I had the opportunity to interview symphonic metal mastermind and keyboardist Martijn Westerholt of DELAIN. We discussed the band’s upcoming album, Moonbathers, which is out August 26th via Napalm Records.
Moonbathers features Alissa White-Gluz (ARCH ENEMY, ex-THE AGONIST) as a guest vocalist on “Hands of Gold,” as well as a cover of QUEEN‘s “Scandal”.
Westerholt also discusses his time in Within Temptation, accusations of “commercialism,” and elitism in metal:
The whole ‘commercial’ argument is total bullshit, because if I want to go commercial, you can not use any guitars whatsoever, and I’m in totally the wrong genre. So, I just make what I love to make… If I want to make money, and if I want to be commercial, first of all, I wouldn’t be into music in general, because the chance that you can earn money with music is REALLY, REALLY small. And second of all, even if I want to do that, then please don’t choose metal, because you will have very limited radio airplay, and metal is not in fashion. But I happen to love metal, and I happen to love hard guitars… I actually really, really dislike–actually, despise–the whole elitism thing. Also, when bands become successful, then it’s suddenly not cool anymore, because ‘your’ band–you have to share them with other people. It’s not your band in the first place… I see the fans as my boss, as my employer, because they spend money on me and I can do this because of them, and I really am grateful for this. But this doesn’t mean they have a say in what kind of music I will make or not, because that’s something that comes from your heart… I make what I want to make.
You can listen to the entire interview at our partner website Vita In Musica.
July 18, 2016 | Categories: Heavy Metal, Interviews, Music News, Power Metal, symphonic metal | Tags: alissa white-gluz, Arch Enemy, charlotte wessels, delain, keyboards, martijn westerholt, moonbathers, Napalm Records, power metal, Queen, scandal, symphonic metal, the agonist, the miracle, within temptation | Leave a comment
In the final part of this interview, Doro Pesch discusses her future plans and reveals her thoughts on the current metal scene. Her new movie “Anuk: The Path of the Warrior 2” will be released next year. She plans to do a new fashion line and create a champagne to commemorate her career’s 30th anniversary.
The Blog of Shredding: You design all your own stage clothes, right?
Doro Pesch: Yeah, but somebody else is sewing it and usually it’s not real leather. Because one day, I thought, “Man, I don’t want to hurt anybody and I don’t want to have, you know, any animals getting killed for my stage clothes.” So our stage clothes, they look like leather, but they are actually not real leather or other fabrics. I have a lady who’s sewing it, but we’re always working together and making how I want it and then her ideas, we get together. But she’s sewing it. Yeah, she’s a professional. I used to do that by myself in the 80s, but yeah, it’s better when you have a professional. (laughs)
The Blog of Shredding: Have you ever considered making a fashion line?
Doro Pesch: Yeah, actually I got my own fashion line. It’s called “Love Me in Black,” and it’s all, of course, black clothes and it has all kinds of jean material and like fake leather, which looks really good. And I would love to do a second one in time, maybe for the 30th anniversary. We were thinking about working out with some people together, they are like doing this gothic clothes, gothic metal clothes. Yeah, so it’s maybe something that’s in the making. But so far, I’m always on tour or just finished mixing the record or the promotion tour, so I don’t know if it will come out this year. But something nice.
I want to do something nice for the 30th anniversary, having a big celebration. And I think we will have our own champagne, the 30th anniversary champagne! There’s a perfume line in the making for ladies, so some little goodies. Something for the merchandise, not like big¸ big, big, just something nice to collect and stuff.
The Blog of Shredding: What are some of your other future plans?
Doro Pesch: Just a couple of days ago, I came back from Switzerland and I finished the movie “Anuk: The Path of the Warrior 2.” I did it one time in 2007, and now the second part we just filmed it before the European tour. And we didn’t finish it. And I just finished it last week. I wanna do maybe a couple of songs for the movie because that’s how we got together in the first place. The guy who’s doing it—the director and producer—his name is Luke Gasser, and he asked me if I wanted to write the title track for the movie that was back in 2006, 2007. And I said, “I would love to. I would love to.” So he gave me the script, and I thought, “Wow! This is great.” It’s like an adventure movie, and I said, “Oh, I would love that!” And he said, “Do you want to play a part in it too?” And I said,” Wow! I never did it. I just did (music) videos.” He said,” Oh, let’s do it.” So I did, and my part was actually a warrior named Meha. Now I play the part of Meha again. And we filmed it in the mountains in Switzerland and in Ireland. It was very exciting. So this will come out this year as well, maybe end of 2013, beginning of 2014.
