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VADUZ: "Better Days"
VADUZ - The (his)story of U.S. melodic rockers VADUZ dates all the way back to 1987 when Brian Wade (vocals) and Ringo Lee (guitars) played in a band called Blind Ambition. Before long they changed their moniker after the capital of Liechenstein (!?) They soon replaced the original bassist with Jimmy Krio and discovered drummer Matt Finn. The band toured smaller venues in the states and recorded two indie albums before they decided to call in quits in 1993. Fast forward to present date, the reunion, and the rather smashing new, kicking it old skool, melodic hardrock CD, 'Better Days'. Hardly original U.S. hair-metal, but never derivative, thanks to Wade's emotive performances and songwriting. Find out more about the album, here's the singer of the band: BRIAN WADE...
How has the reaction to your latest CD been?
Very good! We've been pleasantly surprised by the new fans we're picking up overseas and our fans here seem to really dig it! Unfortunately, we can't tour to promote it properly but it's slowly finding the right audience.
How long did this CD take to make from start to finish, recording-wise?
All the members of Vaduz live and work in different cities so we had to record little bits at a time when we could get together. It took roughly 5 months to complete with lots of breaks between sessions.
What kind of 'sound', production wise, did you have in the back of your mind, prior to recording
We wanted it to sound big but not overproduced and have a "live" feel to it.
What kind of input did the producer have during the process
Tom (Tatman) was great! He had a lot of cool ideas for recording techniques/song arrangements and he pushed us to perform our best.
And are you pleased with the final outcome? (sound - production wise)
Yeah, we're really proud of how it turned out and how it represents the band from the early 90's til now!
Did the producer (or you) use any (weird) experimental miking and/or recording techniques?
Not anything too weird.......just rock n roll!
Please inform us about your favourite songs off the album
My faves change from week to week but I dig the vibe and energy on "Hey Yeah" and the mood of "Faces in the Storm". I like the lyrics on "Better Days" because they're really honest.
Any overall theme of mood that you're trying to capture while
Hard to say because a lot of these songs were written at different times thru the years not knowing if Vaduz would ever record again.
Are there any 'crazy' behind the scenes anecdotes from these sessions that you can share with us?
I don't know how "Crazy" it is but we had a few setbacks that kinda sucked. When it was time to record lead vocals, I started having some serious allergy/sinus problems and I couldn't sing for a couple months (no fun). Being in Iowa in December means VERY cold temperatures and after one late night session our drummer's van wouldn't start after everyone had gone home. Luckily Tom (producer) was still around to give Vinnie a ride to the hotel or he would have froze his butt off! haha
Are all the songs on "Better Days" from the good-old-days or brand new material?
Tracks 6-9 were actually written back in the day and reworked for the new CD. "On My Way" was recorded in 1989 and re-mixed for our old fans. I did re-do the lead vocal, though. The rest of the CD is new material from the last few years.
Would you label yourself as the christian band, or the band with christian members/ideas?
Good Question. We've never been a "Christian" band but I write all the lyrics and I am a Christian. Writing songs has always been a way to express my thoughts, fears, doubts, and hopes so I can see why someone might think that. I do love rock music as a way to evoke certain emotions and ideas.
How would you describe the new CD to any potential new fan?
A lot of people say we have that 80's hard rock sound but we've always just thought of ourselves as straight up Rock n Roll. We didn't try to sound like anything 80's but I guess our influences lean towards that and you can hear it in our music. I think our CD sounds like polished, melodic rock that makes you feel good when you listen to it.
Who are your influences and heroes? (music-wise)
My heroes are the Beatles (songwriting) and KISS (performers). I am heavily influenced by the arena rockers of the late 70's/early 80's (with a healthy dose of European hard rock thrown in: UFO,Iron Maiden,Def Leppard,Ozzy,etc.) I'm a sucker for a catchy pop song too!
If there's anything you'd like to add, say, please do:
We're just a bunch of rock fans that have been lucky enough to play and record some music we enjoy. Even though we're getting a bit older now the music is in our blood and we're glad there's still people out there that like to rock as much as we do. ENJOY THE MUSIC, don't take yourself too seriously, and it'll all turn out good.
Interview by: Urban "Wally" Wallstrom,