Maria Savva Interviews… Varga
I love it when I discover a band that plays music for the love of the music and when that passion comes through in their sound. Varga are such a band. I recently connected with Dan Fila from the band, on Facebook, and have enjoyed listening to their new record, Return Of The Metal.
Varga, from Hamilton, Ontario Canada, were signed to major labels in the ’90s, and were even featured on Beavis and Butthead! They’ve now reformed and released a new album.
Their musical style is influenced by the greats in Metal including Slayer and Metallica. If you like Heavy Metal, I recommend you listen to it. It’s been getting some great reviews, here are a few links:
Broken Neck Radio: http://www.brokenneckradio.com/reviews/reckless-ron-review-of-varga-return-of-the-metal
Metal to Infinity: http://www.metaltoinfinity.be/CDREVIEWS_2014/Varga_Returnofthemetal.html
Focus on Metal: http://focusonmetal.blogspot.ca/2014/06/varga-continue-their-prog-metal-tour-de.html?spref=fb&m=1
I invited Dan here for a chat about the band and their current plans.
Interview with Dan Fila of Varga
Varga had lots of success in the ’90s, signed to a major label, opening for Metallica, etc., what are some of your best memories from those days?
Opening for Metallica in Toronto had to be one of the major highlights along with having dinner with Phil Anselmo in New Orleans….and Rob Halford watching us play in Phoenix from side stage were also pretty cool.
The band has reformed now, are all the members the same as the original line-up? Were the band members in different bands during the 13 years that you were separated?
It is the original line-up…during our time apart Adam played in several classic rock bands as did Joe…Sean and I played in a band called Hypodust.
How do you think your music has changed from back in the ’90s and now?
I think what has changed is the way people are being exposed to music and the power they have to share and connect with like minded people. In the early ’90s major record labels dictated what type of music was “cool” and unfortunately this had severe adverse implications on heavy metal music and culture.
What do you think of the current heavy metal music scene? Are there any stand-out bands that you’ve heard?
I think there are some great bands coming out now, I really like BattleCross, having said that, with the power of the internet and technology many bands are putting out musical clutter and it is difficult for people to wade through the sea of garbage. Great bands have and always will stand the test of time.
What are some of the differences you’ve noticed in the way music is produced/promoted, and the music industry as a whole these days as compared to the ’90s?
In the ’90s major labels dictated and financed the industry, now major labels are nothing other than distributors and promoters of music for the masses. My fear is that due to the lack of people willing to pay for music, this new wave of bands will be short lived and artist development will be a thing of the past. What has remained the same is the importance of playing live and connecting with your audience.
You’ve had much success with your music, obviously the fact the music is good helps, but are there any tips that you can give to any bands that might be starting out as to how best to promote themselves?
Bands today rely too much on technology…..I recommend locking yourselves in a rehearsal space and learn how to be a band by rehearsing, listening to music and getting to know the people in your band as musicians and people.
Play live as much as you can, play anywhere and for anyone and study the bands that inspired you to play.
Your new album Return of the Metal has just been released. Tell us a bit about the songs on the album, your writing process, and the inspiration behind them.
Return of the Metal is an onslaught of heavy, progressive pounding metal in the vein of Slayer, Megadeth, Mercyful Fate, Death Angel, Rush, Anthrax and early Metallica. The writing process was very simple, Joe and Adam came in with the majority of the riffs and lyrics and we as a band jammed each section out, work on transitions and honed the songs together. Return of the Metal is a record that we would have liked to have released when we were signed to BMG/Sony but the powers that be felt that due to the music climate at the time it would have failed. I’m very proud of the records we made with BMG/Sony but Enter and Return of the Metal are the purest representation of the band ever recorded.
Do you have any tours planned?
We are currently playing dates locally and in the North Eastern parts of the US, our goal is to be playing on the European/UK summer tours next year.
Any other news for your fans?
We are putting the final edits on our video for Three Section Staff and will be releasing our latest single Disfigured Gargoyle in mid July.
Thank you, Dan! Good luck with the album and I’ll be looking forward to seeing the video :)