Interview with Arago

Interview with Arago

Arago is Progressive Metal Band from Leobersdorf, Lower Austria, Austria. Andreas Senkl gave us some information about Arago. Check it out.

Tell us about Arago!
The band ARAGO was founded in 2004 by Thomas Kleinander (bass), Sandra Kleinander (vocals/Senta) and Andreas Senkl (keys – that’s me). After an expressive search for other musicians, who should suit to us, we were able to extend the band with Andy B. Barna (vocals/Daland), Jürgen Dvoracek (guitar) and Lukas Kager (drums). Least left the band after finishing the drum recording, to force his other projects. Jürgen Ebner (vocals/Captain) joined us after a while, because a third person established in our material on the „Flying Dutchman“. Wolfgang Köppel (drums) replaced Lukas, but this was really hard work for us to persuade him. This is the actual lineup.

What are lyrical themes of Arago?
„The Flying Dutchman – A Drametical“  is based on a nautical folklore from the 17th century (also Richard Wagner told this story). Hence the theme was merely given but there is a lot to discover within the songs – adventure, hope, love, faithfulness and treachery and you will also find solitude, loss and remorse. The beauty of the story is, that it is a timeless story which you can transfer into now.

What are your influences?
I grew up with bands like Kiss, Judas Priest, Krokus, Iron Maiden and so on, but I also like Sam Brown, The Police or Vangelis - quite different styles of music. It is quite the same with my bandmates. If you find something interesting in a song – whatever style it is – you can use it for yourself and extend it, make your own thing out of it. You should be openminded. For Arago the ingredients are Drama (mainly lyrical), add a portion of Metal (incl. Rock/AOR) and filled up with musical … that’s why we call it a “Drametical”.

How did you choose the cover artwork?
Because of the title “The Flying Dutchman” it should be something with an old ship – and the sea. Something like that. I know that Thomas (bass) got hold of an image made by George Grie. We asked for permission to use it for our CD-artwork and there it is. Thomas made a few adaptions to the original image, created the Arago-logo and did all the other art-things. I really like the sign (on the back of the booklet) which hold all the letters of Arago.

How were the songs written?
I started in 2004 with “Through The Storm”, “Brand New Day”, “Cursed” and “Lost And Lonely” which showed up to be like a basis ready to extend, musically and lyrically. My kind of writing songs is a really freaking one I think. First I got a title of a song. Then I think about what it means to me, and then I try to transfer the emerging pictures in my head to music. Other songs were created in the rehearsal room, together with the whole band. Also Thomas (bass) and Jürgen (guitar) came up with ideas, and as a band we created and arranged the songs. The great thing that I experienced was that when one of us got stuck another one helped out immediately and brought a new idea or a way to get ahead. Our vocalists had any room they needed to try out vocal lines and to give the songs a mark of their own. This process was really exciting.

How did the recording process go?
It was really difficult because we had to transfer our rigs for every session to the studio that was also used as a rehearsal room for other bands. So we had to assemble everything again and again. On the other hand, the mood in the studio was very good which results of the presence of our friend Richard Sowade. He is not only our friend but also our technician, producer, mentor, instructor, engineer and good fairy. He encouraged us to try a lot of new things, inspired us and came up with some ideas for arrangements, we haven’t thought of. For instance, the intro to “A Ship On The Shore” only existed in my mind, I never played one single note of it before. So I told him my idea and described what I had in mind. He just looked at me, smiled, stood up, arranged everything for recording and said: “Well, now let’s play!”. That’s why I am nuts about him.

What are your future plans?
We want to present our concept album live – of course, but a definitive date or place is not yet defined. Until then there will be no new songs – not in the rehearsal room - for now.

Are there any countries you’re interested in touring or performing in? Why?
Music is our hobby – that stands for all members of Arago. It would be an enormous effort to get all of them together for a tour or even a few days out of Austria – but you never know. I love England, I have been there a few years ago and saw Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe – that was a blast.

What bands would you like to play alongside?
I saw Michael Bormann’s Jaded Heart live just a few weeks ago, that was very nice. There are a lot of bands I admire and I think I would want to play alongside.

Any last words?
Yes – from our song “Brand New Day”: “Spread your wings, learn to fly, waste no time and live your life”. So never give up, stand up and listen to your favourite music and maybe our material “The Flying Dutchman” will soon be amidst your music! We would really appreciate that!

Hope everything is fine.


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