Jimmy Kay and Alan Dixon from Canada’s The Metal Voice recently interviewed Udo and Sven Dirkschneider of U.D.O. The two spoke about their upcoming orchestral new album ‘We are One’ and their songwriting collaboration with the Musikkorps der Bundeswehr (Concert Band of the German Armed Forces) and the two former Accept Stefan Kaufmann and Peter Baltes. Other topics in the interview, drive-in concerts, songwriting with Peter Baltes and touring with Ex Accept singer David Reece.
When asked about why they decided to collaborate with German Armed Forces Orchestra
“We did two shows in the past with the orchestra, the first in 2015 at Wacken and the sound on stage was amazing, there was a lot of energy. Then we did another show on 2018 and the audience was 40% metal fans and the rest of was there for the orchestra. The audience was really enjoying the show and they were standing up and clapping. So after this concert we were having drinks with everyone and we were talking about continuing together by doing an album together. We said if we do a new album we have to write new songs. So we had a meeting with the two guys who do the arrangements for the orchestra and we started working on everything. We were sending files back and forth and it took nearly a year before everything was done, it was a lot of work.” Udo
When asked about former Accept bassist Peter Baltes contribution to the new album
“Peter’s participation was not planned unlike Stefan Kaufmann who’s participation was planned from the beginning on the new album. One day I was in Germany and Stefan told me to do some demos in the studio so I went there but he didn’t tell me Peter Baltes would be there. Peter was there doing some stuff with Stefan at the time. Then we started talking and Peter said he had some ideas to contribute to the new album and if I didn’t mind and I said I don’t mind. I never had a problem with Peter and his ideas. For this project it was important to have really good stuff and for me it doesn’t matter who is writing the songs. Of course Stefan and Peter ideas are not so far away from my ideas. Peter and Stefan were both very happy to work on this project. When I met him it was like I just saw him yesterday after 15 years. ” Udo
When asked if Peter is joining U.D.O.
“Peter to be the bass player of U.D.O. no. We were not really talking about this. I heard he is doing a solo album and if he wanted me to sing a song ok but he is not joining the band. ” Udo
“I mean it would be cool to play with him once but we already have a very strong 5 piece band.” Sven
When asked about Udo rapping on the song ‘Here we go again’ off the new album
“When I did the demo vocals my son Sven was saying are you sure you want to do this? Don’t ask me why I did this, it was just coming out like that. ” Udo
“Then I was asked to do some demo vocals on that song and it ended up being a duet between me and my father.” Sven
When asked about their thoughts about doing Drive-in shows
“That’s a bit weird, the stage would need to be very big so we could fit 85 people (orchestra and band). Can’t happen right now cause there are too many orchestra players and they have to maintain social distance. We have lots of offers at the moment to do these drive in shows but our band members are spread all across Europe, we come from three different countries and have a hard time to travel. We can’t even come together to practice. Of course we would like to do these shows, I think it would be cool once in a lifetime event. ” Sven
When asked about bringing former Accept singer David Reece as an opener for U.D.O. shows on future North American tours
“I’m up for it. he was very nice and he is a good guy to talk to and spend time with and it would be fun, why not? ” Sven
“I’m really good friends with David, we had a lot of fun on the last tour together.” Udo
The album contains 15 new songs that will be released through AFM Records /Soulfood Music. All songs have been developed and arranged by U.D.O. together with Christoph Scheibling. The two former Accept musicians Stefan Kaufmann and Peter Baltes have been part of the songwriting too – as well as the German Armed Forces´ composers Guido Rennert and Alexander Reuber.
The album is entitled `We Are One‘ and will be released on July 17th.
01 – Pandemonium
02 – We Are One
03 – Love And Sin
04 – Future Is The Reason Why
05 – Children Of The World
06 – Blindfold (The Last Defender)
07 – Blackout
08 – Mother Earth
09 – Rebel Town
10 – Natural Forces
11 – Neon Diamond
12 – Beyond Gravity
13 – Here We Go Again
14 – We Strike Back
15 – Beyond Good And Evil