Yeah, his appendix was broken. It was infected and then broken. The whole stomach and everything was infected and it was very serious. He was close to death at this point. They made some very urgent operations on him and saved his life. He's pretty fine now again.
Thank goodness for that. Good heavens.
He reacted too late. He should have went to the hospital earlier.
Some people put off stuff like that because they think it isn't serious. It isn't impeding anything.
Especially Victor. He's a workaholic and he's not really reacting on his body signs.
He has a side project going that involves you guys. Is his solo CD finished now or is he still working on that?
His solo CD is also finished. It was also released the same time like the live DVD last year in November. It's really amazing. You should really get a copy and check it out.
Tell me a little about your combination CD and DVD.
Yeah, it was released in three different versions. One was just the regular live CD. Then we had the double DVD and we had a limited edition box with everything included with both DVDs and both CDs. We're really proud of this thing. It's a 20 year anniversary release. One of the DVDs is a complete live show and the other one is all kinds of history material, all the old video clips the band made, everything like other live stuff and studio documentations and stuff like this. It has five hours playing time and I think it's a pretty good thing for the fans. Both old and new fans.
Did you guys think you'd be around for 20 years?
Good question. Actually I never really planned it that far. Maybe I was going to make plans and maybe not longer than a year or two or so. Basically we just enjoyed our lives and kept doing the band. Basically the reason why I'm still doing this is because I love music. I love to do this music and of course I live from this so we never really thought about stopping or doing anything else. Then one day you just wake up and say "what? It's already late." 20 years. Didn't really notice.
You did this at the Bochum Zeche venue.
Yeah, that's my hometown. That's where I live. The place where we recorded the live show was exactly the place where I played my very first live show 20 years ago. Or even longer than 20 years ago.
Did you plan it that way or it worked out that way?
Yeah, it was planned like this. We thought about releasing a live full release for the 20th anniversary and we thought this might be a good place to do it. First we had different plans. First there was a plan for example to record a show in Moscow but this was very difficult to organize. You couldn't really find the right team over there and then we thought why don't we do it just here in our hometown where it all began. This is the easiest way and also it makes sense to go back to the roots. To the place where it all started.
I listened to the CD and of course I heard some material that I had already heard before but then I also heard material I wasn't familiar with. I thought that was incredible that you guys did a three hour show.
Yeah, that's right. There was even more material but we couldn't put it all on the CDs. It was too much. We played endlessly.
Will that material materialize on something else later on?
Actually we thought it out. The material with some recording problems on some songs. Some tracks were missing so we thought that those wouldn't go really out. We could repair this material of course but I don't know if we will.
You recorded this totally live then.
Are you guys working on new material for a studio album?
Yeah, that's right. We already rehearsed some new songs and we planned to fully orchestrate the album. A very odd one. You might remember a couple of years ago, we did this "Lingua mortis" thing. This time we want to do this even better. The material should be harder and also I think we can make it quality wise a lot better because we have Victor now in the band and he's such a great classical musician. I don't know exactly if the whole album will be orchestrated but we are thinking so far about it. I can't exactly promise when it will be finished. Maybe by the end of the year or beginning of next year.
The last time we talked, you had released an album that had the White Russian Choir on it.
Yeah, right. On Unity we had the choir. They are all connected to this orchestra that Victor usually works with. His father is the orchestra chief. He's a great composer in White Russia and so we always work with these musicians.
It's nice to see the three of you are still together. A lot of times lineups change a whole lot. You guys seem to tough things out together all right.
Yeah, we just like this band and we like to play with each other. We want to continue on working with each other as long as we can. Of course if the band breaks up we wouldn't make any money anymore in the future. I doubt that Mike Terrana could just afford to stay with us. We all live from this but I think for Mike, it's the biggest problem because he's still a foreigner here in Germany. He's from America and he just moved to work. He can't just take off. So far the band is doing pretty good especially here in Europe. We have a good following and we sell still enough records so I think it's not a problem. You never know what is in 10 years or so.
Mike is an incredible drummer so it shouldn't be too hard for him to find work.
Yeah, it's good that we all like each other very much and we like this band and we like the way we work with each other. We really want to keep it going.
It's such an international group too. You're from Germany, Mike's from the U.S., and Victor's from Russia.
Yeah, this is how some jokes started 10 years ago right?
You guys are in the middle of touring right now?
Yeah, we just ended an extended European tour. Next weekend we take off for Korea and Japan and we have all kinds of shows in between. At least one or two shows a week. It's not a constant tour at the moment. We finished this like I said but we are busy playing live until over summer or so. It is hard at the moment to schedule the rehearsals or the studio work for the next album. We want to put it somewhere in between. I think we'll be pretty busy this year.
I hope we get to see you guys in the States sometime.
Yeah, we just changed our booking agency last summer and the new agency we work with now is way better than the one we had before and they are really working hard on getting us everywhere all over the world on stage. I think as soon as they might make up a chance, maybe we can make a package tour or something. As soon as they see a chance for us to go over I think they will book us definitely so there might be a good chance.
I hope so. I've been dying to see you guys for a long time.
What I just heard last week is they're pretty hard at working on some Canadian shows so if we come over to Canada I think it might be easy to do some U.S. shows. Let's see what they can work out.
Any other thoughts or comments?
Yeah, let me thank the fans because they keep the band rolling and see everybody soon.
Maybe you'll be able to do a 40th anniversary.
Yeah, like Lemmy. Why not?