For 30 years, Backyard Babies has delivered top of the line rock'n'roll, both live and recorded. The fact that the original four guys that started the band still are playing together, is next to unique. The new album "Sliver & Gold" was recorded in the classic Park Studios (also known as the "Psych Bunker") and produced by the legendary Chips Kiesbye (known from Sator among others). Fittingly, the first single from the album - ”Shovin’ Rocks" - is about "30 years of rock’n'roll". But let's take it from the top.
It does not happen much on the music scene in the small town of Nässjö in southern Sweden, where the band is from. Frankly, nothing much at all happens in Nässjö. This is a long time before the internet and smartphones became main staples in more or less every person’s life. At this time MTV is the window to the music world outside of Sweden's (or again, outside the municipality to be honest) borders. For those who like hard rock, the program "Headbangers Ball" is the highlight of the week, where bands such as Guns n Roses, Mötley Crüe and Skid Row dominate the top lists.
The childhood friends Peder Carlsson, Dregen and Johan Blomquist have played in the band Tyrant for a couple of years. But after agreeing that the band's singer doesn’t really fit in, they fire him. The replacement? Enter Nicke Borg, who has had his eyes on Tyrant for a while. The new lineup eventually decides to change the name of the band – and Backyard Babies are born.
30 years of rock n roll
The 80's is a decade when many dream of a rock star life and for most that is exactly what it remains to be – a dream, however vivid. But Backyard Babies understand that it requires hard work, persistent ”nagging” and a lot of networking to reach the absolute top. The ambition was set high from the very start. The band records demos and they manage to release their first EP ”Something to Swallow” on their own. After a few years the band realise that they must make a name for themselves outside their home county.
Nicke, Peder, Johan and Dregen enter a pact - they will breakup with their girlfriends and focus all their energy on the band. They will move to Sweden's capital, Stockholm. The goal is crystal clear - Backyard Babies shall succeed. They will be rock stars. In their new hometown, the band quickly builds a life consisting of intense repetition and equally intense partying, whether it's a weekday or weekend. In Stockholm's nightlife, they develop new contacts and one thing leads to another. Backyard Babies finally sign a record contract with Megarock Records and in 1994, they release their debut album - aptly titled "Diesel & Power”.
But in the mid 1990's, grunge has taken over the rock scene. It will take another few years before Backyard Babies gets their real big breakthrough. With "Total 13" (1998) the audience receives a dirtier, angrier sequel. It hits home, the group collects its first golden record and wipes the floor at the Swedish Grammy Awards that year. They tour Asia, USA and Europe and manage to support hall of fame icon Alice Cooper.
With ”Making Enemies Is Good” (2001), produced by Thomas Skogsberg, Backyard Babies further amplify their status as Sweden's most successful rock band. They get top rankings, one after the other, the single "Brand New Hate" becomes a hit and they win another Swedish Grammy. The band also performs on a major European tour as main support for AC/DC. With the radio hits "Minus Celsius" and "A Song For The Outcast", the band reaches an even wider audience. Both singles receive heavy airplay on the radio as well as frequent screenings on various tv shows. The album "Stockholm Syndrome" (2003) becomes a success, despite the fact that record sales in general are decreasing. Backyard Babies continue to tour the world, with
Velvet Revolver among others. The friend and multi-faceted artist Nicke Andersson (Entombed, The Hellacopters, Imperial State Electric, etc.) produces Backyard Babies fifth studio album "People Like People Like People Like Us", released in 2006. A record that sounds exactly as much rock n roll as it should, when
Andersson is behind the levers and knobs. The singles "The Mess Age" and "Dysfunctional
Professional" are both highly successful. Even in the best of families, friction and conflict may arise. Backyard babies - having lived closer to each other than siblings for more than a decade while touring constantly - is no exception. When the self-titled album "Backyard Babies" is released in 2008, many people fear that it will be the band's last effort. However, there is no trace of exhaustion or weariness. On the contrary, the self titled piece serves up a vital cocktail of songs such as "Fuck Off and Die", "Abandon" and “Nomadic" – all loved by fans of the band. The following year, the band announce that they are taking a break for an indefinite period of time. A career-spanning collection of hits - "Them XX" - will be the swan song before Nicke, Dregen, Peder and Johan finally ”get divorced”. "Them XX", which summarizes the 20-year history of the band, is also released as a photo book with accompanying CDs and DVDs. The break proves to be much needed for Backyard Babies. They get the time to develop as musicians and songwriters individually, but also as people. Dregen and Nicke both find themselves leading solo projects the former even puts out an autobiography in print.
Skip forward to 2015 that sees a well rested and energized band make their much awaited comeback with the album "Four By Four" - featuring the single "Th1rt3en or Nothing". Soon Backyard Babies find themselves back on the road for a two year stint, including touring with none others than Guns N’ Roses.
Three decades later, Backyard Babies find that the move from Nässjö to Stockholm was just the starting shot. Today, the band has the whole world as their ”play ground”. And if their career is similar to a three course menu, they haven’t even covered the main course yet. "Sliver & Gold" is Backyard Babies’ eighth studio album, but hardly their last. Energetic and powerful, the band prove that they´re in better shape than ever and most certainly have enough material to last the coming 30 years. "This time the band joined forces under a shorter amount of time and wrote the most intense and furious album to date with accurate lyrics and trademark riffs.” - Nicke Borg
”After all these years touring and making music together, we still love what we do. And still we find new ways musically. Sliver & Gold sounds like classic Backyard Babies but with a total new set of spices. And they are damn hot!” - Dregen