It's busy times for Swedish doom stalwarts Monolord. In September, the riff-worshipping trio released their latest opus, the stirring, Sabbathian No Comfort, and on November 5th, they're set to kick off a month-long North American trek that will see them joined by Revolver favorites Blackwater Holylight. No rest for the wicked, so they say, but the truth is that, when he's not making music, Monolord singer-guitarist Thomas Jagër loves few things more than just chilling out — and doing so with his two rescue dogs, Alma and Elsa. Below he shares some of his favorite things about his favorite animal companions.
PET(S) Alma and Elsa
AGE IN HUMAN YEARS Alma 15, Elsa 8
WEIGHT Alma 12 kg, Elsa 18 kg
HOW LONG HAVE YOU HAD YOUR DOGS? HOW DID YOU FIND EACH OTHER?
THOMAS JAGËR We have had Elsa since she was around two. My girlfriend had Alma when we met. Both dogs come from an organization called Paws on Ireland. All it took was a picture of the dogs' faces on that organization's website.
It sounds rough, but we picked Elsa up outside a gas station at a rest stop. [Laughs] But it isn't as bad as it sounds. The organization, Paws, coordinated the whole thing so all the Swedes living in the west could come pick up the dog they reserved. We got this white, thin and scared dog with us in the car on the way home. It took a few days to get her calm, but we had Alma, the older and wiser dog, to get her to calm down.
WHAT'S THE WEIRDEST THING ABOUT YOUR DOGS?
When we are walking on our lawn, Elsa sometimes gets "freak-out" moments where she spins around and around on the spot like she is totally insane. Alma is an excellent thief and a long while back, at a late night after party, she stole the meat out of a burger, but left the bun intact.
WHAT IS YOUR DOGS' FAVORITE FOOD?
Elsa loves fruit — bananas are so good — but both of them love everything that is a bit nasty, as dogs often do.
DO YOUR DOGS LIKE METAL? DO YOUR DOGS LIKE MONOLORD?
For all I know, they couldn't care less.
DO YOU FEEL ANY KINSHIP WITH YOUR DOGS? WHAT DO YOU HAVE IN COMMON?
As rescue dogs, they are sometimes afraid of strangers and loud noises. Just like me. We enjoy walking in the woods, and they like short, explosive runs around the house, but they also like chilling in the living room. We listen to music, play guitar and play PlayStation.
DO YOU PREFER YOUR DOGS' COMPANY OVER THAT OF MOST HUMANS?
I never grow tired of their company — which is a rare feeling around humans.
WHAT CHARACTERISTICS OF GREYHOUNDS DRAW YOU TO THEM?
They are silent dogs and, as stated above, they like chilling, and they do not like rain. For me, this makes for the perfect dog.
And here's a story about the dogs that ... might be helpful: Last fall we really, really thoroughly cleaned our house. We had put a lot of stuff in bags and boxes to throw away, recycle and to donate, just inside the front door. We went to the store to buy some more cleaning stuff, and when we were on our way home, we realized that, in one of the bags, were sawdust and droppings from a rabbit we saved from being put to sleep — Gizmo, may he rest in piece. I heard some noises, and when I put the key in the lock, it got all silent. Inside, there were two dogs with torn plastic bags, sawdust and rabbit pieces all over. Two rooms had to be re-cleaned.