Band Interview: In Vain ( Johnar Håland – Guitarist)

Games, Brrraaains & A Head-Banging Life are very pleased to bring you an interview with extreme metal band, In Vain. The band’s fourth album, Currents is out on January 26th 2018 & you can read our review of this excellent record here.

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1. Tell us a bit about In Vain’s origins. How did you get started?

In Vain started back in 2003 while I was attending music school. Back then I had already been active in a metalcore band, but I was starting to get into more extreme music. In contrast to myself, my friend Andreas had been a metal head for many years and we had been joking about starting a metal band for quite some time without really being serious about it.

At the music school I attended everybody had to record something in the school’s own recording studio and I ended up writing a metal song, which Andreas added his vocals to. The song, As I Wither, actually ended up on our debut album ‘The Latter Rain’ (2007), and I am still proud of that song.

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We ended up renting the studio for the whole summer, recording our first EP ‘ Will the Sun Ever Rise’, which was released independently in 2004. We repeated the process the following summer and released our second EP Wounds in 2005, and following that we were signed to Indie Recordings. Since then we have released 3 albums and will release our fourth album Currents on January 26th.

2. You’ve set the bar for 2018 with Currents already. It’s an incredible release. How are you feeling about it?

Thanks a lot for your kind words. We are very happy with the album to be honest. We have worked really hard on it and it turned out really well. The production is also better and more organic than ever. I think Currents showcases a wide range of styles, but still keeps a delicate balance between all the various sub-genres. It is creative and full of contrasts, and definitely an album you can enjoy for a long time.

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3. How would you describe the new album for those who don’t know your work?

In Vain’s musical vision has always been to make interesting and original music and to merge what we view as the strengths of various musical genres. They key is to make this combination in a seamless and natural way. In order for people to put us into a box we usually label the music ‘progressive extreme metal’.

4. What are some of your favourite bands/influences?

Some of my all-time favourite bands in the more extreme genres would be In the Woods…, Extol, Emperor, Opeth, koRn, Shai Hulud, etc.

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5. Has the rise of YouTube/streaming services helped or hindered you as a band?

I guess it has helped our recognition and it makes it more easy for people to discover us. On the other hand, we really need that people who like our music to also support us financially. That is the only way we can continue to record albums, and YouTube does not really generate any revenue at all.

A lot of people ask us why we do not tour more, release albums more often, etc. The brutal truth is that we do not have the money necessary. People have no idea how much money we have spent on recording, mixing, promoting, etc of our new album Currents. In order for us to continue to release music our label needs to make money, so it is important that you support us if your like our stuff.

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6. What are your plans going forward? Are we going to see you touring in the UK?

We are going on a European tour together with Orphaned Land in February/March. Catch us live at the Underworld in London on the 26th February!

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You can pick up Currents in a number of formats as well as merchandise via Indie Recordings here. Pick up the band’s earlier releases here, check them out on Spotify & via Apple Music below. You can find out more about In Vain on their websiteFacebook PageTwitter & watch videos on YouTube.




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