Aniruddh “Andrew” Bansal of GuitarWorld.com recently conducted an interview with drummer Michel “Away” Langevin of Canadian metal innovators VOIVOD. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
GuitarWorld.com: “Target Earth” came out in January. It’s been a while since we got a new VOIVOD album.
Away: Of course, it feels like quite an accomplishment. We tried to release material every year or so, but it’s difficult. Last year, we released the live album, “Warriors Of Ice”, and our very first demos, “To The Death”, were re-released via Alternative Tentacles. In January we celebrated the 30th anniversary of VOIVOD with a new album, which is great. We worked very hard on it for a couple of years. We tried to make it very intricate and progressive.
GuitarWorld.com: I think it’s the first album to feature guitarist Chewy, who joined the band in 2008. What has his contribution been like?
Away: He’s been working a lot with Blacky [bass], which was also the case in the ’80s when [late VOIVOD guitarist] Piggy and Blacky were writing a lot of the music. So they worked a lot together trying to build these very complicated songs, and eventually I had a couple of requests. I wanted one song to be a bit like MOTÖRHEAD, which is the song titled “Kluskap O’Kom”, and I wanted another one to be reminiscent of “Ripping Headaches”, and that became our very first French song, “Corps Étranger”. We also did a bunch of improvisation sessions that we recorded, and many parts of the new album were pulled from these recordings. Blacky and Chewy also rearranged a few songs.
GuitarWorld.com: What’s the plan for the rest of the year?
Away: The plan is tour across North America, South America, Europe and Asia. Between tours we want to write another new album. That’s what we’re aiming for right now.
GuitarWorld.com: Have you already written new songs?
Away: We have only one part of a new song written, and it’s the outro of “Target Earth” called “Defiance”, and that’s also going to be the first song of the next album. So right now that’s where we are at for the future album. We have, like, two minutes written. [laughs]
GuitarWorld.com: Is it going to be a sequel to this album?
Away: Yeah, we’re hoping to make it like that. We’re always trying to improve. It was hard with Jason [Newsted, former VOIVOD bassist] to make our albums as epic as we wanted, but luckily for “Target Earth” we were able to work a lot on the arrangements and make it very intricate. We’ll try to push it further on the next album, but again we need to still keep it a little thrashy.
Read the entire interview from GuitarWorld.com.
“Target Earth” EPK: