Welcome to the "Dawn Of Battle"


Greetings to everyone,

"In a society that I hate deeply and scars my soul daily, the foundations and rules of which I deny, being likeable would mean that I am starting to look like it..."

This is the quote that I live by the last few years but come to think of it, I could as well be living by that particular quote all my life, without even knowing it.

The purpose of this blog is to gather all my thoughts in one place, nothing fancy, just a piece of me. The articles that I write are a blend of my experiences and thoughts.

I hope some of you enjoy what you read here and Ι welcome you all to walk down that road together.

5/2/12

Devil's Train - RD Liapakis & Laki Ragazas Interview


Devil's Train - RD Liapakis & Laki Ragazas Interview




Prologue: I had the opportunity to speak with RD Liapakis and Laki Ragazas of Devil's Train. Check out the interview below, and listen to the band's debut music video at the bottom of the page.

Elias: Devil's Train, a fresh hard rock band with a classic sound. What's the story behind the band? How did you start? 

R.D.L. : For almost ten years now, I've been thinking of making a band, moving in the style of Heavy Rock, influenced by blues .... I 've just been so busy with Mystic Prophecy and working as a producer, that's why I didn't do it so far ... but the most important thing needed was to find musicians who have the same vision with for this kind of music ... so I was in contact with many people, some of them very good and well known musicians, but I couldn't really find guys with the same vision as me ... in 2009 I was producing an album for Greek Metallers Crystal Tears, recording in Prophecy and Music Factory Studios, and I discussed this vision of mine with their drummer Chrysafis, and he asked me if I had ever listened to Laki Ragazas before ... his name didn't ring any bells at that time, but I decided to speak with him so I could see if he has the vibe I 'm looking for all these years ... Laki sent me some material of his own music, and I immediately realized that he had all this "dirty rock'n'roll" approach and style of playing I was looking for ... that's how things started ... we had a great chemistry working together from the very beginning ... a few months later I was on tour with Mystic Prophecy, opening for Stratovarius, that's when I discussed with Jorg Michael about the idea of making a band in the style of Heavy Blues Rock, and he was very interested in it ... we started recording the basic tracks in the summer of 2010, that's when Jorg suggested Jari to play the bass ... and we 're so glad that he did, because Jari was actually the perfect missing link for Devil's Train ... 

Elias: I know that you've been working a lot on your sound and songs, so I don't consider this being a project. However when renowned musicians work together that the story most of the times. How do you see it? 

L.R. : We don't give a shit about projects, and anyone who knows us well they know that we 'd never give our precious time and energy for something superficial, or a mere project ... we don't like projects, the same goes for the four of us, neither of us see it as just a project, we see it as a band ... all of us have a certain experience into the music business, and the only thing we want is to have some fun with the music we make ... we 're just 4 old farts, who still want to kick some ass ... we 're not gonna live forever, so the only way to find the answers is to rock'nroll ... 

Elias: You are all talented musicians. Do you think at some point playing hard rock will be a little restricting for you? 

R.D.L. : On the contrary ... this style of music is the ultimate expression for us ... and creating it, has nothing to do with technique ... it has to do with finding the right sounds to share what you have in your heart and soul ... it felt so natural and unforced in the way we composed and recorded, and the great thing about it is that either you have it or don't ... it's not just coincidence that people who have already listened to the album liked it so much ... it definitely has to do with the way we felt when we were creating it ... the message is getting through ... 

Elias: You have two Greeks in the band. How did that come up? 

R.D.L. : As I said in a previous question, I first got in contact with Laki when I was searching for musicians who match with this kind of music, and we both realized that we had the same vision of what we wanted to do ... we both had lots of fixed ideas for songs, so we started exchanging them ... and his music fitted like a glove with mine ... he came over to Germany and in 10 days' time we finished these 11 songs you now hear in the album ... we have an amazing chemistry when composing ... and we 're both sure that this will be the case for a long time, since we already started working on new material, and our cooperation in making music is equally great ... 

