This year's edition of Inferno festival in Oslo, is about to start and I asked some questions to Runar Pettersen from the organisation.
BRS – Hello and thanks to answer some questions about this amazing festival, in Oslo. Could you start to present the origins of this festival. Where it started, who started and when?
Runar - Thanks! It was started in 2001 in Oslo at Rockefeller. So same location as is in use today. Jens Ryland from Borknagar was one of the co-founders alongside some of the people that still are in the festival today, like Jan-Martin, Lars Frode, Torje and Asgeir.
BRS – The festival will have 42 concerts this year. It was easy to bring all these bands to play in Oslo, in this time of the year?
Runar - Sure. We get many hundreds of offers from bands each year that wants to play. The only bands that can be tricky is the bigger bands from other parts of the world. Many of them is often on tour or in the studio at this time of the year. But basically we got a lot to choose from.
BRS – Being the oldest Norwegian metal festival, Inferno has to have some crazy stories. Could you tell me one of these stories?
Runar - There is a lot of fun stories, but they are not that crazy as most things has always gone pretty nicely. For some reason people that visit Inferno Metal Festival is mostly cool people. There was actually some guy that had to be carry out from the hotel bar very early at the Inferno Hotel, last year. But it turn out that he was not there for the festival or was even a metalhead. Just some guy that was there to drink and had no clue what was going on. It's the straith people who are the worst. Haha.
BRS – Inferno festival it isn’t only music. Could you tell more about what will happen in this year’s edition?
Runar - There is a lot of other things also happening. Most interesting is what is happening at Inferno Music Conference, where there will be all kind of things, from sightseeing to movie screening to drum clinic. We are also focusing at making an awesome party that will already start at noon, every day at the Inferno Hotel Royal Christiania.
BRS – Since the concerts will happen in different places, it’s easy to walk from one place to another to see all concerts or the spectators must choose what they want to see?
Runar - At the club night, on Wednesday there is several of clubs around in Oslo I use. But we have concentrated on having every club in the same area. The only club that is far from the others is Sentralen. The rest are only in one or two minutes walking distance. On the 3 main days, where we use two stages, the stages are in the same building just in different floors. So you only have to walk up and down some stairs. And none of the bands play at the same time, so you can see every bands on the main days.
BRS – The tickets, hotel prices and all in Norway costs much money. This is a festival, only for Norwegians or you think of foreigners too?
Runar - There is around 30 to 35 percent of our audience from other countries than Norway. We actually have more affordable ticket prices compare to many of the other festivals in Norway. And we also offer a very good discount at the Inferno Hotel Royal Christiania for our crowd. Beer and stuff like that is sadly not much we can do about.
BRS – This kind of festivals are also important to show the culture of the country. What will make this year in this regard?
Runar - Well, there is a sightseeing tour for the delegates at Inferno Music Conference. But Norwegian black metal has become a culture of its own. Fun fact; people that work at Norwegian embassys around the world actually takes course in Norwegian black metal since it as become such an huge Norwgegian culture export. I kidd you not.
BRS – The festival will have the special nights dedicated to labels and their bands. How do you think that this is important to the labels and tell me more about these collaborations?
Runar - It is something several of the Norwegian labels like to do. It gives them a chance to show their artists to a bigger audience. We are working close with several of the labels anyway, so it is nice to let them have their own stage during the club night.
BRS – Daily tickets will give entry to see everything that will happen on that day, at the festival?
Runar - Yes. On the club night you will either need to have the 4-day pass, or a club ticket. Then you can walk freely from club to club. We have 16 bands playing this day, so you can just choose what you want to see.
BRS – Obviously, Mayhem is the major name what Norwegian black metal concerns. They are preparing something special for Inferno festival?
Runar - Yes, they are going to have a great show. The only thing they want to reveal at this time is that Maniac will be back as a guest vocalist. It is now 12 years since he left Mayhem, so that should be cool. And it is probably the first time for many of the younger fans to see Mayhem live with Maniac. Also on the same day, Saturday, Messiah and Manheim from Mayhem will perform with their new band Order. So Inferno Metal Festival 2016 is a must for all Mayhem fans.
BRS – Mysticum is another of the main attractions of the festival, just because they do not give many concerts. It was important to book this band to the festival?
Runar - It is always cool to have some of the bands that are rare to see live. And Mysticum has only perform on a small private club back in the days in Norway. So not many people has seen this band live. They are also doing a very special show where they will use all their fee and more to make an awesome show. So it will something that can't be missed.