8 May 2006
The 46-year-old German guitar player Axel Rudi Pell presents his new, 11th full-length album, "Mystica", and recalls his warmest feelings to the Bulgarian audience...
Vassil Varbanov: Hello, Mr. Pell! How are you doing?
Axel Rudi Pell: I'm great, thanks! What about you?
V. V.: I'm very excited to have you live on the radio today, because "Mystica" sounds really amazing! How do you feel about this album?
A. R. P.: Thank you for the compliment! I think it's the best album I've done so far - I really like it. When I went out of the studio, this was the first time I said that I like every single song, and hopefully the listeners will agree to it, too.
V. V.: Before focusing on the album, please tell us what exactly happened at this show of yours in Bulgaria that didn't take place? You were supposed to play with Scorpions...
A. R. P.: Well, we went to Bulgaria, we stayed in Sofia and we were driven by car to the town of Stara Zagora, which is 230 km away, I think. We arrived there, but it started to rain heavily... Then the sun came out, we went on stage to do a soundcheck, and it started to rain like hell again. The whole stage was completely flooded, the power started going on and off... Then I got a call from the Bulgarian promoter (Universum Entertainment) that we'll have a meeting with the mayor of Stara Zagora, so we went there after Scorpions and were told that the mayor had decided to cancel the show, because it was too dangerous due to the rain - not only for the bands, but also for the technicians on stage. At the same time I got a call on my cell phone from my guitar tech, who said the voltage had completely gone off, so it was impossible to play. It was very bad for the fans, but we really couldn't do anything.
V. V.: It's been announced you're coming back to Bulgaria in August for the so called Monsters of Rock Festival, promoted by the same guys, Universum Entertainment... What's the situation with that so far?
A. R. P.: I'm really looking forward to it, because we like the Bulgarian audience. Last year we played in Kavarna together with Masterplan and it was great! The fans there are so enthusiastic - from the first to the last row - and that's not usual nowadays. The people went crazy, laughed and definitely had fun, and we were treated very nice, so I can't wait to play another show in Bulgaria.
V. V.: Let's talk about your new album now. There are at least three components that makeÂ "Mystica" a good release - your amazing guitar play, the high quality songs and the brilliant singing of Johnny Gioeli. Where did you find him?
A. R. P.: It was many years ago. The first record he did with me was "Oceans of Time" back in 1998. He's American and his first band was Hardline. I bought their records in 1992, and since then Johnny has always been one of my favourite singers. Then, when Jeff Scott Soto left my band in 1997 due to lack of time to go on tour and stuff, I tried to find Johnny's address and luckily I did after looking for it more than six months. We sent e-mails to each other for quite a while, and then he agreed to come over and record with me. There's a real chemistry between us and we're really big friends now. It's the same case with the other guys (drummer Mike Terrana, keyboard player Ferdy Doernberg and bassist Volker Krawczak). We're having fun all the time, so you could call the whole band a big circus with five clowns on stage, ha-ha!
V. V.: "Mystica" is going to be officially released via SPV in the end of August, and then you'll start a big European tour...
A. R. P.: That's right, the tour begins on September 19 in Paris.
V. V.: Where is your favourite place to play live in Europe, besides Germany, of course?
A. R. P.: It's great everywhere, because it depends on the audience, and I really love all the audiences. However, Bulgaria shall join the European Union as well in the near future, and then I'll say Bulgaria, because it was really incredible to be there, as I already mentioned.
Copyright: Tangra Mega Rock
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