AVANTASIA – Tobias Sammet discusses the new album GHOSTLIGTS and more.

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INTERVIEW AND LIVE PICTURES BY ARTO LEHTINEN AND MARKO SYRJALA

Tobias Sammet is the man and the visionary behind Avantasia and Edguy. Tobias sat down with  Metal-Rules.com in Helsinki to discuss the brand new Avantasia opus entitled GHOSTLIGHTS. Avantasia is best known for its bombastic and rock opera-oriented metal offerings. The band has conquered thousands of fans worldwide, and they’re now more popular than ever. GHOSTLIGHTS is the band’s seventh studio album. This is yet another masterpiece by Avantasia, offering a magnificent journey into the world of Tobias Sammet and his musical adventures. Here’s the summary of the discussion we had about the album creation process, Avantasia in the Eurovision contest, the special guests, and more, including the current state of Edguy. Read on!  

MYSTERY OF A BLOOD RED ROSE AND EUROVISION FLUSH

Let’s start with a question about “Mystery of a Blood Red Rose” which is the first single of the upcoming album. The song is not that typical Avantasia song because it is pretty soft, it’s very melodic, and, should I say, it’s more commercial than what you usually do or what do you think?

Tobias: No, no. It’s not much more commercial. That kind of music was commercial in 1983, maybe; this is not commercial in the 21st Century. You think it’s a little more what we would perceive as AOR music, which’s not mistaken with commercial. The commercial is a different type of music. Let me say it’s one of 12 songs; I forgot what I wanted to say. It’s just a part of 12 songs; it’s only one song of 12 songs. The whole album doesn’t represent the entire album. It’s one of those songs. It’s probably one of the two or three soft songs on the album. Many people have said that this is perhaps the heaviest album we’ve ever done, from what I can tell. Of course, you have to be careful; this is just a perception of somebody. But there is a perception of many people, and it is heavier, and yeah, “Mystery of a Blood Red Rose” is just one aspect of it.

The song is the first single from the album, but it is also a candidate for the German Eurovision qualifiers. When you composed that song, was the Eurovision competition in your mind already then?

Tobias: No. I only heard about the competition end of December. They called me, Nuclear Blast said; would you consider being a part of it?

Was it difficult to decide if you’re going to participate or not in the contest?

Tobias: Not at all. Actually once, I have to say because I was already, I got a text message saying, please call us, it’s very important, and I thought; my God! What the fuck, have they screwed up now? Because it’s always the same when you’re before an album. So I thought; the album has leaked, which it did actually two weeks later or something. So I called them, and I was naked about to go to have a shower. They said; we want to do this. Would you like to consider being a member of the competition? Of that Eurovision song contest. I said; can I call you back in five minutes? I’m naked here? I just wanted to have a shower. Five minutes later, I called them back and said; Yeah, sure. Why not? Is there anything tricky about it, and what do I have to do? I can pick a song. I just can take the first single; it’s perfect timing. That’s…

Is it a free promotion for the band and a new album?

Tobias: Yeah, and that’s exactly what I thought. So that was it. Blame me or not; honestly, that’s the evil intent I had. I was sitting there, imagining how I would sit on this huge pile of gold coins. Counting them, laughing, mean. Look, I’m selling my soul and making lots of money with it. Seriously I thought it was a great opportunity to do promotion.

A few years ago, one Finnish “metal” band took part in the same competition, and they were a big success.

Tobias: Lordi? Yeah, but Lordi was a freak show. Positively, I don’t mean that to be disrespectful. Lordi was not there because the song was so beautiful; Lordi was there because they won this thing. After all, the fans wanted to flip the bird. The fans wanted to flip the bird; all European heavy metal fans united and flipped the bird at a pseudo, aristocratic, snobbish pop industry high society.

What kind of expectations do you have from the competition? I mean, how do you think that people will react when they see the band on stage and when you’re not playing traditional Euro-pop (crap) as most the others do there?

Tobias: It depends on the day I’m going to have. They will probably turn their television to mute on a bad because you have to sing live. Isn’t that crap? I’ve just done a combined interview with some Finnish contestants. She was just singing one line, and I said; my gosh! She’s such a great singer, and then I come out being that horse, frog, and barking out a song in the old-style heavy metal way. So that’s weird. But I think it’s a great idea and I think the fans will probably, our fans will like the idea, and the mainstream audience will either like it or not. I have no clue.

