Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation) on RockOverdose: “Today we know more what we want and do what we need to do in order to fulfil our aims.”

The Norwegian progressive metalers Green Carnation are visiting Greece for the first time on two special shows in Thessaloniki and Athens together with the mighty Moonspell on their special anniversary tour.

Frontman Kjetil Nordhus answers our questions on their very first appearances in Greece, their latest album plus a whole lot more. Read the full interview.


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RockOverdose: “Leaves Of Yesteryear” came out in 2020. It marked your return to discography, being your first album in 14 years. Looking back, are you pleased with the end result and its reception?



Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): Yes, I think we couldn’t have asked for more. It was a weird time to release our first album for 14 years, being a couple of months into a whole new situation for the entire world, but I don’t think we lost too much on that. Maybe people had more time to check new music, because I think we managed to spread the word a lot, of course helped by our label Season of Mist.




RockOverdose: You'll be playing two shows here in Athens and Thessaloniki, along with the mighty Moonspell. Although the greek audience has had the chance of seeing Moonspell perform numerous times through the years, this will be your very first appearances in Greece. It kind of baffles me that it took you so long to be honest, because you have a dedicated following here. What should we expect from Green Carnation on stage?



Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): It has kind of baffled us too, honestly. Especially since our comeback in 2016, trying to book shows in Greece has been one of our main priorities. And it hasn’t been lack of interest either, just a long line of different obstacles. I guess all that just makes it feel even sweeter now when it is happening at last.


What to expect from us on stage? We have been preparing a set that touches into all of our albums one way or another, and it is a set where we have been working a lot with getting the different components to fit so well together that it feels like one experience, from start to end.



RockOverdose: Moonspell will be playing two sets: an acoustic one plus a full on electric show.

 Obviously, you've delved into both areas. You re-released “The Acoustic Verses” recently and you did a short acoustic tour earlier this year. Would you consider doing a show or tour showcasing both sides of the band in such a way, playing two different sets, like Moonspell?



Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): Yes, the crowd on these shows will certainly get value for money. It is certainly something worth consider, and we will be doing something in that direction next year at ProgPower USA, playing a full electronic set one day and an acoustic set the day after.



RockOverdose:After these shows you' ll be travelling to The Netherlands for three concerts with The Gathering. Do you find it flattering that prestigious bands like Moonspell and The Gathering are inviting Green Carnation to play with them?


Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): Yes, we find it very flattering, to be honest. Both those band have been important to me personally, and it fills me with pride to know that Moonspell and The Gathering acknowledge what we are doing and want us to play with them. It makes the five shows in November even more special for us, to be honest.



RockOverdose:I noticed that there is a use of bouzouki in your live perfomance of the song “Lullaby In Winter”, an instrument used predominantly in greek and middle eastern music. How did that come about?



Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): Our guitarist Michael Krumins has been into world music for many years, and he is the one who brought the Greek bouzouki into the band. Even before he joined the band, Green Carnation had been flirting with music from other sides of the world (for example the “Indian” theme in “Light of Day, Day of Darkness”. And I can reveal that we have made something special for our Greek fans for the shows in November. Hope you’ll like it.




RockOverdose:The band paused activities for a long period of time between 2007-2014. What was the motivating factor of getting the band back together and what are the main differences between these two eras of Green Carnation?


Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): In 2007 we didn’t pause band, we quit. It was never a plan to come back at all. We talked together in 2012-13 when the offer came to do the Under the Dam show in 2014, and we decided to see how it was to play together again. It felt so good that we decided to do the 15th anniversary of “Light of Day, Day of Darkness” in 2016, and then conclude after that if we were to continue. Obviously we did and I do think the only difference between the two eras of Green Carnation is that we have are a bit more strategic now. In the first era we did what we wanted all the time without having thought too much on what we wanted out of it, while I think today we know more what we want and do what we need to do in order to fulfil our aims.



RockOverdose: Around the time you disbanded there was talk of a new trilogy called "The Rise And Fall Of Mankind". Was there any music written for it and if so are you considering releasing it down the line in some way or form?


 Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): That’s a big question, with many answers. In the time of disbanding there wasn’t really a lot of music written for that. After coming back we have been working on short term projects and also a longer term one. If that will be the trilogy we talked about in 2007 or something else is hard to say right now, but the idea is still there, somewhere.



RockOverdose: Green Carnation is a band that's never made the same album twice and has experimented with various styles throughout the years. I was wondering if that's a conscious decision. Do you pause and ask yourselves: "Ok, where do we go from here ?" or is it more of a natural process? How important is for the band to not be confined within the strict boundaries of a certain niche?



Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): I think that was the main reason why we disbanded in 2007. We didn’t know where to go after “Acoustic Verses”. But until then it was a natural process between each and every album. That was just the way it had to be. There aren’t many bands who can survive with very strict boundaries, and Green Carnation certainly wouldn’t have.




RockOverdose: How are things going for Green Carnation nowadays songwriting wise? Are you looking to build on the momentum of “Leaves Of Yesteryear” with a new album?


Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): We have been writing music constantly since “Leaves of Yesteryear” and we are discussing with the label what would be the best next step. We lost a lot of momentum after releasing “Leaves of Yesteryear” because we couldn’t go out on tour for 2,5 years. And even now the live market is extremely challenging. Festival line ups being full because of postponements and extreme amount of bands on the road this year and the next. And I guess also in 2024. So I think we will continue writing new music and we will figure out our next step when the time is right.


RockOverdose: I want to thank you very much for your time! I hope to see you soon in Athens. Any last words for the readers of Rock Overdose?


Kjetil Nordhus (Green Carnation): Thank you for your question. It has been a pleasure answering. Green Carnation is really looking forward to coming to Greece for the first time. Hope to see as many as possible there. And – hope to see you in Athens 😊




MOONSPELL (acoustic + full electric set) + GREEN CARNATION - Live in Athens (Fuzz Club, 21/11/2022)


Tickets can be found here 👇




Questions: Dimitris Soursos