Interview With Joy/Disaster

Greetings from Metalheads Forever Magazine, I’m Keith Clement, Head Editorial, how are you today?

Hi Keith, I am Nicolas ROHR (vox and lead guitar) and I feel very well because I’m glad and honored to reply to your questions.

From Stars To Angels was out months back, can you tell me about the songwriting and production behind it?

I have written and recorded the demos tracks of this album during the confinement between March and May 2020. It was a strange period for the world but very interesting for creativity. When we were able to move between the cities, we were back to rehearsal to work on the tracks during three months and we have recorded a live session studio in September 2020. 

We’ve took the time to listen to the tracks and fix the changes before to start to record the album. We have recorded, mixed and mastered the album by ourselves between September 2020 and April 2021.

I am working on the sound of the band from the start as I compose and write the starting tracks, I already have a vision about the final sound of the album.

What was the concept of the album?

I don’t have any special concept when I’m starting to write. In general, I compose the music before to write the lyrics because I love to keep the feelings and vibes of the sound that I’m listening. It helps me to write some words and finally to write the full lyrics.

Of course, some of the tracks of the album talking about isolation, loneliness, strength of the spirit, the power of nature when man is no longer there to harm. It talks about people we miss when we were enclosed at home for few weeks.

Songs are so deep lyrically, with strong emotions and a thought of loneliness, can you tell me about the songwriting process?

I think I have replied in the question before but I can add something. Everything is strong because the situation was particularly hard to live for everybody and for me it was a very good time for reflexion about my situation, my position as a person with my family, my love, my friends and me as a human in the middle of society. I’ve spended this time alone in my flat to write like a therapy and that was given the birth of this album and those lyrics.

Can you tell me how Joy/Disaster was formed and how you all got together?

I have created JOY/DISASTER in 2005 with a friend who was the bassist from my old band that I have been fired. The band was a power trio at the start and we didn’t have a lot of money and only one car to take the road for concerts. At this time my friend Simon proposed us to join us on the road with his car and help to manage the merch and other things around the band. 

In 2008, Simon bought his first guitar and started to learn to play alone and at this time I had in mind to add guitar on stage and I proposed to him to play his first notes on stage with us and now he is still in the band, a very good friend and better guitarist than me.

Soupa the bassist was an old friend too and I proposed him to join us in 2011 after five other bassists. Now Soupa is still playing bass and assured the backing vocals on stage.

Sebastian the drummer is the last arrived in the band in December 2019, Seb is a good friend of Soupa because they played few years in a grunge band and he naturally arrived in JOY/DISASTER.

We had a lot of changing of musicians in the band because of life and other musical desires too.

Talking about your music, its quite touching in each of your songs, a blend of early 80’s and 90’s with your own creative process, makes it perfect, how do you feel about the music that you been creating?

First of all, thank you very much because your words are really heartwarming.

From the start we never tried to play a particular style, we took what we had every time we composed and made songs out of it. 

We have a lot of influences but as you said, most of them are from the 80’s and 90’s. I think it comes of the fact that I am born in 1976 and my brother who is five years older than me maked me listen a lot of bands like Depeche Mode, The Cure, Sisters of Mercy, AC/DC, Autograph and during my teenage I was a big fan of Guns’n Roses, Queen, Metallica, Faith No more, Alice in Chains and many others…

When I bring my guitar to play and compose, I don’t really know what kind of tunes will be created but I’m starting with a common clean or distortion sound as I add effects. This how it starts but the final sound of our tracks is a real mix of all musicians influences and touch.

How has the road been so far for you guys?

During all these years the road was very exciting and we had a lot of beautiful and amazing experiences. 

We have played in few countries in Europe (France, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Belgium, Uk, Norway, Poland, Austria, Czeck Republic, Latvia, Estonia, Littuania, Romania and Mexico).

In each country and for each concert, we met only nice people and we’ve shared a lot about music, life and experiences. We are a very friendly band and we love to talk and share some beers with people before and after shows… that’s why we are really hurried to go back on stage!

Would you like to share some great moments?

One of the most incredible was the day after our show in Mexico City in May 2014. The promoters with who we made a very big afterparty proposed us a surprise before to bring up to the airport. Finally in the morning we took a van to go to Teotihuacan Pyramids and it was just an incredible moment for all of us and a very nice present from the promoter to the band.

Another great memory was Wave Gothic Festival (De) in 2018 where we played in front of a big crow’s crowd with a very good energy. It was a very nice stage and we met back a lot of old friends and fans from that start and they gived us good feedbacks about our show! 

What is the touring look like, any possibilities this year or early next year?

For the moment we are working with SPLIT SCREN MANAGEMENT to book shows for early of 2022. We have plans in Germany and Belgium but we would really like to go back on stage at the UK but finally we just want to go back on stage whatever the country!

What would be the next plans for the band?

At this moment we have the plan to record a live session studio filmed at the end of October because we realized that people would rather watching us play our tracks than watch a simple videoclip.

We are looking for a partnership with a new label to release FROM STARS TO ANGELS album in CD and vinyl editions.

Meanwhile we are preparing a very good setlist including tracks of our eight’s albums. We have a very interesting goal for June 2022 because a promoter proposed to play for the 50’s birthday of one of our fans and we will be the only band of the night. We will prepare 35/40 songs for a very big show which will cover the story of J/D.

In a next step, I will continue to compose for the nineth album that we would like to release in 2023, I have already five demos tracks recorded but only three of them sound pretty good.

How do you see the future and what would be some of the musical experiments you have planned to do?

I think we must have hope in the future and see what will be the new opportunities for concerts and festivals. We would love to make some summer festivals in Europe in 2022 with hope that JOY/DISASTER will find a place there and burn stages with the energy we love to spend !

Finally what would be the message for the fans?

We hope that you had a great time to read our replies to Keith for Metalheads Forever and as you know we can’t wait to meet you back or meet for the first time at our next shows!!! Thank you very much to follow us from far and from years!

‘From Stars To Angels’ tracklist:
1. Memories
2. Blind
3. Breathe
4. Certainties
5. Somewhere
6. Close
7. Trust
8. Nature
9. Shine
10. Hope
11. Alloy
12. Moment
13. Face Off
14. Broken

Album coverart by Siane R.

Stream and buy ‘From Stars To Angels’ at https://joy-disaster.bandcamp.com/album/from-stars-to-angels-2021

Line-up:
Nicolas ROHR (Lead Vox & Guitar)
Simon BONNAFOUS (Guitar)
Soupa RUNDSTADLER (Bass & Backing Vox)
Sébastien MASSUL (Drums)

Music Videos

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 https://www.facebook.com/joydisasterofficial 
 https://www.instagram.com/joydisasterofficial 

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