Me and the Graaf Sisters

graaf_35397When I was 16 or 17, my parents took me and my twin sister on what was supposed to be the last family vacation, since children of that age and younger could still travel with their parents at a reduced price. The destination were the two Greek islands of Santorini and Naxos. This was a time when I had begun to realize certain things about myself and my family, and I suppose I wasn’t in the most secure mindset, but I still wasn’t prepared for the sudden onset of severe anxiety when stepping into the bus that would take us from Santorini proper down to the beach from where the ferries to Naxos departed. The road, a dusty old serpent, was only loosely attached to the steep volcanic wall, and I instantly felt it would be my last bus ride. [read more]

Mattias in English

After some years of what could be seen as simple negligence, I’ve decided that I am going to take a more structured approach to writing online. Since 2004, I’ve been keeping a sort of a diary on the Cats on fire website. Right from the beginning, I’ve refused to call it a blog, and the word still makes me cringe after all these years, but I really can’t see why one couldn’t call it just that if one felt the need to. [read more]

Old Artefacts #1: Group Photo Anno 2002

A couple of years ago, the old family computer was done away with after just standing there doing nothing for too long. A DVD backup, containing my files, was burned by my father and subsequently ignored by me. Thus, I won’t call this a glorious discovery, but I’m still a bit intrigued, just because the files are rather ancient by modern standards. This, for example, is a group photo from 2002, used on our first demo cover. It’s taken in Vasa, outside of Keltsu, which is where we essentially formed. It was our rehearsal space, but also our first concert venue. I don’t know how bands go about in Vasa today, when Keltsu no longer exist.


Photo taken by Johann Höglund.

So, from the left: Kenneth, Johan Ekström (Burning Hearts), Mattias and Kim Huikarinen.

New Recordings and Such



Hi all of you, and especially all the truly faithful ones among you,

We’ve just started recording again. Ville and I spent a few days in a small chapel in a remote village in Northern Sweden. We didn’t do it because we were desperate for extra-ordinary amounts of peace and quiet, but simply because it made logistical sense this time. It is not often it makes logistical sense to go up here to do recordings, but this time it did, and the sweet deal included peace and quiet as a bonus. Even God was strangely absent, and we sneaked in unnoticed.

We are not quite ready to reveal our plans yet, but this time, as opposed to all the other times we’ve done something, we think that the speed of the process will surprise you. All of a sudden, unexpected news will reach you, and you will not quite know what to do with all the information.

10 strange facts, #6

By the end of his reign, pope Eugene IV had developed a taste for nasal intercourse.

All posts labelled “10 strange facts”