THORSTEN PENZ - ANCIENT CURSE
💿 Hi, it’s a pleasure for us to have on Hardrockheavymetal THORSTEN PENZ of ANCIENT CURSE! Welcome!
A pleasure for us! ANCIEN TCURSE welcomes the makers and readers of Hardrockheavymetal: Hello from Bremen in the cool north of Germany to all music freaks in Italy in the warm glowing heart of Europe.
💿 On May 29th was your long-awaited new full-length entitled THE NEW PROPHECY, well-received on our pages. Can you tell us somethin' about its composition process and style?
Well, we play our own kind of prog power metal with a small portion of thrash and speed as well as and partly rough and clean singing. The listener additionally finds acoustic and symphonic elements like orchestrations, choirs and authentic guitars in the compositions. To answer your question of our composing process: The two main songwriters Pepe and Gunnar usually create the songs at their home studios and present the band with an instrumental pre-production. During the rehearsals we add the songs together, the rest of the band contributes ideas. From somewhere we get the lyrics, either from an existing pool, so that they have to be made suitable, or they are made to measure, as in "We follow the Signs". Then comes the rehearsal and touching up. Until a piece of our music is finished and ready for the stage, even years can pass, in which adjustments are made again and again.
💿 In your early times as musicians which artists influenced you the most?
When they started their career as guitarists, the young guys Gunnar and Peter were attracted by bands from the San Francisco Bay Area and their special sound: Testament, Exodus, the early Metallica, Death Angel, Vio-lence, Heathen but also Flotsam & Jetsam. Matthias is influenced by the drum style of Jeff Porcaro from Toto. Thorsten liked also bassist Steve Harris from Iron Maiden and he is a fan of Fates Warning with Joe DiBiase and Joey Vera on bass. Since he started as a acoustic guitar player with Beatles songs, Paul McCartney's bass playing was formative for him.
💿 Can you tell us somethin’ about the birth of the band?
The band was founded by Pepe and Gunnar, who met each other at Trade school in Bremen. Before they seriously started playing the guitar, they had to find a band name and a proper lettering :). The founding days were still under the name "Black Widow" - with changing band members, before the group took shape under Ancient Curse. The speed- and thrash-demo „From Below“ from the late 80s was the first serious work: a perceptible sign of life about the place of birth. Every birth is followed by growing up, as with a music group: In the mid-1990s - in the meantime Matthias and Thorsten had joined band - Ancient Curse landed a number one hit in the radio charts of the station Metallic Avalanche on the sugar cane island of Cuba with the song Plastic Tears. The four yougsters from Bremen were the first western band since the Beatles to tour the Caribbean island. The band was grown up, also concerning the style and what the soon to be released first album "Thirsty Fields" showed.
💿 How is difficult promote a new work after the lockdown drama? Do you believe can you return soon on stage?
Except for the fact that concerts are not possible for the time being and therefore the release gig has to be postponed to autumn, we are coping quite well with the exceptional situation.
For example, we have made a home video for "Fire and Ice" and our first real video clip for "The New Prophecy", which you can watch on Youtube - right on time for the release of the album.
💿 Here at HARDROCKHEAVYMETAL we are strong defender of classic format. Love for vintage or isn't there a future outside digital?
Oldschool or digital, no doubt a question of attitude but also of technical skills.
Of course, we also use digital technology for the recordings, but always make sure that the audible result appears organic.
We can assure you that everything on the album is played by hand and has been rehearsed and can be reproduced on stage - of course our „colleague computer“ helps live with choirs and other classical sound effects like orchestrations, after all we only have two hands each. The future of our music probably belongs to a digital-analog coexistence.
💿 Your new album will be out on PURE STEEL RECORDS; Can you tell us somethin’ aboutthe partnership with them?
Pure Steel Records approached us immediately after the release of our lyric video for "The Shadow" to talk about a collaboration. We had contacted other labels that could fit to us stylistically and in terms of repertoire and attitude towards art and there would have been other options for us. But with Pure Steel we had a very good feeling from the beginning. They are just a great metal family and we are part of it now. The Pure Steel staff helps us especially through the wide distribution network and contacts to the international metal-scene.
💿 Can you tell us somethin about the great cover of new album?
Thanks for the compliment. The praise goes directly to our drummer Matthias. He is a graphic designer by profession and fully responsible for the fantastic artwork. Matthias has really delivered a masterpiece here, we are all totally enthusiastic. The cover should reflect our musical resurrection. The dieamantine pendulum above the awakening sculpture in an antique setting is supposed to say: Make the most of the precious time left.
💿 Thank you so much for your time! See you soon on Hardrockheavymetal, hoping to seeyou also on the stage as soon as possible.
Truly appreciated. Greetings to all Italian friends and fans of the four Bremen Town Musicians with Pepe Pierez on vocals and guitars, Gunnar Erxleben on guitars and backing vocals, Matthias Schröder on drums ans backing vocals and bassist Thorsten Penz.