Dynamic, heavy, light, chorus and mellotron – Intorducing: Vokonis

The heavy prog-metal-trio, Vokonis, is here to daze you with their furious sludge-vibe and melodic passages. Drenched in blasting distortion, melody, and menace, Vokonis is ready to fully blossom as the progressive beast they’ve held within since 2015. With a style that ranges from heavy riffage, face-melting layers of fuzz, and gritty, howling vocals to utterly clean, dreamlike soundscapes, they aim to completely immerse you in their songwriting. As you share a psychedelic and thrilling journey Vokonis will have shown their range from full-blown doom to melodically blissful passages.

After the release of their latest album “Grasping Time”, Vokonis immediately went into crafting more material. The result came to be their fourth studio album “Odyssey“, out on The Sign Records in the spring of 2021. Dynamically diverse, with more choruses and with the addition of guest musician Per Wiberg (Opeth, Spiritual Beggars, Kamchatka) on keyboards, “Odyssey” sets itself apart from everything the band has released before. With clear aggressive guitars, rumbling distorted bass, and blasting drums along with mellotron and organs, Odyssey is Vokonis‘ first true prog-record. A record for the new decade. 

Playing shows and putting a bigger focus on touring, Vokonis have shared stages with bands such as Monolord, Skraeckoedlan, and Elder. Playing on the road has been instrumental in the evolution of the band. Their appearance at Desertfest London in 2019 showcased the band’s musical growth since their latest album release. With the addition of Peter behind the drum kit, they’ve taken a lot of steps towards a more cohesive sound. 

Vokonis has since their start putting everything in high gear. While they’ve released three records, being featured in the highly profiled “The Planet of Doom”-animated movie, Vokonis isn’t stepping down in tempo. Neither are they satisfied. With a new sound, the trio is ready to launch themselves into the stratosphere. 

Vokonis‘ third, critically acclaimed album “Grasping Time” was released in late summer 2019 on The Sign Records. Inspired by nature and the universe around us, the album was the beginning of a new musical era for the band. Drawing inspiration from the shared vocals of Mastodon and a love for all things progressive, Vokonis evolved into the usage of dual vocals. Now sharing lead vocals, Jontes’ melodic voice complements the fierce bark of guitarist Simon. The album also meant a line-up change as former member Emil left the band and current drummer Peter was recruited. Here’s our interview with the guitarist and vocalistSimon Ohlsson!

Beginnings:

We formed after another band fell apart. Jonte joined me and our former drummer Emil in late 2015 to start off Vokonis.

Behind the name:

I just made it up, lol.

Inspiration:

I think it’s very different depending on who you ask in the band. I listen to a lot of prog and pop music. I also listen a lot to old grunge bands. So I draw inspiration from a lot of different styles in rock. I was very happy to see Kate Bush getting a nomination for an entry in the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. She is one of my biggest inspirations ever. In our scene, I want to highlight Elder and Skraeckoedlan for inspiration!

Inspiration behind the upcoming album, “Odyssey”:

The current state of the world comes to mind. It’s always changing so whatever I see comes into our new album I guess. I think a big inspiration for our new album ‘Odyssey’ was to just let go of previous boundaries we had set for ourselves.

Teamwork:

I come up with a framework, riffs/hooks, or stuff but we write together. So if someone has an idea we just go off on it and see where it takes us. I like it a lot better when all of us contribute.

COVID-19:

We can’t really rehearse so we have taken up weekly zoom meetings to keep in touch. It’s been very hard.

Online concerts:

We have done one. But as it looks now with restrictions we are not planning anything as of right now.

Fun fact:

We are all big lovers of sci-fi and scary stories, and we actually kinda went through something that might’ve ended up as one. We got invited deep into the woods to a fan’s house. Followed him on tiny gravel roads and got very lost on where we were. Then when we came up to the house we got served delicious pancakes and listened to records with the fan. It was very odd but definitely a fun experience.

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"I associate heavy metal with fantasy because of the tremendous power that the music delivers." - Christopher Lee

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