Photo Credit: Raquel Garcia

Chatting with Kristina of Cobra Spell

After two EPs in 2020 and 2022, on first of December, Cobra Spell released their first full album “666”. Short after, I had the honour to interview Kristina Vega, their vocalist. So here we are, I hope, you will enjoy the interview as much as I did. I tried to keep it as authentic as possible so there might be some grammar mistakes which remained uncorrected because we both are no native speakers. It all starts with my cat Sookie jumping on my lap at the beginning of the interview…

Nearly met her once

Hi Kristina, I’m Gernot from Thank you for taking the time for us, by the way, it could be that my cats will disturb us sometimes. Do you have cats too?

“Hi Gernot, that’s okay, no worries. I used to have three when I was living with one of my ex-partners and now we have one cat at home. She’s 13 years old.”

Mine are nine years old. They are twins. It’s lovely to meet you. Do you know, by the way, accidentally I nearly met you in 2021 when I was visiting my friend Mara Lisenko, do you remember her?

“Wow. Yes, of course. I remember her. When she was living in L’Estartit?”

Yes, November or something like that, she said, we could also once go to Barcelona and meet you. Sadly, we couldn’t make it that time, you were not there and then she had another appointment in Latvia. We always said, next time. And then she and her moved to Croatia and now they are living in Austria.

“Yeah, yeah, yeah. Wow. Wow. I didn’t know that. I’m very looking to see Mara again because she’s a real friend, a really close friend of mine and I admire her a lot. We had the opportunity to meet just a few times, but all the moments that we have together were like awesome, super energetic moments. And we had very, very big and profound talks, you know, and that’s easy. That’s easy. She’s really easy going. She’s really talkative, you know, and she made me think pretty much in really important things. So I am super grateful to her.”

The other project

Me too, me too. She is a really great friend. Anyway, we should not only talk about her. Yes, of course, it would be lovely to talk about Mara and veganism and animal shelters. But we are here to talk about you and your bands. By the way, are you still also in Born In Exile or is it finished?

“I’m still in Born In Exile and I’m in another band too. I’m in three bands now.”

So will there soon be news from Born In Exile or is it still on hold a bit?

“We released an album on September this year. It is called “Major Arcana”. It’s an album that we released with… Let me check… One, two, three, four, five… Five songs. Progressive metal, of course. It means that we made a song of about 24 minutes length. Then you have progressive stuff for a nice evening. Yeah, I’m still doing other music too. Because I think this is what gives me the ability to be in shape, you know, with my voice. It keeps me practicing a lot. And making music is the thing that I love the most. So I cannot quit.”

And another project

Your third band, is it also a different style then?

“No, it’s progressive metal too. But we mix very acoustic passages. And it’s a conceptual story. It’s not just an album. It’s going to be a full story. Going through different albums. We released the album “Palin Genesis” this year too. The band is Serapis Project. It is very storytelling from the first song until the last one. You will see that we have different acts. Act 1, Act 2, Act 3, till the 8th. I really have to check it. You should because we are really dedicated to… In that band we are really dedicated to make things really minimalistic.”

Cool, yeah. I’m very interested!

“Big voice, big screams, not too much nonsense soloing. Everything is precisely calculated to be nice and packed and strong. So you will find different solos of course, because the guitar player is a very talented guy, he is Joaco Luiz and he plays amazingly. But there are nice solos, nice riffs, you will see. Let me know what you think.”

Interest caught

Now that keeps me interested, so I will have to check the album and when I like the album, it’s simple, when I like the album, I write a review. Every album or song is a piece of art. And I don’t want to judge it badly.  I like it or I like it not. But I would not write a review if I don’t like an album. Because it’s still a piece of art and hard work of the musician and the artist that’s part of it. And people have to learn to appreciate it again. That’s what I very often miss, that it’s just the Spotify music thing, one song, another song, another song consumed. That’s something which I really don’t like, I absolutely don’t like.

“Okay, yeah, seems fair.”

[Meanwhile I had a listen more than once, it is a great and very intellectual album and you will read my review soon…]

I like challenges

But back to Copra Spell. The style of Copra Spell is very different to Born In Exile. Completely different. How did it come that you auditioned for them?

