Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Chapter one

God, time flies, did we really already finish the first European block of our tour? It went by incredibly fast and I have to say it was awesome and a lot of fun. A big thanks to all of you who came to the shows and had a party with us. Many people keep asking me which show has been my fave, but I have to say that I can't really name just one, basically all of them were really cool, but if I had to chose I would pick at least 5 shows that were incredibly cool in my opinion: Düsseldorf, London, Moscow, Milan and Madrid, in no particular running order. And if you wonder why I liked those ones the most... well, I can't really answer this ;-) They are just the ones that come to my mind first. Now we will enjoy our short time at home before we continue touring in the USA next week, so see you guys there soon.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

The big day

So far the tour is running great, all the shows have been cool, but today we reached the big one, our "hometown" gig in Düsseldorf. The Philipshalle is one of my fave venues ever and we played some very special shows here over the years, but the really special thing is of course the presence of all our families and friends. I am just putting together my guestlist for today and it is "slightly" bigger than the average one... Of course this always puts a bit of pressure on us, when you play in front of your friends and families you of course want to be good, but I think we don't have to worry about that, things will be fine and it will be a great show, I am definitely looking forward to it.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

The tour has finally started

After all the promo stuff, rehearsals and whatever preparations finally the tour has started and we have already played the first 4 gigs. It is really great to play live again, even though I have to say that my mind didn't fully arrive on tour yet, it always takes me about 7-10 days to switch from "normal" life to touring life. On the road some things are just very different, you get to bed much later, you get up later, your bed shakes when the nightliner is driving and you might wake up from the snoring of some other people around you, things like that, just that my body didn't understand yet that I am on tour again ;-) But soon this issue should be solved I guess. For now I am just enjoying a day off before tomorrow the German part of the tour will start.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Fun at the Gamescom

I spent two days at the Gamescom in Cologne now, partially to do some interviews, but of course also to check out everything about new games, after all I am a hardcore gamer ;-) One thing is for sure, Gamescom is a much nicer place on non-public days, waiting lines are almost not existing, it is not that loud (and so far I thought Musikmesse Frankfurt would be loud...) but on the other hand the atmosphere is not the same. Of course there were tons of new games, but here is my personal top 5:
5: Rage    I had the chance to see the presentation of this game and it looks absolutely awesome. But well, after all this is what I expect from an ID shooter.
4: Torchlight 2   I love part one and the sequel looks awesome too, it finally offers a multiplayer mode, so I am really looking forward to that.
3: Star Wars The old Republic   Playing this one was great too, I was a bit disappointed about the graphics but the games definitely will be great, all the Star Wars atmosphere is already there.
2: World of Warcraft Cataclysm   Well, this is not a big surprise I guess, with WoW being my fave game I loved playing the beta. Can't wait to get the beta key unlocked for my account so I can explore some more parts of the good old world.
1: Diablo 3   YES!!!! Had the chance to play this for about one hour and the old feeling (and addiction) was back imediately, god, this will be so good :-)

Monday, August 9, 2010

The Wacken Diaries: Day Three

The last day of our Wacken trip has been the one with the most promo work, one interview chasing the other, with a signing session at the end of the (working)day. Since we have been doing all this press stuff from 1:00 to about 21:30 more or less non stop there was not much time left to watch some bands, but at least there were still 3 on my list: Immortal, Rotting Christ and Candlemass... Too bad they all played exactly at the same time, so I had to make a choice. Since I have seen Rotting Christ a few weeks ago already at another festival I watched a bit of Immortal and a bit of Candlemass in the end, hoping that next time not all the bands that I would like to see will be playing at the same time... Talking about next time, next year we'll be at Wacken again, this time to play ourselves though ;-)

Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Wacken Diaries: Day Two

After having only a couple of interviews yesterday, day two was a bit different, we had some interviews, a couple of interviews, and after this some more interviews. Of course this was preventing me again to watch some of the bands that I had on my list (I would have loved to see Amorphis and Orphaned Land), but at least in the evening I was able to watch some shows. Arch Enemy have been cool and it was really nice to see Hansi on stage with Grave Digger, specially cause he was wearing a kilt :-) My musical highlight have been Slayer though, didn't see them live for quite some years and their setlist was great, only the sound was not really good unfortunately, but well, you can't have it all ;-)

Friday, August 6, 2010

The Wacken Diaries: Day one

Releasing a new album is of course always tied to a lot of promotion, and could there be a better place than Wacken? This year we'll be here all 3 days doing tons of interviews, but of course I will also try to watch a couple of bands. I already checked out who is playing, but unfortunately my interview schedule will prevent me from watching all the bands that I would like to see, but well, I can't change that. Day one has been pretty smooth, no big traffic jams on the way here, we already met some old friends and also the interviews that we did so far were all cool. On top of that we won a Metal Hammer Award for being the best German Metal Band, that was really cool :-) Concerning the interviews, my highlight of the day was a radio interview that was recorded not far from the main stage while Motley Crue were already playing... As you can imagine it was pretty loud, and on top of that tons of cars were passing by all the time, I am really curious about how this interview will sound like. But I am even more curious to see how it looks like... If you wonder how a radio interview looks like, well, it was also filmed, in 3D, using only one camera... yeah, I know, sounds very weird, thats why I am curious myself ;-) Another highlight was a weirdo on the festival area that wanted to start a fight with me cause I was blocking his sight. Lol, I explained to him that blocked sight is not really that rare at festivals, and that it was not my intention to block anything for him, that I just wanted to pass and leave, then he got even more pissed cause I wanted to leave before Maiden finished their set... strange world ;-)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

The new iPhone 4

Anybody here has problems with his new iPhone 4? Go over to judasphone.com, you might find help there :)
PS: No, I don't have this phone, I have an android phone ;-)

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

3 new songs available for streaming

Only 3 more days to go until "At the edge of time" is finally released in Europe, but if you can't wait any longer then go over to our official homepage and check out 3 new songs, they are available for streaming there.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Maintenance time

The tour is getting closer, more rehearsals are about to come, so it is time to take care of the gear a bit. Aside from a broken saddle on my J45 there are no big things that would have to be taken care of, but sometimes it can be the small things that can give you hell during a gig, when something unexpected happens and you just have no time to check what the hell is going on. So right now there is maintenance season for my equipment, amps get checked and tubes get replaced, a couple of guitars get new pickups (I just love my EMG 81s...), my racks get completely new cables and as mentioned before of course the J45 gets a new saddle. With all this being done my stuff should be fit for the next tour.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Surprise surprise...

What the hell was this??? I was prepared for anything but this... to be honest I expected Argentina to win, I of course hoped for Germany to win, but this??? 4:0 ?!?!?!?!? Awesome :-)
And if with all the soccer overkill you have some time left then check out our new single "A voice in the dark" which was released last week, and if you want to check out more new stuff go to our official homepage, in the discography section you can listen to samples from all the new songs.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Weird Guitars

I guess you can call me a rather conservative guy when it comes to my guitars, I just love my Les Pauls, the most "unconventional" guitars in my collection are probably my Steinberger and my new Flying V, which are not really that unconventional... specially not compared to those ones that I found on the net :-) My fave model in the moment is the one with 12 necks, must be heaven for somebody that uses a lot of different tunings, might be hell for his backliner though :-) The boat is also very nice, perfect for vacations, who the hell still plays acustic guitar at a bonfire, going offshore with it sounds much more like fun. Also the "girlfriend" model is a nice idea, custom made for somebody that just fell in love I guess :-) Well, I guess I will just stick to my Les Pauls, I am just too traditional for such things... even though the Gibson melon is tempting :-)

