Freedom Call

Interview date

14 Janvier 2010




Interview Chris Bay

Why did you write this album about Ludwig II?

That was just an idea to do that, because the first song we wrote on the new album was about him. And then we began to work on the next song and we decided why not to write an album about our own history. Ludwig was the king of Bavaria, and Freedom Call comes also from Bavaria. So it was our history just around the corner. We decided not to go back to the middle age, dragon etc. When we involve ourselves in the life of king Ludwig it was getting more and more interesting. We found out a lot of things we can use for the lyrics and the story about king Ludwig II. It's a little bit different, but it's a good idea.

Isn't it more difficult to write about an historical personality than about something we imagine?

Oh yes, it is! Because you have to take care that everything you write is right. You always can say,"It's my own mind, my own sentences" or whatever and no a real personal history. But there is a lot of literature, DVD about Ludwig II and it makes you rich about the knowledge, the history. There was a situation during the song writing with we were really close to the age he dies. We were written songs on his life. It was amazing!

We can separate this album in three parts: the first one, which is happy, the second one, which is darker, and the last one, which is happy again. Why such a difference between the beginning, the middle and the end of this album?

I think we decided to... but it wasn't really like this, do three parts in the album! The traditional Freedom Calls' songs are happy with nice melodies, high vocals... And I think it's what the people are expecting from Freedom Call. I think they will be a little bit disappointing on the new songs as "Under The Spell Of The Moon" or "Dark Obsession". It's not typical Freedom Call. But we are feeling free to try out new directions in music. So we are more open-minded. And it's a life situation. If you decide to write a concept album about a personality like king Ludwig II... His life wasn't always very happy, there were big tragedies in his life. So I think it would be unauthentic if you had only happy song on this album. We just supporting the emotions of king Ludwigs' life.

In fact, in this album, the end of Ludwig II is coming fast; it's in "The Darkness", which is the eightieth song. So does the end of this album is telling about?

The end of the album is about hope. It's "A Perfect Day". Maybe you can see in it a simple song: if you waking up in the morning, everything is right, the coffee is done and still hot (laughs) and everything is working by itself... It is just an easy song about a perfect day, but maybe an all life can be a perfect day! If you think it is, if you really believe it in yourself, maybe your all life can be a perfect!

As in the others album, the songs of "Legend of the Shadowking" are easy to remember. Do you thing ites one of the strengths of Freedom Call music?

I think it's a trademark of Freedom Call. Because we are not doing music to realise ourselves, to show the people how loud we can play the guitar, how high I can sing, or whatever. We try to do the music for the people. If I'd listen to the music, I'd like to understand the music. We are not made for doing some progressive stuff or things like that. I love in songs that I can play it with the band, with the drum, with the guitars... But I also could play these songs when I'm on vacation, and I'm sitting on a bonfire. I just have to take the guitar, and we are four persons... And I also can realise a Freedom Call songs, just with an acoustic guitar and my vocals. And that makes a real good song for me.

This album is darker than the others. Do you think it's a turn in the Freedom Call career?

Yeah, I think so. But I think it's 'cause of the concept. Because we were really inspired with his life, his passions, his experiences... And king Ludwig was also a good friend and has a close relationship to the composer Richard Wagner. And he made really bombastic, big masterpieces. And these combinations never can sound very happy. I think we have to have heavy sounds dark or elements in the music when you writing an album with a concept.

And in this album, the song "Ludwig II-Prologue" is a particular one. It's more a speech than a sing and it's in German. Why?

Well, because I told you there were some situations that we were close to king Ludwig life and it's Germany history. And it was our opinion that if "Prologue" was in English it would not sound authentic. We try to do that as authenticable as possible. I think the sound is richer in German language. It's the language of King Ludwig and this short part; we decided to do it in our language.

The 29th January, you will do a release party. What is the program?

