Forever Still – Interview with Maja Schønning – April 2015

Forever Still

Forever Still is a band that has been on the PlanetMosh radar for quite some time. With the release of ‘Scars’ last year and an upcoming UK tour at the start of May; the time was right to catch up with lead singer Maja Schønning.

Hi Maja. Can you please give our readers the beginners guide to Forever Still. Where you are from, how you were founded and who’s in the band?

We’re a female fronted rock band from Copenhagen, Denmark. We’re 100% independent and fully in charge of our own recordings, artwork, videos, booking etc. I met my co writer, Mikkel Haastrup, at a show back in 2010. He sent me some instrumental music ideas, and I knew right away, I’d found someone with whom I could connect with on an emotional level, which is the founding component of our music. We added live musicians to the line up a few years later and have Dennis Post on guitar and Brion Wekin on drums.

Is there a particular meaning behind your band name?

There is, and it’s important to pick a good one, ‘cause it sticks with you! We wanted to have a band name which made sense to us and the music we make. “Forever Still” is the feeling of standing still and not knowing how to move on, while the world is rushing past you. When you’re stuck in a really dark place in your life, it can feel like it’s going to last for an eternity. We’re still here today, so it does get better, even though it can feel like it never will.

You’ve recently released the ‘Scars’ which PlanetMosh called “one of the most exciting new releases in the last 12 months”; can you give some more insight into the concepts behind its creation and the theme?

Haha yes, we even used that as a press quote, it was brilliant! The Scars EP is part one of a trilogy, which will be assembled to a full length concept album later this year. The album follows a suppressed individual struggling through depression, anxiety, worthlessness and in the end possible self discovery. The Scars EP is the dark beginning about coping with the deep marks, which the world has left on your mind and body. It confronts the feeling of wanting to die, being judged and the revenge you desperately want on the people who’ve hurt you so bad.

You worked with “The Master”, Flemming Rasmussen on your debut EP ‘Breaking Free’ How was that experience and what lessons did you learn here that helped when approaching ‘Scars’?

Flemming was great working with in the sense that he knew what he wanted, and was able to push the musicians until it was good enough. Being a perfectionist myself, this is honestly the only type of person I can work with in regards to my own music. I want everyone to do the best they possibly can, and only stop when we’re completely satisfied with the results. That’s how I work and that’s what I expect from the people I work with.

Mikkel is a trained sound engineer by Flemming, and has since then spent many years developing his own as well as our sound, so we felt very comfortable going into the recordings and mixing of the Scars EP. It was our hope that we, more than anyone else, would be able to make this release sound exactly like we wanted. We had a clear vision for the Scars EP, and we knew how to achieve it, and being fully in control all through the process has made me even happier with the final product. It’s just pure, raw emotion in sound!

What bands have influenced Forever Still on this musical journey?

All of our inspirations are extremely subconscious. I’m fully aware that we, as well as everyone else, is influenced by the music we listen to on a daily basis, but we’re so fueled by our own emotions and experiences that it’s hard to pinpoint exact outside inspirations. When writing music we dive deep into our own minds and write from there. The music we listen to is very varied and often out of our own genre, and changes often depending the mood we’re in. These days I’ve been listening to Jane’s Addiction, Flyleaf, Rasputina and The Smashing Pumpkins.

Speaking of influences and the current music scene; how is the state of the world in Denmark? Are there any bands you care to name check that you may have treaded the boards with that we might not be familiar with but you rate highly?

Honestly, the music scene in our genre is nothing to write home about. You don’t see many modern rock bands out of Denmark, and of course it’s a small country, but it’s also because the genre is not as appreciated. To put it into perspective, we’re the only female fronted rock band here. Denmark is really fond of easy listening dance/pop and folk/indie, and in the alternative genre, heavy metal is getting a lot more attention. I’ve seen really great bands play here and have a terrible turnout, which is why even many of the bigger bands skip Denmark when touring Europe. We look very much forward to going to the UK this spring, where the scene seems so much more alive.

Can you give us some highlights of your career so far? Any funny stories at the expense of other people (especially bandmates) are always welcome.

When we independently released our first EP “Breaking Free” in 2013, I definitely saw that as a big thing and a milestone. Then we released the Scars EP in 2014, and I felt the same way. Every time we put out something new in this world, it’s a piece of our heart and soul, and having people respond to that with as much emotion as there was put into it is simply amazing. We’ve played some amazing shows and festivals, and soon we’ll be visiting our fans in the UK for the first time, which is a definite highlight as well. I feel like we appreciate even the smallest things, so everything becomes a special moment and a highlight so to speak.

Would you care to share any details on upcoming shows?

You already know about the upcoming UK-tour starting at the end of April this year, which we’re incredibly excited about. We do have some festivals and shows in Europe confirmed this year as well, none of which are official yet unfortunately. We still want to visit our fans around the world and are soon getting around to planning our fall tour, and advice all of our fans who wanna see us live to Suggest Their City

We wanna go where you are, and we wanna meet as many as you as possible!!

Are you looking forward to the UK tour and what should people expect when they come to see you play live?

So so much! We’ve wanted to go to the UK for a long time, since we’ve had a growing fan base there for quite a while, and now we’ve finally made it possible! It seems surreal that it’s just a few weeks away, and we’re all incredibly excited every time people tell us that they’ve already got their tickets – sometimes even accompanied by pictures and everything!

We don’t want to just give you a show; we want to give you an experience. We try our best to make every night memorable and we project all our energy outwards, so the show leaves the stage and becomes part of the crowd. We’ve often been told that even when we play a small stage; it feels like we’re playing a stadium. So that’s what you should expect from us. You can also expect to hear your favourite songs as well as your new favourite songs! We’ll make sure to post a set list to our sites real soon, so keep an eye out for that.

Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. What are the plans for Forever Still in 2015 and when can we expect the full length album?

It has been my absolute pleasure. I think I’ve already covered most of what we’re doing this year, but to sum it up: We’re planning on continuing The Open Wound Tour this fall with new cities on the map. Both part two and three of the concept album will be released this year and become a full, physical album as well.

Finally, where can people get their hands on your merchandise and EP’s?

You can find everything on our Bandcamp page – there’s digital EP’s, physical EP’s, t-shirts, tank tops and necklaces and even a few free downloads as well! If you have some things you wanna see in the merch shop, like items or cool designs, be sure to let us know!
Also head to where you can find all our social media links in the top banner – we love to talk!

Check out their latest single ‘Awake The Fire’ here

About Steve D

Dublin based editor, photographer and reviewer for PlanetMosh