Jesper Strömblad

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Jesper Strömblad
Jesper-s.jpg
Jesper Stromblad in 2013
Background information
Birth nameClas Håkan Jesper Strömblad[1]
Born (1972-11-28) 28 November 1972 (age 45)
Gothenburg, Sweden
GenresMelodic death metal, death metal, thrash metal, power metal, heavy metal, alternative metal
Occupation(s)Musician, songwriter
InstrumentsGuitar, drums, keyboards, bass, Hammond organ
Years active1989–present
LabelsNuclear Blast, Ferret Music, Wrong Again, Regain
Associated actsIn Flames, Dimension Zero, HammerFall, Sinergy, Ceremonial Oath, All Ends, The Resistance, Nightrage, Cyhra

Clas Håkan Jesper Strömblad (born 28 November 1972) is a Swedish musician who is the guitarist of the bands Dimension Zero and Cyhra, formerly In Flames and The Resistance. He is best known as founder and former guitarist/drummer/keyboardist of the Swedish pioneering melodic death metal band In Flames, guitarist of the band Sinergy, bassist of Ceremonial Oath and drummer of HammerFall. In 2013 he joined MDM band Nightrage as a session guitarist.[2]

In March 2004, Strömblad (along with Björn Gelotte) was ranked No. 70 out of 100 Greatest Heavy Metal Guitarists of all time by Guitar World.[3]

Background and early life[edit]

Strömblad began playing music at age 4, with a violin he played until age 12,[4] when he no longer considered the violin a 'cool' instrument to play and began playing guitar instead.[4]

Ceremonial Oath[edit]

In 1990, Strömblad became the new bass player of the band once known as "Striker" (although he was not in the band under that name), then "Desecrator" and finally Ceremonial Oath where he quit by 1993 after not being able to have at least some control in the band. The band disbanded in 1996, but in 2012, it was announced the band reunited for an appearance at the inaugural edition of The Gothenburg Sound festival, that took place 5–6 January 2013 at Trädgår'n in Gothenburg, Sweden, with Strömblad back in the band.

In Flames[edit]

During 1993, his last year in Ceremonial Oath, he wanted to write music and combine melodies inspired by Iron Maiden, with the brutality of death metal; something which Jesper stated he had never heard any band do. Now free to control a band, he formed his first one, In Flames, which was considered a side project. The first demo he made with the band was shipped off to the owner of Wrong Again Records, who liked it so much that the owner spoke to the members of In Flames and with the pressure of being signed, the band lied stating they had 13 songs done; intrigued, the band got the deal over the phone. He started in the band as the drummer but switched to guitar by the next year.

On 3 February 2009, the band's website inflames.com announced that Jesper would not be participating in the Australia/South America/Japan tour in order to get treatment for his alcohol abuse problems. Niklas Engelin was announced as his replacement for the tour. On 12 February 2010, the same problem that he had in 2009, he announced that he was leaving In Flames permanently for personal problems and health issues.

Jesper's comment on the situation was:

I have decided it is best for me to leave in Flames and to quit the band permanently.

The last 17 years have been a blast, and I am proud to have been part of this great journey, with the most talented and amazing people anyone can wish to have the privilege to work with.

I'm also the luckiest guy in the world, to have the BEST fans in the world, who have been supporting me during my difficult times. It means the world to me, and I'm determined to fight and defeat my demons once and for all.... and by the help from you guys, I'm on my way.

I'm far from done with music, metal, or whatever my direction is taking me, so be sure to hear from me in the future.

… May the Force be with you![5][6]

— Jesper Strömblad

HammerFall[edit]

Oscar Dronjak also of Ceremonial Oath, formed a new band being HammerFall inviting Strömblad as the drummer in 1993. He is falsely listed as the drummer on their album Glory to the Brave for an unknown reason when the real drummer on the album was Patrik Räfling; the album was released in 1997 when Strömblad left, although he still helped the band write songs later on.

Dimension Zero[edit]

In 1995, Strömblad formed his second side project which he started with former In Flames guitarist Glenn Ljungström, first being known as Agent Orange then Dimension Zero, which he is the guitarist (formerly bassist) of the band, but the band has been on hiatus since 2008. In May 2014, Dimension Zero was confirmed for the 2015 edition of the Gothenburg Sound Festival, at Trädgårn.[7]

Sinergy[edit]

In 1997, when Kimberly Goss was in Dimmu Borgir they did a joint tour with In Flames. Goss spoke to Strömblad about forming a female fronted band, but due to time constraints, they were unable to get together. When Goss quit Dimmu Borgir and moved to Sweden, the duo recorded the album Beware the Heavens.