Then nonstop touring the world, and I just wanna concentrate to do a great American tour and to give the fans the best we’ve ever played. And we will play all the songs from the old school metal songs of the 80s, some great Warlock songs which fans never heard (live), some surprises, the title tracks of all the records. Now there’s like 17 records. All the best stuff. All the best songs of the new album. Yeah, that’s actually what I’m most excited about now.
We will celebrate the 30th anniversary, we’ll have some big shows with great guests. The first one, we will do Open Air in Wacken this year in August. Then I want to do two in Dusseldorf, Germany, my hometown. Two shows, two nights in a row, maybe with orchestra and great guests. And the other one, maybe—something spectacular. Something really great. And I want to do one time in London, one time in Paris, and one time in New York, since I live there now since ’87. So we want to do like these extra-special shows… Yeah, I think that’s more than the whole year can be, then there’s time, so yeah.
The Blog of Shredding: What do you think of the state of metal nowadays?
Doro Pesch: Oh, I think it’s in great shape and I think the festivals worldwide—usually they’re like the biggest and best festivals. For example, Wacken, it’s already sold out. It was eight months sold out before the show would take place. And the last time, I think it was sold out six months before it took place. So I think it’s a great sign.
Worldwide, I think we can tour the world much more. In the 80s, it was impossible to tour Russia or China or Romania, Bulgaria, and now, we can tour all over the world and I think that’s awesome. Thailand we did too. It’s fantastic, so I think the world became much more open and I think there’s still a lot of work to do and some other countries where it’s impossible to listen to metal or to even go there to tour.
But other than that, metal is in great shape. I think it almost reminds me of the 80s, and I think that’s very good.
I miss all like the great magazines. I was a big fan of these great magazines, and I miss them. And I miss the big record stores where you could, you know, go in and like, you know, weed through for ten hours. So that’s what I miss a little bit. But on the other hand, now everything’s available on the Internet.
So I guess in one way it’s good, in another way—I still love vinyl. And the few ways to send the record, the record company, I told them I would like to have a vinyl edition. And they said, “Yes, we know your fans would like that.” So there’s actually vinyl editions, that’s awesome. Yeah, and I think metal is in really good shape, very strong.
The Blog of Shredding: What are some new metal bands you’re listening to?
Doro Pesch: I like Children of Bodom, I like In Flames, Arch Enemy, Sabaton, Saltatio Mortis. There’s a very unique metal band that do—I don’t know how you call them. Maybe “Middle Age”. It’s like, they have like these different instruments like the old, old instruments. I don’t know how you call that genre in English.
Me: Folk metal?
Doro: It’s not folk metal. It’s called “mittlelalter”. “Mittlelalter” means “middle age” or “dark age”. And it’s very interesting, so if people are interested, it’s a great band. Saltatio Mortis is their name. I sing on one of their records. We did a duet. The song’s called “Salome”. Yeah, and they’re young guys, really great.
And I’m a big Rammstein fan. Of course, they’re not so new anymore. It’s not like they just came out, but it’s already, you know, so many more years…
All the bands I loved in the 80s, I still love them, I must say (laughs).
I like Steel Panther. They’re so much fun! (laughs)
And so concludes our interview with the ever-humble Metal Queen.
Tomorrow on TBOS: This Week in Metal. NAMM, Ozzfest Japan, Tommy Aldridge rejoins Whitesnake and more.
January 26, 2013 | Categories: Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, Interviews, Interviews, Music, Music News | Tags: Anuk The Path of the Warrior, Arch Enemy, Children of Bodom, Doro, Doro Pesch, fashion, gothic, In Flames, Luke Gasser, mittlelalter metal, Rammstein, Sabaton, Saltatio Mortis, Steel Panther, Wacken Open Air, Warlock | Leave a comment