“I like challenges. Many people were texting me about a post that Sonia posted on her socials, looking for a singer. And then I wrote Sonia, I texted her like, ‘Hey Sonia, I’m Cristina from Barcelona, Spain. So maybe I can help you out with this singer wanted that you posted.’ Then I did the audition. In the first place, for me it was a little bit challenging because it’s not a style of music that I used to make or I used to sing because I’m so into progressive metal and into heavy metal. And then it came like, OK, why not?

I like all these glam bands

Because I like all these glam bands and hard rock from the 80s, heavy metal from the 80s, like Judas Priest, Rainbow, of course, Dio. Wow, my God. And I thought, wow, maybe it’s a good chance to make my voice go out there, you know? I like the idea. I was like super motivated by the project because I think Cobra Spell is something really interesting. And I went like, OK, so let’s go, so I’m here.”

When you look at the beginning of Cobra Spell, it’s so interesting to see how the band developed. And to me, as an outsider, it was always like, ‘oh, a new member and the band is always becoming better and better and better’. And it was not that you just had to exchange members and it was steady. It was an amazing progress everytime.

“She [Sonia] made it even better.”

And then when you came, I was thinking, yeah, completely different stuff.

“Yeah, yeah, super different.”

we record it over again till we get the best

Yeah, but it’s cool. Anyway, your album, the 666 album, which was just released in December 1st. How long did you work on it, also given that you released something with your two other bands too?

“For 666, the composition started at the beginning of the year by Sonia, because Sonia is the main composer of the band. And later on, we went to the studio in May to record everything. I think the Born in Exile album I recorded in February or a little bit in March, I don’t remember exactly. The Serapis Project, we were recording each act separately. So it was not a really difficult moment or time or stressful time to record everything because we managed to schedule everything so easy. But for 666, I spent five days in the studio and I recorded 11 songs for the album.”

Five days, that’s barely one week, and the weekend off, that’s not too much.

“No, it’s not too much. We were a little bit in a rush. But it’s okay, I like these things. We were recording almost 10 hours per day or so sometimes.”

I guess, when you’re recording in a rush, that also means you’re not overdoing things. Another try, another try, another try. And then you have 10 versions of the same song and you take the first one.

“No, but I like to do a lot of takes. Yeah, because I sing the part and I say, maybe I can do it better and maybe I can do it even better. And can I listen to that? Yes! OK. And I am listening to that and I can still do better. We record it over again till we get the best. Yeah, and it takes a little bit of time, but I think we had a good amount of working hours for the album. It was perfect. Like five days.”

Favourite tracks

Perfect. That’s cool. What’s your favourite track of the album?

“My favorite track? Oh, I have trouble with that because I love “The Devil Inside Of Me”. It gives me goosebumps. And I think maybe “High On Love” is one of my favorites. Yeah. “Love Crime” and “You’re A Cheater” too.”

I like “Warrior From Hell”. I was quite surprised because it was the chords, the guitar chords are quite heavy. And they are the quite similar to “War Machine” of KISS. Then it’s clear when you know that Sonia likes KISS quite lot.

“A lot of people say that like, hey, somebody two days ago put a song on a phone and it was, do you know this song? I was like, oh, wow, this is quite similar, but I don’t know. So, you know, Sonia always says that she came out with an idea. And then later on, somebody said, like, hey, this is this this song is like very similar to that song. We were like, oh, my God, I didn’t know that. But sometimes happens. Sometimes when you are super influenced by a lot of bands or for or a certain band, you know, sometimes these little things can happen. And I, I like when I am listening to a band and hear something from, I don’t know, Opeth and I say, wow, this sounds really Opeth. Wow. Sometimes when I talk to them, hey, do you like Opeth because your music sounds like Opeth and they say, wow, not at all. Or I’ve never heard that band or I don’t know, but yeah, these things happen. And I think it’s quite funny.”

Favourite Bands

Opeth “Sorceress” album cover, to give you an idea

So you like Opeth?

“I LOVE Opeth. I have a tattoo on my back. All my back is the “Sorceress” album. I have these birds that they have with their feathers. Oh my gosh.”

I once saw them live at the Summer Breeze in Germany and I really had great expectations. The music is so progressive and it’s something for the intellectuals on my mind. It’s not only progressive, it’s intellectual metal. They were playing for one hour and they were not moving. And I thought, oh, OK… Please can you do a little bit of a show? I don’t demand a flamethrower or spitting fire and blood, but please move at least your left foot or your right foot. But I understand that sometimes the music is so complex that they have to fully concentrate on that.

