I caught VOLA opening up for Katatonia and I thoroughly enjoyed this Danish band on stage. This interview was done before that gig but it still gives an insight into the band. Interviewed persons are Nicolai Mogensen (bass), Martin Werner (keys), Asger Mygind (vocals & guitar) Anders Ekdahl ©2016
Could you please introduce yourself to those of us in the dark?
Nicolai: “We are the Danish band VOLA. I would describe our music as progressive metal with melodic vocals. Our biggest inspirations are probably Meshuggah, Mew and Porcupine Tree, and you can definitely hear that in our music.
I often wonder how people discover that they can do what they do. How did you discover that you can sing and play instruments?
Nicolai: “For me it wasn’t really a discovery. It has taken a lot of practice and patience especially some of the parts were I have to sing and play bass at the same time. That’s really difficult and unnatural for me. But nothing beats the feeling of having mastered something that you couldn’t do initially.“
When did it become a revelation that you can do this and maybe get paid for having fun, instead of just putting out all the money?
Nicolai: “My uncle used to be a professional musician, and I guess I have always had the possibility of becoming a professional musician in the back of my head. But getting there is really hard and we still have a long way to go as a band before we can make a living out of this.”
When you spend an amount of your life on a band does it ever feel like you have wasted time, that you have fought one too many windmills?
Nicolai: “I haven’t had that feeling yet. And I guess if I start to feel that way it’s time to quit and find something else to do. Right now and since the beginning really, it’s been so much fun, and seeing the progression the band has been in the last few years really make me feel proud.”
No matter how small or big you were as a band you will leave a legacy behind you. How do you want people to treat this legacy?
Nicolai: “We hope that people will continue to listen to our music in years to come and that our music has a timeless quality to it. Time will tell I guess.“
Is digital taking away the mystery of waiting for a new album now that you can upload as soon as you have written a song?
Nicolai: “I think it has opened up some new possibilities for artist try something different and I find it interesting putting out songs where you don’t have to think in albums. But I also really like the album format and I guess we’ll stick to that for now.”
How important is image in separating you from all the million different styles of metal there is out there?
Martin: “For the most part we don’t see our self as a metal band, although there are clear parallels to the metal scene music wise. We try to maintain a personal and individual look, always letting the music be the center of focus rather that a certain image.
Do you deal in different topics lyrically or do you keep to one, just using different variations?
Asger: “On Inmazes the lyrics mainly deal with being trapped in negative thought patterns. It was never planned, that’s just what came out when I started writing. But generally I like albums that follow a concept. It doesn’t have to be a very explicit narrative. Just having some kind of overall thematic idea can give a nice focus to the writing and create a special frame for the listener’s experience.”
Do you consider yourself a live artist or do you like to spend most of the time secluded in a studio?
Martin: “Up until now we have mainly focused on songwriting spending a lot of time recording, but that might change in the future. We love to play live, but it’s important for us that all songs are perfect to us, and that always requires a lot of time in the studio.”
How much of a touring band are you guys? What memories do you take with you?
Nicolai: “Right now we are on our very first tour alongside Katatonia and Agent Fresco. It’s a dream lineup for us and it’s been incredible so far! Since it’s our first one we don’t have that many stories and memories from the touring life yet, but getting out there meeting new people and friends is what I’ll take with me after the tour is over.”
What does the future hold?
Nicolai: “Next year we are going to focus on writing a new album. We have made a few demos already and I’m really looking forward to getting some new music out there. We’re also planning to do a shorter headline tour sometime next year.“