STORY WRITTEN BY BRIAN BINGAMAN
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Volbeat isn’t entirely bent on world domination. But the Danish hard rock group does want to keep improving its foothold in the U.S.
And the mission is certainly being accomplished.
After hitting the Billboard Top 10 for the first time three years ago with “Outlaw Gentlemen & Shady Ladies,” the group’s sixth album, “Seal The Deal & Let’s Boogie,” debuted at No. 4 in June, while the single “Devil’s Bleeding Crown” logged a 10-week reign at No. 1 on the rock radio charts. And on the road Volbeat is certainly noticing more people and more excitement, according to guitarist Rob Caggiano.
“Everything feels really great in the States right now,” Caggiano, 39 — who was born in the Bronx and joined Volbeat in 2013, after a stint in Anthrax — says by phone from Baltimore. “It definitely keeps growing and getting bigger in the States. It feels like it’s growing in Europe as well, even though it’s really big there already.
“It just still feels like it’s growing everywhere.”
Caggiano, who co-produced “Seal The Deal…,” says that preparation is part of the key to the album’s success. “We spent a lot of time in the rehearsal room hashing out ideas and messing wtih the arrangements and changing stuff and throwing stuff out,” he recalls. “It just took awhile.
“But we really were focused on that. We spent a lot of time in the room, like I said, and by the time we went into the studio we were really prepared. Everybody knew what they were playing. We made sure all the parts worked together, everything.”
Caggiano also had to do double-duty this time. Volbeat bassist Anders Kjolholm left the group last year, shortly after his wife gave birth to a new child. Rather than replace him (Kaspar Boye joined for the tour), Volbeat made the album as a trio, and Caggiano stepped up to play the bass parts.
“We didn’t actually have a bass player when we went into the pre-production and the recording, so during rehearsals I was always thinking about bass line ideas as we were working on the songs,” Caggiano says. “But it all kind of came together pretty easily when we got in the studio.
“There’s no right way or wrong way to do it, really. It took a little getting used to not having that low end to fill out the sound, but we made it work. And I think it came out really good.”