At least you will reach lots of new people and potential audiences who have never heard the band before?

Tobias: Absolutely. This type of music, especially in Germany it flies under the radar. We’re selling shit loads of records, and we’re going to play a sold-out tour in Germany. The tour is mainly going to be sold out worldwide. This is not to brag, and it’s just to give you an idea of how successful Avantasia has become. We’re doing shows in territories like Spain, where people, in the beginning, didn’t want to dare to do it. Now we have to book an additional show there because Mad Ripple was sold out in no time. The second show will sell out as well in Madrid; Barcelona is going to be sold out. London is a good way, a good chance it’s going to be sold out. It’s, really, really going great. But still, in the German media, it flies under the radar. People do as if we weren’t accessed. That way, at least people will find out that I exist, and that’s always good. Having such a huge, being so desperately in need of attention is just great if people find out, no matter how.

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THE STORY BEHIND GHOSTLIGHTS

GHOSTLIGHTS I took a glance at the front cover of the GHOSTLIGHTS album. It looks stunning, and in my opinion, it seems more based on the fantasy thing, or am I wrong?

Tobias: It is, in a way, it’s very metaphoric. It’s very metaphoric, and the story is about. It’s a continuation of a MYSTERY OF TIME and speaking about distraction, about how we’re being given distractions, in my opinion, to be kept away from thinking freely about what truly matters in life. We’re also busy these days just running and running and moving faster and faster, being effective in our jobs. Private. We’re just trying to live up to our expectations, and we’re trying to keep up a pace that is forced upon us. To be more effective, make more money. Move faster and faster on the treadmill. But nobody realizes that we’re giving away; we’re giving up on that freedom to ask ourselves; what we’re doing this for and if this all makes sense? This is something that I was just wondering when I wrote the story, the concept. I wanted to write a beautiful, fantastic story about a young scientist. Who’s realizing that the pace is getting faster and faster around him? He joins a group of other scientists trying to manipulate people’s perception of time, and they want to align it. So they want to align society in a way, sell it as progress. Not knowing that they’re serving a force trying to speed up time, people don’t make up their minds about what truly matters in their lives anymore. To keep them away from asking questions about spirituality and their true nature, and their true power. So that was what I wanted to do. GHOSTLIGHTS refers as a metaphor to the various distractions; we get from what’s important in life. We’re all sacrificing quite a lot to afford to have little devices in our hands and using our thumb to scroll through our 2,850 best friends that we’ve never met—sharing interesting stories like what we have for breakfast. Everybody tells nobody reads and everybody is moving faster and faster. So everybody can afford the newest version of that thing that they hold in hand—that magical access to the future. But people forget about just having your great bottle of red wine, sitting at home putting on HOLY DIVER and having a good time, and talking to their best friends about the UFOs that are just landing in the garden. The quality time, I would say. That’s something I wanted to write a concept about, and GHOSTLIGHTS is about the various distractions. It’s metaphorically the ripper holding that light, that enticing vane ideal in his hand. Like a piper, come to me, I’ve got something beautiful. But he’s holding some distractions, something that draws people like a moth to a flame.

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GUESTS ON THE ALBUM

Once again, you have some exciting guests on the album, and perhaps the most interesting of them all is the legendary Twisted Sister frontman, Dee Snider. Would you tell me something more about it?

Tobias: Yeah, yeah. I find it interesting. He did it in New York. It was not very, very obvious that I would ask him. It was done because of that song, and it was in a very theatrical, very eerie way. A song like, I wanted a more theatrical character, more like a speaking character like in a movie. Like somebody pottering someone like a boogeyman, a ghost in the darkness like the city-chity, bang-bang. Some real mean creature. But I wanted him to bark out that melancholic melody and the chorus as well; a thousand nights we’ve been calling your name. I was going through my record collection, and I thought Dee Snider would be a perfect choice. He’s theatrical, he’s flamboyant, he’s sinister and tongue and cheek, and he’s an icon of mine.

Have you ever heard of Snider’s Van Helsing’s Curse project?

Tobias: No.

Yeah, it’s a kind of musical or rock opera as well. It is a theme-based story, one album, and he was doing Van Helsing’s Curse shows with orchestra and many singers and stuff. You can find it from YouTube, the whole show. It never came out in public sale, the DVD. But you can find the CD, Van Helsing’s Curse. 

Tobias: Okay. I’ve got to check it out.

