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With: Paul Van Der Zwaal



Richard Hawey - May 2016

PROFIL - First of all, I want to thank you for accepting our invitation to participate in this interview.

PR - Your last album was in 2004 with "Retreat," which has taken place during this long break?

PAUL - As the title “Retreat” implicates we planned a break after our 2th album. At that time in our lives we had to make time for our private lives and professional careers as well after a period of intensive playing and writing music for more than 10 years at that moment. Unfortunately, the sabbatical lasted a little bit longer than planned.

PR - What led you to return to the music scene with a new album?

PA - Two things to be honest. First of all the friendship between us. We missed playing, writing and most of all laughing together during our weekly rehearsals. Secondly the love for symphonic and progressive music. Funny thing is that we don't see it as a return to the music scene. Triangle was never a very outgoing band. The four of us have a very close bond and we love to hang around making music together. We see the recording of each album as a milestone for our self and if there are more people who enjoy our music that's a very pleasant benefit. The critically acclaimed reviews then and now were and is really a surprise to us. Mainly because we don't seek media attention we are very proud of all the effort people take to contact us. Funny thing is that it was never the intention to produce official albums. It was our recording engineer during the “Square the Circle” recordings who stimulate us to do more with the recordings than keep it to our self. Blue as we were we sent the recordings to a record company and the first official album was a fact.

PR - The group's line-up has returned to its roots with the return of Paul Van Der Zwaal on drums? You can tell us?

PA - As I told before we have a very close bond and a specific vision what Triangle means for us. The pressure and involvement from outside after the 1th album took over. When we planned the recording of Retreat I noticed that the pressure and influence from outside the band took over the pleasure I had in making music. So we asked a very close friend and drummer Edward Bijnsdorp to do the recordings. The sabbatical was already planned before this decision. The reason for our “return” was we missed hanging around together making music. We decided to start playing together for fun with again no intention to release a album. But after the first rehearsal the fun and inspiration took over big time. We have grown older, wiser now and keep the influence from outside the band away by producing and releasing the album. Best thing is that we had a blast of a time doing it our way.

PR - 2016 emphasizes TRIANGLE back with a new album called "Alert & Alive." You want to talk about it?

PA - During the rehearsals and writing of Alert & Alive life grabbed us by the throat. We had to deal with serious health issues. Jan-Willem (bass) and Roland (guitars) became seriously ill. When things turned positive there and we started the recordings our recording tech became very sick. “Alert & Alive” refers to unforeseen matters in live who turns out positively with a lot of effort and determination.

PR - You have been working for a long time?

PA - Yes, time flies when you’re having fun. Triangle started off in 1993 but it feels like yesterday. Only looking at our pictures from that time and my recent hairstyle (I’m bold) reminds us of time passing.

PR - Are the 2000 TRIANGLE version is similar to that of today? Priorities have changed?

PA - I think the Triangle version of 2000 is changed a bit to its version today. During the writing sessions of our first 2 albums we integrated several musical ideas in one track. On “Alert & Alive” we focused more on less ideas in a song to create a song with a clear beginning and end. We hoped to create some shorter songs but that didn't work out for all of them. So people can still enjoy a tracks for over 12 minutes. The vibe and sound is still the same as in 2000.

PR - Despite the long break, did you follow what was happening on the progressive scene?

PA - Of course we did. Our interest in music especially prog music never faded. We attended live concerts and collected prog albums all that time. For example, I really enjoy Iona and Riverside. Recently I discovered Votum. I love their latest album.

PR - Is there a promotional tour or concerts that are planned?

PA - Latest news is that Martijn (keyboards and vocals) left to the USA to start a new life over there. His partner is from the States. This was not really foreseen or planned in a long run. Our first reaction was that the remaining 3 of us would continue Triangle. But as told before our bond and match is so that we could not see Triangle would continue with new members. So Triangle is on hold at the moment. When Martijn returns to the Netherlands one day we start to play together for sure. Till that time, we plan interviews and auditions with other musicians this week to start a new band, with a new name (not yet known) and maybe new progressive influence.

PR - What are your main musical influences?

PA - We have a similar taste of music. Riverside, Collage, Jadis and Marillion are off influence.

PR - Do you think progressive music is still alive?

PA - Yes for sure. During our visits to concerts we see younger people attending the prog concerts with lots of enthusiasm. Roland even takes his teenage kids to concerts and they really enjoy the music we like.

PR - In Quebec I notice that most progressive music fans are relatively old, however, we see that more young people are beginning to learn this style. It's similar at home?

PA - As in my answer above we see younger people visit prog concerts. A good example is Porcupine Tree with a lot of young fans.

PR - What are your future projects?

PA - As the future now is to start a new band with Roland. Unfortunately, Jan-Willem is at this moment not able to join a new band due to health reasons. His long term health expectation is positive so when Triangle starts to play one day he will join Triangle for sure.

PR - You have the last word ...

PA - We would like to thank you all for your support and positive reaction over the years. As I spoke before, it is not our basic instinct to seek media attention. That’s why you don’t find us all over the internet or playing live in concert. But we enjoy the attention and reactions so much. It makes us proud.

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