RockOverdose had the chance to speak with Jon Larsen, drummer of the Danish rock band VOLBEAT.
Jon Larsen comments on their new singles, the writing process of their upcoming new album as well as the evolution of the band throughout the years.
RockOverdose: How did you managed to stay creative during the lockdown?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : Once we were informed that there would be absolutely no touring for 2020, instead of just going like "Oh, men...now what?!" , Michael (Poulsen) said, "That's fine! I'm not going into my little dungeon but I'm gonna come up with some little stuff" and that's how we made some new songs. That's pretty much what we did last year, we hold up in our rehearsals space most of the year making new songs.
Actually, the lockdown was kind of blessing in disguise for us because we hadn't have a break for at least 10 years, we always tour, always perform or recording etc So, for the first time, all of a sudden there was no touring so we had time for our families, so we could actually spend some times with them. Of course it was really annoying that we couldn't fo out to tour and promote our new album, but we thought it was better to start working making new music.
RockOverdose: So, after the release of your last EP you're going to release a full-lenght album... Is it going to have the same musical style or direction?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : Yeah! To be honest, I don't really want to say too much about the forthcoming album but I think people would be definately and hopefully pleasantly surprised! We all have a good feeling about it, there are two songs released already and as I said people will be surprised from this one! But I really don't want to say to much.
RockOverdose: When are you planning to release it?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : We gonna let everybody know, when it's time. You'll find out.
RockOverdose: I was going to ask you if you're going to cooperate with other musicians, but I respect the fact you don't want to say much about the new album.
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : Like I said, the first two singles of our new album have been released. There's a female singer on song "Dagen Før", Stine Bramsen. She's a singer at a Danish pop band, called Alphabeat.
RockOverdose: You used to support or co-headline other bands. How do you feel now that you've become a headliner in big festivals? How has your life as a band changed throughout these years?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : Well, when you start to headline you have more responsibility. Big percentage of the audience is coming to see you actually, which is a good thing.
I don't think that we have changed that much. Of course its got bigger because we headline but I still believe that we are the same foreign stupid people from a country called Denmark!
RockOverdose: The fact that Lars Urlich is also from Denmark, do you believe has helped the band to receive a better reputation?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : That's interesting... I don't really know. He is a huge part of Metallica of course but I don't really know what to say actually.
RockOverdose: How did you got inspired from all this rebel-metal attitude?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : The inspiration comes from everywhere. We grew up as teenagers listening up all these metal bands, in the death or black metal genre. But when Volbeat started up, we didn't just play metal, we wanted to add some elements of other styles whatever ... you know.
We have never said that, we are definatelly a metal band so let's just play metal. We have never said that once in our life. We always say we are a rock n' roll band.
RockOverdose: Volbeat have a great fan base in Greece. Do you believe it's time for a great headline show in a greek festival?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : That would be really amazing! I remember last time we've been there was in 2018, when Iron Maiden was headliners, it was an amazing experience, we've never been to Greece before, we had a day-off in Athens we had some good time. We didn't have expectations cause we 've never been to Greece before but we really enjoyed it! People were singing along, the crowd was crazy... it was beautiful! We absolutely had a great show in Greece and we'd love to comeback.
I can only say that we hope to come back in Greece, I'm sure we will but I don't know when... The problem is that is kind of difficult to travel to Greece, but I'm sure we will be back.
RockOverdose: Do you feel as the successors of the big bands, after they eventually retire?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : That's definately not for me to say, if we're going to be the successors of big bands. The audience is going to let you know who is going to be the next big bands. We never think about it because in the end it's all up to the audience. Sometimes you go up, sometimes you go down. Somebody once said, that being in a band is like a rollercoaster.
RockOverdose: What are your goals for the future now that you have become a festival headliner band?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : Well now when the time is right the album will be out and hopefully we will be back out on the road, for as long as it takes. That's the goal that we are aiming right now, basically get the album out and then tour. Now we have 2 years without touring and it's time to go out see our friends.
RockOverdose: If you had the chance to play on stage together with one of your music idols, who it would be?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) : That's hard to answer! I guess why not Paul Mc Cartney, why not the Beatles, Keith Ritchards would be interesting also. They would definately be an experience, that's really interesting and it would be fan. It's a very difficult question, but I would pick Mc Cartney cause I grew up with the Beatles.
Is there something else you'd like to say?Any message to the fans?
Jon Larsen (Volbeat) :I would say, play our new songs over and over, enjoy them! Thank you so much for your support we hope to return to Greece and play for you one more time! Stay heavy!
Questions: Panos Petropoulos
Transcript: Vivi Zapantiotou