Forever Still – Interview

Forever Still are a “Rock” group from Copenhagen, Denmark, who I stumbled on quite by chance (and very glad that I did too). I say I stumbled, but it may even be the other way around. A lot of bands go on a massive “add everybody” mission when the start on Twitter, and then, silently start unfollowing people to maintain an artificially high “Followers” to “Following” ratio. Many people don’t bother checking, but I do. When a band follows me I see if they stay following for a little while. I then send a message to see if I get the usual cut and paste reply comes back at me. If it’s all good after that I check out the music, and it has to be said, very impressed by Forever Still.

There are numerous comparisons between them and Lacuna Coil / Evanescence, and that’s maybe selling them a bit short. Sure, yes, there are similarities, of course there are, it’s the same genre of music, but there is enough in them to distinguish them in their own right. All they need is more people exploring the internet for music to find them.

Maja was kind enough to agree to answer my questions in our bid to find out more!

Could you tell us a little bit about how the band formed, and how you chose the name for the band?

I met my co writer, Mikkel, at a show back in 2010, and shortly after, we started writing together. We had great chemistry, and I felt like the music we created came from a similar place. We wanted the band name to mean something, just like the music does. “Forever Still” is the feeling of standing still and not knowing how to move on, while the rest of the world doesn’t even seem to notice. When you’re stuck in a really dark place in your life, it can feel like it’s going to last for an eternity. It’s not. There’s always light somewhere out there, even when it’s hardly noticeable.

When did you all start playing musical instruments, and how did you discover you had a very good talent for them?

I’ve enjoyed singing since I was a young child, and around age 11 I started working in a girls choir. Since then I moved on to musical theatre and then rock music, and rock music took my heart. In my early teens I wanted to work in musical theatre, since I enjoyed singing, dancing, and acting, but everybody told me it was a risky a business with too few job opportunities, so I never went for it. Finally I let my heart choose, and I went for the rock music full force and I haven’t regretted it one day of my life.

If you can remember the very first time you all got together as a band and practised, how did it sound and how did you feel?

Haha uhm, since Mikkel and I started the band just the two of us, I guess it was a little weird meeting up with people we didn’t even know and have them play our songs for the first time. I think everyone was a bit nervous. Luckily we’ve developed a lot since then, and I daresay it sounds a lot better now!

Is it useful having comparisons with Lacuna Coil and Evanescence being made or do you prefer people to see beyond those?

It’s always good for a potential listener to have other bands to compare the sound to. It’s also a natural way to describe to people around us, what a certain band sounds like for them to decide, if they want to listen to it or not. Both we and our fans feel that even though there are similarities, we’re still very different from both of those bands.

You recently toured the UK, how was that for you?

That was absolutely great! We’ve wanted to visit our fans in the UK for a long time, so it was amazing finally to get the opportunity. It was an awesome feeling to meet people we’ve talked with for months and sometimes even years. We’re going back for a festival in Sheffield this fall, and we can’t wait to see both new and familiar faces.

Do you ever see fans at multiple gig venues and how does it feel when you know you have fans who think so much of you?

Yeah definitely, we see a lot of familiar faces and also had fans going to several gigs on the UK tour. I think it’s fantastic! Truly. I’m so happy that there are people out there who love the music as much as we do! What I heard from the fans was that all the concerts were still different in their own way, and this is what we strive to do, when we play a live show. We want it to be a unique experience everytime.

Your latest EP is “Save Me”, could you tell us a little bit about the themes of the tracks on there?

The Save Me EP is part two of our concept album about an individual struggling through anxiety, depression, worthlessness, and possible self discovery in the end. Part one was Scars, which was very dark, where Save Me is a roller coaster of emotions, which is not too uncommon when you’re trying to go from worse to better. One moment you think you’re doing better, and the next you’re stuck in a hole even deeper than the one you came up from. No one ever said it was easy.

With the previous themes of your albums, do you get a lot of feedback from fans sharing their own experiences? How do you react / deal with that?

Yeah, we always have.. I guess it’s very common with emotional music like ours that many people are able to connect with it on a deeper level and have it help them heal. I think it’s humbling yet the best feeling in the world, when something that has helped you heal can comfort someone else in their struggles. The most important thing I tell everyone who come to me with their personal problems is that is does get better, even when you believe it won’t.

I read that the plan was to release a trilogy of EP’s from which, an album would be compiled. Is that still the plan, and if so, how is work progressing on that?

It absolutely is! As a concept album, it just made a lot of sense to us to release the album like that, since we go through different stages in our lives, especially when experiencing dramatic changes. In late April we released part 2, and part 3 will come out with the full album this fall. We knew from the start how we wanted the story to progress, so we’re super excited to end the trilogy and allow the audience to experience the full story at the same time.

If I remember correctly, you all still work full time? What do you all do, and how do you manage to keep a healthy balance between work and the band?

That’s the truth, and from what I experience, most people don’t expect that at all. I work in a small office. It doesn’t sound like the coolest thing, but I think it’s really important for the fans to understand that even when you’re really good at what you do, it doesn’t mean that you make a living doing it. There’s not a lot of money in the music industry, yet so many people are out to get them. It’s really tough to make it all work out as a completely independent artist, so fan support means even more than the fans maybe realize. And I’m not just speaking financially, but sharing our content and helping us reach a larger audience. Everything helps.

I work my day job as little as I possibly can while still being able to pay the rent, and spend every other minute of every day working on the music. It’s necessary to put in hours and hours of hard work to succeed. Nothing’s gonna come easy.

What so far has been the biggest challenge for Forever Still?

Being self sufficient in everything. We manage ourselves, book shows, record, mix, master, do videos, art – you name it, we do it. It’s really hard work all day everyday, and we could definitely do with more hours in a day. The positive side is that we’re able to make everything an extension of the music we write, and it all becomes even more personal and stays connected through everything. I’ve never had a doubt in my mind that it’s all worth it.

What’s been the best bit of advice you’ve ever received and who gave it to you?

The superintendent at my music school used to say: “Sit while you sit, stand while you stand, and walk while you walk”. That came to mean a lot to me, and I carry it with me to this day.

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