I thought that Van Helsing’s Curse was the key for you to bring him to Avantasia?

Tobias: No, it wasn’t. But I thought he was very, as he was such a visual character, I thought he would be a great person to be doing it. Sascha was just like a producer and a guitar player. I’m sure Dee Snider, but he stands for different types of music. I said; no, no. Don’t under-estimate him. He’s a very visual, theatrical person. If you accept doing it, you will do a great job. Let’s just ask him. He listened to it, and we got the message back; it’s a killer track, let me do it.

I found out that he did it from the Internet. I was on vacation. I was in the gym on vacation, cycling on a bike like on a treadmill. I got a text message going like; you’ve got Dee Snider on the record. I said; how come you know this? He wanted to do it, but I’m not sure he has done it yet. How come? Check the Internet. I went to, and there was Twitter, and Dee Snider twitted just like; going to the studio, singing some songs for Avantasia. It’s great stuff. I said; Dee, why did you let the whole world know before you let me know? He’s a great character; I really, really think that way. He was a huge inspiration for me.

Another interesting name on the guest list is former Queensryche vocalist Geoff Tate. How did things work with him, and was it an easy decision for him to join a project like this?

Tobias: Very easy. Unbelievable, people wouldn’t guess so. But it was effortless, and I got in touch with him. I had this track, and originally it sounded a little bit like a typical blues metal song. I thought it’s got to be something like a Robert Plant on vocals, like the young Robert Plant. Now the young Robert Plant was not available, obviously. But I thought it was too obvious if I would ask somebody with a bluesy voice. As the mid’ section had a very Queensryche’s RAGE FOR ORDER era type of thing going on, atmosphere. So I was going through it, and I just imagined; what if Geoff Tate would sing that? I was in my basement, I remember, and all of a sudden, it was not; it isn’t the far cry. Suddenly, I was just like; It isn’t the far cry that it seemed in just a wink we’d come for you. I thought that’s precisely how Geoff Tate sings. I’ve got to ask Geoff Tate. I asked him, and although it was a big issue finding a spot in the schedule. He’s so busy growing wine and writing OPERATION MINDCRIME albums and traveling the world and being a connoisseur of wine, making wine travels here and there. He’s so fucking busy, and I was just asking his manager and wife; if he finds a time, a free spot between now and, let’s say, 2028. Would there be a possibility to have…? But he liked the track so much that he said; okay, we’re going to squeeze this in. I’m going to do it. The funny thing is, he delivered a really amazing performance right on the spot. I got it back, and I thought like this is so great, this Geoff Tate. One, a real icon for me and also for Michael Kiske. He was a singer who Geoff Tate inspired, everybody who sings like that. Everybody who sings like that was inspired sooner or later by Geoff Tate. There is always Rob Halford is always mentioned; there is always Michael Kiske mentioned. But Michael Kiske was… Bruce Dickinson, I wanted to say. But Geoff Tate was the most technical one, the most over-doing it, very theatrical. When he agreed to do it, I was very, very happy.

Have you ever asked Rob Halford to be your guest on Avantasia albums?

Tobias: I once asked Rob Halford. They didn’t want to do it because Ripper Owens has already been there. So for some reason, there was kind, that’s kind of a voice call alert, like in a bull ring.

It sounds like that you get the ideas for these guests from your record collection? ”Laughs”

Tobias: No, no. It happens. It all happens very naturally. I just go through the songs I have. Some songs have singers that I had in the back of my mind from the beginning. Like Michael Kiske, like Bob Catley. When I write songs for them, they’re there right from the beginning. But vocalists like Dee Snider or Geoff Tate are a different story.

Or Biff Byford, who was one of the quests on the MYSTERY OF TIME album?

Tobias: Biff has been a friend for a long time, so it was quite of. I felt almost guilty that I hadn’t asked him before. Because that was just like, yeah, Biff, of course, it’s going to be Biff, it’s Biff Byford, and he was; yeah, I’m going to do it. Biff is amazing. You just go through your record collection, only if you don’t have someone in the back of your mind. When you have a song… Sometimes subconsciously, you already know a voice that could sing the song, but you don’t know the name that fits the voice. You have a voice and then go through a record collection and think; of course, it’s got to be this or that vocalist. But it’s great; it feels great to be able to do this.

You have mentioned many great singers from the ’80s, but are newer singers or bands you are convinced of?

