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Deutsche VersionInterview mit Pyramaze (29.07.2004)

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HH: Hi, first of all congratulations for your album Melancholy Beast. It's a very good one and in my opinion one of the best Progressive Power Metal releases in the past few month. How would you rate Melancholy Beast?

Michael: Well, it's hard for me to rate our own album, but I'm definitely satisfied with it. I think the melodies have turned out really good, but without loosing roughness, so the album kicks some ass.

HH: How were the reactions of press and fans to the album?

Michael: We have been getting great reviews all over the world, and we have already done so many interviews. So the overall reaction has been very positive, and we are very pleased with how the media has treated us so far.

HH: Could you give a brief history of Pyramaze?

Michael: Morten and Niels where the first two persons which I approached with my ideas, and they both liked it, so they jumped on the wagon. They are both from DK, and live close to my town, so this was brilliant. I already knew Morten before I approached him with the material, so we go way back before Pyramaze was created. He is a fantastic drummer, and a great person, so it was obvious for me to choose him.
The reason for why I approached Niels was, that I heard him perform at a local festival once, and his skills just blew me away. I managed to get his phone number from a friend, and called him to make my offer. He said yes at once, without any questioning and stuff, so that was quite easy :-)
And now for the guys from USA. I found Jonah because he had made an advertisement on the Wacken Open Air homepage, where he offered his skills to bands out there. I mailed him, telling him about my ideas, and he was in to it from the beginning. We exchanged some promo material, to see if our skills where matching, and so they where. I loved his style, and he liked what I was doing too, so we agreed to do this. Jonah flew to Denmark in January 2003, and the four of us (Lance was not onboard yet) spent 12 days in the studio recording all the instruments. Actually from the beginning I wanted to do the vocals myself, but after the 12 days in the studio I had to re-book for the recording of the vocals, since there was no more time left for that.
But before this happened Intromental management got to hear the material, and they loved it. We decided to join forces, and this opened a whole new world for us. Suddenly I was able to choose a vocalist which was better than me, because of Intromental's great contacts, so I decided to do this. They sent me 5 or 6 promos with different vocalists, and Lance was the only one who really stood out. We then contacted him to hear if he was available, and sent him the material. He loved it and agreed to become a part of this.

HH: What's the meaning of the name "Pyramaze"?

Michael: It's a connection of the word pyramid and the word maze. I thought of this name because I have always been very fascinated by the ancient Egyptian pyramids, and all the legends surrounding them. Also the name maze (like labyrinth) has a mystical ring to it, so I thought this would be a nice name for our band.

HH: The riffing on Melancholy Beast sometimes reminds me of Iced Earth. Is Iced Earth an influence to your songwriting?

Michael: I have listened a lot to Iced Earth for some years now, so yes, I guess one could call it an influence.

HH: What further influences do you have?

Michael: I listen a lot to Blind Guardian, Nightwish, Stratovarius, Kamelot and Jag Panzer.

HH: What's this 'thing' on the cover? Is this the Melancholy Beast?

Michael: Yes, the figure on the front cover is the Melancholy Beast.

HH: Why is it called so?

Michael: It's called Melancholy Beast because it's only a beast on the outside, not on the inside. So the character is sad to be judges as an evil being, just because of it's frightening appearance.

HH: On Melancholy Beast I like the song "Legend" best. It's got that magnificent chorus and it has in general very very much power and energy. Is it connected with the movie "The Legend"?

Michael: Actually it's a 100% based on that movie, nice that you noticed, most people don't. I was very impressed by that movie, and so I decided to put it down to words, and write a song about it.

HH: Which song is the best in your opinion?

Michael: I really can't say, but right now I listen the most to "Legend".

HH: Which song do fans love most?

Michael: It's very very different from fan to fan. Some love "Legend", some "The Journey", some "Sleepy Hollow", so it's a good mix.

HH: What do you think about the download and file-sharing problem at the moment?

Michael: I think it sucks when people can just download an album for free, without the artist getting any credit at all. That's not how it's supposed to be, and I think many bands quit the business because of problems like that. The money has to come from somewhere, otherwise a band can't exist for long (recording an album is very expensive) and most money just comes from the sale of the album. If no one buys it but just downloads, then the band just ends up with a whole bunch of expenses, and no income. That's really a shame.

HH: Do you use the internet to check out new bands?

Michael: Yes sure, but only in the form of sound clips which the bands themselves put on the net. There are many great webzines too these days, and that's also a great way to hear about new bands.

HH: Imagine, Melancholy Beast is a plant! What plant would that be?

Michael: Hmm, I would say some kind of tree.

HH: Why?

Michael: Because most of us are pretty tall guys. :-)

HH: What about touring? Do you have plans for a bigger tour so far?

Michael: No big tours so far, but there is a small tour this September, which will bring us to Denmark, Germany and France. All the details can be read on our homepage at www.pyramaze.com

HH: Thanks a lot for your time and for answering my questions. Any last words?

Michael: Thank you too, it's been nice. Thanks to our fans, and to all the people who have read this interview and showed us interest - cheerz.

Lord Obirah

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