I N T E R V I E W S
Interview with John Allan guitarist of Steel Attack, 05/02/03 by EC
Finally after weeks of anticipation, we have an interview with the mighty Steel Attack. This band has been one of my favorite "newcomers" to the power metal scene, and a band I hold in high regard as the next generation of power metal elite. Heavy, fast guitars with double bass and soaring vocals, Steel Attack define everything that is great about old school heavy metal. For some of the newer fans out there that haven't heard the two Steel Attack records, how would you describe your band's sound?
Steve started out first as a drummer and he is also in the band Carnal Forge and they got very good backup from the label etc he told us that he was going for them at 100% and we understood him completely about his choice. And since we already got Dick on lead vocals, I think that made the decision easier as well for him.
Tell us a little bit about the new Steel Attack vocalist, Dick Johnson? How did he get involved in the band? What kind of vocals can we expect from Johnson?
Dick is a vocalist from the more old type of singers like Dio etc. He was in a band next to our rehearsal studio before he joined the band, and they where more of the old seventies type of band in the vein of Deep Purple, Uriah Heep, Whitesnake etc. So when they quit the band some months before Steve told us that he was going to stop with the lead vocals then he was the first one that I contacted about trying out for the band, so we told him to decided what songs he would like to try with, then the rest is history, we knew him and the personality he got even though he can be an “Dick".
Lets talk about the new record, "Predator Of The Empire". How does this release compare to the previous two? Has the band evolved or can we still expect old school power?
The very first difference between the previous releases will be the lead vocals and of course what the other new members style wise differs from the previous members. Then when it comes to how we did the recording there are some changes as well, i.e. we tuned down a whole step to get a heavier sound to the songs, then we been using several different unique voices for the choirs and the album is more varied and more melodic then the previous recordings. But there will be old heavy metal as well.
Where was the album recorded and who produced it?
We used the same studio as we did on the Where Mankind Fails and the Fall into Madness albums and co produced it with Pelle Saether the studio owner, www.studiounderground.nu
When can we expect "Predator Of The Empire" to hit store shelves?
The actual release date is 7 April and there can be some slight changes from country to country and the Japan release will be in June.
Looking back over the years at the Steel Attack tours, what was your favourite show to date? How did the band's first and only trip to the US go, for the March Metal Meltdown 2002 festival? Were you surprised at the response?
I cant think of one that is better then the other ones just because we enjoy them all and they all got something different to remember and for the US trip we had a blast, the only sad problem was that we had to run the show on borrowed instruments but we had a blast meeting lots of fans and that is what counts. Then we had to thank the New Jersey police, I can tell you what the story is;
We got to the states 4 days before the gig and the 2nd day we had a real warm hot day and we walked away from the hotel in just t-shirts and of course pants. We got a bit of food and asked some locals for the way to a bar to get some beer etc. But we had to walk a long way before we finally found the bar and the liquor store, we got the beer and whiskey etc and stopped at the bar on the way back to get a bit of food as well. We had a great time with the locals at the bar and we started to get real drunk, so after 4 hours one of them asked us if we would like to get a ride back to the hotel and that was perfect because we didn’t want to walk that way back, so we went to get our beers, whiskey etc from the place we first sat at when we got their. I normally where a leather jacket so I grabbed the one that where placed on the chair where I left my liquor so then we where of to the van and soon back to the hotel. Just short after we got back to our room they called from the reception they said that the cops where on their way to us, we started out laughing about it and thought it was a practical joke from another band, then she called us up once again and told us that they were here, we made a joke of it and soon some one knocked the door, and a voice that says; Open up, it’s the police! Yeah right, but when Dennis open the door there where three New Jersey cops at the door and they said that they got a call that there was a leather jacket stolen at the bar where we just been, I said this must been some mistake and I held the leather jacket up and told them that this is mine but Dennis told me right away that this is not yours, you got your over there. Fuck, I realized that the jacket went with me just because I’m so used to wear mine but this time the weather was so hot when we left the hotel earlier so I had left mine at home, after some time the cops understood that it was all a mistake but they also got a report of a “palm pilot” (hand held computer) as well, but we told them that we only got back from the bar with a leather jacket that belong to someone else. So they started to search the room for the palm pilot, but they understood that the palm pilot was a fake and they wished us the best for the gig. That is why we thank the New Jersey police in the booklet.
What are the upcoming tour plans? Are you guys doing most of the big festivals this summer?
Get as much gigs as possible, and we are not doing festivals this summer, we have to wait till the new album gets out, then there we will see how the reaction of the new band will be.
When do you think the new Steel Attack website will be finished? What about the new band logo? Obviously the logo had to change somewhat due to the new record deal.
First of all I don’t think it ever will be finished in a positive way, but as long as we got ideas from fans for what the website will look like then we got our webmaster to work on it. The new logo is a statement as well that this is a “new” band, and our former label told us that we could not use the old sword logo because its their property, but they told us that we could buy it from them.
Well, its been a pleasure getting an update on the band's happenings. Thanks alot for your time and we wish you and the other members of Steel Attack the best of luck on the new album and we hope we can see you in American again!
Thank you all! And thank you very much out there you American Steel Attackers who support us and all that where at the Metal Meltdown 2002. We all wish to be back in the states for a tour. Please fell free to visit our official website at www.steelattack.com for more info etc.
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