You say you want a ReVolution? Voyager talk us through the new album

Voyager might have a Scandinavian sound but if A-Ha want to bring it on, they'd better be ready to rumble.

I Am The ReVolution, the latest offering from Australian melodic metallers Voyager is quickly becoming marked as the album that could be their breakthrough into bigger and better things; ‘Whether it’s the “breakthrough” in the metal world or if it breaks through to an alternative rock scene, we’ll be happy either way,’ says guitarist Chris Hanssen, 'from what I know, I don’t think we’ve received one negative review so I must say I’m very pleased with the outcome and the reception of the album’.

With two releases under their belts, Voyager approached the notoriously tricky third album in a more democratic way, meaning more input from each member of the band in the early writing stages.

Danny [Estrin - keyboards, vocals and the brains behind Voyager's inception] writes the backbone for all the songs and the rest of the band would add their touches’, says Chris of the six month writing/recording process. But don’t for a minute think this is an all-smiling love in; I Am The ReVolution has a message. ‘Conceptually,' he said, 'it's all about the power of the individual to make a change in this world we live in; this world of information overload.’

With a message of empowerment and change, was Voyager ever tempted to veer away from it's signature melodic sound and into heavier world normally associated with this type of metal?

Chris says, ‘We go by what sounds good to us without the intention to purposely adopt a style’. But wouldn’t harsher vocals take Voyager's appeal to a broader fanbase? ‘There’s really no temptation within Voyager to employ any aspects to appeal to a certain audience…we’ve received nothing but positive feedback and reviews from this so I think it’s a method we’ll stick to,’ Chris said.

Having said this, though, it doesn't mean that the band doesn't care what the critics say about their work - they do; it's just not the be-all and end-all to their work.

‘I value what the critics say,’ says Danny, ‘you can always tell if a person has listened to the album or just given it a cursory going over. But ultimately we play the music we love and if people happen to like it, that’s a huge bonus!’

It’s fair to say that the lion’s share of melodic metal bands hail from Europe, the likes of Sonata Arctica, Within Temptation and Nightwish being just some of the bands that have hit the big time. Voyager’s sound has a distinctly Scandinavian sound and I wondered what it was about the lands of perpetual night and burning churches that influenced this quintet from the sun-soaked land of Oz. It turns out that all of the band's members are half-European, which might go some way to explaining the constant references to 80s poseurs A-Ha that can be found in reviews of I Am The ReVolution. 

‘I don’t see a close enough resemblance to be comparing us to them in any way. But every review has stated we’re like a “metal version of A-Ha”, maybe I’m just missing something’ says Chris. Danny, on the other hand, embraces the somewhat tenuous comparison, ‘I think it's a cool comparison, because we write really catchy stuff. It just happens to be rock/metal rather than synth pop!’

Bearing in mind A-Ha’s biggest song is Take On Me, I wondered how Voyager would fare against the Nordic popsters were they to issue this challenge in a bar room brawl. Chris confidently tells me, ‘We’re from Western Australia; bar brawl professionals from a young age’. Although, Danny did admit that he'd hide behind the axeman.

With plans in the pipeline for a Japanese tour and ongoing talks of the USA, combined with new management and a new video for The Devil In Me on YouTube that's nudging 5,000 views, Voyager have got a busy twelve months in front of them. They’d like to be on the road with Children of Bodom (‘Those guys know how to party!’), and I Am The ReVolution could be the album that makes this kind of high profile slot a possibility.

The eclectic musical taste of the band (Chris is listening to everything from happy hardcore to Southern Californian punk rock, whilst Danny’s enjoying the new Scar Symmetry and Infected Mushroom efforts) is clear in an album that crosses a number of genres from one song to the next. And with the effort Voyager has put in, expect them to be making a lot of melodic noise in a venue near you soon.

As the guys themselves say, ‘keep a close eye on Voyager because big things are about to happen!’

I Am The ReVolution is out now on Dockyard 1/Riot.