Tobias: Yeah, the band H.E.A.T. The whole band and both of their singers. Kenny Lekcremo the first singer with, fantastic voice. I don’t know where he’s living now; I don’t know what he’s doing now. Also, the new singer on the album, Erik… Is it Erik…?

Do you mean Erik Grönvall?

Tobias: Right. He’s a great singer as well and a great band. I love that band. I think they’re exceptional. They are so retro and don’t do anything new, but they do it so well and so authentic, and you can sense it’s there.

Tobias and Jorn Lande in Swedenrock 2008
Tobias and Jorn Lande in Swedenrock 2008

THE FUTURE COLLABORATION WISHES

It’s not a secret that you’re a huge KISS fan, and you’ve worked with Bruce Kulick, and Eric Singer in the past but have you asked Paul or Gene to be a part of Avantasia?

Tobias: I was talking to Eric about it, like three or four months ago about Paul. Because Paul is my hero, he said; I wouldn’t think the chance is too big, but why not. That’s something, but I didn’t dare to ask them for some reason. I’m a huge Paul Stanley fan. But right when I was thinking about that, I found out from Blabbermouth that he had some fun conversation with Dee Snider over the first. So I thought, God, that ruined all the chances now.

So that was another red flag “Laughs.”

Tobias: Another red flag. No, I haven’t tried it yet. But I would love to work with Paul. I’ve met them once; apparently, they’re nice guys. I wouldn’t say they’re guys like you and me, but they’re nice guys. But they’re guys like you and me, in a way, just quite rich. Eric is a very, very nice guy. Always like an elephant in a porcelain shop. He runs me over a figure out of the Muppet Show. In a very, very good way. I don’t mean to be disrespectful. Eric is a very, very nice guy. I really like both Eric and Bruce; they’re so different. Bruce is a well-behaved and more quiet person, and Eric is like; hey! Hey! He’s so loud, and I like them both, very, very much. They’re both so nice guys. I’m very good friends with Bruce and also with Eric.

Before we started to arrange this interview, we both tried to guess who could be involved in the future Avantasia albums. You mentioned that you would like to have Paul Stanley on the album, but are there any other names you would like to work with in the future?

Tobias: Paul Stanley, Bruce Dickinson, and one person I tried, but it’s hard to realize. Two actually. Meat Loaf and that unfortunately probably won’t happen, because he’s one of my old-time heroes as well. Steve Perry. What a voice. It gives me goose-bumps just thinking of it. He’s just so supreme.

I have learned that Steve Perry is probably returning on stages soon?

Tobias: With the guy from Extreme, Nuno. Yeah, I’ve heard so. He lives in an apartment, or he has an apartment around Bruce Kulick’s place. Bruce told me. We were there, and I said, can you… Because a few times I was at Bruce’s place. He’s living in Los Angeles, Studio City, it’s a very nice apartment. He’s living there with his wife now. A very nice place, Bruce is so lovely. I know a lot of nice people, but everybody has always got some asshole story about somebody. But I’ve never met anybody who’s got anything bad to tell about Bruce Kulick.

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THE AVANTASIA STORY IN PEANUTS

Let’s go back in time next and to the time when you first started the Avantasia. Was it more than 15 years ago?

Tobias: 16 or something like that?

Originally Avantasia was a temporary, one-off project, but things changed, and you’re still doing more Avantasia albums and world tours. What happened?

Tobias: I failed “Laughs” I just wanted to call it quits because it was so difficult to put together, and I thought this was so amazing. The first time I did it, it was so amazing I thought I would never be able to bit this anymore and come up with something equally good. But of course, that’s a ridiculous thought. You’re 21 years old, and you do something you think; I can never do something as equally as good as this. So, of course, five years later, I thought, wow! If I would do it now, the first album is sold. How many copies? If I signed a record contract now, I would get a budget that is a fantasy. I have an address book. What about doing a real extensive drum recording. I’m going to get Eric last time, and Eric just played one song. I’m going to get Eric to do all the stuff. I contacted Eric; what is your schedule with Kiss like? Eric said; I can’t come over. I can do it in December. December is off. So we recorded the whole of December.