First, having fun! But also have a show in the night. Of course, introduce the new album to the people. We will play six or seven songs of the new album. But also we will play the older stuff. And I sure we're gonna have a great metal fest on this evening. We have a new album with us, old stuff and some specials are waiting for the people this night. We are very, very proud to present the new album.

You were used to do several gigs in France, but during the upcoming tour, you will only come to Paris. Do you plan to do another tour with more dates in France?

Oh yeah we do! So at first, I'm really sorry and disappointed that there is only one show in France. I think Freedom Call has a real special relationship with France; we did our first show in 1999 in Grenoble. And so we always play a lot of shows in France. In 2007 we toured with Nightmare. It's always good memories. We are planning a headliner tour in the fall of this year and hopefully we can play some more shows in France.

In summer, there are a lot of big festivals, but for now, you are not announced in any of them. Are you negotiating to play in one of these festivals?

Hopefully, yes! I think January and February are the good times to promote the band. And I hope we can go there as well. But we can't confirm, not yet. At first, we will tour. I think in February it's to early. But, hopefully!

Some people say you sound like Gamma Ray or Edguy. Do you think it's difficult to have a name unless comparisons in the Melodic Power Metal?

Yeah. I think generally the people love to compare bands. So I think when Gamma Ray began, the people were comparing Gamma Ray to Helloween, and Helloween to Iron Maiden, and so on. In the beginning of Freedom Call, the people were saying "Oh Freedom Call sound like Helloween or Gamma Ray" or whatever. And as a member of Freedom Call, I can say or I can read in some magazines that other bands are becoming compare to Freedom Call! So I can read some reviews: "this new band" blabla "sounding a little bit like Freedom Call". I think it's just a thing of time. But I don't have problems with that because we are compare to band like Gamma Ray and I like this band. So I'm not disappointing about that when I'm getting compare to this kind of band.

And what do you think about the power metal scene of the lasts years?

There are a lot of good bands. The problem is that power metal will always be an underground music. So I think it's hard for the bands because you can't earn money with power metal. If you decide to do power metal, never think about money! But I think it's a great music because you can have an orchestra or orchestras' parts, but you also have a heavy metal drum, high guitars. For me it's a great combination. I love that. But it's not easy even if you are a professional.

And what are you expecting from the metal scene in 2010?

For Freedom Call, I'm very optimist. So, touring a lot, the new album out... I think we are in the light of the business. But for other bands which are looking for new records deal, or try to realise a tour, it will be hard to get the money to realise that. It is a problem 'cause the economical disasters of the last year also touch the music business, especially the metal category. But the business can survive. I hope that it's getting better in the next year and we will do the best for that! Going on with the economy.

Will we listen to you on another album as a guest this year?

It's not plan. I get a lot of proposition. But I'm to busy at this moment. I'm preparing with Freedom Call for the tour, and I was working on studio for the album "Legend of the Shadowking" so it was in December. But after the tour, I will have a little bit more time for things. But of course, it would be great to work with other guys together.

What does it bring to you more satisfaction: singing, playing the guitar or playing piano?

I would prefer to drink a beer! (Laughs) It depends in which song, in which band it is. But I love every instrument. But, I'm not a very, very well piano player. I can play a little bit for my self or do the keyboards, but I'm not the best piano player. For the guitar, it's the same. Many of guitar players will play crazy music, but I'm not in competition with them. So my main instrument is definitely singing! I have emotions, ambitions to do that.

And are you satisfied with this interview? (Laughs)

Oh yeah, it was a pleasure for me! It was really great, cool questions, and different of the others interviews. I do seven or eight interviews the day, and it was very special! Thank you very much for that!

Oh, thank you, it's kind to you! So to end it, do you have something to say to your French fans?

Oh yeah, of course! We can't wait to come in France again, to pay the show in Paris. We hope the French metal fans will like the new album "Legend of the Shadowking". And I can guarantee it will be a great heavy metal party in Paris. They will hear some new songs of the new album, but also old stuff of Freedom Call. So we're gonna have a good time.