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..: Interview April 12th, 2002 Takis Pomonis :..

Manowar visited our country for an interview session and Metal Realm seized the opportunity to talk with guitarist Karl Logan. It started out as an interview, but it turned out to be a friendly talk about everything concerning Manowar. Here, we present some parts of it, undoubtedly very interesting for all of you. Read on!

First of all, congratulations for your new album! It is excellent, I enjoy it very much and I think it's the best release Manowar have, since their first four albums!
Karl : Thank you, I think it's great too.

When did you record the album and where?
Karl : Ahhm... we probably started writing the album in the year 2000, before that, we were touring for four years, we recorded two live albums and we were remastering the three earlier albums, added new booklets into them, old archival stuff. After that, we got together to the digital studios and started recording new songs, in the spring of 2000.

And I guess it was Joey DeMaio's personal studios? Why there?
Karl : Yeah, right, it's in his house. Well, nowadays it's good to build up your own studios and work there , than to go somewhere else where you'll have to pay for. You know, it makes sense to have your own studio, you control things better, you can wake up and go right in the studio and generally have total control.

So, are you satisfied by the result? And what do the other guys think?
Karl : Oh, yeah, we all think it's an epic heavy metal album. I think it redefines the boundaries of heavy metal, we have the regular heavy metal on it, we have an epic ballad on it, so there's a lot to be proud of, I think we put together something that's really impressive.

Is it better then, than "Louder Than Hell" album?
Karl : Better or worse, I just see it's a different album. Of course, some things like production are a lot better in this album. We recorded "Louder Than Hell" in Galaxy Studios and we had to "hit 'n run", but now we have our own studios and also the guy ( en can't make out the name-sorry!) who produced Rammstein's last album. Surely you can hear his contribution on it.

Ok, next question. Who's responsible for the music this time? Did Joey do all the work or did the other of you contribute to the music?
Karl : Joey wrote all the lyrics and then Joey and me wrote all the music. After that Scott and Eric came in and shaped the whole of each song...

Well, I see. The slow, mid-tempo character of "Warriors Of The World" album differs a lot from the last one - two albums. I think you made a kind of a return to the old epic days (en he nods positively). Was that your purpose on that record?
Karl : Yes, because we didn't want to do something like "Louder Than Hell" album. We wanted to redefine heavy metal, and to do something unexpected. The fans also helped us a lot, asking us to record an epic album.

So, was it your desire to do such an "epic" return also?
Karl : Yeah, sure, and we thought that after "Louder Than Hell", the time was right to record such an album, pretty different and unexpected.

And you know, it sounds to me like "Into Glory Ride" album, I mean the slow, epic songs.
Karl : Yes, that's right, a lot of people have said that. It reminds them of the earlier days and that's a true fact.

What are the lyrics talking about?
Karl : Well, it's easy to understand them when you hear the record, and we always want to hail and honor our fans, so some of them talk about heavy metal, and there's "fight for freedom", a patriotic song, as well as "American trilogy" and that's not to say that these songs are just about America, they're just patriotic for any country, and actually, both of them were finished before September 11th, and yes, there are also the standard heavy metal themes, which we have on other albums also. We evolve but we don't really change, we're not going to write a song about flowers or teddy bears...

So, why did you name the album "Warriors Of The World"?
Karl : Because the cover of the album shows the Manowarrior coming out of hell, which is the name of our studio, and behind him are all the warriors of the world, carrying flags of the countries that we've played, it's like a tribute to our fans, you know.

How come you put "nessun dorma" in the album? Why did you choose that?
Karl : Well, we firstly played it live in "Gods Of Metal Festival" in Italy, some years ago. We did it as a tribute to our Italian fans, because we hadn't been in Italy for a long long time. And also, we put it on this album, wanting to send out a challenge, because there are lot of bands who try to copy Manowar, there are bands out there who want to sound like Manowar, so we say "do this", take it as a challenge, is there anyone who can copy this? We wanted to bring back to people what heavy metal really is, it's not just riff after riff after riff and blastbeats (en he does relevant sounds!), it's more than that, it's a feeling, it's a concept, it's a lifestyle.

And I think there are very few singers in this world who can sing like Eric did in "nessun dorma". He's such a great performer!
Karl : I agree. Thank you!

Are there any hidden symbolic messages behind all those lyrics that speak of battles, magic and all that stuff or are they just stories?
Karl : I think they are universal things. You know, if you think about life, every day is a struggle, every day is fighting against something, against sleep like I am right now (laughs), or against taxmen, against your boss...

"Fighting The World", then?
Karl : Right (laughs)! Every day there's something that people are fighting for or against , so these things are in our record. All you need is in yourself. I believe people make their own heaven and their own hell. It's up to you to choose.

That's true. So, who'll do the cover?
Karl : Ken Kelly. The same one made other covers for us, as well as the pictures you have on your T-shirts!

