Volbeat — Danish Dynamite

The Finns have bowed down in admiration in the snow. The Germans have hailed them as über-cool. Their own compatriots have succumbed too. Volbeat are Denmark’s biggest-ever heavy sensation!

Volbeat -- Danish Dynamite
Volbeat — Danish Dynamite

It’s been many years since singer Michael Poulsen and his band played to tiny audiences and slept in flea-pit hotels or on cold trainstation benches while on tour. At the time Poulsen was in Dominus, a  hard-hitting Danish death-metal band that released four albums between 1995 and 2000. Not many people were listening, but Poulsen kept up both the momentum and his faith in the music.

In 2001 he formed a new band, Volbeat, whose heavy sound also reflected his love of ’50s rock’n’roll. One bright scribbler dubbed the band “Elvis metal” – and that’s alright mama, ’cos soon the heartbreak hotel days were behind them, and Volbeat no longer faced being lonesome tonight when they played live.

The band’s 2007 breakthrough album “Rock the Rebel/Metal the Devil” was a bona fide sensation that topped the Danish charts and went platinum – something no other Danish heavy metal band has ever achieved. The follow-up, the critically acclaimed “Guitar Gangsters & Cadillac Blood”, also made it to the top in Denmark.

Volbeat’s success has also been spreading through Europe. The famously metallic Finns sent the album  right to the top of the charts, the Swedes took it to no.4, and it entered the Top 30 in Germany, Austria, Norway, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

The hard road
All this success may just be the beginning, as the group continue to tour with an intensity that would impress even B.B. King. “We played about 30 festivals this summer, and now we’re touring Denmark and the rest of Europe,” says Poulsen. “If we can fit it in, we also hope to make it to the USA in 2008. We’re on a real roll at the moment – in 2007 we played 103 gigs in nine months. But we wouldn’t have it any other way. When I get home from touring I soon get restless. As soon as I’ve zapped through all the TV channels I start thinking: ‘I’ll go for a walk, then.’ Musicians are like rats in a cage. If you pull us off our wheel, it won’t be long before we jump back on again.”

The singer and songwriter thinks that the lean  years, when they had to fight tooth and nail forgigs and a breakthrough, helped toughen the group’s metal soul: “We put up with a helluva lot. But ultimately it’s helped us. Our success  hasn’t been easy, like winning a competition, but our boyhood dream has been fulfilled. We make a living from playing, and we enjoy it. Who knows when the ship will sail in the other direction…? But even when things do start to turn we’ll just keep on going, ’cos we’ve already tried  scraping rock bottom,” he promises.
As the King sang, “It’s now or never!”

TEXT ANDERS HOUMØLLER THOMSEN
PHOTOGRAPHY NIKOLAJ PALMSKOV

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3 Responses to “Volbeat — Danish Dynamite”

  1. boomboommag Says:

    Wikipedi on Volbeat here — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volbeat

  2. […] –  mike sheridan  –  alphabeat  — dúné  — boom boom mag  –  volbeat – aura   — sinne eeg  – boom magazine — boomboom — caroline […]

  3. Repeat Pete Says:

    I ku’ sgu laere Sidney Lee noget!

    Respekt!

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