Razorbats unveil new line-up including second guitarist
Norwegian rockers Razorbats have announced their new line-up consisting of guitarists Kjetil F. Wevling and Asle Tangen, lead vocalist Paul Vercouteren, bassist Christoffer Haugerud and drummer Knut S. S. Wettre.
Razorbats‘ press releases state in part (with slight edits):
“After a few turbulent months with a failed attempt to record a new album, disagreements and major changes to the lineup, Razorbats are finally back with a new lineup!
Norway’s Razorbats got international attention when they released their debut album Camp Rock in 2015 and critics from all over Europe, Australia and the US praised their unique ability to blend classic rock, powerpop and punk in a new and exiting way. The lead single «Kids of the 70s» got a lot of airplay on rock radio across Europe and college radio in the US, in addition to national radio back home. The band shared the stage with bands like Rise Agains and The Dandy Warhols before they embarked on their first UK and Scandinavian tour. Camp Rock was named album of the year by Glitter 2 Gutter in the US and featured on a lot of best-of list for 2015.
Razorbats lost both lead singer Even Berg and bassist Stig Sætevik during the recording of their follow-up album. In addition to replacements for them, they have also recruited a second guitar player. The new members are Paul Vercouteren (Hollywood Vampires/Virginia Hill) on vocals, Asle Tangen (Babylon Bastards/She Said Destroy) on guitar and Christoffer Haugerud (Kill City Bandits) on bass.
Kjetil F. Wevling (guitar): We were almost done recording a new album when singer Even Berg told us he had to leave the band. He’s a single dad and with the success of Camp Rock and all the plans we had for the future he found it impossible to combine the two. It didn’t really come as a surprise to us and it was of course the right decision, but it put us in a difficult position. Even is a unique singer, so we knew he would be hard to replace. We had some disagreements about what to do next, so bass player Stig Sætevik left about the same time. We went on Christmas leave with half a band and half a record in the can. At that moment, we were very close to calling it a day.
How did you go about finding new band members?
Kjetil F. Wevling (guitar): “I somehow started thinking about a band I really loved a few years ago called Hollywood Vampires. Not the one with Alice Cooper and Johnny Depp, of course. They had a fantastic singer and frontman, great style and was one of the few bands in that mold that could actually back the image up with quality songs. After I started thinking about Paul, I couldn’t even consider anyone else. He was perfect! We had a few beers one day and discussed plans, ambitions and music. We realised we shared the same vision, so it was really a no-brainer. Paul knew we were also looking for a bass player, so he brought along Christoffer, who at that time was in Kill City Bandits. So after a few hours of talking and many delicious beers, Razorbats was reborn and we quickly got to work on finishing the new record.
Already that first night, we decided we were gonna find a second guitar player to do the Thin Lizzy and Def Leppard twin guitar thing. None of the guys we knew were a fit, so we held auditions. Asle had the right musical references, played great and had a lot of drive, so we knew he was our guy.”
What was it about Razorbats that made you want to join?
Paul Vercouteren (vocals): “I wanted to join the band because I heard so many references to the 70s and 80s rock, punk and glam music that I love. They had a great mix of attitude, energy and attention to melody. I knew I could contribute to that both as a singer and as a frontman.”
What was your impression of Razorbats before you joined the band?
Christoffer Haugerud (bass): “I was a fan of the band! I knew they were a kick ass melodic rock ’n roll band, and I actually dreamed of joining the band from when I first moved to Oslo three years ago. I’m thrilled to finally be a razorbat myself!”
What has it been like to join a band that was going through such major changes?
Asle Tangen (guitar): “To me, it has been really inspiring and something positive! After we first started jamming, I could feel that we had something very special going on. The combination of great players, a common understanding of the music and our shared ambition will make us a force to reckoned with, mark my words! Hats off to Kjetil and Knut for the great work they have done with finding the right players to take Razorbats to a new level. The band sound amazing and it’s fantastic to be a part of it!”
How has it worked out with the new guys so far?
Knut S. S. Wettre (drums): “Just brilliant! It is in a lot of ways a new band now and all the guys have brought something special to the table. Paul is awesome and he’s taken a lot of the songs on the new record to a another lever. Christoffer is a God given backup singer in addition to being a solid bass player and Asle is a great guitarist. It’s a lot of fun being in Razorbats these days!”
Razorbats‘ “Kids Of The 70s” video:
Music video for the track Kids of the 70s. Filmed live at Tribute in Sandnes, Norway by René Undem. Track appears on the album Camp Rock released 2015 throug…