“Yes, yes and yes. It’s the thing that you are saying that they cannot move, maybe because they are playing something really difficult and really technical. But I am not the person to say anything about Opeth because I don’t know, I’m in love with the band and with the singer. So I will not be critical.”

Train or lose your voice

Maybe my expectations were too big in this case because the music itself was good, but there was no show. Coming back to Cobra Spell again, sometimes I think when I listen to your, let’s say, usual songs, to me they are 80s, of course they are 80s, and to me very often they sound like one of Sonia’s favourite bands but with a very well trained female singer. It is a pity the main singer of this band damaged his voice a lot. There are so many good teachers he could have asked. By the way, are you also giving lessons?

“Yes, I do. So he could have gone to so many people and he damaged his voice completely. But anyway, that’s another story. There’s something that happens to many singers, you know, that when I was aware of all the process that you need to sing, I decided to start studying, like even vocal coaching, because sometimes even just talking can be difficult for people, you know. You can hear sometimes that people are not articulating, are not phonating good, like, ‘hello, what are you doing?’ All that stuff. And even when we sing, nothing happens if you are going to play a few shows in a year. But if you go on tour every day for almost six months in a row, and then you rest one week and then you go again on tour and blah blah blah, you will damage your voice if you are not well trained. So if you put your body to a certain excess of work, you will need to train, man. You will need to train your voice. You will need to take lessons because otherwise you can end like this.”

Role Models

Yes, exactly. We were talking about Opeth as one of your favorite bands. Do you have other bands which influence you or musicians, singers or role models?

“Ronny James Dio. I really like the way Dio did his things. I have seen a lot of interviews from him and I really like the way that he had to think. His behaviour, his rituals and his way to see life. For me, he became something more than just a singer that inspires me. He became something else. He is very special to me. There are a few more singers that I admire a lot. One is Lzzy Hale from Halestorm. She is a beast. I admire her so much. I can name a lot of people that inspire me a lot to make music. They can be Tatiana from Jinjer, Mara Lisenko of course, for example, Einar Solberg from Leprous, he has a very delicate way of singing. I admire him so much. Rob Halford.”

And Influences

Who else?

“I don’t know. I have so many singers that I really like. Freddie Mercury, Chester Bennington from Linkin Park, Corey Taylor from Slipknot. I think they are really, really good doing their jobs. And of course the ones who are not with us because they passed away, they are still in my mind and I always try to revive them in some way, you know? There’s a song in the album, in the 666 album that says, ‘it goes on and on and on and on’. And this is for “Holy Diver”. Oh, but the lyrics were from Sonia. Sonia wrote that, ‘and on and on and on’. I told her, wow, this is Dio here. And she said, ‘Really? I was not thinking about Dio when I wrote that’. And I said to her, ‘OK, but I will think in him when I sing that’. So for me, we’ll be Holy Diver in this song. And she said, wow, Cristina, I like very much when you think these things to empathize with the lyrics in your kind of way. And yeah, it’s something really cool.”

Internationality as advantage

You’re a quite international band. I mean, Sonia is Dutch, but I think Sonia is also half Spanish, isn’t she?  Is it more difficult for you as an international all female band, than it is for, for example, for Swedish bands or British bands to gain popularity or to be noticed?

“Yes, she is. Oh, well, I don’t know. I don’t really know because, oh, the thing that I know is that if we were just from Spain, it would have been really difficult for us. Really, really difficult because in Spain for metal it is difficult. I think, other genres are a little bit, maybe can be a little bit, easier, but for metal, it’s really difficult to float, you know? There are a lot of bands and even playing live, it can be really difficult because you have to book the venue six months in advance and if you are not signed with a booker, it’s even more difficult for a band. Just for the debut or to make shows, you know, then the thing that we are international helps us to be a little bit known in different countries. So we can spread a little bit more than a band who is based in just in one place.


