Interviewer: The most remarkable thing of the last tour was the “setlist of the century” with songs such as "Metal Daze", "Dark Avenger" or "Gates Of Valhalla". What was the reason for you to play these old classical songs?
Joey: We only did it for the fans. It was our decision to do what the fans wanted us to do.
Interviewer: “Hell On Stage” was to be released at the end of 1998, just before Christmas. And now it came out on the 1st of February.
Joey: Actually, the idea was to release “Hell On Stage” as soon as possible. We still wanted to be sure that everything would work out the way we had it in mind. We’re really very happy with the CD - it’s absolutely a Killer. No really, to me it’s a great sounding album. Some people already call it a classical live one, putting it up to "Unleashed In The East" from Judas Priest or "Alive" from Kiss. We’re really pleased, it sounds great and I think you guys are gonna love it.
Interviewer: Why is Manowar’s second live album coming out so shortly after the release of "Hell On Wheels"?
Joey: That’s an easy question. Because it’s actually Part II of "Hell On Wheels".
Interviewer: What do you tell people that say you guys just want to make fast money?
Joey: Who says things like that? Definitely not Manowar fans. I find it kinda stupid if somebody claims that to be true. It’s no secret that we live for our fans and that’s the only reason we did the record.
Interviewer: A couple of friends of mine had problems with “Hell On Wheels” because every song was recorded at a different show, so that real live feeling wouldn’t come up.
Joey: That is not true. Although the songs were recorded in different countries, the album has a live feeling because they flow together. That’s why it is one concert, we worked very hard to maintain that feeling. How would your friends feel, if we would have completely recorderd it in Italy and not a single song in Germany? And how would the people in Portugal feel, if all songs would have been recorded in Germany? Our fans are all over the world. Of course we play more shows in Germany because we’re more popular here. We’re more present here, that’s for sure and we’re proud of it. Of course there will be alot of fans who will ask why so many songs on the album were recorded in Germany. The fact is, because we do more shows in Germany.
Interviewer: OK, so the thing behind this all, is to satisfy the fans?
Joey: That’s the only reason and the band has always had that in mind. We shit on magazines, radio stations, fuckin’ MTV and all that other bullshit. Manowar is made of heavy metal people. We started off as heavy metal fans and we still are heavy metal fans.
Interviewer: What about small mistakes in the songs. Are you gonna use overdubs to get them out?
Joey: No way. There will be no additional recordings from the studio, we don’t do things like that.
Interviewer: I once heard from (probably jealous) musicians that your drummer Scott uses technical devices because the guitar and bass are so loud that he can’t hear his drums anymore. Is there anything true about these rumours?
Joey: (laughs) No, that’s not true. And besides, he’s a drummer who plays hard, maybe even the hardest in the world. So it’s impossible not to hear him.
Interviewer: You have a new demon on your cover. Who is that and what’s up with the "Metal Warrior"?
Joey: Oh yeah, the “Metal Warrior” will definitely be on the next studio album again. He represents the spirit of heavy metal in everyone, that’s why he doesn’t have a face. The guy on the live album is the “Hell On Wheels Demon”. He is the “Hellfight” of the band, when we’re on tour and the “Hellfight” of the fans. It’s just another figure that comes from time to time, just like us going crazy from time to time.
Interviewer: "Hell On Stage" is your first record on your new label Nuclear Blast. Do you think that they’ll be able to push your career?
Joey: As it seems nobody will ever be able to push us forwards, because Manowar is Manowar. But the good thing about this label is that the people are heavy metal fans so they understand heavy metal. They like the music and that’s why we chose them. That’s the only reason.
Interviewer: Don’t you have any problems with the fact, that Nuclear Blast formally only released Death Metal?
Joey: No, they’re all cool guys. They wanted to have Manowar on their label and we wanted to work together with them, because they are a "no-bull-shit"- label.
Interviewer: Sometimes you get the impression, that you guys change your label after each album.
Joey: Actually, we often had to change our label, because the record companies didn’t want to understand that Manowar doesn’t make any compromises. That’s the way it is, nobody tells us what to do. We only listen to our fans.
Interviewer: But you do have intentions to stay a little longer on Nuclear Blast?
Joey: We hope so. But the thing is, if everything stays cool, we’ll stay, if not, we’re leaving. It’s just as easy as that. After all, we have the best fans in the world and we don’t have to take anything from anybody. We know where ever we will play, the fans will be there to support heavy metal.
Interviewer: You played without a support band on the last couple of tours. What’s gonna happen in the future?
Joey: Sometimes we’ll have bands playing with us, sometimes not – it depends on the atmosphere of the tour. We had our Harleys and a large stage with us and alot of other things we had to look after, during the “Hell On Wheels” tour. It gets difficult with a production that size. We did a set of about 2 hours. We asked the fans on the internet and spoke with the fan clubs if they wanted to see another band or if we should play an hour more. I think the answer would be obvious...
Interviewer: Are you going to promote the "Hell On Stage" album with a tour?
Joey: We’ll be on tour again this Summer, not in main because of the live album. Nothing can stop this. We’ll be playing on the Dynamo Festival.