Are Manowar going to tour to promote "Warriors Of The World" album?
Karl : We're going to be looking towards doing some summer festivals. We're going to headline again "The Gods Of Metal Festival" and also "Lorka", a rock festival in Spain, and one in Budapest also, and we might play a couple of other shows at summer time.

Is there anything about Greece?
Karl : Yeah, we're gonna do a world tour from September and on, and I think we visit you at the start of October. But, there isn't anything confirmed right now, so I can't tell you for sure.

What do you remember from your live appearance here, in Greece, three years ago?
Karl : The fact that I was hurt (en he laughs-he had badly hurt his knee)! Yeah, every one remembers that!

Well, the fact also is that many spectators that night were displeased by the many interventions to your set. I mean they didn't like the fact that there were many power failures or Joey's bass solos and speeches or even the bringing up on stage this guy and this girl. What do you have to say to them and generally to all those who believe that Manowar haven't anything else to offer?
Karl : I can tell you that there are power failures in many parts of the world that we've played. We use a tremendous amount of power and some places just can't handle it. I'm telling you the truth on this. And we don't do it for fun, our songs really need such power. As for the other stuff, I can tell them that all the stuff we did that night were stuff of a general format. I mean, just like every album has a format, every tour has one also. That was that tour, this one's gonna be a different one. And if they think we've nothing to offer, then they would better listen to the new album, because everyone's saying it's the best album we've had in a long time. So, the new album proves them wrong, doesn't it?

Of course. Absolutely! What's your favorite song from the new album?
Karl : Well, I've a connection to all of them, I really do. I like playing the last three songs, because they are heavy and fast, and I like the ballad because of the texture of it, the way it was built, and I like the Puccini song (en it's Verdi, Karl!), it's so emotional, I like the "American trilogy" because it sounds to me a very stirring, emotional, patriotic song, I can't say there's a favorite song, they are all great.

Any favorite Manowar album then?
Karl : Umm... not really. Of course, I've been on two of them and every one has a different character, not just mine, all the old albums have a different feeling...(en the interview got out of hand here, since we began talking about old songs and guitar techniques with Karl for 5-10 minutes)

So, what are your relationship with the other guys? Would you give me a description of every one? 4-5 words...
Karl : A description of them? Ahhm... Eric is humorous and very up-beat, energetic. Scott is a computer maniac (laughs) and he also has a great sense of humor. Joey is...busy, that's the best word to describe him, busy and dedicated, committed to the, I don't know, quiet, contemplative and surely passionate with music...

Ok. Any plans for a video?
Karl :Yeah, the video is actually done. It's "warriors of the world united". We had a problem getting on tour and we didn't bring a PAL video, we have a NTSC, so we have to convert it and that's what we're doing right now, you have to see it, it's tremendous, filmed in New York and it's really cool.

Alright. Speaking of New York, would you like to tell me what are Manowar's thoughts over the terrorist attack seven months ago?
Karl : Well, every one thinks it's a terrible tragedy. I think it's a tremendous loss for every one. It really changed the entire world. But, we don't want to enter the political arena, and start talk about politics.

So, the American way of life is changed?

Karl : Oh, yes, absolutely! We can feel that, we can feel the difference. And I know that here in Greece there's a big anti-american feeling, but people have to remember that not every American agrees with the government! I mean, the government is not necessarily the voice of every American person.

That's true! Tell me Karl, what's your opinion about this nu-metal and extreme metal scene in general like thrash, death or black metal?
Karl : Well, you see, metal to me is a very specific thing and I think that a lot of this nu-metal is not metal and they should stop calling it metal, it's not; a lot of its noise, a lot of its crap and these dog-barking vocals, it's not metal. You know, metal is melodic, it's got structure to it, it's got feeling. A lot of these songs go...(en he makes some death/black metal rhythms with his throat!) and you don't know what's happening, it's like a car-crash! I don't appreciate a lot of this stuff, I really don't like singers who go...(en and he makes some death metal vocals!) , I have no use for that at all. But, there are some bands out there that, musically, they write some very beautiful stuff, they really do, and they totally ruin it when the singer comes in and I wish I could put in another singer, and I feel like "shut up!". I can't understand why they do it. It's like painting a beautiful painting and then sticking a cartoon all over it! It's horrible. But, there are some good songs and bands in extreme metal surely. I like some of them...

And the last question is what does the future hold for Manowar? What are your plans?
Karl : More records, more touring, doing exactly what we're doing now, and this new record tells the future of Manowar, we'll keep evolving, surprising people...

And a message to your fans?
Karl : We hope to see you soon on our world tour! With a full set, a new stage show, a new format, less talking, less solos on stage, more songs...

That's good news! Ok, Karl, thank you very much! Take good care!
Karl : You too! Hope to see you soon!

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