Noelle lives in Berlin, but she’s from Brazil. Roxy is from Venezuela, and I am from Barcelona. Sonia is Dutch. Hale is from Granada, Spain. No, she lives in Granada, but she’s from… I don’t remember. Let me check, because I don’t remember where she comes from. I don’t remember. I have to see the map… It takes a little moment. She is from Melilla! This is a place from Spain, but it’s in North Africa. A few parts of Spain are there. It’s Ceuta and Melilla.”

Okay, it’s not the Canary Islands, but Africa. I must check it later. [It is the Spanish enclave surrounded by North East Morocco] It’s funny because you’re coming from Netherlands, Venezuela, Brazil, Spain, Spanish Africa. It’s funny because also the godparents of my daughters are coming from Spain, from Brazil, from England, from Luxembourg. I like when things, when people are so international because it opens your mind and your point of view of things is so much different than being so blockheaded than so many other people in this case.

Tour in sight?

Anyway, we should not talk about me but you. In April, you are going on tour in Spain. Do you also have plans for festival tour in Europe or otherwise a tour in Europe or South America?

“We are working on many dates for the next year and there are some confirmed and some not. The thing that I can say is that we want to play everywhere so we will. And very soon we are going to announce all the dates.”

That makes me curious. I said nothing but… Sure, sure. Do you have a dream venue which you would like to play at?

“A dream venue?”

You know American bands always want to play Madison Square Garden for example.

“Yes, of course. For me it’s like a dream to play in big venues, big festivals. It’s something really amazing to see all the crowd there just for you. It would be nice everywhere, of course. I don’t know, if I want to be crazy maybe on a plane or under the sea. Let’s see. Everything that can be possible. Let’s go for that.”

Sure. And do you also think about Wacken for example or Hellfest or these big, really big ones?

“Yes, yes. It would be amazing. And we are really, really looking for that, of course.”

Being booked…

How good are the chances for a relatively, I mean a well-known but relatively small band as you are, which just released the first full album, how big are the chances to be booked for such big festivals?

“I think it depends very much on the time that you release the album, the PR that you are doing or the promotion. And I think it’s the booking agency that you are in. So if they can pitch you, it’s nice, but for example, it depends because imagine that a booking agency has ten bands in the roster and they have only three slots for Wacken.

… depends on many things

Then they will send three bands that can fit the most to the other bands that are playing the same day or if the festival is not having many, for example, female bands, they will add female bands or if they don’t have folk metal, they will add folk metal bands or black metal bands or all that stuff. Then to go there is difficult. Sure. But I think if you are in a big label and you released an album almost six or seven months before a big festival, maybe you can be called. Yeah, good chances, there are chances.”

Yeah, that’s good to hear because not only I really want to experience you and the album live!

The unavoidable

Of course, the unavoidable happens now, we run out of time, we already talked longer than scheduled and the next interview partner is waiting for Kris.

“We’re sadly running out of time if you have more questions.”

Yes, I’ve noticed that. I’ve already seen that. Yeah, all the other questions I can skip in this case because they were the additionals about tour life and stuff if there was enough time. Things I can still ask you once we meet on tour.

“If you want to send some questions for Sonia, you can send them by email so she can answer them if she finds the time.”

Possible Update

Oh thank you, that’s a good idea to send some questions. I’ll just type that I had an interview with you and there were also some questions. That’s perfect. Super nice. So you already have the next interview now?


Thank you so much. Thank you for taking the time. Lovely to speak with you. Your hair looks beautiful by the way.

“Thank you. Thank you so much. So see you soon, I guess. Okay, bye. Bye bye. Thank you.”

Later on, she sent some more additional infos about Kris’ other project. It was a lovely interview with her. Kris might be and look like a wild metalhead but also is a really nice and down to earth personality. Please appreciate that! Stay tuned for the update as soon as we have Sonia’s answers! Everybody who follows her socials knows, Sonia really is a very busy bee, so let’s wait and see. Of course this would a bonus as an unexpected encore on a concert and not what one should expect! AND meanwhile we got her answers, so we will publish the second interview with Cobra Spell soon as a separate post. You can be sure, it is worth it.

Read our album review of “666” here meanwhile.

666 – album cover



Cobra Spell

Kristina Vega

The other projects:

Born In Exile

Serapis Project

Please buy merch and physical music or downloads  from the bands official sources and don’t stream music for free because it steals your artists’ income

proof reading by DeepL

All pics taken by Friend.X during the interview with Kristina Vega

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