VENGEANCE

\r\nMetalzone\r\nhad recently the chance to talk with the bass player of the heavy metal\r\nband Vengeance Barend Courbois. Burend talked to us about their come\r\nback album, their touring plans but also about their upcoming release\r\nwhich will begin recording next spring.
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\r\nMetalzone: At the other end of our line we have Barend Courbois of Vengeance. Hello Barend this is Metalzone calling how are you?
\r\nBarend Courbois: I am fine. I am at the south of France at the moment, doing my holidays.
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\r\nMetalzone: We are calling you to learn more about your latest album released on June 23rd 2006. Would you like to tell us a little bit more about being “Back In The Ring”?\r\n

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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nI was in Vengeance during the 90s, and after that we stopped but I was\r\nin the band Casa Nova, from Germany, we were on tour in Spain and Miko\r\nand I got the idea to bring Vengeance back and I ask him can you\r\nproduce and write and organize the hole new comeback album? And then\r\nMichael me and Leon, just the three of us started and we had no band,\r\nwe started and then later on the record company said well these stuff\r\nare fucking great so continue. Then we started finding some new people\r\nand the album is ready and we’re very proud. We got great reactions\r\neverywhere. \r\n

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\r\nMetalzone: Vengeance is a historic band and most of the old fans of the scene know about it and it’s history.However the newer friends of the scene don’t know about Vengeance. Can you give us the history of a the band in a nutshell \r\n

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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nVengeance is really old Hard Rock band from Holland, and started almost\r\n25 years ago, with the first singer Leon, who is still in the band, the\r\nfirst guitar player and the brain behind it was Arjen Lucassen who is\r\nfamous now with his own prog band called ARJEN. It is funny melodic\r\nreally hard rock sound there’s a little bit of ACDC, it’s got a lot of\r\nVan Halen, it’s got a lot of Judas Priest, Saxon, Accept. We split up a\r\ncouple of times, we had some problems with the record company, with\r\nmanagers which is kind of normal, and now we’re back and we try to tour\r\nas much possible. \r\n

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\r\nMetalzone: You have been accused of being too much like ACDC. Would you agree on that is your music unique?\r\n

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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nOfcourse we think our songs are unique but we have some similarities\r\nwith ACDC. And Leon our lead singer his favourite singer is Bon Scott\r\nthat’s his main influence, you always see a little bit of ACDC in our\r\nmusic but also like I said before you’ve got guitars like Judas Priest,\r\nor Iron Maiden, all the influence that we had when we were young, all\r\nthe 80s bands. It’s a little bit of ACDC but we’re fine with it because\r\nwe are all ACDC fans. \r\n

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\r\nMetalzone:\r\nTell us a few things about your latest release, Back In The Ring,\r\nproduction, the sound, we’ve listened to it many times through\r\nMetalzone, everything we should know.
\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nI’d like to start with Mike of course who is a really old friend of\r\nmine, and later on we had Mat Sinner helping us, he had a couple of\r\nsongs, he is a musical friend from the record company, and from\r\nMichael. I didn’t know the guy I only met him at the Bang your head\r\nfestival he is a really nice guy, he’s gonna help us with the second\r\nalbum, record that in January already. So Mat Sinner is gonna help us,\r\nand Arjen Lucassen the original Vengeance guitar player did a great\r\nsolo for us in the song Captain Moonlight for us, we have had Captain\r\nMoonilight written by Borse Abou who is an American songwriter he is a\r\ngood friend. There’s the guy from a dutch band called Sleaze Biz which\r\nis a multicrew kind of band. They are really popular in the
US\r\nhe wrote the cowboy song, and the singer of Sleaze Biz did the backing\r\nvocals and he’s also our manager. He used to be the singer of Sleaze\r\nBiz he’s our manager now and it took almost three months but the\r\nrelease had to be a little bit earlier because we had some problems\r\nwith the old record company, that’s why the release of Back in The Ring\r\nwas a little bit late. Otherwise we could have played more shows in Germany,\r\nmore open air shows, but we didn’t have the time for it because the\r\nrelease was late. But everything is ok now, at the moment everybody is\r\non holiday (the interview took place in mid August) on September we\r\nwill tour with Axel Rudi Pell, UFO, Y&T so that’s really great. We\r\nhave to get back in the ring, we gotta start somewhere so we’re going\r\nto do a lot of support acts\r\n

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\r\nMetalzone: So the title track was actually literal being back in the ring…
\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nAbsolutely! It was such a long time ago, Vengeance stopped in 2001,\r\nfive years ago, and Leo was in and out of the band also, he was\r\nreplaced by Ian Perry early nineties, mid eighties, so it’s Leo who’s\r\nactually back in the ring now and I like the guy so much I think he’s\r\none of the best performers in Europe, live performers.
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\r\nMetalzone: How is the response you’re getting so far, the reviews from the media etc
\r\nBarend Courbois: It’s overwhelming. We didn’t expect such great reaction. In grading we get 90 out of 100, from ten we get 8 or 9,
Germany. Italy, Spain, France, Scandinavia, the East block, Russia, Japan,\r\nis coming out now soon because we recorded an extra track . It’s\r\ngetting really great reactions from everywhere around the world\r\nespecially with the internet. We didn’t have that in the past, we can\r\nkeep contact with each other and everybody sends photos to us, that is\r\nreally great and the Bang Your Head festival was so fucking great, the\r\nreactions from the German fans, from Austria, Switzerland, France\r\nalmost everywhere thousands and thousands of Vengeance fans. \r\n

