Freedom Call: beyond the roots will you find Joy

German band Freedom Call classify their own music as “happy metal” – and “happy” is exactly what frontman Chris Bay is. You will never hear him sing about unhappiness in his band. To him, joy is everywhere; even sadness can be turned into something positive, and his art will therefore never be particularly dark.

Chris Bay is, to all intent and purposes, a happy man. The source of his happiness is to be found most notably in those little things that other people would see as a crisis, such as the latest line-up changes in Freedom Call and the return of one of the band’s original members – respectively drummer Samy Ali, a musician who’s apparently “full of surprises”, and bassist Ilker Ersin, who symbolizes in part a return to the band’s roots. And when he talks about the strength of women, far greater than men’s, there isn’t the slightest trace of bitterness or misogynistic resentment.

Joy underlines the whole interview, where the vocalist/guitarist talks about the band’s new album, Beyond, which comes in its limited edition with an acoustic live record – an isolated experience that he doesn’t intend to repeat, and explains why.

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Scorpions unplug the guitars but don’t retire

“We don’t have any plan!” laughs Klaus Meine, singer of the legendary Scorpions. We were asking him what they had planned for the next two years or so, but the band is actually enjoying life a day at a time, postponing the promise to retire they made after the release of Sting in the Tail. But it doesn’t really matter if it is the end or not. The musicians are now free from all constraints and pressure. Whether the crowd shows up or not is only a bonus; and luckily, almost four years after the release of their last opus, the audience is still very much here.

“It is much harder than we would have thought” he says regarding their decision to retire. Over forty years of career – more than two thirds of his life! – can’t really be left behind in the blink of an eye. We can therefore easily understand that the band takes its time. We can also understand the doubts and the fact that, in the end, they decided to make the most of their life and enjoy it a day at a time without thinking too hard about the future.

Making the most of it was apparently their watchword for the legendary MTV unplugged they recently recorded. Two discs of songs adapted to this acoustic project and enlivened with a few surprising arrangements. A few of these tracks are rare songs and five are completely unreleased material. They had even thought about forgetting their most essential hits but were called to order by their label.

We tackle these topics in our following interview with the most enjoyable, enthusiastic and talkative Klaus Meine. With, on top of this, a hint towards our national Johnny Hallyday!

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Ektomorf : a highly sensitive interview with Zoltan

Zoltan Farkas, the brains behind Ektomorf, is a kid living his dream. He’s always thinking about how to please his fans with the same amazement and tearing eyes he must’ve had in front of his idols (idols like Max Cavalera who, as you’ll see, isn’t one anymore). Yes, Zoltan loves his fans because he stayed a fan himself. We’re talking to a kid, a music junkie: colloquial language, no prepared statement – or even thought about beforehand – and answers with a rare honesty. A surprising honesty, disarming at first, but delightful in the end: with him, you’re free to talk about anything.

He’ll tell us unbelievable stories about Danko Jones recording in the back seat of his car, or the conditions of their first acoustic show, or the ousting from Ektomorf of guitarist and Zoltan’s best friend, Tamas. He’ll gladly talk about more “personal” matters, like how it is to be a Gypsy living in Hungary, his personal issues and, of course, the reasons for his choice of ringtone on his iPhone.

A touching attitude, confirming what Zoltan himself tells us: his musical career is the result of his search for redemption.

Click here to read the interview…

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