Elias: I've heard about the problems that Jorg had with his health. Is he better now? 

L.R. : Yes, Jorg had some serious health issues last year ... he had a problem with his thyroid, he had to make an operation, he was going through a very difficult time in his life ... but he's a real fighter, and he managed to pull it through, we are so glad to see that he is fully recovered, feeling great and ready to go on stage with Devil's Train ... 

Elias: Your first video is out and surprisingly it is a cover of the Guess Who classic. I'm guessing that you made this choice to give people the feeling of a "rock and roll all night party every day band"? 

R.D.L. : As you correctly say, "American Woman" was originally composed by Guess Who in 1970 ... then we had a great cover of it by Krokus in the early 80's, Lenny Kravitz did the more poppy-radio version in the 90's .... now it's time for us to pay homage to this great song ... I discussed with Laki about making this song, and he send me his arrangement of it, we both liked it a lot and we decided to include it into the album ... Yes, I guess you could say that the way we covered the song, along with the video, gives this Rock'n'Roll party vibe ... but then again, all of the album does ... and we 're so happy to have this feeling coming out from all the songs, because that's how we felt from the very beginning, when we were making the songs ... 

Elias: Your sound is not unique, but listening to your record I get a nice and warm feeling. I'm guessing that the recordings must've been great and you do sound very tight as a band. What are your memories from the recordings? 

L.R. : Anyone can see that we are not trying to re-invent Rock'n'Roll music ... this music is here for the last 40-50 years, and we feel so happy to give our own tribute, our own perspective to it ... As mentioned before, it took us very little time to create everything ... this doesn't only have to do with the fact that every member of this band is a great player and musician ... it's more about feeling great about the music we created ... when we were recording we felt that everything was flowing so naturally during the whole process, which made me realize one basic truth ... in this style of music, just being a great musician and player is not enough ... you have to feel every note, you have to be able to pass this great feel into the music ... and either you have this charisma, or not ... and I'm so happy to see that everyone in this band has got what it takes to give this kind of magic, which was so vividly engraved in the recording ... we started recording the drums in the summer of 2010 ... without any exaggeration, Jorg recorded all the songs within 12 hours !!! Jorg is no rookie, and he perfectly knew what this music needs ... after the drums, we recorded the guitars in 4 days, the bass in one day and the vocals in 3 days ... 

Elias: We've always been hearing that "the 80s sound is coming back etc" but your sound is a little 70s and 90s American rock. This sound just came up or have you known from the start that this is what you wanted? Have you considered playing more "hard n' heavy" stuff, using keyboards etc, or this was never an option? 

R.D.L. : Yes, we knew from the start how we wanted the album to sound ... when I work on producing an album, I always have a clear image of how things should sound like in a recording ... what I wanted was a clear, typical drums-bass-guitar sound, down and dirty, mean to the bone, and I was so glad to see that all of us had the same picture about it in the end ... and everybody contributed in the same direction, that's why everything sounds so well defined ... keyboards was never an option from the very beginning ... 

Elias: Have you scheduled a tour for the record? 

L.R. : We are so eager to play this amazing music in concert ... I believe this is the perfect music for stages ... but the album has just been released a couple of months ago, so it 's too early to say about concerts ... so we just wait and see how it goes, but I 'm sure you 're soon going to hear about the Devil's Train ... we have some festival dates, but we would like to reveal everything in good time .... just stay connected with us through the band's official website (www.devilstrain.com) Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, etc., to see all our latest activities ... 

Elias: Any last words for the Greek fans? 

R.D.L. : We believe that the lovers of this music, and all the people who have the nostalgia of the good-old-Rock'n'Roll- party-all-day music will definitely find what they are looking for in our album ... we believe we made an album that speaks right to the heart, has amazing balls of groove, and gives so much energy that it can drive you crazy !!! So, if you see a train coming in your town, filled with fire, screaming and roaring, be sure, this is the Devil's Train ... and it will take you to Hell ... 



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