Hello Rick, how are you doing?

I am doing fine, thanks.

Please tell us about the last 2 years. The whole World is involved in this pandemic. There are things happening now that nobody could ever Imagine on the planet, Maybe not even in there Wildest dreams?

Strange times indeed, wordwide. We took the last 2 years to finish writing , re- arranging and especially the recording process of the new album Planet Metalhead which we already started before the Pandemic.  We had much more time on our hands now to deep dive into every detail of the songs and the production and that paid off really well. Next to that we did have a few shows and did the Dynamo Metal fest Live Stream 2020  and invested time in conquering more countries by streams but also by re-releases of For The Universe our first album for example in South America.

What did you and the other members to ‘stay alive’ and well in these last 2 years?

Writing, recording, recording , rewriting . mixing , promoting the band etc etc. We were still very active. Released 3 singles and videos for the upcoming album to stay in touch with our fanbase. Also a MARTYR Mlitia fanclub was raised by fans for fans and now has 1000+ members .

So you can say we kept in touch with our fans and did all we could to deliver a very high quality album and promote the band the best we were able to during these times.

What do you think the impact have the last two years on the bands from all over the globe that where/are sitting home and bite there vingers of and wait to play again around the globe?

Difficult, i think there are bands that quit, cause they discover other interests or are forced to do something else. On the other hand, bands will spent time to discover themselves and write a lot of new music.  When we are able to play around the globe again all these rescheduled shows and summer festivals might be overwhelming for the audience. I dont know if that is a good thing too. People can only spend their money once

Can you tell us about the new album; Planet Metalhead. That Will be released next year? Writing Process, time in the studio etc…

It will be released on Feb 24 by PT78 records, but we have multiple deals worldwide in China, Japan , South and North America. We want the world to hear it,  as it is our best album ever. Also No Dust records will release it with a special limited fan package . That all looks very promising.

It is a pure metal album containing 10 great songs and is mainly recorded at home. That means we all have our home studios, the drums are recorded in de Meister in Geleen and after recordings all instrumental parts are produced, mixed and mastered by our drummer Rick Valcon (who is also a studio engineer). It took us about 1,5 year for re-arranging, recording , mixing and mastering and as said we went into the smallest details to perfect the material. But esp Rop (Vocals) and myself were already writing new material for some years after the You Are Next release (2016).  With Rick Valcon (Drums), Geoffrey Maas (guitars) and Vinnie Wassink (bass) in the band we now also have the musicians to bring you the best and heaviest of MARTYR.

There Will be a special online listening party going on. Can you tell us about it?

Yes , we were supposed to do it in Dynamo right before the Eindhoven Metal Meeting with press and fans that pre-ordered the album . Have a drink and a talk. But, the story is boring, due to corona measurements we had to cancel (or postpone) that. But we also organized online sessions for press abroad so we focus on this right now also for national fans and press. You have to think out of the box nowadays you know. We will play the whole album, and hope they all go crazy , raising their horns online haha

What we can expect musically and lyrically on the new album?

It is fast, loud, heavy but also has a few easier moments on it . It is a pure , true , heavy metal album and thats why we call it Planet Metalhead. It is about Heavy Metal Music, the metal community as a whole on the planet. Everybody is welcome on Planet Metalhead, enjoy our music and play it LOUD!

Any news about a tour or concert in the near future?

Yes we have our release party planned for March 12th in club De Helling in hometown Utrecht. It is also our 40th anniversary party.  After that we try to play as many shows as possible, like Das Oktober metal fest, other festivals and club shows too. We hope to return to Japan ofcourse too and hope we can cross the oceans to South America for the first time.

Can you tell us when you started to play guitar and how you got interested in rock and metal music?

I started when i was 15 years old, my brother had a guitar but did not play on it so i took it. My interest in metal music came earlier i think i was 11 when i discovered KISS but before that i already listened to bands like Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath , DeepPurple, Jimi Hendrix

Where your parents also active in Music or listeners ?

My father was a jazz musician, played in a band when he was young, and listened whole his life to Jazz and church choirs too. My mother was more into german schlager haha

Beside playing in Martyr what is your profession, hobby’s…..?

I work in IT management and my hobbys are beer tasting , films , go out for good food, travelling.

What are some of your favorite bands in the 80’s and now Anno 2021?

Fav bands from the 80s are Van Halen , Loudness, early Queensryche, Pantera (early period , but ofcourse also the later groove metal period), Testament. Anno 2021 i still listen to these bands and am a collector of old releases on vinyl.  Newer bands i also like are f.e. Lamb Of God, Unearth,  to name just two.

Do you have any Nice stories you want to share with us if you think back about all these years of Martyr..?

Too many to mention when you think of 40 years of MARTYR (or at least 40 years since we established as from 1988-2005 we were not active). Best stories are the road stories, going to Japan and a lot of countries , experience the music , cuture and people everywhere, or all those things that can go wrong but still you have to laugh about it and having a good time. All these travels are “boys night out”

Do you have a last word to the readers of Bonavox.nl…?

Thank You all so much  for the continious support. Hope you will check out our discography but also the new Planet Metalhead. Join us online as we love to hear from you and keep in touch with our fans and followers.

Martyr: www.martyronline.nl

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