Relentless and controversial: These are just some of the traits used to describe the five wolves of VARG. Since their founding in 2005 in Coburg, Germany, the band has made quite an astonishing career for themselves. They have recently released a new full-length album ‘Das Ende Aller Lügen‘, which entered the charts entries in Germany and Austria. Although VARG are more monstrous than ever, Das Ende aller Lügen is perhaps one of the best examples that the calm always comes before the storm. These calming moments prepare the listener for the coming thunder.
What’s the main concept behind the band?
We’re not about a concept when it comes to Varg, everything is possible, we just write what’s on our minds without restrictions, whatever we feel doing we do (laughs). Lyrically of course we have the Viking or wolf themes that we like to do. Because only doing that over the years it could get kind of boring, we also tried to incorporate more modern themes and topics into the Viking themes, for example, to make battle warrior themes and mix them with modern themes, like that.
So the band stepped up their game and came back even stronger the scene lately with a new album ‘Das Ende Aller Lügen‘. How were the first reactions so far?
We hit the german album Charts so that’s a good sign. The reviews were also all in all overwhelmingly positive, the people we talked to during the shows really liked it so yeah it was a good reaction. I know bands always say that but we really think this is the strongest album we’ve done so far.
There is a growing international fan base for Varg now. Since almost all of your songs are written in German, will you dedicate more times now to the non-german speaking fans?
Of course, despite the fact that we play most of our shows in the german speaking areas, we toured Europe and North America at some point which helped us gain more international fans. In fact, on the new album, on the special edition, there’s 3 different CDs, the third CD is just instrumental, the first one is the normal album and the second one is the same as the first but with English lyrics. We wanted to give all the non-german speaking fans the possibility to listen to our music and understand the lyrics while listening to it and not have to search for translations on the internet.
How do you think Varg has musically and lyrically evolved through the years, especially if you compare your first and last album?
The thing with the very first album is that the lineup was different back then. The singer on the first album was responsible for a lot of the song-writings and then I joined and kind of took over most of the song-writing duties so this probably why the music changed after the first album, just because I have a different approach.
What genres influence your writing?
I can only speak for myself, everyone in the band listens to different things and because of that we incorporated a lot of different stuff in out music. Personally, I’m more the 90s Nu metal fan kid. I grew up with Limp Bizkit, Korn, etc.. This is what I love very much but I’m not sure if any of that gets into the music I write for the band, probably not. (laughs)
I think what influences what I write for Varg is mostly the swedish melodic death metal. I love Katatonia, sometimes you can here a bit of Katatonia in the new stuff. I still listen to a lot of different music, I listen for example to Ambient, I even listen to Hip-hop and some electronic stuff, a lot of things, I don’t want to restrict myself to one thing.
Do you think the culture and the surrounding environment is a direct influence on the band’s sound?
There are already really badass true black metal bands coming out of Iraq or the Arabic countries and so I don’t think the culture has a big influence anymore on the music. And the same goes on religion.
How should one imagine the touring life with Varg?
Well, we’re not as crazy as we used to be actually. We got a little calmed in the last few years.
I’ve watched the crazy beer spitting game video ‘Spuck Du Luder’ of you! (video can be watched here)
Of course, we still do the stupid stuff and the heavy drinking, like tonight, there will be the after show party. We are just trying to live our dream, we are all musicians from the heart and this is what we love to do. Even if everyone is exhausted and tired, we still have a lot of fun and try to get the best out of it, have a good time!