Legion arrived on the rock scene a couple of years ago like a breath of fresh air, for once giving songwriter for hire Vince O’Regan the chance to write for himself, alongside vocalist Phil Vincent. They also impressed live at last year’s Z Rock festival, and are returning this year to promote their new album, “Nemesis”. We spoke to O’Regan about the album, which will be reviewed as soon as we can get hold of a copy!

We're on to the third Legion album with "Nemesis" - you guys seem to work pretty fast, how does this happen?

It's a fine oiled machine right now. I write new tracks all the time in different styles, then when I’ve got 3-4 that I think will work well for Legion I email them to Phil. Some tracks can take longer than others, but when he's recorded the vocals he will email them back to me, When I’ve got 10-11 tracks done I’ll get Gav and Steve in to do their bits, mix it and that’s it.

I have to say that the artwork is more reminiscent of a thrash album. Why was it picked, and were you worried it might send out a conflicting message to newcomers?

This time I hadn't got a clue for the artwork. I let Mark “The Dark Lord” Alger from the label sort it out, but to be honest the songs are a bit heavier and darker than the first two albums and I think it suits it so I'm not gonna complain.

Has anything changed in the band's sound since the previous album?

I don't think so. I’ve just put together a cd of the set we'll be playing at Z Rock in May and all the mixes are a close match. I think the big change in the sound was after I finished the 3rd Eden album I changed the drum kit in the studio and it made a massive difference to
the sound The only thing to change in the sound of the legion albums is the writing, which is only natural.

Are you happy with the sound mix on the final result?

Yes I am. There’s a lot of mixes passed between the band and label before the finished album goes to press so if anything goes wrong no one can blame me!

Obviously you adore all the tracks, but are there any that you think will immediately get into people's heads?

To be honest I think we covered all bases with this album. Legion are known for being on the heavier side of melodic rock but there is a good cross over between heavy mid paced and slow tracks on the album. To be totally honest, my fave is “Just Because“ - its got a filthy riff and I can't stop playing it.

This seems to be a time for what are known as "projects", is this a necessary thing with the current financial state of the rock industry?

I suppose so, but this band are signed for 5 albums, with a further 2 on option if they sell well, so I think we'll be around for a few years yet, Plus, we've just been offered the 2 album option, so I think were selling ok.

How easy was it to get any chemistry, seeing as the band rarely meet face to face?

Like I said earlier ,I write a lot of tracks all the time, so I just send the tracks to the boys and we decide which ones to record then get stuck in. I've currently got 3 albums that have been sent to various singers (who i couldn't possibly name as my next royalty payment may get delayed… lol) who will pick what tracks they like, record the vocals then send them back for mixing.

Last year's Z Rock marked the live debut of Phil Vincent - have there been many shows since, and how did they go?

No, last years Z Rock was the only show, but there is talk of us doing some shows in Germany, Spain, and maybe a few in the U.S.A, so you never know.

Which of the other acts this year is exciting you the most as a fan?

I'm not a fan of anything really except big boobs! I am looking forward to seeing Paul Sabu, as I was involved with the writing on his new album “Bankock Rules“, also I'm looking forward to playing with Arabia and Von Groove again,

Do you have to be nice to Phil, seeing as he looks like he could snap the rest of you like twigs?

I want the world to know Phil Vincent is a big pussy cat, but the last thing I would do is stand on his foot on stage without apologising! (I might get him drunk at this years gig and get him to wear a cape instead of a cap…. Lol).

Interview by Alan Holloway