Interviewer: Are you going to stick with this fabulous setlist?
Joey: Did we ever have a bad setlist? But the last time was truly something special. We wanted to play longer than ever before, to make up for of the cancellation of our last tour. It’s nearly impossible to play 2 hours every night, but we did it anyway, just to apoligize and to say thank you to our fans.
Interviewer: Will we ever hear other old classical songs like "The Oath" or "Mountains"?
Joey: Of course, there is a possibilty. If you get to hear all the other songs, it’s logical enough that we may play these in the time coming.
Interviewer: Is it true, that "Mountains" is Eric’s favorite song?
Joey: I have no idea, but maybe. He’s actually like me: he doesn’t have a favorite song. It’s like with children. How could you say that that’s my favorite child. You just love them all. They’re all a part of you. The same with your balls. How could you say which one you love most? You need them both! Or, take women. How could you say which one you love most? You just can’t!
Interviewer: Are there any countries or special places where you’ve never played before?
Joey: Of course there are still many countries we’d like to play in. I’m sure, that we’ll do that, but like everything, it’ll take its time. We’re planning the next big world tour. After that I hope to record the live video. I’m really looking forward to that. It’s supposed to be a real long video, that will not only show the band but mainly Manowar fans worldwide. After that we’ll be going back to the studio to work on new songs. Maybe we’ll start off with the new record and than do the live video. At the moment, I really don’t know. That’s the way it is with Manowar. We don’t plan anything until we know that we’re gonna do it. That’s the best and most natural way. It’s the same with fucking. You know you’re gonna do it in different positions. But you don’t have to plan which one you’ll do first.
Interviewer: Manowar is still the loudest band in the world. Meanwhile you could also hold the record for the longest metal show.
Joey: I think we actually hold that record. The first show on the last tour went on for 3:45 hours. It was fantastic, the people got totally crazy.
Interviewer: Your former record company just released a best of Manowar CD from all your albums. Were you able to take part in the selection?
Joey: Yeah, they asked me to help them with the selection of the songs. I just asked them if they wanted to make a pile of shit or a good record for the fans. I like the record.
Interviewer: In 1996 you released the maxi single of "Number 1". There should have been live versions of "Blood Of My Enemies" and "Kill With Power" on it. In the end you only put studio versions of both tracks on it.
Joey: Yeah, that’s right. Some dumb asshole from the record company came up with that shit. Though, later on, we released the record with the live songs on it.
Interviewer: The song “Metal Warriors” on the album "Triumph Of Steel" had the subtitle "Brothers Of Metal Part One" and the song “Brothers of Metal” on the next studio album "Louder Than Hell" was also subtitled "Part One".
Joey: They built shit on that too. The song on “Louder Than Hell” is actually part 1 and “Metal Warriors” is part 2, because this song was written later on, but released first.
Interviewer: Can you tell us anything about how the next studio album will sound like? Will it be more epic like "Hail To England" or "Sign Of The Hammer"?
Joey: Every Manowar album is different. There are no two, that sound alike. That’s better than to sit down with the intention to make a record which sounds for e.g. like “Into Glory Ride”. I love every record we made because it reflects the time the band and the fans were in. They depict the spirit of metal at that respective time. And however the record turns out to be, that’s the way it will be. It will definitely be heavy metal and not some kind of commercial bullshit, like all those other dicks play – you can bet your ass on that.
Interviewer: Everyone knows that you are a great fan of Richard Wagner. What do you think about playing songs like “Ring der Nibelungen" or "Bridge Of Death" with an orchestra?
Joey: That would be totally crazy. That is a fantastic idea. Classical music means everything to me. I don’t think that’ll happen next week, but maybe in the future. Something like that requires an enormous amount of time and work.
Interviewer: Can you remember when Arno Hofmann played the song "Der Hund von Baskerville" from Cindy and Bert for you (its a cover version of "Paranoid")? You wanted to call the “Schlager” singers so they could do a cover version of a Manowar song (laughs).
Joey: I haven’t called them yet, but I thought that song was really funny. "It’s Schlagershit". One of those guys is pretty cool – he fucks with all the women. Dieter Thomas Kuhn, do you know him? He’s having himself a great time, isn’t he?
Interviewer: Sure. Do you also know Guildo Horn?
Joey: Yeah, all these guys just fuck around and have alot of fun. Excellent! I don’t care if they play “Schlager”, as long as they have fun. It’s a great laugh, all these girls throwing their panties and flowers up on stage. “Schlager” is like all sorts of rock music. The people go there to get drunk, fuck and have a good time. What should be bad about that?
Interviewer: And what about yourself, have you already found “the woman of your life”?
Joey: No, I haven’t found her yet, but I’m always looking. It’s really hard to find the right one, but I’m having a great time doing so. Life is too short, not to have fun. Just lately when we played in Budapest, I was standing under the shower with three women. All of a sudden the lady from the record company showed up in my room. She almost died (laughs). I said, “Come on in and join us, we’re having alot of fun.” She just turned around and ran away (laughs).