I rented the most expensive studio you could find in Germany because I thought; if I have the drummer of Kiss, I’m not going to record in anyone’s basement. That was the start of a wonderful waste of money from start to finish an introduction. We did everything, and we did two videos that were way more expensive than we got the budget. So we blew up all this beautiful money, off the record and also my own money. But I got it eventually back because it was a very successful tour afterward as well. But everything was so much bigger than anything I had experienced before. I felt like it was what people told me. It was like in the ’80s. We were spending all this money on production. It was the studio that had one of the biggest microphone collections in Europe, Vintage Microphones. It was an old cinema, and it was costly, but a lovely place. I said, where are we going to live? There is a nice five-star hotel right around the corner of the studio. Yeah, that’s where we’re going to stay. We had done that with Edguy once before we were in not even one star, bed, and breakfast place. I said; we’re going to do it the proper way. Then we got all these fantastic musicians involved, and everything was beyond the budget, and it was just great. We were allowed to think bigger and differently.

The album SCARECROW (2008) was a big success, and two years later, you released two albums; THE WICKED SYMPHONY and ANGELS OF BABYLON. If I remember right, after the following massive world tour was over, you then said, “Now I have done everything I can with this project. Avantasia is done”.

Tobias: Yeah. That’s what I seriously felt. I felt; how is it going to be bigger? I just had after that tour, and I had brought Michael Kiske on stage. Which he said he never would do that. He said; I will never do heavy metal again, I will never be on a stage again, and I will never play festivals like Wacken with all those black metal bands. Now he was on stage with Kai Hansen on the same stage. Afterward, they founded Unisonic. He was doing Wacken, and he was singing heavy metal songs. Which scared him the most; he enjoyed it. So that was just the best I could squeeze out of Avantasia and what was impossible. But once you have called it quits, a year later, you’re again thinking about it, and you think. I should do it again; I can’t leave it at this. Now I will not say I will never do it again.

In 2008 Avantasia played in Wacken, and that was the band’s first show ever in Germany. I was in the photo pit taking pictures, and I watched the audience. There was a crazy amount of people watching your band. That made my eyes open. I didn’t realize until seeing this that Avantasia was that huge in Germany in general. I also remember that photographers in the pit were looking at each other and saying that something is wrong on stage now. Because they couldn’t hear anything from Jorn Lande’s microphone and…

Tobias: I remember that I tried to manipulate Jorn’s microphone so that I would shine even brighter next to him. Just to make sure he wouldn’t ousting me “Laughs” Seriously, the funny thing is I was on stage, and I didn’t know that Jorn’s microphone was not good. Because it was in my headphones, it was in Jorn’s headphones, and it was on the recording. We did the DVD recording. It was all there, but it was not. The audience couldn’t hear it; that was the only thing. We didn’t realize it; all I could sense was; this is the first Avantasia show in Germany. We’ve just been around the world. Everybody went crazy everywhere, and people were just standing there, screaming things that I couldn’t understand. They were just shouting; microphone, microphone. They were just trying to give us a sign that something wasn’t working. So yes. There was a bit of a problem, but we did realize it only afterward.

But when you’re looking back, are you surprised how big Avantasia has become nowadays and that there is a huge demand for Avantasia in many new countries and territories as well. What do you think about the success?

Tobias: It sucks! “Laughs” Seriously. It’s overwhelming, you know? Honestly, honestly. Let’s be honest with all the bells and results. I’m just doing the same thing we all do on this table. I might be a metal fan. I love playing music, I love listening to music, and I just play music because I thought it is great. I started to play music; I sucked. But that didn’t prevent me from having the ego I have. That didn’t prevent me from going on. It’s like we’re all music lovers, and when you do something like that, of course, that’s beyond imagination. Imagine you go on the stage. Imagine you go on the stage and all of a sudden, it gets bigger and bigger. The only good thing is that with Avantasia and Edguy and everything I’ve done so far. It all happened so fast. I had so much time to become acquainted or get used to the next step that it’s all happening in a flow. We did so many tours with Edguy, carrying our own Marshalls into bars. In Sweden, the first tour we did, playing in bars. In front of 150 people. Tonight it is 180; tomorrow, it’s over 200. That’s a great show. So we never really took anything for granted.

I’m just looking into nowhere, and nobody is waving us. It’s just beyond imagination that something like that, even Wacken. That first time I played Wacken, which was hard for me even to grasp. Because I played Wacken before with Edguy, even full-house, I know what it’s like to play in Wacken and in front of many people. That all clap their hands. But that energy coming, like people pushing towards the stage before we went on, then went on. It’s packed, and nobody moves anymore. Even like 200 meters into the audience, people were stuck there. Because everybody was there, everybody was singing along. That was even for me, hard to grasp. But of course, it was shocking me positively.

