Never heard of Quicksand Dream? Well, to be honest the band (from Timrå in central Sweden, just north of Sundsvall) is not really a household name. Not yet. They are much more of an obscurity. But with the vinyl release of "Aelin - A Story About Destiny" (limited to 500 copies) this might change rather sooner than later. Patrick Backlund is the brainchild behind Quicksand Dream, he plays all the instruments on the album, only supported by Göran Jacobson on vocals (and guest keyboarder Henrik Flyman). Patrick sheds some light on the formation of the band: "It was early autumn 1988, inspired by the great music from Candlemass and Cloven Hoof, when I and Thomas decided to start a band. Göran and Mikael were chosen as members to the band because they were close friends with the same taste of heavy music." Initially the group was named Epic Irae but this soon changed to Quicksand Dream: "This was very much Göran's idea. He always felt Epic Irae to be an incorrect composition of Latin words that did not match grammatically. Such a nerd, ha, ha! Well, anyway… He had received the then newly released Necromandus vinyl (originally recorded 1973-74 and produced by Tony Iommi) and the name Quicksand Dream came from that one. It later became known that it was a bootleg and has now been released under the name 'Orexis Of Death' on Black Widow, so maybe we have to change our name again … ha, ha!" However, Epic Irae did record some demos, as Patrick explains: "We actually recorded three full-length demos: 'Ballet Of Desolation' (1989-90), 'One Cloudy Day' (1990-91) and 'A Lonely World' (not really sure of the years here, but around 1991-93). The first two were released and shared amongst friends, but also sent to a couple of fanzines for reviews. The third was never really finished until after the band disbanded in spring 1993. I did some additional recordings on guitar and some vocal tracks were also finalized by Göran, probably during summer 1993. This last demo was never actually released due to obvious reasons. Apart from the demos, we recorded some songs separately and we also videotaped four live appearances, covering songs like 'Open The Gates' and 'Divine Victim' (Manilla Road) and 'Come To The Sabbath' (Black Widow). Speaking of covers, we also did 'Electric Funeral' (Black Sabbath) both live and on our third, never released demo." So epic bands like Manilla Road have quite obviously been an influence on the multi-instrumentalist: "Regarding musical influences, I guess that bands like Manilla Road, Iron Maiden and Fates Warning (early Fates Warning in particular…) have always been close to my heart. But also bands Like Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Thin Lizzy and far too many to mention here … also have an impact on the music we create." Are there any Swedish bands which influenced Qucicksand Dream musically? Maybe Heavy Load? Patrick denies: "I don't think we had heard of them back when we started the band. The major inspiration from Swedish bands was from Candlemass, Nemesis and possibly also Stillborn. Well, maybe also early 220 Volt and Sadwings which inspired Göran to start writing his own music in the early '80's."
In 1993, two songs of Quicksand Dream were released on the "Metal North" compilation. Patrick confirms: "It was released by Massproduktion, a local Sundsvall label. This was their first Metal album, earlier they had released mostly Punk/Pop/New Wave etc. Prior to this album there had been a local Metal festival with some five bands or so. I guess this was where Massproduktion saw the potential of making an album. We were asked to participate with two songs and so we did!"
In the year 2000 Quicksand Dream released "Aelin - A Story About Destiny" as a CD-R with a circulation of 30 copies only. Originally, the music was only meant to be listened to by Patrick's inner circle of friends: "I was, and still am, totally addicted to making music and a couple of songs had already been tried out by the band back in early the '90's. I had some ideas on how to complete the story and I began building my home studio. I also started the long process of recording and re-recording the music and writing the lyrics for it. I hooked up with Göran once again and let him do all vocals when all the music and arrangements were ready. Everything, including the 16 page booklet in full colour, is home-made … with the technical equipment we had at hand ten years ago, I decided to only make 30 copies. A couple were sent to labels, a couple were sent to magazines, some were sent to connections within the music industry but most were shared to the closest circle of friends. After that nine years passed and finally I decided to share our work with the world on Myspace instead of letting it only collect dust in my drawer. And here we are, all of a sudden, with many people really enjoying it! An awesome feeling I must admit." Not surprisingly, "Aelin - A Story About Destiny" is a concept album: "Yes, it's a complete story from start to end. The lyrics are quite fantasy-oriented and have their origin from a song on our first demo. It's a story of magic and dreams, wherein the young sorcerer-to-be, Aelin, is thrown between the choices of following his heart and sail the oceans or to follow the path destined by The Mighty One, to study sorcery under the supervision of the Old Sorcerer."
As Quicksand Dream only consists of two musicians (plus a session keyboarder), can we call them a real band or just a studio project? Patrick reflects: "Well, I guess back in the days we were just a couple of guys that loved making music, rehearsing and playing live. From 1989 to 1991 we played live on six occasions, so to say we were a touring band might be a bit exaggerated. Between 1993 and 2000 we were a two-piece project and from 2009 things have been happening really fast these last three months. We have the vinyl release on High Roller Records and we are also working to complete a CD deal for the album as well with another label, something that hopefully is official in the very near future. Right now I am working hard to get a full line-up ready to start rehearse old and new music to be able to perform live shows."
Patrick and Göran have never played in any other bands before Quicksand Dream (or Epic Irae): "Neither I nor Göran have been in any other bands prior to Quicksand Dream, but I now play in another band as well called Mortalicum. This is a band that I started as a project in 2006 but which is now a full band. I would describe it as a heavier, more straightforward and old-school Doom-rocking version of Quicksand Dream. But, speaking of musical style, I promise you that Quicksand Dream is quite diverse in that matter. We are now working on music that ranges from heads-on Heavy Metal to more doomy tunes, but I guess that's the way it has always been … dramatic and epic but without being bombastic and pompous. Heavy as hell, still rather gentle …. that's Quicksand Dream!"