Germany is the home of the largest fanbase for heavy music. So starting a new band means there is a tough crowd to impress. Venues have done exactly. With a period of having no vocalist the band have seen some tough times recently have but a newfound frontwoman Venues are sure to take 2020 by storm. Their debut album "Aspire" features a blend of heavy sounds that bring a unique approach to songwriting and showcase a never-ending display of talent. They are set to take the rest of Europe by storm after winning over crowds at every national show they played so far they show signs of slowing down. Venues are the next German heavyweights.
Germany has always been a country where heavy music is incredibly popular, what do you think it takes to win over your national crowd and gain recognition and respect as a new band?
Well, I think you need to be playing a lot of shows (especially in Germany) and show everyone that you’re existing and willing to give 200% on the stage! I think it’s also important to just write and release good songs with cool music videos to stand out of the masses of locals bands nowadays. Especially in Germany. (Robin)
You were without a vocalist for a period of time, was the future of the band ever a question during that period, what inspired you to keep going and move forward into the next chapter of Venues?
This period wasn’t a long one. Our guitarist, Constantin, already knew Lela as a singer. So shortly after Nyves left the band, Lela joined us to support us for a few shows. We soon noticed that it worked pretty well, so she became a permanent band member. (Robin)
Who are your biggest influences and why?
Everyone in our band has different influences. Constantin is a big fan from 80s Heavy Metal and Hardrock, his fave bands are as example Wasp, Iron Maiden, Metallica and skid row. Robin on the other hand is a post-hardcore and melodic hardcore lover and didn’t have much contact with oldschool heavy metal. I can say for myself that I have my roots in bluesrock, Led Zeppelin for example. Over time I got more and more into hardcore and metalcore. But all in all I can say that Janis Joplin was and will always be my hero. Our Drummer loves 80s bands too but he also loves alternative and visual key bands. Our second guitarist Valentin like bands like Alpha Wolf, Dealer and Code Orange. (Lela)
How do you approach songwriting for your material? Has the formula changed over time?
Our songwriting process is pretty much defined. Our main songwriter Constantin composes all the instrumentals and gives the songs to me. After listening to the songs I try to put my emotions of the song into words and write the lyrics and the melodies for the clean vocals and backings. Then I pass it over to Robin and he puts his lyrics and his shouts. We rehearse then with the whole band and everyone puts his style and touch on the songs. (Lela)
How important is lyrical content for Venues? Do you use lyrics as a chance for a personal outlet or do you write lyrics by taking influence from other creatives?
Pretty important. When we started with the song writing for ‘Aspire’ we didn’t think about a concept or an exact imagination of how the songs will be like. But we knew for sure that we wanted to create something which would combines our experiences, values, perceptions and emotions. So we put in every song different messages and motivational thoughts to send them to our future listeners and maybe give them some inspiration and support in their lives. At least this was our vision.
Some of our themes have a social aspect, others are spiritual and some are personal experiences. But ‘Aspire’ carries all in all a very positive message and emotions.
The debut record is about the direction we choose in our life. We’ ve been through a lot of social, technical and political changes in this century. We reached the ending form of Capitalism, the maximum of environmental pollution and industrial livestock farming. I think more and more people are realizing that all this over consumption is getting us to nowhere and happiness can’t be found in materialism. That’s why we want to aspire together with this new generation the truthful happiness, which requires values and always an open mind and heart.
For the new material things haven’t changed that much. But we’re now also trying to tell more “stories”. You will understand what I mean when you hear the new songs J (Robin)
How does the band prepare for a show?
Before a show we usually spend time together backstage before everyone warms up and prepares for the show. When we are on tour, we like to visit the city we are in before we go to the venue. (Lela)
What was the album that changed the way you listened to music and view the art form from a whole different perspective?
Hmm. I’d say it was Linkin Parks’ ‘Hybrid Theory’. It made me fall in love with songs. (Robin)
How was the reaction to your latest release “Aspire”?
The reactions were overwhelming! It became album of the week in Kerrrang, hit so many great playlists on the digital streaming platforms and also stormed the iTunes charts in Japan and Australia which is crazy. We received a lot of positive feedback from around the world and are 100% proud of what we created here. We now really have some pressure to keep this standard with our next release, haha. (Robin)
How was the recording process and what “sound” in terms of production did you have in mind prior to entering the studio as the goal for the record and why?
We recorded our Album at the SAW Dust studios and the producer was Chris Wieczorek. The cooperation with the Producer Christoph Wieczorek on our Album Aspire was really professional and smoothly going. Chris is a real good musician and producer and gave us really good advices during the whole recording process. He understood exactly what we wanted and helped us with his experience a lot! (Robin)
Are there any crazy stories from behind the scenes of the recording sessions you would like to share?
Honestly we have a lot of crazy stories but not really during the recording sessions. We’re very focused and boring when we hit the studio as we want everything to be perfect. The most “crazy thing” is that you can watch us put on weight in top speed during 2 weeks, haha. (Robin)
What are your plans for 2020?
At the moment we are in the last phase of songwriting, before we will record our second album in the studio at the end of April. Right now we’re planning to release the new record by the end of 2020. Over the summer one or two singles will be released and we can’t wait to perform our new songs on stage. Furthermore, these will be the first songs with Lela on vocals. (Robin)
Interview by Rob Kent