We are very honored to present you the interview that Ralf Scheepers, the frontman of Primal Fear, gave to Rock Overdose and to Konstantinos Sotirelis.
Rock Overdose: Hello Ralf!
Ralf Scheepers: Hello Rock Overdose!
Rock Overdose: How’s it going on the band’s side these days?
Ralf Scheepers: Very good, absolutely great! We’ve a fantastic life! We’ve been touring the world almost. We’ve been to America, Japan, Australia, and in three weeks, we go to South America. So, it’s been the world, when we end it this year. There’s also some negotiations for some more European dates, maybe at the end of October, so we will see. It’s a great year for us, and the vibe is absolutely fantastic in the band.
Rock Overdose: I see that you are very active all these years, and you play a lot of shows, especially this month. Also, you have a tour on September, and then you said that you will probably come back to Europe?
Ralf Scheepers: Yes, we’re coming to maybe work around some dates, around the Italian show. At 30th October, we have a show in Italy. And one week before, we play also in Germany, so we will see… There’s still negotiations going on with our booking agency, and we’re working on some more dates. So, we will see what comes up.
Rock Overdose: Do you have any plans about some shows in Greece?
Ralf Scheepers: I would really love to come back to Greece, because “agapao tous Ellines” [laughs] but the thing is… You know the situation there, you know the situation with the promoters and stuff…
Rock Overdose: Actually, it’s a difficult situation…
Ralf Scheeperes: It’s not that easy. But we would love to come. I mean, it’s always the same thing… People are not to blame for any politician, political situations all around the world. So, I think, people really want to live together in peace, not in war and all the fucking economics, and all that shit.
Rock Overdose: So, I’ve read that you plan a show for your twentieth anniversary in your hometown. Can you say a few details for the show, or is it too early?
Ralf Scheepers: It’s too early to tell the date, but I know that there’s a lot of activities going on in between friends and fans and so forth to come with us on stage. So, it’s gonna be a good thing in the end, and people will really like it. And I hope there’s not only the people coming to the show, which are living around Stuttgart. I really hope that some more people will be flying, to see the show because it’s really worth it, in the end. And we’re gonna have a really good time together.
Rock Overdose: What’s the feeling of touring all around the world, and seeing metalheads banging to your music and singing your lyrics?
Ralf Scheepers: It’s absolutely fantastic! And this is really the reward for what you do when you travel. I mean, you travel a lot, you have hurrying-up and waits at the airport. You have hanging out at the venue all day, doing soundcheck and seeing nothing else than you and maybe the local area. You literally don’t have the time. But there’s not so much time, because you always have to be on stand-by, so basically it’s really a rush, and of course, sometimes boring, until you’re on stage. And that’s exactly the reason why you do it. Because you have a wonderful time on stage. I mean, this cocktail of adrenaline and power you have on stage, and the feedback you get from the fans is the best you can ever get, and that’s the reason why you do it, actually. So, we’re really happy about that.
Rock Overodse: Your latest album was released a few months ago. How do you feel about this album, and what’s the feedback, in the present, from the fans sofar?
Ralf Scheepers: You’re right, it was just a few months ago. For me, it feels like a year. Because for us, it’s a bit older, because we recorded it last year. Anyway, the feedback has been amazing. I mean, we were on a very high precision again on the charts all over Europe, and this is fantastic for us. Also, in the States. So, we are happy to deliver, like, five or six songs from the album live, and people are really grateful for that, and they give us a great feedback in our live shows. It’s just really amazing. I mean, we… It’s one of our best efforts we released in January, and we’re happy about it.
Rock Overdose: You said before that, you recorded last year. So, do you have any plans for the next album?
Ralf Scheepers: Yes, next year. We talk about a live CD/DVD again. So, we’ve collected a lot of video material from the world tour: Europe, USA, Canada, Japan and Australia. And, of course, I’m gonna take my camera with me to South America, so there’s gonna be a lot of footage and of course some recorded shows from our European and American tour. And we stay together, and a live album next year, that’s our next step. And then, of course, we’re always, somehow… Easy you can say… Everybody’s collecting ideas for our next album, and this is a big advantage we have. We have five writing members, so everybody’s collecting, and collecting… And, in the end, we have a lot of material again.
Rock Overdose: Do you have any specific dates for the release of the new DVD, or is it something that you plan to do?
Ralf Scheepers: It’s a little bit early to talk about a date, but maybe it’s gonna be around the mid of the next year.
Rock Overdose: So, the band has been very active during all these years. How do you manage to release an album almost every two years? Because I think it’s too difficult…
Ralf Scheepers: No, I just said that the good thing is we have a lot of creative heads, creative writers in our band, and that’s a good thing. And, in the end, it takes a lot of work, but that’s what we’re here for…
Rock Overdose: Not many bands can do it.
Ralf Scheepers: I know, because maybe sometimes they have not so many writing members as we have. I mean, of course, it’s also a good challenge to find writing members like Matt and Magnus, for instance. So, that’s just great. And the thing is, we really have the possibility to bring a lot of songs in between one or two months already. But now we’re collecting several months, like five six or seven months, and that’s just really great.
Rock Overdose: I think that the big advantage is that not only you’re very active band, but that you’re also a very successful band, and I believe that with the “Unbreakable” album that your success became even greater. So, how do you feel about this success? Because I believe that now you’re a mainstream band, you’re famous all over the world.
Ralf Scheepers: Yeah, when you talk about “Unbreakable”, and this has been three albums ago, so we have “Delivering The Black” in between, and also our new effort, “Rulebreaker”, so...
Rock Overodse: I believe that “Unbreakable” was the album that made you so famous, in my opinion, because you entered a lot of charts.
Ralf Scheepers: Yes, that’s true. I mean, of course, it’s been a great effort. I mean, I don’t wanna diss any album we ever released, of course. But yes. It’s also… The situation is a little bit different in terms of sound. I feel like we, in the end, developed the best sound on “Delivering The Black” and now “Rulebreaker”, which doesn’t mean that the songs on the previous albums were not good, so that’s a good thing. We still, really believe in albums like “Nuclear Fire” and “Seven Seals” and so forth. Everything is for a good cause and for the next step on our ladder of our career, and that’s the most important thing.
Rock Overdose: I see. So, thank you so much for this interview. The last words are yours.
Ralf Scheepers: Thank you so much, “efcharisto poly”. Like I said, “agapao tous Ellines” and I would love to come to Greece again, because I love the place. I have good friends there, also in Athens, and so forth, so I send a “hello” to them from this place here in Germany, and I hope we’re all gonna meet again soon and have a great time!
Rock Overodse: Great! I hope we see you again soon! Thank you!
Ralf Scheepers: Thank you! Take care!
For Rock Overdose,
Interview: Sotirelis Konstantinos
Transcription: Stergios Goutsithis