Metal Witch interview
Germany's Metal Witch actually formed back in the 1980's and had an all too brief run before parting ways. The reformed over ten years ago and this decade they have already knocked out an LP, an EP and a split album. They have also played some major festivals in Europe. I recently had the pleasure to talk to this band and fine out more about their past, present and future.
-Hello, please introduce the members of your band and tell what instrument you play.
Kay Rogowski - lead vocals
Ingo Hinz - lead and rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Lorenz Hoppe - lead and rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Thorsten Meyer - bass, backing vocals
Rüdiger Voigt - drums, backing vocals
-Tell us some about the history of your band.
1985 - Founding year of METAL WITCH from Wedel.
1987 - Split up for private and professional reasons.
1998 - Reunion of the original members!
2001 - METAL WITCH finally complete with bass player Thorsten Meyer.
2002 - The first CD "Ready To Burn" comes out.
2004 - Opener of the 7th "Headbangers Open Air" festival in Brande Hörnerkirchen after winning the "Headbangers Ballroom band battle" in Hamburg.
2005 - Support for AGENT STEEL (USA) in Hamburg.
2006 - Kick off band at the official "Wacken Warm Up Party" in Hamburg. Co-headliner at the "Kielowatt Festival".
2007 - "Risen From The Grave" studio recording sessions.
2008 - The second CD "Risen From The Grave" comes out. Founding member Dietmar Hanke quits the band. Lorenz Hoppe becomes new METAL WITCH guitarist. 2009 - Co-headliner with ARTILLERY and GRAVE DIGGER at the "4. Kuttenfestival". Split CD with VINDICATOR (US) on SLANEY RECORDS (Ireland). Co-headliner at the Waldbrand Open Air.
-Who are your musical influences?
Kay & Rüdiger: The NWOBHM, 80s American Power-and Speed metal bands and some old punk bands in general. Some all time faves are: Accept, Charged G.B.H, Iron Maiden, Saxon, Ramones, Judas Priest, Motörhead, Twisted Sister, Misfits and Kiss.
-What are you currently working on?
Kay: We are working on new songs to put a new CD out and we are contacting festivals for 2010 to play.
-Is this the only project for you guys or is anyone currently working on any other projects?Rüdiger: Our guitarist Lorenz and our bass player Thorsten also play in an AC/DC cover band called OVERDOSE. Lorenz is playing the drums there. He's an excellent musician and plays many instruments. He also plays in his own band LOROCKO where he sings and plays guitar. I also play drums in a surf beat band called THE TYPHOONS. Kay and Ingo were for not too long ago in a punk rock band called REINHEIZGEBOT. You all can find that on myspace if you are interested.
-You played the Waldbrand Open Air festival in June. How did that go?
Rüdiger: We played there last year in the evening for the first time. They liked us a lot and asked us to co-headline this year. Very cool people and it was well organized. These are the ones keeping metal alive in the underground. Cheers to you and all the best for the future!
-Do you have any other shows lined up for the near future?
Kay: We definitely will play some festivals next year and some club gigs around. To be updated you're welcome to visit our myspace site: www.myspace.com/metalwitches or our homepage: http://www.metalwitch.de/. We appreciate your feedback!
-What are some of the most memorable shows that you have played?
Kay: I liked the 20th anniversary gig in our hometown the most. That was an unforgettable party with some of our oldest fans and friends! Many beers a a whole lot of fun!
Rüdiger: Another great one was the Headbangers Open Air 2004. We played our hearts out and got an amazing feedback from real hardcore fans who know what metal is all about.
-What was your music like during your first run from 1985-1987? How was it different from the music that you have been doing in the last ten years?
Kay: We were teenage Heavy Metal fans and formed our first band. We wrote our first songs like "Metal Witch" which we play every single gig ..till this day. Some songs were really cool but we didn't have musical chops so we often sounded like a Heavy Metal train wreck. Today we play tighter and learned a lot over the years, but I think we stayed the same in taste over all these years.
-What is the metal scene like in your part of Germany these days?
Rüdiger: There are obviously huge festivals like WACKEN where you can find people nowadays who don't even like metal, but there are smaller really ass kicking old school festivals to mention like the Headbangers Open Air which is our favorite. Here it's all about the music and being a fan.
-Are there any great unsigned bands there that you would like to mention?
Kay: I would say our friends the death/grinders IRATE ARCHITECT deserve to get signed. They play very well and they are really original. Maybe the best in extreme music Hamburg has to offer.
Rüdiger: I add our local band LAST LINE OF DEFENSE. They deliver finest 80s old school hardcore which I love a lot.
-What kind of music are you currently listening to?
Kay: I..m listening to the new U.D.O. CD "Infected", the first STRAY CATS record and the "Eagle Has Landed" live album from SAXON.
Rüdiger: Currently I enjoy the MUNICIPAL WASTE album "The Art Of Partying". I have just bought the new SLAYER 7 "Psychopathy Red" and I always listen to KISS. They are my heroes since 1975.
-What would you like to accomplish in the next year?
Kay: Having enough songs to record a new CD. Try to conquer other countries. Thank myspace we are selling merchandise and CDs to: Japan, America, Greece, Poland and Ireland. It would be awesome to play there. So foreign bookers! Book METAL WITCH! You won't regret it!
Accept or Scorpions
Kay: Easy! ACCEPT! It was my first concert back in 1983 since then I'm their fan. The SCORPIONS have no doubt some great songs. I like their old stuff like the "TOKYO TAPES“ double live album, but ACCEPT is the band which we collectively like the same since the beginning of the band. A mayor influence! Rüdiger: I would say that Kay sounds a bit like Udo Dirkschneider, too.
Twisted Sister or Wasp
Rüdiger: For our taste it's TWISTED SISTER. Both bands have incredible frontmen which wrote many great favorites of ours, but as a live act TWISTED SISTER wins.
Metallica or Motorhead
Kay & Rüdiger: Motörhead! You can..t go wrong with Lemmy! A living legend and he's still great! Metallica WAS great.
Iron Maiden or Judas Priest
Kay & Rüdiger: No competition! Both are the kings of British Heavy Metal in all it's greatness! Long live Priest and up the Irons!
-Is there anything else that you would like to say about your band or your music?
Kay & Rüdiger: We would like to thank: our families, friends and fans, bands, bookers and magazines worldwide who supported us so far and we promise you that METAL WITCH will always be good old rough and raw HEAVY METAL and nothing less!