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Markus Grosskopf (Helloween)

Levi: You've just released album number 14 entitled 'My God Given Right', there is so much energy and enthusiasm on the album. How do you still have this much rocket fuel after 30 years?

Markus: That is a strange question I can't really answer. How can I be inspired still? I'll be sitting on the toilet and all of a sudden a sound or a melody will pop into my head. But where did I get inspired from? Was it the birds singing outside? Sometimes I get ideas at the pub just when I'm drinking some beers, so I guess it can come from anywhere.

Levi: You've got a lot of albums, is it hard putting together a set list with so much to choose from?

Markus: We have a lot of tracks we have to play like; "Dr Stein", "Eagle Fly Free", "I Want Out" and all those tracks you know. I'd rather play the songs people know, rather than songs that aren’t even out yet.

Levi: You've only been to Australia once or twice in the past?

Markus: We've only been once actually, but there's plans to come back. There's a live show in Japan at a festival in Tokyo which is kind of the nearest spot to Australia. We were just talking about getting on a plane to come visit you guys soon, play five or six shows. That would be the last quarter of the year, maybe.

Levi: I know you've got a massive fan base in Germany and Scandinavia, but I don't think that many Aussie's know about you guys. Is it still profitable and worth your time to come here?

Markus: We play smaller shows at clubs from 400 to 1000 maybe. But we'd like to do it just because we can, it’s fun and we'd love to come say hello.

Levi: You've influenced a lot of power-metal bands from Hammerfall to Dragonforce, what do you think of the new wave of power-metal?

Markus: It's nice, it makes me proud to know we've inspired people just like we were inspired by other bands like UFO, Judas Priest and Led Zeppelin even. Its good seeing them start, grow and develop their style.

Levi: You started out playing punk music when you first learned bass guitar. Do you think punk influenced your music at all?

Markus: Listening to the very first Iron Maiden it's kind of like a mix between metal and Paul Di'anno doing the punk voice. That’s what I kind of like you know, combining it. The attitude is great, that’s what I loved.

Levi: What do you think about the news that Black Sabbath is retiring this year?

Markus: No, I didn't hear about that. I heard Tony Iommi had some problems with health or something. I hope when it happens I'll be close to one of those places so I can watch it. When they played at Ozzfest we we're there and Coal Chamber. It was great seeing them up there, doing what they do. We'd love to see their show again. Geezer Butler is an incredible bass player, he has that hellish sound playing a lot of very dark sounding licks.

Levi: I just read a survey which says metal fans are the most loyal music fans…

Markus: It’s absolutely true, metal fans really want to buy the albums, have all the pictures, they want to know who's producing and playing on the albums. They want all the details because they are passionate collectors. It's an emotional things and I do the same. I want to know who is playing and mixing and then finding out they produced other bands I like. Even if an albums not so good fans will stick by until they find an album they do like from us. I love the attitude of sticking by through good and bad times so to say.


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