Friday, May 28, 2010

Some gear pics

Here are some pics from my stuff, taken during one of the last days. It shows my usual amp and effects setup, some guitars that I will take on tour for sure, just my second rack is still missing, I didn't put it together yet ;-)

First rehearsal block

We just finished the first block of rehearsals for the next tour and things were really great. Our crew was there to set up all the backline and monitoring stuff, we could check our gear, plan some adjustments and changes, and finally go through our list of 40 songs that we want to be able to play. We might still add some more songs to that list, we might kick a couple of others, but at least we have a big catalogue to chose from when we will finally play live again and talk about the setlists for each gig :-)
Talking about gigs, last week I had the chance to see Nevermore and Orphaned Land live again, and both bands were great. Nevermore even played 4 new songs already, even though their new album has only been released today. I immediately bought it but didn't have a chance to check it out yet, I will do thig right now after finishing this posting ;-)

Monday, May 17, 2010

Rest in peace Ronnie

Unfortunately yesterday Ronnie James Dio lost the battle against his cancer and left a giant gap in the music scene. He was not only my fave singer and fronted 3 of my alltime fave bands, he was also one of the nicest and most humble people that I have ever seen in this business. Rest in peace Ronnie, my condolences to your family.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The update for the updated update

I forgot something, somebody was asking if I do not allow comments on my blog on purpose... yup, for now this is intentional, I might change this some day but if you want to post something in a blog in the moment, get your own ;-)

The updated update

Due to public demand here is a more detailed look on my setup for the upcoming tour.

Guitars: Well, big surprise, I will have Les Pauls with me :-) I am not sure yet which ones I will use for this tour, but there will be for sure some of my "high gain" models with EMG pickups (my two fave guitars belong to those ones, my main Custom and my Light Burst Standard Premium Plus), I am also thinking about the one in which I can split the pickups into single coils (nice option for clean sounds) and one that has a Fishman Powerbridge, a Piezo pickup that can deliver some really cool acustic sounds. On top of my usual load of Les Pauls I am thinking about a Flying V in the moment. My very first electric guitar has been a Flying V back then, and somehow I would like to play one again, the only question is if I will still get along with the shape, after playing only Les Pauls for the last 12-15 years... well, I will see, I called Gibson the other day and ordered one, as soon as it arrives I will give it a try ;-)

Amps: My main amp is (and always will be) my Mesa Boogie Tripple Rectifier, best amp that has ever been built ;-) As a backup I will take my Mesa Boogie Triaxis, firing up a Mesa Boogie 2:90 poweramp, both amps will run through Mesa Boogie Rectocabs (I am using the bigger versions). The third amp that I will take with me is the ultimate backup, an Axe-FX Ultra. It is a high-end Pre-Amp/Effects Processor (some people would even call it a modeling amp) that doesn't need anything else, I can plug in my guitar, choose an amp simulation, add the effects that I need, dial in my perferred cabinet and microphone and just plug it straight into the PA. Like this I always have a working backup in case anything goes wrong with my main setup, and this thing even sounds absolutely great, perfect for a backup.

Effects: I am not using much here, there is a Rocktron Intellifex that is in the loops of the Rectifier and the Triaxis, for my rhythm sound there are absolutely no effects anyway (besides the Rocktrons Hush), for clean, lead and effect sounds there are the usual suspects like a bit of chorus, delay or reverb. In case the Intellifex should die I still have the Axe-FX Ultra as a backup, this could also be used as a pure Fx processor, without all the amp/cab/mic stuff.

