'! Grotesque were pretty much the inventors of the Death/Black Metal genre! 'GG' has also played guitar in numerous Thrash/progressive and Doom/Death Metal bands (like Intoxicate and Runemagick). He also played bass in some Thrash/Hardcore bands, and he has been the lead singer in Valedictory (Progressive Rock), Ancient Dreams (Candlemass tribute band) and Kung Diamant (King Diamond tribute band)."
As in the past, Gothenburg is still a good place for new and upcoming bands: "The current 'heavy rock' scene in Gothenburg is very much alive n' kickin' and 'vital'. Bands in this town inspire each other, instead of seeing each other as 'competitors'. If someone knows about a good label, studio, places to play gigs etc. ... well, then they share that information with other bands. This creates a fantastic 'settlers' spirit' and helps to create a great musical climate, and also makes the music scene constantly evolve." That is really good news. So Gothenburg surely is some kind of musician's heaven! The city was once well-known for its Death Metal scene. What's left of this scene? What has it developed into? I mean bands like Entombed have developed in a certain direction ... Has Gothenburg gone psycho-Stoner/Doom? Christer reflects: "Well, what remains of that scene is mainly the band Dark Tranquility who still kicks ass. What the Gothenburg Death Metal scene has developed into is bands like In Flames and The Haunted, and bands like Evergrey also have thier roots in the Gothenburg Death Metal sound. So: NO! Gothenburg has not gone psycho-Stoner/Doom ... Gothenburg has just gone 'one of the best Doom/Stoner, Heavy Metal, Hard Rock Progressive and Hardcore Thrash scenes' in the world. HELL, YEAH!" This clearly sounds like a guy loving his hometown!
With a name like DoomDogs is it safe to assume that our friends are playing old-school Doom Metal? Do they see a big difference between Doom and Stoner? Christer reflects: "We get that question a lot ... guess everyone is quite confused when it comes to the 'difference' between Doom and Stoner, right ?! For me, original Doom Metal are songs like 'Black Sabbath' and 'Electric Funeral' by Black Sabbath, and one of the first 'Stoner songs' (even if that word Stoner Metal/Rock wasn't yet invented back then) as I see it is 'Hole In The Sky', also by Black Sabbath. So in my opinion, 'Stoner' maybe have a bit more of a 'swing/shuffle, and sometimes tripplet, kind of heavy groove' to it, and also uses more effects like phaser, flanger and fuzz (both on the guitar and bass)." Pretty good definition, methinks! The music of DoomDogs has been described as "Motörhead and Black Sabbath having a car wreck". That sounds nice. Chris nodds: "Yeah, that's a quote from Shannon 'Shan The Big Man', a hardcore DoomDogs fan and totally awesome guy from Georgetown in the US. And that must be one of the best comments about our music that we could ever get, as those bands are two of our greatest sources of inspiration ... especially early Motörhead with Fast Eddie plus Philthy, and early Black Sabbath. Our bassist, Patrik, almost started to cry with joy when he heard that quote about DoomDogs' music, as Lemmy and Geezer Butler are his absolutely biggest bass gods."