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Tankard : beers are like women


It already seems difficult not to mention the word « beer » when interviewing the guys of Tankard, but when they put out an album called « A girl called cerveza », it is mission impossible. So why not doing it, when such an album pays tribute to the best that life has to offer to a metalhead : beer, thrash metal and women ?

Having said that, it would be a mistake to limit Tankard to its funny side. Therefore, the new album tackles diversified themes, ranging from rumors spread on the Internet to politics, as well as the beauty of lady boys in Thailand.

Andreas ‘Gerre’ Geremia tells us more here…

« To be honest, there are no differences [between a girl and a beer]! (rires)

Radio Metal : Your previous album Vol(l)ume 14 was released in December 2010. Why did you write the new album, A Girl Called Cerveza, so fast?

Andreas ‘Gerre’ Geremia (vocals) : I think it’s a good thing to release an album every two years. We also wanted something to come out the year of the band’s 30th birthday.

Your new album is entitled A Girl Called Cerveza. It really looks that this album tells the story of the love of your life, which is beer, isn’t it ?

The idea for the album’s title came from Frank [Thorwarth, Tankard’s bass player]. We were in South America, for our very first tour over there, and he saw a girl. He just said: “Hey, she looks like a cerveza !” and our manager kept this sentence in his mind. When we talked about the title of our new album, our manager said: “Why not a girl called cerveza” and we all thought: “Yes ! That’s cool !” (laughs). It’s non-sense, it suits Tankard, and so we chose that title. The girl called cerveza is the sister of the kings of beer!

Was the girl pretty ? (laughs)

I don’t know what Frank really saw, to be honest ! (laughs)

What would be the similarities and the differences between a girl and a beer ?

To be honest, there are no differences ! (laughs)

What do you prefer : chicks or beer ?

I prefer to listen to good metal music !

I have to say that the girl who’s on the artwork isn’t really attractive… Is it how you picture the human version of beer?

As I’ve told you before, she’s the sister of the Kings of Beers, so she suits all of our old album covers. If you go on YouTube, you will find our new video : we have an other girl, who’s very hot !

The song « Running On Fumes » talks about the fact that you ran out of beer at some of your shows. Does it happen often?

It is a funny song, but this thing really does happen sometimes ! During the last three years, we ran out of beer during two or three shows, so we had to go and buy some for us and for the fans.

« First of all, we are a thrash metal band that writes stupid things, because we don’t take ourselves seriously. But we are 40 years old now, and we can’t always write songs about beer. »

“Witchhunt 2.0” is about anonymous comments on the Internet. Was this song inspired by some bashing comments about Tankard’s music?

No, not about Tankard, but you know, on the Internet, some people, in front of their computer screens, write things about you behind your back. I personally don’t like that. If someone has a problem with me, then why wouldn’t he just come and talked to me about it ? On the one hand, the Internet is cool, because you can be connected with the whole world, but on the other hand, spreading bad things anonymously is a bad thing. That’s what the song is all about.

The song « Master Of Farces » is about the American populist Tea Party movement. Since Tankard is perceived as a funny band that always writes songs about beer, isn’t it hard for you to be taken seriously when you talk about such political themes ?

No, because we’ve always tried to mix funny and serious stuff. First of all, we are a thrash metal band that writes stupid things, because we don’t take ourselves seriously. But we are 40 years old now, and we can’t always write songs about beer.

Do you think that your fans are interested by what you think about politics ?

Yes. I think that the fans are open to everything. If we want to talk about politics, we just do it, and hope that everyone will understand that.

« We still have a lot of fun playing this kind of music, we are totally independent, we play as often as we can and put all of our free time into our music. As for me, I couldn’t imagine my life without being Tankard’s lead singer ! »

The song « Not One Dad Dead (But One Day Mad) is actually about you being around for 30 years, never giving up and always fighting against the odds. What actually made you hold on for so long ?

It’s a sort of a love-song to ourselves ! (laughs) We still have a lot of fun playing this kind of music, we are totally independent, we play as often as we can and put all of our free time into our music. As for me, I couldn’t imagine my life without being Tankard’s lead singer ! So I’d like to say “cheers !” to the next thirty years !

Doro Pesch sings on a song of the album. Can you tell us how did you get in touch with her ?

We are divorced now, but… (laughs) ! No, I’m joking ! (rires) Doro is such a nice person : I love her and her voice. She’s The Metal Queen. Last December, she did a gig in my area. She saw me and asked me to join her on stage to sing along ! Backstage, we talked and I said to her that we’d have a love-song on our new album and that we’d love to have her on this song. We stayed in touch, she loved it, and she recorded it. It’s my favourite song on the album.

It really looks like this song was written for her and only for her (note: the song is entitled « The Metal Lady Boy »).

The Metal Queen had to sing “The Metal Lady Boy” : it’s logical !

Does that mean that if she had not sung on that song, you wouldn’t have released it ?

I don’t know. We had of course planned to have a female voice on that song, so we would have released it, but Doro was the best option ever.

What was her input on that song. Did she write the lyrics for example ?

No, she just sang. We recorded the song first in studio, then we sent her all the stuff.

« [In Thailand], they have a little metal scene, but what was so special is that the most beautiful girls over… they are men ! […] But I can’t tell you which member of the band has had sex with a lady boy. »

This song is about your first trip in Thailand. What was so special in that trip so that you decided to write a song about it?

It was exciting to go and play in Thailand. They have a little metal scene, but what was so special is that the most beautiful girls over there are men ! The first two nights, I was totally confused, so I decided to write about that experience. But I can’t tell you which member of the band has had sex with a lady boy (note: « Lady Boys » are Thai men dressed and made-up like girls) ! (laughs)

You talk about the fans on the song “Fandom At Random”. What pushed you to write on that particular subject?

This song is not about metal fans particularly, because they are really cool. We wanted to write about fans who like movie stars, for example, and dedicate their entire life to them. Some of them are really crazy !

Did someone ever succeed to interview you without asking a single question about beer?

Yes, half an hour ago ! The journalist said right at the start that the interview wouldn’t have the word “beer” in it ! (laughs)

This is the last question and I called it the « Captain Obvious question » : do you like beer?

Sometimes ! (laughs)

Interview conducted on July, 19th, 2012 by phone
Transcription by Jean Martinez – Traduction (s) Net

Tankard’s official website : www.tankard.info
Album : A Girl Called Cerveza, already released via Nuclear Blast Records



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