Refuge marks the reunion of arguably the most successful, line-up of the German metal band Rage, featuring Peavy Wagner, Manni Schmidt and Christos Efthimiadis. Coming together in 1988, they parted ways in 1994, with Wagner continuing Rage, Schmidt joining Grave Digger and Efthimiadis eventually joining Tri State Corner. After a long period with no contact, the trio met up in 2014 and decided to play a secret show in their hometown Herne (Germany) under the moniker ‘Tres Hombres’.
Aside from word of mouth and social media rumblings, the show was not promoted and therefore one where you had to be ‘in the know’. Despite this, more than 1200 fans found their way to the gig, where the band performed all the hits from their time together in Rage and loved every second of it. Hungry for more, the idea of forming Refuge was born.
Refuge played some hugely successful festival shows in mainland Europe in the summer of 2015. The audience reaction to the 1988-1993 Rage songs they performed was truly overwhelming and exceeded all expectations. More shows were played in 2016, including three in Japan, exactly 20 years after they had played their last shows together first time around, coincidentally also in Japan!
“The band sounds nearly the same as back then, maybe a bit more relaxed, mature, with more individual experience,” states Wagner. “But the general vibe is still the same. We know each other blindly. In order to write the songs, we created the same set-up we had 30 years ago. We rented the same rehearsal room and jammed together in a live situation and the magic was back! I’m glad that we could use and finalise some of our ideas from back then, stuff that we couldn´t use at that time for various reasons.
The song ‘Waterfalls’, for example, was always one of my unfinished favourites. I´m proud we were able to bring it to light now, finally!” What started out as a fun thing in 2014 has turned into a real band again. “We want to continue doing this together as long as possible, it is a manifestation of our reborn old friendship and it is a ‘coming from the heart’ thing for us to do it,” concludes Peavy.
The debut album by Refuge, entitled ‘Solitary Men’, is the first album of original material from the classic Rage line-up in a quarter of a century and will surely satisfy fans who remember their now legendary albums. Up the horns for Refuge!
1 Summer’s Winter
2 The Man In The Ivory Tower
3 Bleeding From Inside
4 From The Ashes
5 Living On The Edge Of Time
6 We Owe A Life To Death
7 Mind Over Matter
8 Let Me Go
9 Hell Freeze Over
11 Another Kind Of Madness (Bonus Track)
Peavy Wagner – bass & vocals
Manni Schmidt – guitars
Christos Efthimiadis – drums