Crimson River – Interview

Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (

PD:  How would you describe yourself or your band as an artist?

CR: Hi, Danny Keijsers from Crimson River speaking, thanks for the interview! We are just four guys that like to make music together, and that are well matched, which makes it a lot of fun. We are not professional musicians, nor are we signed to any label. We all have steady jobs, so everything we do is “on the side”, which means that things sometimes might take a bit longer than in a professional band. But what we do, we like to do well and with our newest (debut) full lenght album called “Here’s To The End… Again”, we have hit another milestone in our musical endeavours.


PD: Can you tell us briefly about your background – i.e. where you’re from, how you came to make music, etc.

CR: Guitarists Kris van Rens and Danny Keijsers have known each other for a long time, they grew up in the same village (Hegelsom). Every now and then they jammed together, and the idea arose to start a band. A drummer and bassist from the same village joined in and the band was complete. After a few shows, however, this composition fell apart again, and a new drummer and bass player had to be found. In the meantime Kris had moved to Eindhoven, and the search was continued there. Drummer Tom Koene was soon found through Kris. Bassist Kevin Megens responded to an advertisement on, and so the current line-up was completed at the end of 2011.

It clicked immediately, and the different backgrounds of the band members complement each other very well. As a programmer, guitarist Kris is already completely absorbed in technology in daily life, and with guitarists such as Paul Gilbert and Yngwie Malmsteen as inspiration, you can see that reflected in the band. Drummer Tom previously played in a punk band and prefers to keep it as simple as possible with a small drum kit. No double bass pedal in a metal band? It’s fine! Bassist Kevin is mainly focused on power metal and metalcore. So in addition to a solid foundation, this also provides a melodic undertone. Also the backing vocals are handled by Kevin. Guitarist and singer Danny is the only one who does not live in Eindhoven, but in Nijmegen. With his 10-string B.C. Rich Bich guitar he provides a special rhythm guitar sound. As a biologist, he does his best to make the band an organic unity.


PD: Who and what inspires you to make music, both in terms of musical and other influences? What do you like to write about in your songs?

CR: For our influences, see the previous question. It might be a bit cliche in the metal genre but the inspiration for the songs and lyrics mostly comes from epic theme’s, like war and death, but also nature and the universe.


PD: What are your aspirations as an artist?

CR: It is so hard to get above the crowd in the music business, so we don’t have very high expectations. We do our thing because we like it, and like playing together and writing songs. We have been doing that for more than 10 years now and will probably do so for years to come. We all have steady jobs, and not the finances or time to compete with big labels and the like, and that’s fine.


PD: What is the proudest moment in your music career so far?

CR: Producing the upcoming album that will be released on February 10, called “Here’s To The End… Again”!


PD: Promoting one’s music is such a challenge these days, especially with so many new artists emerging from bedrooms in the day of the home studio. How is that going?

CR: We just started doing it, and hired a pr firm to help us. It has only been two days but already results are coming in, so it seems promising…


PD: And how do you book and promote your live shows and tours? Any performances coming up?

CR: We still do that ourselves by reaching out to venues and bookers. No performances coming up yet, we have been so busy organising the release of the new album that we haven’t got to that yet. But when the album is released we will send it out everywhere and hope we can get some shows here and there.


PD: What do you think about downloading music online? What about streaming sites like Spotify?

CR: Generally good, it makes it a lot easier to access music, and also to release it as an artist and potentially get it to a large audience. Although the feeling of a physical cd or even better, vinyl, will never beat streaming.


PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?

CR: Kashmir by Led Zeppelin, because of the unusual rhythm and epic feel of the song, and the athmosphere it creates.


PD: Is there anything you don’t like about the music industry, which you would change if you could?

CR: If you want to make it as a band, it’s not about how good the music is, it is about marketing and who you know…


PD: So, what are you working on at the moment?

CR: Releasing our debut full length album, then getting a tour going to support it. And in the meantime we have been writing a number of new songs already which would already be enough to fill the next album!


PD: Where can we learn more about you and buy your music/merch online?


Crimson River links:
Band/Artist location – Eindhoven, The Netherlands
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