And this is almost it, the only other things are my wireless system, a midiswitcher (so I can change the channels in my Rectifier via my Rocktron Midimate floorboard) and a Furman Powerconditioner, put everything into a rack, add some strings and my pick of destiny (a Dugain stone pick) and you have my touring setup.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Gear - A retrospective

Our next tour will start in september and the first rehearsals are not that far away anymore, so it is time to think about what gear I will take with me on that tour. When I think about our very first tour in 1988, everything was very simple back then, I had exactly one guitar, one amp, one cabinet and one distortion pedal :) Pretty impressive, isn't it ;) Well, that was all I had but it worked, it only gave me one sound, but that was all I needed back then. Today my setup looks slightly different, in the moment I am thinking about 3 amps, 2 cabs, 6 guitars plus some 19" stuff like wireless systems, powerconditioners or multi effects. The good thing is that this setup offers some more sounds and I even got rid of the distortion pedals so at least those little boxes won't fly around on stage anymore :) For all the rest, well, I can plan my setup and test it during the rehearsals.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Shows in seated venues are strange...

Yesterday I have been to the Opeth 20th Anniversary show in Essen and it was a really cool show, the band played an awesome set (including the full Blackwater park album, which is my fave Opeth album), but something was just not right... They played in a nice venue, a fully seated theatre, but in my opinion this is the wrong place for a death metal concert. The atmosphere is just not the same if everybody is sitting down, there is not half as much energy as in a "normal" show. I guess they also had to cut down the volume in the first half of the show (the Blackwater park set) which kinda reminded me a bit of the premieres of our DVD, which also took place in cinemas back then, at least it felt a bit like watching a dvd. However, this changed with the second half of the set and from that point on it felt more like a concert. As I said I really enjoyed the show, it was a killer 3 hours set, but next time I will watch them in a normal venue for sure.
Aside from this I checked out the Musikmesse in Frankfurt, I didn't go there in quite some years and I have to say it got much smaller compared to earlier years, many big companies were missing this time, due to the crisis I guess. But at least all the ones that I wanted to visit have been there and I could check out the latest Gibsons, Mesa Boogies and whatever else I was interested in. One thing that improved big time this year was the noise, normally you were bombed by hundreds of people, playing Smoke on the water, Highway to hell, Stairway to heaven and enter sandman, all at the same time, with amps cranked up to the maximum, but today, with modeling amps and noise isolating headphones this is history :) The only thing missing now is a similar system for drummers...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The sound behind the name

There are a couple of names in the music scene that I keep hearing over and over again, without having the slightest clue about who is behind that name, or what those artists music sounds like. I just hear people praising their talent, their music, their live shows, and sometimes I get curious enough to check them out, but for whatever reason, most of the times I forget about them until they show up in magazines again. Muse was such a band for example, I kept hearing great things about them, but only after I heard "Knights of Cydonia" (which completely blew me away immediately)I bought their albums and became a big fan of them. My latest discovery is also a guy that I kept hearing about all the time: Joe Bonamassa. He appeared in every guitar magazine poll, everybody was praising his skills as a player and his music, but somehow that never impressed me enough to check him out. Some days ago I read a big story about him and got to know that he is a blues player that really rocks, so much that the blues purists hate him for that and somehow this got me curious ;-) I expected something like Gary Moore, so I bought his latest album and just like back then with Muse I was blown away immediately... this guy really ROCKS! I never heard somebody playing blues with pretty heavy and downtuned guitars like him, I just love it, just as I love his "regular" blues stuff, so in case you like this kind of music, make sure to check him out, he's worth it!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Are you tired of teenage vampires? Do you think that demonic creatures should be vicious, mean and evil instead of cute? Do you agree with me that it is complete bullshit if a vampire always has to take off his shirt to show his sixpack before he can help a little girl? Do you prefer classic horror movies with a nice dose of blood, guts and gore? Salvation is here... Sit back, relax and enjoy Wolfman :)

