ENTOMBED A.D. Guitarist NICO ELGSTRAND Is 'Still Grieving' Death Of Singer L.G. PETROV: 'It Was A Terrible Loss'
July 7, 2022
Former ENTOMBED and ENTOMBED A.D. guitarist Nico Elgstrand spoke to Heavy Culture about last year's passing of Lars-Göran Petrov. The pioneering ENTOMBED and ENTOMBED A.D. frontman died on March 7, 2021 after a battle with bile duct cancer. He was 49 years old.
Asked about the current status of ENTOMBED A.D., Nico said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I've gotta say I, at least personally, am still grieving. It was a horrible blow, a terrible loss. We speak pretty often, the rest of the guys in the band, but with the COVID and everything, everything came to a halt anyway. So we have been talking about maybe someday doing something, but it's nothing… I think we all still are hurting from the loss, so the vibe to continue doing anything at this point is not really there for the moment. I don't know if it's gonna happen in the future. People have been asking about all kinds of reunion or tributes or whatnot. And maybe in the future we'll do some kind of a tribute thing to him, but right now it's still really, really tough."
ENTOMBED A.D. was formed in 2014 when Petrov and other members of ENTOMBED decided to change the band's name in order to avoid a legal battle with ENTOMBED guitarist Alex Hellid who didn't want his former bandmates to use the ENTOMBED moniker. Elgstrand explained to Heavy Culture: "We decided we wanted different things. After [ENTOMBED's last album, 2007's] 'Serpent Saints', there was a lot of turmoil and some people in the band didn't wanna continue touring and whatnot. So basically I was in ENTOMBED and then all of a sudden we just changed it to ENTOMBED A.D. to be able to continue recording albums and tour. Four parts out of five decided to move along and then just call it something different just to be able to keep doing it… Everybody except one wanted to continue to do it, so we all decided together, let's just continue. And it's been a lot of legal bullshit back and forth, and to avoid it, we just decided to continue as the same band but kind of different anyways."
ENTOMBED A.D.'s latest album, "Bowels Of Earth", was released in August 2019 via Century Media.
In August 2020, Petrov told Metal Hammer about how he found out about his cancer: "A couple of months ago. I felt a lump in my solar plexus. And I was, like, 'Okay, I'll ignore it.' But then it started to hurt, so I went to the doctor, and they X-rayed it quickly and said, 'You have to go to the specialist.' That was weird. You can't imagine what it feels like. Your whole body goes warm. It's, like, 'Fucking hell.'"
Although Petrov revealed his cancer was "incurable," he said that the doctors were "hoping" they would be able to treat it. "Being young, the doctor said there's hopefully a way to control it so it doesn't spread, or maybe even make it smaller," he said.
Hellid and Petrov had been embroiled in a legal battle over the ENTOMBED name for several years. In 2014, Petrov was reportedly awarded the right to use the band name in connection with future recording and touring activities, a decision which Hellid appealed without success. The guitarist then went on to register a trademark for spirits production under the "Entombed" name. This move did not sit well with Hellid's former bandmate, who filed a letter of protest against Alex's registration of the name, claiming that it could be confused with band activities. He also said that Hellid acted in "bad faith" when he registered name and that there was a desire to "deceive the public." Petrov's protest, however, found no favor with the Swedish Patent And Registration Office, which rejected his claims on the issue in a March 2016 ruling.
In an interview with Revolution-Music.dk, Petrov defended his group's decision to release albums and tour under the name ENTOMBED A.D.. "It had to be done, because without an album you can't tour," he explained. "I mean, you can tour, but if there's seven years between albums, it's ridiculously long. So we did the right thing, and we did what bands should do, and still do — release an album and go on tour and headbang and have a good time with friends, and that's what it's all about."
He continued: "There was too much bullshit — crying and whining about things. It's just ridiculous.
"Some people are comfortable staying at home, but then just step aside and let us do our thing.
"We added two letters, but it's still the same band — [only] without people that wanna stay at home, or take millions of years [coming up with] a [new] riff."
Asked if he thought the ENTOMBED name has been damaged as a result of the drama surrounding the split with Hellid and the decision to continue as ENTOMBED A.D., Petrov said: "Nah, not really. A thousand people have a thousand different opinions — good and bad. But we do what we felt was right. And we're out here touring, and that's the most important [thing], I think. And leave the childishness aside and play metal, basically."