Updated: 05/10/01

Iron Savior is a power speed metal band, featuring the talents of lead vocalist Piet Sielck and Gamma Ray's Kai Hansen. Inspired by the great science fiction movies of our time, Iron Savior's three albums are epic adventures that thrill the senses. There is plenty of news to report in regards to their new album, their tour -- plus the current membership status of the very busy Mr. Hansen. So here are the goods delivered on the mighty Iron Savior…

Highwire Daze: So what is the story line behind the Dark Assault CD?

Piet Sielck: It's a science fiction story. I invented it, and that goes with all Iron Savior albums so far. On the third album we're continuing this story - which is about Atlantis, alien beings and stuff like that. And the story for this album - evil bastards from a parallel universe are invading our universe and doing evil things. And of course in the end they will be defeated by the mighty machine, the Iron Savior.

HD: What are some of your favorite science fiction movies or books and do they have any influence on you at all?

Piet: Of course I am a big science fiction fan and I have been all of my life. I'm regularly watching Star Trek on the TV, and I've definitely seen all the Star Wars movies and lots of other stuff. Read a lot of books and of course all this definitely influences me and is a source of inspiration. This story I came up with is like a summary of all the science fiction stuff I've consumed so far.

HD: Tell me about how you and Kai Hansen met and about your first band Gentry.

Piet: Kai and I met when I was 11 - I'm 36 now so that's quite a couple years ago. We were actually visiting the same school and just met by accident. Found out that we both played guitar and we both liked The Sweet at this time. We both had the idea to form a band, so we did that. And there we were with our first band Gentry. That was something that we did until I was 18. I can say that in these years we definitely formed the basis for later and became Helloween and Gamma Ray or Iron Savior.

HD: I was reading on a website that you guys won a competition by playing some covers.

Piet: Yeah, that was the first gig we ever played together. It was a band battle competition. And actually we won this band battle. We played Paranoid (Black Sabbath) and Rock N Roll from Led Zeppelin, Stealing by Uriah Heep, and I think two of our compositions. So five songs altogether.

HD: We're going way back in time here.

Piet: Yeah, definitely!

HD: So will Kai be able to tour with you this time around.

Piet: Actually Kai will be on the tour, but I have to say that it will be the last tour that we're doing with Kai. At the end of the tour, Kai will be released from his duties with Iron Savior. To make a long story short, Kai and I tried to play again together in Iron Savior. But the problem for the last years has always been that there are too many conflicts between Iron Savior and Gamma Ray because of dates and everything. So we both finally had to come to the point where we had to realize that this fact was blocking both bands. Gamma Ray can't act as they want to and Iron Savior can't act as we want to because the schedules are too hard. Iron Savior is constantly growing and so is Gamma Ray. So in the future, we think we are better off if we both do our own thing. Yes, Kai will be on the tour, but it will be his last tour.

HD: That must have been a hard decision to make.

Piet: It wasn't easy. Actually when we started Iron Savior, the only thing what we liked about it was the fact that we now could play music again together. It was something that we had no chance to do for so many years. That was the main purpose why we kept on doing this for three albums now. If you look at the albums, Kai is writing songs and he always has been with the production and everything. But people keep asking me, "Why is Kai not doing more?" Kai has been or still is just a single guitarist in a band, and for that he's giving his input and I think that's perfectly okay. But because he's Kai Hansen, they always think that he's not doing enough for Iron Savior, which is not true. The presense of Kai in the band really brings a lot of problems, to make it simple. I have to explain everything all the time why. And on the other hand there are people who think it's a marketing idea to have Kai in the band because he is a big name - which is also not true. But for the last years, I always find myself in the situation of explaining and explaining and explaining. Those are only side effects. The main thing is that the schedules of the two bands are really hard and they are growing. It's obvious that it won't get easier in the future. All of us do think that after the third album, it's perfect timing to have this bye-bye party for Kai. There's no hard feelings. We all do want this. And we still do like each other. Some people will be disappointed that Kai is not with Iron Savior anymore, but on the other hand, Iron Savior has been my baby from the beginning and still is my baby. I'm writing most of the songs and doing all the production and I'm the lead singer. And I think within the last five years, most of the people did understand that.

HD: What made you decide to do a cover of the Judas Priest song Delivering The Goods.

Piet: We do cover tunes for one simple reason - we do like to record and play cover versions. And that's it. And why Delivering The Goods? Well. It's a good song. There are a few people in the band who are pretty decent Judas Priest fans. When it comes to pick cover versions, why not a Judas Priest song again? So far we only did two - or three. The reason for cover versions is just the pure fun of doing these tunes. And on the album you can look at them as simple bonus tracks for everybody. On all Iron Savior albums we make sure to have enough of our own material so that cover versions are not needed to make the CD longer or more interesting. Our own material is strong enough that any Iron Savior album could stand without any cover versions. Well, that's the idea of cover versions - just a pure bonus track driven by the motivations to please ourselves.

HD: Incidentally, what did you think of the Halford album?

Piet: I liked it very much. For me it was the best release last year. One of the very few albums I really bought.

HD: On your headlining tour, will you be performing the entire Dark Assault album?

Piet: Not the entire Dark Assault album, but I think we're gonna play six songs from it. The set will be around about one and half-hours. We'll pay a good mixture of all three albums - that's what we usually do. I don't think it's a very good idea to play the entire album on a concert. Of course, the purpose at a show is to promote your new material. But for yourself, if you have a favorite band, you really want to listen to the old songs also. But we'll be playing songs from all three albums and some other stuff. Some surprises…

HD: Some Judas Priest songs…

Piet: Maybe, you don't know…

HD: Has Iron Savior ever played here in the States or do you plan to do so in the future?

Piet: Planning to do, no. But in the future, of course. There is a wish for this. But playing in the States is always a problem for European bands. If you're really big and everyone wants you and you get enough money to pay for everything, then no problem. But for a band like Iron Savior - we're doing quite well in the States - but the money we get for playing a night would definitely not be enough to pay for all of our cost. Just think - we're six people in the band and we bring some technicians and crew with us - it would easily be ten people. That quite an enormous bill for tickets already. And on top of that we have to transport or rent or own equipment. So touring the States would be combined with enormous costs - and that is the problem. But if we come to play some shows in the States, I am quite sure that there would be some people.

HD: Describe what a live Iron Savior show is like onstage.

Piet: Onstage we are humorous I'd say. We're not ridiculous but we do have a sense of humor and I think that is important to bring that to the stage. Basically, we're pretty natural onstage.

HD: Do you have any messages for Iron Savior fans here in the States?

Piet: Of course I'd like to thank all of the fans for supporting Iron Savior and for making Iron Savior as successful as it is. Without the fans, we would just be musicians -- but to be musicians who sell records is another thing.

Dark Assault is now available from Noise Records!


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