Long-running Swedish punks Asta Kask have posted a couple new live tracks on their myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/astakask

Some new Scandinavian names added to the Hultsfred lineup: HIM, The Crash, The (International) Noise Conspiracy, Meshuggah, Asta Kask, Niccokick, Sugarplum Fairy and Rallypack.

Read a short, gushing review of the new album "Souvenirs" from the Netherland's The Gathering. As mentioned in therein, the album features guest appearances from Mathias Elk of Jaga Jazzist and Trickster G (Kris Rygg) of Ulver, and yes, I agree that it really is great.

Reviews and samples of new releases from Ulver, Katatonia, JR Ewing and more from Aquarius Records. Mailorder, too.

As already reported, Arve and Jarle from Supersilent will be appearing solo and as part of the Tord Gustavsen Trio on May 10 at the Maijazz festival in Stavanger, Norway. It's not confirmed that Supersilent themselves will also be playing the fest on the day before. In other news, Arve makes a guest appearance on the new Jørn Simen Øverli album "Pengenes Oppmuntrende Virkning" along with Stian Carstensen from Farmers Market.

Mustasch is entering the studio on April 22 to record a new album under the tutelage of producer Jacob Hellner (credits include Rammstein, Clawfinger, and Fläskkvartetten). They expect to have it out around fall.

Here's an interview with Ebbot from TSOOL talking about touring the US among other things. (in Swedish)

25 years ago the first Swedish punk single "Vårdad klädsel" from Kriminella Gitarrer came out. There's gonna be a show celebrating this event at Vågen in Göteborg on October 4 featuring Brända Barn, Asta Kask, Attentat, Stry Terrarie and Freddie Wadling plus more to be announced. Tickets go on sale April 11.

This week's MTV Up North Nordic video chart:

01. The Rasmus - In The Shadows
02. Mew - Comforting Sounds
03. Kwan - Shine
04. Kashmir - Surfing The Warm Industry
05. A-ha - The Sun Always Shines On TV
06. C21 - You Are The One
07. Bertine Zetlitz - Girl Like You
08. Roxette - Opportunity Nox
09. Winta - Emotions
10. The Cardigans - For What It´s Worth

01. Left Lane - Walk after you
02. HIM - Funeral of harts
03. Ralph Meyrz & The Jack Herren Band - Think Twice
04. Whyte Seeds - Slow motions
05. Don Diego - Min lat

Go to the MTVE.com site to watch and vote for your favorite.

Lotta will be playing Tavastia in Helsinki on April 15 with Buddaboys. Even better, Yle Radio X3M will be broadcasting the show live.

Orange Crunch has a new EP coming out on Dead Frog in May. They play Alcazar in Stockholm tomorrow night, too.

The Svensk Rockarkiv will be making a roadshow appearance at Hultsfred fest this year. The archive was started in 1993 as a place to keep documentaries, photos, records and so on from all sorts Swedish artists through the ages.

The winners of the 2002 SAMA awards have been announced:

Best newcomer: Melody Club
Best song: Melody Club – Electric
Best album: Covenant – Northern Light
Best artist: Apoptygma Berzerk

Read more about the SAMAs here.

Download an mp3 of Randy's new single "A Man in Uniform". The new album "Welfare Problems" comes out April 14 on Burning Heart.

Hedningarna, Radio Dept., Tyskarna från Lund, Colony 5, Kamera, Interlace, Stairland, Magenta, Necton and The Celophane Flowers are few of the new Nordic bands confirmed for the upcoming Arvika Festival. Other new bands confirmed include Ministry, Mono and DAF.

The final list of nominees for the Swedish hip-hop awards has been announced. Go here for the full list. The ceremony will April 25 at Nalen in Stockholm. Performing live will be Spotrunnaz, Prominent, Don Diego, Peshi, DJ Confuse, Narcissists, Ison & Fille & Hemmalaget, Ken & BB Entertainment, Sam-E, and Timbuktu.

Speaking of Timbuktu, he'll be hitting the road in May along with Chords, DJ Amato and the live-band Damn!. The dates:

5/6 - Stockholm, Göta källare
5/7 - Göteborg, Nefertiti
5/8 - Göteborg, Nefertiti
5/9 - Malmö, KB

Here's a short interview with Jocke Ahlunds from The Caesars talking about the filming of the video for "Jerk it Out" in Havana, Cuba. You can also view the video from that page, too. (in English)

Check this article on up-and-coming Swedish pop groups Franke, Laakso, José Gonzales, The Embassy, Radio Dept., and Her Majesty from Dagens Nyeter. (in Swedish)

Ulf Lundell is hitting the road this summer:

7/4 - Varberg, Fästningen
7/5 - Sundsvall, Gatufesten
7/6 - Leksand, Sammilsdal
7/8 - Visby, Kneippbyn
7/11 - Christinehofs Slott
7/17 - Stockholm, Skansen
7/19 - Karlstad, Mariebergsskogen
7/22 - Borgholm, Slottsruinen
7/24 - Karlskrona, Bastion Aurora
7/25 - Västervik, Gränsö Slott
7/26 - Halmstad, Brottet
7/29 - Fjällbacka, Hamnen
8/1 - Uppsala, Fyrishovsparken
8/2 - Mariestad, Folkets Park
8/8 - Norge, Wrightegaarden
8/9 - Norge, Fredrikstens Festning
8/10 - Norge, Oslo, Rockefeller
8/15 - Linköping, Slottsparken
8/16 - Göteborg, TrSdgsrdsföreningen

Finnish electronic act Mr. Velcro Fastener will be playing at The Egg in London on May 9.

Finland's Amorphis has signed a deal with Virgin Records to release their new self-produced album "Far From The Sun". It will come out May 20 with the first single "Day Of Your Beliefs" coming later this month. Guitarist Esa Holopainen comments:

Having had to go through all the contractual differences in the past, the future does really look bright at the moment. The process of making the album was easy and the schedule for the summer and autumn live dates is developing steadily. We aim to play European festivals over the summer and hit the road on our own in the fall.

Despite the recent death of guitarist Teemu "Somnium" Raimoranta, Finntroll has decided to soldier on with their upcoming European tour with Katatonia. The official statement:

We do this with heavy hearts, as the sudden loss of Teemu 'Somnium' Raimoranta, a close friend and one of the leading forces behind this band, gave us a blow from which the recovery will take a long time. We feel that dropping everything now, canceling the tour and all the plans we together agreed for this band, would be an insult on Teemu's memory. Going back on the road was also the particular wish of his family and close ones. We feel that this is the best way to honor our friends' memory, taking the music out to the fans. On the following gigs the second guitar will be played by a long-time friend for all of us, Mikael Karlbom (The Seventh Planet), who has played as a stand-in guitarist for us several times in the past.
During the tour, we wish some courtesy on the part of fans, members of the press and others concerning questions about Teemu's departing, future of the band and such. We will share information in due time.
Thanks to all those who have contacted us, expressed their condolences and honored our brother's memory.

Christian Kjellvander will be playing the opening of the Handikappåret 2003 at the Kulturhuset in Stockholm on April 11.

The Caesars are heading back to the UK in May with the French Kicks. The dates:

5/11 - Oxford, Zodiac
5/14 Manchester, Roadhouse

The Swedish pop group Natural scored a number 2 position on the Japanese radio charts last week with the tune "Put Your Arms Around Me".

Charlie's Magazine will release their new album "Traffic" on April 22. The female-fronted band previously enjoyed a taste of success with the single "Sweet Alibi" back in 2001.