All Ends[edit]

In 2003, Strömblad and his then In Flames bandmate Björn Gelotte formed another side project called All Ends, for which they both wrote the music. They recorded a demo although neither had intended to be part of the group, due to In Flames' demanding schedule.

The Resistance[edit]

After playing Call of Duty online with Marco Aro from The Haunted, Strömblad discussed to Aro about forming a new band in which Aro joined; that band is The Resistance, alongside fellow former In Flames guitarist Glenn Ljungström, Alex Losbäck Holstad of Despite, and Chris Barkensjö of Carnal Forge, forming in 2011. Strömblad left the resistance on March 1st, 2016.

Side projects[edit]

Strömblad was working on another side project together with Roland Johansson, former singer of the Swedish metal band Sonic Syndicate.[8]

In 2012, the Swedish movie Isdraken, directed by Martin Högdahl and for which Strömblad composed the original music was released in theatres.[9]

Guest appearances[edit]

  • 1997 – Withering Surface – "Scarlet Silhouettes": Guitar Solo at "Scarlet Silhouettes"
  • 1997 – Misanthrope – "Visionnaire": Guitar solo at "Hypochondrium Forces"
  • 1998 – Exhumation – "Dance Across the Past": Guitar Solo at "Images of Our Extinction"
  • 1999 – Grievance – "The Phantom Novels"
  • 2007 – Annihilator – "Metal": Guitar Solo at "Haunted"
  • 2013 – Angelica – "Thrive": Guitar Solo at "I Am Strong"
  • 2013/2014 – Nightrage – Session Live

Equipment[edit]

Strömblad currently uses Cort Guitars guitars.[10] Before the release of Reroute to Remain, Jesper was an endorser of ESP using his signature variant of the EX series until he switched to Gibson guitars with his bandmate Björn Gelotte. He switched to Gibson for the release of Reroute To Remain, but returned to ESP for the recording of Soundtrack To Your Escape. Strömblad returned to Gibson after the release of Come Clarity. Jesper used the Gibson Flying V and Explorer Voodoo models, as well as some Gibson Gothic Explorer II's. Since his departure from In Flames and his subsequent formation of The Resistance Strömblad has been playing the Cort Z-Custom 2.[11]

Jesper is known for using the Peavey 5150/6505 amp.[6] Strömblad also uses a Line 6 rack-mounted POD just like Gelotte.[6]

Discography[edit]

with Ceremonial Oath

with In Flames

  • Lunar Strain (1994)
  • The Jester Race (1996)
  • Whoracle (1997)
  • Colony (1999)
  • Clayman (2000)
  • Reroute to Remain (2002)
  • Soundtrack to Your Escape (2004)
  • Come Clarity (2006)
  • A Sense of Purpose (2008)

With HammerFall (songwriting credits)

With Sinergy

Beware the Heavens (1999)

With All Ends (songwriting credits)

  • Wasting Life (2007, EP)
  • All Ends (2007)
  • A Road To Depression (2010)

With The Resistance

  • Rise from Treason (2013, EP)
  • Scars (2013)

With Cyhra

  • Letters to Myself (2017, LP)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ratsit – Gratis upplysning pĺ företag och privatpersoner". Ratsit.se. 28 November 1972. Retrieved 2011-08-17.
  2. ^ "Nightrage". www.facebook.com.
  3. ^ "GUITAR WORLD's 100 Greatest Heavy Metal Guitarists of All Time". Archived from the original on 2 September 2011.
  4. ^ a b Lady Enslain (1999). "Interview with Jesper Strömblad". Enslain. Retrieved 2007-06-23.
  5. ^ Stefanis, John (2004). "Interview: In Flames (Anders Friden and Peter Iwers)". Get Ready to Rock. Retrieved 2007-06-23.
  6. ^ a b c "In Flames Interview". Metal Pigeon. 17 July 2006. Archived from the original on 21 October 2006. Retrieved 2007-06-23.
  7. ^ "Sweden's DIMENSION ZERO To Reunite For Next Year's GOTHENBURG SOUND FESTIVAL". www.blabbermouth.net. May 7, 2014. Retrieved 2018-02-14.
  8. ^ "Roland Johansson's interview with Heavyhell". Archived from the original on 1 January 2009.
  9. ^ "Isdraken IMDb page".
  10. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 6 February 2014. Retrieved 5 February 2014. "Cort Guitars Signs Metal Guitarist Icon Jesper Strömblad", "Cort Guitars" , 2014-02-06
  11. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 6 February 2014. Retrieved 5 February 2014. "Jesper Strömblad Z-Custom 2", "Cort Guitars" , 2014-02-06

External links[edit]