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A Dirty Dozen with ROB VAN WAR of ATTIKA – May 2019

 

According to a recent press release: “A metal cult classic, Attika’s ‘When Heroes Fall,’ was recently reissued via Pure Steel Records. Originally self-released on cassette in 1991, the album was then issued on CD a year later by Massacre Records out of Germany, before soon going out of print. But the album remained popular with the metal underground (Belgium’s ‘Metal to Infinity Webzine’ said, “This kind of albums brings me back to the good old days, days I really miss”).” We get co-founder and frontman Rob to discuss new music, influences, and much more…

1. Tell us a little about your latest reissue release.  What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through? Are there any hidden nuggets the band put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

Some people miss the thought behind the lyrics on this album. There are no subliminal inserts or nuggets. Our main goal with this album was put it their face. Get recognized.

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

This is actually amusing. I’ve always wanted to a musician since I was very young watching ” The Monkees” on TV. I knew that’s what I wanted to do.

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

It was “I’m A Believer” by the Monkees. Later I learned that it was actually Neil Diamond that wrote it. Soon after, I was buying up Neil’s LP’s.

4. Who would be your main five musical influences?

Kiss, Neil Diamond, Dio, Thin Lizzy, and Judas Priest.

5. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

I think I would call in Paul Stanley. I’ve been a huge Kiss fan forever. I really  believe Paul is a true artist and musician. He has a good ear for producing as well. I know i could learn something from him.

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

Now days, Its easier to suggest bands like Judas Priest or Iron Maiden. However. I remember seeing Savatage, Crimson Glory, Metal Church, etc. These are all great bands. I don’t think i have ever cringed to be honest.

7. What’s the best thing about being a musician?

Freedom!! The ability to put myself in an art that others can enjoy.

8. When the band are all hanging out together, who cooks; who gets the drinks in; and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

LOL – I imagine the cook would be Jeff; Glenn and I would take care of the cooler and drinks. Bill definitely would be the first to grab a guitar.

9. When was the last time you were star struck and who was it?

I actually haven’t really had this experience. I did meet Eric Singer and Jonathan Cain. it was very low key and cool.

10. If you weren’t a musician, what would be your dream job?

A job where there is freedom, travel, and where I make a difference.Possibly a liaison for corporate sponsorship’s and festivals.

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over”, even if it didn’t change your current situation?

Back in 1991 we were fortunate enough to perform for Island Records in Miami. This was before cell phones, google maps, etc. I had the chore of entertaining them while the drummer tried to find his way to the gig. We also had a second guitarist at the time who was running his mouth as if we were the next big thing. Afterwards, I had to make some choices. One choice was easy and made very quickly. The other choice at the time I couldn’t make or do. I think things may have gone a lot differently if I had made those choices Island recommended.

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

I think watching Black Sabbath during the Mob Rules album would have been amazing. To see them and Dio work that magic would be unforgettable. That album was a staple for a lot of us back then. I remember hearing the “Mob Rules” for the first time in the Heavy Metal movie soundtrack. I was mesmerized!!

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Todd ‘ToddStar’ Jolicoeur

Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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