Friday, February 12, 2010

My new Steinberger

As you can see on this picture I recently got a new guitar, a Steinberger ST-2FPA. Did my love for Les Pauls end? Nope, not at all, but I needed a baritone guitar for the recordings now, and there just is no baritone guitar from Gibson available in the moment. But since Steinberger is a part of the Gibson family... :-) The guitar has some very cool features, as mentioned before it is a baritone guitar, so it can easily handle even very low tunings, it comes with EMG pickups, has an active bass boost/cut, an active treble boost/cut and even a built in piezo pickup for clean sounds. The most unusual feature is the built in capo though. If you keep it all down the guitar is in "baritone-mode", if you set it to the second fret the guitar turns into a normal scale guitar and of course you can roll up the capo even further. Don't expect to see me with that guitar on stage, my Les Paul addiction is way to strong for that to happen, but it is a really cool guitar for studio work.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

More confirmed Tourdates

Here are some more confirmed dates for the upcoming Blind Guardian tour, dates in Poland and Sweden were added, also Enforcer from Sweden have been confirmed as the second support band for those dates.

24.09.2010 Tilburg o13 Netherlands
25.09.2010 Gent Brielport Belgium
26.09.2010 London Sheperds Bush Empire England
28.09.2010 Paris Elysée Montmartre France
01.10.2010 Ludwigsburg Arena Germany
02.10.2010 Trier Arena Germany
03.10.2010 Langen Stadthalle Germany
05.10.2010 Bremen Pier 2 Germany
06.10.2010 Hamburg Sporthalle Germany
08.10.2010 Bamberg Jako Arena Germany
09.10.2010 Düsseldorf Philips Halle Germany
10.10.2010 Munich Zenith Germany
12.10.2010 Rome Atlantico Italy
13.10.2010 Milan Alcatraz Italy
15.10.2010 Pratteln Z 7 Switzerland
16.10.2010 Vienna Gasometer Austria
17.10.2010 Brno Fleda Czech Republic
19.10.2010 Warsaw Stodola Poland
20.10.2010 Berlin Huxleys Germany
21.10.2010 Osnabrück Halle Gartenlage Germany
22.10.2010 Gothenburg Brewhouse Sweden
23.10.2010 Stockholm Klubben Sweden
30.10.2010 St. Petersburg Glav Club Russia
31.10.2010 Moscow B1 Maximum Club Russia
05.11.2010 Madrid La Riviera Spain
06.11.2010 Barcelona St. Jordi Club Spain

Friday, January 8, 2010

Man with a vision

We all know what George Lucas vision about Star Wars looked like, after all he turned those visions into some pretty successful movies ;-) But what would Luke, Han, Vader or Yoda look like if the vision would have been different? Matt Busch, the guy that did the posters for the Star Wars movies, recently showed us a different vision of the Star Wars universe by slightly "modding" the original posters, turning everything into Zombie Wars. Now I wonder if this vision would have been as successful... ;-)

Saturday, January 2, 2010

The 2009 hitlist

As every year here is the list of my faves for 2009


1: Alice in Chains - Black gives way to blue
2: Megadeth - Endgame
3: Muse - The Resistance
4: Amorphis - Skyforger
5: Heaven & Hell - The Devil you know


1: Avatar
2: Inglorious Basterds
3: Wolverine
4: Up
5: Watchmen


1: Rome (All Seasons)
2: [Rec]
3: Blindness
4: The X-Files (Season 3)
5: The Tudors (Season 1)


Stephen King: Song of Susannah
Stephen King: The dark Tower
Stephen King: The Dark Tower 2 - The Long Road Home (Graphic Novel)
Steve Niles: Freaks of the Heartlands (Graphic Novel)
Grant Morrison: Arkham Asylum (Graphic Novel)


1: In Flames (Oberhausen)
2: Heaven & Hell (Athens)
3: Candlemass (Bloodstock)
4: Paddy goes to Holyhead (Moers)
5: New Damage (Krefeld)

Most entertaining timekiller ever:
World of Warcraft

Most heard album 2009:
Muse - Black Holes & Revelations

Looking forward to:
1: The new BG album/tour
2: WoW Cataclysm
3: The men who stare at goats
4: Opeth Anniversary Show
5: All my software working with Windows 7