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The band's origin dates back to the summer of 1989 when Zak Tell and Jocke Skog met while working together at the Rosegrove Hospital somewhere in the vicinity of Stockholm. In 1990 they were joined by Bård Torstensen and Erlend Ottem and soon the four realized their similar interests in music. Two of the guitarists previously played in a local band known as Theo. Their free time was invested in exploring the musical world, composing and writing songs while evolving into a band.
Their original demo comprising of three tracks (Waste of Time, Nigger and Profit Preacher) quickly secured them local radio airplay and consequently brought them to the attention of the MVG label. Nigger is an elaborate and profound anti-racism statement that caused quite a stir and was a massive success; it was also released as a single. By the beginning of the 1990s, Clawfinger self-released their debut Deaf Dumb Blind. This sold in over 600,000 copies worldwide and was critically acclaimed in Swedish press. With the addition of André Skaug and drummer Morten Skaug, Clawfinger went on tour and played at countless European festivals including major support slots with Anthrax and Alice In Chains.
The band received many awards among which two home Grammies at the Swedish Grammy Awards in 1994 for Best Hard Rock Band and Best Video. After touring, they went straight back in the studio to record their sophomore effort, Use Your Brain. After the release of this album they went in yet another touring campaign, most notably participating in Ozzy Osbourne's Monsters of Rock Festival in South America and rocking alongside American metal counterparts like Megadeth, Faith No More, and Alice Cooper. Back in Europe they continued their touring campaign by participating at festivals and countless gigs.
Clawfinger resurfaced with their eponymous third album after two years, in 1997. They also issued three singles (Biggest & the Best, Don't Wake Me Up and Two Sides). After a four year wait, Clawfinger fans were delighted to know that the band's fourth album (A Whole Lot of Nothing) was released. This was the most complex instrumental offering of the band yet and it featured a more elaborate and noticeable synthesizer sound that created a new dimension in their musical content.
In 2003 it was time for Zeros & Heroes to see the light of day, an album on a harsher tone and more aggressive instrumental, with less electronic elements and also showcasing a very controversial lyrical content on some of the melodies. The month of October of the same year saw guitarist Erlend Ottem leave both the band and the music industry in pursuit of a career as a software specialist. The band and Erlend parted ways in friendly terms.
In more than a decade of activity, Clawfinger have issued already more than 10 singles and 5 albums, each of which has at least 2 bonus tracks in the limited edition. They are currently recording their sixth album, due for release in Spring 2007.
Clawfinger are well known for their personal relationship with their fans. Zak Tell often answers questions from the fans on the official website forums, and each week there is a live IRC chat session where fans can chat with band members.
In 2003 they surprised their fans by producing for a boyband, taking their old song The Truth, re-writing and re-arranging it into In Da House, a hit single for the Norwegian band L8R.
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