GUEST PLAYLIST: Smash Into Pieces

By Gem Rogers

Eclectic Swedish electro-rockers Smash Into Pieces may not be a well known name on these shores yet, but with five albums and hundreds of millions of streams under their belts, there’s no denying their strength as a band – and with sixth album ‘A New Horizon’ arriving on 27th August, word is sure to spread soon, and fast. Bringing a thoughtfully constructed concept world together with music that manages to be both classic rock/metal and hypermodern, synth infused chaos, you’re unlikely to have heard anything like Smash Into Pieces before – so we caught up with vocalist Chris Adam Hedman Sörbye to find out more about his influences, favourite songs, and everything that led Smash Into Pieces to become the band they are today.

Pantera – ‘This Love’

‘Vulgar Display Of Power’ is probably THE most important album for me personally. Not only did my taste in music change the very day I heard this album, it also made me want to be in a band. The best part of this story is HOW I heard this album in the first place. Somewhere around 2002 I lived part-time at my moms house with her boyfriend. At the time I was listening to a lot of trance music and my mom’s boyfriend, who is a rocker, didn’t really enjoy that, so one day he said “That’s it! I’ve had enough! Go to your room and listen to this album and tell me what you think!”. Of course I gave him some resistance at first, but then reluctantly said OK. I started listening to it and when the fifth song ‘This Love’ came on I was hooked! Without him and this experience I would not be the singer in Smash Into Pieces today, and for that I will forever be grateful.

Savage Garden – ‘To The Moon And Back’

When I was around 9 or 10 in 1998 I discovered Savage Garden for the first time. I remember like it was yesterday, I went through my father’s CDs in the living room and the first few seconds of the intro for ‘To The Moon And Back’ I was TOTALLY hooked! I just loved the sound, production and vibe instantly. On our two latest albums, ‘Arcadia’ and [forthcoming album] ‘A New Horizon’ I thought; “OK, so who is Chris Adam? What does my heart and soul wanna do? What is MY voice?” To be honest, I didn’t even realise when I recorded these songs on these two albums what a huge impact Darren Hayes and his voice had on me at a very young age – go listen and you understand what I mean, especially the song ‘Broken Parts’. The thing I really like with Savage Garden is how they managed to blend in some rock elements into the really poppy things. Love it! This song made me realise that I had a singing voice as well which is huge in and of itself.

Alter Bridge – ‘Broken Wings’

Alter Bridge and Myles Kennedy are the whole reason I’m singing professionally today. I was around 15 when I really started to explore my voice. At the time I had problems with me being a tenor and didn’t really enjoy my voice a lot because of it, but when I heard Myles Kennedy in ‘Broken Wings’ on their first album I thought, “If he can sound that good with that kind of voice that I have, I can too!” So I started to practice to this album every day for months. In 2013 we had the big honour of sharing the stage with Alter Bridge in Stockholm, Sweden on their co-headline tour with Halestorm. Before the show Mark Tremonti (Alter Bridge and Creed) came to me backstage after our soundcheck and said; “If Myles quits, I’ll give you a call”. Kinda surreal, haha… That is what we call Law Of Attraction!

Killswitch Engage – ‘The End Of Heartache’

I remember watching the Resident Evil movie somewhere around 2004-2005 and this song came on. GOOSEBUMPS! Not only has this song helped me gain some serious muscles at the gym over the years, it also got my first real attention to growl and screams. If you’re ever going to practice screams, drink water while doing it… A lot of it!

30 Seconds To Mars – ‘From Yesterday’

This song really got me in the feels. Jared Leto (and Chester Bennington) was my first REAL inspiration when it comes to their way of giving a feel to a song and also their way of doing screams and clean vocal crossovers. I remember running late at nights to this album with all kinds of teenage thoughts and problems. That made me resolve a lot of shit, which I’m happy for. There’s just something about this song that makes me feel a lot of things… ‘Nuff said!

Rammstein – ‘Sonne’

This is the first ever music video I “owned” on my computer. During that time I was one of the first kids in my school to have some kind of decent internet connection so of course all my friends wanted to come to my place to watch it over and over again. This song really got me into riffs and headbanging and of course showcased the darker side of music.

Gary Jules – ‘Mad World’

This cover of Tears For Fears’ ‘Mad World’ is one of my all time favourite slow songs. Ever since the beginning of Smash Into Pieces in 2008 we have been talking about doing a cover, but for some reason it never happened. One day in 2019 though, when we just started recording the ‘Arcadia’ album, we sat down and talked about finally doing it – and this song came up. Not only did it fit the story of ‘Arcadia’ perfectly, it also fit the whole worlds situation at the time. I’ve never recorded something that has touched my heart as much as this song did. It’s an honour to have done this song as my own.

Chris Isaak – ‘Wicked Game’

This is the song that made me actually be interested in guitar sounds and country music. Also I have to thank this guy personally for making me start practice my falsetto singing!

Simon and Garfunkel – ‘The Sound Of Silence’

This is probably how Smash Into Pieces ballads would have sounded in the 60s. It’s just such a beautiful song and it makes you feel a lot of things. When Disturbed covered this a few years ago in their own way, all of us were absolutely blown away. I probably will do a cover on this song in the near future – if not, definitely before my passing.

Fear Factory – ‘Shock’

The ‘Obsolete’ album was a huge eye-opener for me. With the song ‘Shock’ I basically learned all I needed to know about headbanging and walls of death – this song and band made me want to go to festivals and live shows to experience the intense energy with likeminded people.

‘A New Horizon’ is released on August 27.