The Mob are coming

No Caption ABCDE
No Caption ABCDE

ON Saturday, Swedish House Mafia will headline a staggering nine hour bash, their One Night Stand, at the National Bowl.

Their biggest UK gig will also be their last on British soil, as the collective have annouced they will split later in the year.

If you are going to bow out on a high, a date at MK Bowl isn’t a bad way to do it.

But then Swedish House Mafia have enjoyed astounding success in recent years.

Google their videos, and you’ll find track promo’s that have been viewed by millions and millions.

How do you get your head around that, I ask one-third Mafia, Axwell, during an exclusive chat.

“You don’t really get your head around it,” he admits, “You won’t be able to, unless there is something wrong with you!

“If you have a deep ego you might grasp it, but as a normal person you cannot understand the fact so many people are into you.”

You never saw it coming?

“No, not a chance, I had no expectations and never even expected to do music as a living, never did I think that,” he says in that fabulous Swedish tongue.

“I never think I’m good enough at what I do...”


“We are always doubting ourselves and think ‘Do we really know what we are doing?’

“Living off making music was beyond our wildest expectations.

“So you can imagine from there to where we are’s unthinkable!”

Swedish House Mafia, have collaborated with artists as diverse as Tinie Tempah and Coldplay, shifting millions of units in the process.

But the three-piece – completed by Sebastian Ingrosso and Steve Angello, do allow themselves to enjoy the good times.

“We have our moments when we have to pat ourselves on the back,” he allows, “ when we played at Madison Square Gardens in New York.

“We were like ‘OK, this is pretty f****** fat!’

“Sometimes you can have moments of euphoria, like when a soccer team wins a game,” he says, although that isn’t the best way to explain to a British gal when our lacklustre team have recently been buried in the Euros. Again.

But we digress.

Axwell is enjoying a little ‘me’ time at home in Sweden when we speak.

And it’s refreshing to hear him doing the same mundane tasks that afflict us all: “I’m doing the type of things I don’t normally get time to do,” he admits, “I have to sort my clothes...see what condition my house is in!”

And possibly, ‘manage’ over-keen devotees. Gone are the days when DJs were faceless music bringers, and so it’s not only critical acclaim that follows the Mafia – adoring fans do too.

Sometimes Axwell is greeted by them on his doorstep.

That must be difficult to cope with?

“You are a bit ambivolent to it, like ‘how do I deal with that?’

“To a certain extent you have asked for it, but to a certain extent you also want to have a private life.

“It’s kinda hard...”

Fans of the fella can sate their appetite and purchase the usual merchandise from his website, mind. But a towel set? What’s that about?

“Well, you’ve gotta have a towel, everyone needs a towel when they go to the beach, and what’s better than getting a hug from your favourite artist after you’ve take a shower?” he asks, cheekily.

In a relatively brief time together, SHM have wowed the industry with a slew of fat tunes.

They take chances and stir up genres – we mentioned that Coldplay collaboration, for example.

“It’s very nice remixing an indie-rock tune being a house music producer.

“You try to keep the vibe of the track intact, but make it into something you can play.

“That’s one of my favourite things to do, because there is so much emotion in that sort of track and when it meets the electronic world it can be really good.”

Let’s talk about the gig at the National Bowl. A potential audience of 65,000 people all focusing on the Mafia for their musical fix.

That’s got to be an immense feeling...

“I probably get less nervous when there is that many people, because they are like one big entity.

“I’m probably more nervous in a 300 club where people come close to you.

“You can get nervous when you think how many people you are affecting, or how many people will think something about you.

“The reward is when you get it right...”

And Saturday’s bash won’t skimp on the show front: “Some DJs might argue that if you’re not standing behind a picnic table, then you are not a real DJ,” Axwell reasons, “...that if you have a big production that needs preparation, if you have synchronised fireworks and pyrotechnics, you are not a real DJ. “But we have to be real about the fact our music has become so big, so people coming to the shows can see more.

“You don’t want to stand behind a picnic table and show you can beat match.”

“We all play together, so we mix in each others songs and add on stuff.

“It is planned to some extent, but we also see where it will take us, you have to improvise a little bit.

“It’s funny for the people that work for us – like the lighting engineer. They know some things will happen, but don’t know everything.”

And ticket holders on Saturday will witness something truly exceptional.

Axwell promises: “It will be the best show until now – the fattest production, the tightest songs and the best energy of Swedish House Mafia yet.”