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TOUR AND EDGUY TALK

When you are on tour with Avantasia, everything is always big, and the audience numbers are huge. When you go on tour with Edguy, you play in smaller venues, and things are quite different. How do you keep yourself motivated to do both bands with full force?

Tobias: You have to be a chameleon; it’s a challenge. It’s just like going back. It’s just like going on a couch after you’ve gone in first class. No, that’s bullshit. Honestly speaking, it’s sometimes hard to adjust. But I embrace it, and to be honest with you. It’s only in very few territories where you have to step down. With Avantasia, we leave out territories that don’t make sense financially because I would lose a fortune with Avantasia. If I would go to a place where we just play, I couldn’t play a 250 person bar in Winnipeg or Regina with Avantasia. Because I would lose like a Mercedes because it’s so expensive to put that show on the road. So I don’t want to make money necessarily, but I don’t want to lose money. So with Edguy, I can do these kinds of shows. Stripped-down shows. We all don’t make money, and we don’t have any hired guns in the band. We are the band; we don’t make money then. We maybe lose a little bit, but that’s okay. So in those territories, we can’t play with Avantasia, but we will play those territories with Edguy. So in the main territories, Edguy is not exactly playing on a very low level. In Germany, we’re playing for 2,000 people with Edguy as well. When you tour on a level with 2,000, you have a shower and a warm meal every day. “Laughs”

I think that it’s obvious that although Avantasia is making a lot of money from touring, it also costs a fortune to have such a big production on tour. But I think you’re still doing great, and you’re not losing money when you’re on tour with Avantasia?

Tobias: You never really know what has left afterward, that’s for sure. But it’s not exactly that I lose money from Avantasia. I make money; I make money from Avantasia. It is, of course. Some shows are very, very good, and some shows are on the verge of making money. Some shows even you lose money. That happens, but I can make a good living from Avantasia.

Is there any chance that you will someday do a strip-down tour with Avantasia?

Tobias: No. Strip-down sucks “Laughs.”

What’s up with Edguy at the moment? Is the band right now on hold or what?

Tobias: They’re on hold, but we’re in touch. I have just been trying to call Dirk this morning just for fun, to talk to him from the airport. We’re friends, private friends. Next week, he just built a house; I’m going to go there and see if he’s done it properly. Because the last time I was there, it was still a building site. So we’re private friends. Felix is joining Avantasia on the next tour. With Eggi, usually, I don’t have that much contact when we’re not on the road or the studio. With Jens, since he’s got a second child now. It’s a little more silent as well, but he’s just living 15 kilometers away from me. We’re friends, and the band is on hiatus now. Of course, on hiatus not, I can’t be touring with Edguy when I’m touring Avantasia. So I hope that they will finally be busy writing good songs “Laughs” Then we’ll go back to the studio, and then ultimately we’re going to sit and see what kind of songs we have.

As I said before, Avantasia is based on the fantasy thing, but Edguy is entirely different. That is more based on… Let’s say it this way; there is a lot of German humor on Edguy?

Tobias: No. There is no such thing as German humor. “Laughs” Edguy is not funnier than Avantasia. We never actually put a space cap with a mustache on a cover of Avantasia record. But I have to say that people sometimes mistake the humor on the surface of Edguy, from lack of taking things seriously or lack of quality. This is not very, very fair. It pisses me off sometimes. Because there are so many thoughts on what we do with Edguy, it is a different approach, maybe when it comes to songs like “Love Tyger.” We won’t do them with Avantasia. Still sing. The riff of “Love Tyger” had been written originally for Avantasia. But it was too light-hearted for Avantasia. But I give my very, very best for Edguy as well.

Even though I called “Space Police,” there were songs with funny David Bowie kinds of vocal passages. This lyric is actually very, very smart. It’s very metaphoric. Many people just get distracted by certain things that we just do in your face, like that Space chord. The cover of Edguy. I thought that was hilarious, and I thought Queen would have done that; Van Halen would have done that. These kinds of bands they could be taken seriously. That was true art. So I think we deliver some serious quality, but sometimes people just want to expect us to do something silly. That’s why people don’t listen to us, but in fact, Edguy is not as nonsense as most people would assume. There is pretty much good thought and message behind most jokes.

That’s all for now, Tobias. Thanks, and good luck with your new album!

Tobias: Thanks, guys, and see you in summer in Helsinki!

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