Interviews: Vrona

On this new occasion, we have had the opportunity to interview the Progressive Metal band Vrona from the UK. Check out the interview and follow the band on their FACEBOOK PAGE.

1. Where did you get the idea for the band name, you plan it or come out just like that?

Jack: Mat came up with it! Vrona is a rough (and purposeful) mistranslation of “crow” from Polish, and the idea of a bird in flight is very evocative. Looking down like a bird in flight at a vast landscape with endless details and absolutely zero restriction to what you’re able to do, it ties together our ultimate aims as a band. Pushing our own boundaries, pushing the limits of what a song can be, and ultimately expressing ourselves without fear of restriction.

2. Why did you want to play this genre?

Jack: We get to pretend we’re a lot smarter than we are! (Plus it’s a way to throw cheesy pop, video games, and big stinking riffs together)

Jamie: There's no other genre out there that you can combine so many disparate styles and it comes together so well. That and we're all super nerds that have loved prog metal since before Vrona was even a thing.

3. Did you know each other before the band was formed?

Jack: I’ve known Jamie since we were 16 and met the others at university. Before we properly formed and Jamie moved to Brighton, it was as much a study/drinking club as anything else.

Jamie: Me and Jack go way back, we started out doing Pantera covers and making our own form of thrash metal at music college. I joined Vrona a couple years after they first formed and they're my second family now.

4. Each band member's favorite band?

Jack: Alice in Chains, Florence and the Machine, Paramore. 14-year-old me would be ashamed to admit any of it.

Jamie: Tool. Yes, I am up my own arse. I'm a singer.

Connor: Daft Punk, Steven Wilson, Koji Kondo!

Mat: Riverside, Dream Theater 

Dan: Karnivool, Animals as Leaders, The Reign of Kindo

5. Who or what inspires you to write songs?

Jack: It’s an itch that needs to be scratched. It’s therapy as much as a way to dick around with new pedals. Now that we’re spread across the country it’s the best way for us to meet up and hang as friends to boot.

Jamie: Speaking personally, a lot of my inspiration comes from real-world interactions with people, issues that face humanity at large, and my own attempts at conceptualizing emotions. I don't know about you but reading that sentence makes me feel sick.

6. Where was your last gig?

Jack: Brighton, absolutely packed, and “sweat is off your nose before halfway through the first song” levels of hot. The best kind of gig!

Jamie: Green Door Store. Hosted by our lovely friends at Paralytic Promotions, we got the pleasure of playing with some of the best bands in Brighton. One of the best gigs we've ever done, by far.

7. Where would you like to play?

Jack: Tiny little dodgy places with funky wiring and things being passed around. No real monitors, right in a crowd’s face. It barely ever happens, but when it does it’s the biggest treat in the world. Who wants an arena where there’s 20 feet between you and the people who paid to come in?. Saying that we’d still love to be on those big stages so…. SOPHIE at Bloodstock would be an amazing “next level” to hit.

Jamie: The small venues are always the best performances for us. They're the venues with a small collective of local metalheads and music lovers, people who genuinely love live music and keep the scene alive. That said, I've never played a big stage at a festival (unlike the rest of the band) so I don't really have the same level of comparison.

8. Whom would you like to feature with?

Jack: I’d love to play with Alice in Chains or Mastodon. In the real world though, we get to play with close friends we’ve met all the time, it’s one of the biggest highlights of being in a band.

Jamie: If we ever got to the level to be able to do it, Karnivool would be a great band to play with. I think our music would gel together really well. That and we'd get a free Karnivool show, what's not to love?

9. Whom not?

Jack: We’ve played our oddball ambient prog on a bill full of black metal so we’re squared to play with just about anyone!

Jamie: That's a hard question. While our music might not fit every occasion I can't think of any situation where we wouldn't be up for playing.

10. Have any of you ever suffered from stage fright? Any tips for beginners on how to beat that?

Jack: Nerves are natural, but repetition is all you can do. By the time you’ve hit the second note in a set any stage fright is gone. People have paid to see you, ergo nobody wants you to fail. Remember that and you’re gravy. The whole room is willing to be the best you’ve ever been.

Jamie: Rely on yourself. You managed to learn an instrument, form a band, write songs, rehearse endlessly, and get yourself on the bill. The hard work is done. Now all you need to do is step on stage. Once you're there the feeling takes over and it goes by in a flash.

11. What bands have inspired you the most?

Jack: As a group? Karnivool, Tool, Steven Wilson, etc. Personally, life would be on a completely different trajectory without Metallica and Nirvana.

Jamie: This band is all over the place most of the time when it comes to music. But we agree on three bands (mostly): Karnivool, Tool, and Steven Wilson. Also Dream Theater.

12. What's the weirdest thing a fan has ever asked you for?

Jack: We got asked to play a wedding. Watching Jamie cringe his way through a two-hour set of pop covers is a memory I’ll hold dear forever.

13. What do you think of your fans?

Jack: My Mum is brilliant.

Jamie: Agreed. Jack's mum is lovely.

14. What do you think of our site?

Jack: Anything to help the underground is a gold star in my book. Interviews, a database, open to helping anyone, what more could you want?

Jamie: If bands are the lifeblood of music, sites like this are the veins and arteries.

15. Something to add?

Jack: Science, Maths, Engineering, all those things are important for the modern world, but the arts are what change it from existing to being alive. Support your local writers, artists, and venues.

Jamie: It's incredibly hard to think of something to say without coming off as a bit of a wanker. I guess, don't take yourself or life too seriously. Let your guard down, have fun, and be honest with yourself and others. Don't do interviews with music magazines if you have nothing to say, you'll look like a dick.

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