Helloween - Helloween [Picture vinyl]
Format: Picture vinyl
Release Date: 18th June 2021
This was the ardent wish of thousands of fans calling out to Andi Deris, Michael Kiske, Michael Weikath, Kai Hansen, Markus Grosskopf, Sascha Gerstner and Dani Löble during the PUMPKINS UNITED WORLD TOUR - and their dream has come true! With the upcoming album, simply titled HELLOWEEN, the band opens a new chapter after 35 years of a glorious career. The future of one of the most influential German metal bands from now on will feature three singers. Originally planned for the live performances only, it was the birth of a unique seven piece metal alliance.
Dani Löble: ”This record is the coronation of the PUMPKINS UNITED journey! Still today I am fascinated by the different character traits and facets of the HELLOWEEN history. As an example I’d like to point out the legendary voices of Michi, Andi and Kai. To enjoy them now together on one record, under one flag is the ultimate HELLOWEEN experience”. It is therefore not surprising that the pre-release single SKYFALL, a 12 minute epos written by Kai Hansen, has the long yearned “Keeper-vibe” - even if the long player can by no means be limited to it. SKYFALL implies the musical arch which will be loved by fans of every era. This first album of a new age is taking the fans from unforgettable memories of the fifteen studio records and four live CD’s to new adventures. SKYFALL begins with a bang. The epic track describes an alien landing on earth and a dramatic chase while Kiske, Deris and Hansen duel with each other in a breathtaking manner and create a vocal broadband adventure. Produced by Martin Häusler, it is the most elaborate video clip in the history of the band; shown with 3-D animation and having a cinematic look, this video is a real high-end experience.
”FEAR OF THE FALLEN” – the second single is a fast paced, melodic track done the way only Deris can do it. ”I had so much fun not only writing a song for my voice but also for one of the greatest singers out there. I always have an extremely broad smile on my face when I hear Michi singing my melodies“, says Deris and Kiske adds: ”The whole process, including the spirit, was just ideal. If I had the feeling that one of the parts would not be really fitting, I asked Andi if he would sing it and vice versa. There was no competition whatsoever – what counted was what is best for the respective song. I am thankful to be (again) a part of this crazy family. I love them all”. Along with massive album tracks such as HELLOWEEN classic and album opener “OUT FOR THE GLORY“, the epic “DOWN IN THE DUMPS”, both written by Weikath, the power metal shouter “MASS POLLUTION“ by Deris and Grosskopf’s scuff proof rocker “INDESTRUCTIBLE“ (which could be an analogy towards the unbreakable career of the band), the album release is flanked by the ‘party-track‘ of the record, “BEST TIME“. Lyrically the song by Sascha Gerstner reminds of the good old days, musically it´s convincing with confident HELLOWEEN style guitar harmonies and a chorus that stays in your long-term memory after hearing it for the first time.
“HELLOWEEN“ offers a complete metal universe within 12 songs. The base of this milestone album was already erected in the studio: using the original drum kit of Ingo Schwichtenberg, the recording was done with the same modulators at the Hamburg HOME studios where back then ”Master Of The Rings“, ”The Time Of The Oath“ and ”Better Than Raw“ were recorded. Completely analog and under the eyes of long term producer Charlie Bauerfeind and co-producer Dennis Ward, the UNITED impact travelled to New York and got the final mix in the Valhalla Studios of Ronald Prent (Iron Maiden, Def Leppard, Rammstein).
Returnee Kai Hansen reflects: ”Being in the studio with my old companions after 30 years was very emotional for me. But at the same time it was a completely different experience with the ‘new‘ boys. The collaboration of different songwriters and strong characters made the album very special: a unique mix with reminiscences from all chapters of the band’s history. HELLOWEEN is a big part of my life and I am looking forward to celebrating the songs live for and with our fans“! From another perspective Markus Grosskopf agrees: ”For me, being one of the last “survivors” who played every note from the beginning, it was a fantastic experience and a very emotional process. I think everyone can hear it on this album. I love it“. When it came to capturing the larger-than-life emotions in the artwork, it quickly became clear that it was only possible as a handmade painting on which the important topics of the band's history are processed. The work of Berlin based artist Eliran Kantor has achieved this and visually underscores the fact that the band cherishes all parts of their history. With all this brand new material an album has been created, an album that is set apart from the digital mainstream and showing the essence of the band was never more solid. This is the beginning of something big – here comes HELLOWEEN!