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Helloween: Saviours in Ballet tutus

Simultaneously with the new live CD Helloween release this time also a live DVD – the first in the band´s history. And for this purpose they could not choose a better scenario than their long tour for „Keeper Of The Seven Keys – The Legacy“: Three concerts on three continents! Sofia, Bulgaria for Europe; Tokio, Japan, for Asia and Sao Paulo, Brasil, for South America. A fantastic spectacle, a great idea and reason enough for STALKER to grab bass player Markus Grosskopf and ask what else we can expect from Helloween...

This DVD portrays a lot of emotion and atmosphere, still it is quite different being yourself part of such a huge event... How do you feel watching your own DVD?
Well, for me it is something special, naturally, to be part of such a wonderful thing like Helloween. Especially this DVD shows what Helloween stands for. The fans made themselves an important part of the show by singing along and having such a good time. As participant you are one with this atmosphere and those emotions. Everything was fully united... Being part of such great night makes me proud somehow, because Helloween has been existing for 23 years already, and I think it is fascinating that something like this is still possible. Everything moves so fast nowadays, and much is destroyed quickly. Things come and go, Helloween stays. Ha Ha.

Do you think that the recording captures the concert atmosphere?
This particular evening just everything was right from the first moment. Thanks God. And watching it today, I have to say that you could not have captured it better. Naturally it is different to be there at the live show. But if it is possible to capture something like that on DVD, we managed to do it well (a satisfied nod).

Looking back, what was the most beautiful, most emotional moment during the show?
This is difficult to say because it was an intact unit. Sometimes there are those little moments during a show, looks you exchange with somebody, or you see how happy a fan is about a plectrum you threw to him. The communication with the audience as such is important. This could be different every day although the set list remains the same. And that night everything worked out nicely, as you can see.

Did nothing go wrong?
There was something going wrong, in Sao Paulo we messed up „Occasion Avenue“, therefore it could not be used, and we had to take this track from another show. But that is not so bad because you can switch between some songs from Sao Paulo to Tokio or Sofia where we play the same song. This is a unique feature, by the way, I have to mention that (laughs).

It is impressive to see how fans sing along with the new songs, too; is this a particular South American phenomenon?
They sing along anywhere we play, sometimes only the chorus, sometimes more... But to such extend I have withnessed it just there. People over there have the talent to express themselves in such a way and to release a lot of positive energy that has to inspire Europeans. Just like people from Spain or Italy, the South Americans surrender to such emotions easily... I don´t think that people in other regions don´t have such emotions, but they react to them in a different way...

What do you see as the biggest difference to the European Fans?
In Europe they also have party and fun. The reason for going to a Helloween concert is the similar anywhere. I witnessed that before the show people in South America sang along with the music in the hall just to get their spirits higher. And indeed everybody joined in to get into the right mood. This is just fantastic!

What do you think is the reason for your success in South America?
Helloween do not sing about women and alcoholism (smiles). Our lyrics often deal with freedom and individuality with a positive message. „How many tears“ or „Eagle fly Free“ are for example songs about human rights, with the perspective of hope in the chorus lines. I think in certain socially disadvantaged regions people might be able to identify with that. Such a song can be a vision of hope for some moment. I can say that because we receive mail from people that indicates that. We cannot save the world, but we try to reach many people with a positive message. And this is how we are, we don´t try to sell people something else than what we are. And I think this is why fans appreciate us.

Do you have a personal connection with Sao Paulo?
Since this evening the memories of a most exciting concert. And there is also a great Rock Bar that I like to visit for having a few beers and hanging out with people (grins). But the city is so big that I never find the way, although I have been there so often. But there is always somebody taking me there.

You will start recording the new studio album pretty soon, so what can fans expect after „Keeper of the Seven Key – Part III“?
Until now we have a couple of killer tracks. But they still need work. For Keeper 3 it was basically clear where it should go, but now we face a different challenge. It will surely be heavy, but there is no concept like the one for Keeper, at least not yet. Perhaps there won´t be a big concept but just a killer album. Let´s see...

What do you think of the German Metal scene development in recent years?
Well, hardly any changes in the Metal scene, musically. At least in Germany. Or did I miss something because I am old and ignorant?

No, I don´t think so…
I am sometimes not quite up to date, concerning new young bands... We sometimes use modern styles, although it still sounds like Helloween. But still in a classical way. And there are very modern bands like Rammstein and similar technically oriented bands. They still have some roots in Metal. The style of H-Bloxx or Guano Apes contains a Metal style that we play, too.
Gibt es noch einen ganz großen Traum, den Du Dir mit Helloween erfüllen möchtest?
Ooochh ! I would like to dress up in a Ballet tutus and take part in the German Idols contest, singing „Cherry Cherry Lady“ in front of Dieter Bohlen (= the German version of Simon Cowell and one half of the Pop duo Modern Talking who wrote that song, the ed.). That might look great and show all my tattoos.

Oh yeah, I am sure…
Or I would like to play a corpse in the TV series “Lindenstrasse”. If I mention that often in interviews, the show producers might pay attention. With Helloween it could be great to be headliner for those big festivals. We have always had good positions, but there should be the option for more in the future.

Any final statement?
Well, cheers (laughs out loud)

Cheers and thanks for the interview!

Author: Jasmin Froghy, transl. K. Weber, photos: Helloween
Date: 2007-04-20

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