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\r\nMetalzone:\r\nDo you feel that Vengeance fans have missed you or it’s because of the\r\ngeneral tension of the metal scene going back to the 80s.\r\n

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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nI think we all pray for that, that it’s gonna be back one day, the\r\nfeeling of the 80s. I guess a lot of people are really fed up with all\r\nthe 90s mid 2000 doom metal and alternative and grunge and whatever\r\nthey call it. I guess everybody wants to … \r\n

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\r\nMetalzone:… listen to some old school metal?
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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nYeah, some old stuff you know! You can see that all around also, young\r\nkids walking around with Iron Maiden, Judas Priest t-shirts, Saxon,\r\nAccept, all the… Rainbow whatever… They all go back now because they’re\r\nall fed up with the nineties depressive music. Of course we had some\r\ngreat bands in the nineties but most I don’t even know. I guess the all\r\ntendency is to go back to the roots of Hard Rock, which is a really\r\nfine thing for us, because we had a really hard time during the\r\nnineties. Even Germany\r\ndidn’t want to have us anymore and it was a really hard time for us.\r\nAnd now everything is open, all the doors are open again, they want to\r\nhear simple funny music. \r\n

\r\nMetalzone:\r\nClassic heavy metal sound. Do you ever listen to all these new stuff,\r\nthe diverse kinds of metal? Since the ninties or a little earlier we\r\nhave opened an umbrella underneath it there are all types of metal.\r\nBlack metal, death metal, gothic metal, all sorts of styles. Do you\r\nlisten to any of those types?
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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nNo sorry. I am with bands like Alice in chains, Faith No More I like, a\r\nlate 80s band, Suicidal Tendencies and a couple of others which I can’t\r\nremember right now.\r\n

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\r\nMetalzone:\r\nHowever there are people saying that going back with the old bands\r\nisn’t good because there is no progression with new bands. Everybody is\r\nwondering what will happen when the old bands stop touring. This year\r\nhave been many examples the latest one being WASP cancelling their\r\nshows in July because Blackie Lawless had some problem with his heart,\r\nso everyone is wondering what will happen when the old heavy metal\r\nbands stop touring. Do you feel that there is a generation following\r\nthem? Bands who can carry on the legacy of heavy metal?
\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nI am not sure but I sure hope so. That’s a really good question.\r\nHopefully the kids get inspired again from the old bands like we did\r\nwhen we were
twelve thirteen\r\nyears old. But in our case with Vengeance, we’re not that old you know…\r\nwe’re still in our thirties, but I hope we can survive it. \r\n

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\r\n Metalzone: So you haven’t spotted any new bands that can carry on with the legacy of heavy metal…\r\n

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\r\nBarend Courbois: No not yet maybe I am going to look into it but not yet. But I think they will come.\r\n

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\r\n Metalzone:\r\nLets go back to the touring, you told me that starting this September\r\nyou will be on tour with Axel Rudi Pell, Y&T and UFO. When are you\r\nstarting and what stops will you make in your tour.
\r\nBarend Courbois: We’re gonna start in Holland, the first show with Axel is in Paris on the 19th\r\nof April, and then Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Belgium and\r\nafterwards we’re gonna do Holland again with UFO, and Y&T but our\r\nGerman booking office is working really hard to book us more shows, I\r\nguess there will come more shows in the end of this year. We’ll try to\r\ndo a headlining tour in early next year. And then the summer tours, the\r\nsummer festivals. But you can see it on our website, www.vengeaceonline.nl
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\r\n Metalzone: Are there any plans to cross the Atlantic?\r\n

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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nThere are some booking agents that have already mailed us they’re\r\nlooking forward to bring us over, hopefully it’s real and not a bunch\r\nof American bullshit. We’d love to oouaou but that’s a big dream.We want to come in Greece first. We never played in Greece and I’ve never been in Greece. \r\n

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\r\n Metalzone: When are you returning to the studio for your next album?\r\n

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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nIt’s going to be the spring of next year. We are working on the new\r\nmaterial Me and Michael got some new songs, some new songs written by\r\nthe band, with the new line up and Mat Sinner is going to help us again…\r\n

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\r\nMetalzone: Is Mat Sinner going to do the production?\r\n

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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nNo, it’s Michael Foss same thing, but for us he only thing that counts\r\nis the quality of the song. It doesn’t matter who wrote it you know.\r\nIt’s the quality which counts. It can be anybody, myself, Michael Foss,\r\nMat Sinner, Wolf Hoffman, Arjen Lucassen whoever, it’s the quality of\r\nthe song that counts. \r\n

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\r\nMetalzone: So even if a fan listening and has a good song they can send it in you’ll listen to it and you put it on the album?\r\n

\r\nBarend Courbois: Oh yeah there’s a good chance if the song is really good, it’s gonna be in the album.If a song is good that’s the only thing that counts. \r\n

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\r\nMetalzone: A message to Vengeance fans\r\n

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\r\nBarend Courbois:\r\nHi it’s Burend Courbois the basse player from Vengeance and we wanna\r\nthank for the support we already are receiving and we hope to see you\r\nreally soon we’re working on it and in the meantime kick some ass!\r\n

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