ACCEPT interview with ARD Morgenmagazin and some live impressions at Wacken!
The year was 2009, when I woke up early in the morning, and the first thing that flashed in front of my eyes was news of Accept’s reunion. That’s right;“Let’s make the ‘Metal Heart’ beat again” were the words that made me realize that these guys are on fire even after so many decades, and I was definitely expecting chaos. Under new label management (Nuclear Blast), Accept exploded onto their new journey with all guns blazing. Armed to the teeth with new vocalist Mark Tornillo, a heavier musical tone, and a return to their older, darker themes, Acceptunleashed upon the unready mortal masses their twelfth studio album: Blood Of The Nations. It was one of the best heavy metal albums of the past decade, simply put.
After releasing their critically acclaimed follow-up album Stanlingrad, and after a highly successful world tour, they are back in action with a new album Blind Rage; the third with Tornillo behind the mic. Do they ever stop? Hell No!Blind Rage is yet another notch in these Germans’ bullet-belts, pulverizing to dust any lingering doubts that the loss of Udo Dirkschneider would doom the band. Surfacing after a great effort in Stalingrad, the pressure was on for Wolf Hoffman and team to deliver the goods, and they deliver it flawlessly. The true gem here is without a doubt the first track “Stampede”. It starts with a patented Accept riff, and then advances at an efficient speed until the chorus, which detonates in an anthemic fashion as Tornillo and gang memorably roar “Stampede! Trampled to the ground. Stampede! Flattened by the sound…” Continue reading…
ACCEPT shows once again on “Blind Rage” they’re masters of their trade, no matter who holds the mike.
If there’s any old-school metal band worthier of resurrection than ACCEPT, let them make their stand now. ACCEPT 2.0 with Mark Tornillo fronting them has been exemplary proof there’s life after death and that you can buck the naysayers by believing in what you’re doing and going full force regardless of who follows or not. Now laying down their third album within the five years since their re-launch, ACCEPT shows once again on “Blind Rage” they’re masters of their trade, no matter who holds the mike.
Working for the third consecutive time with producer Andy Sneap (MEGADETH, TESTAMENT and EXODUS) since their 2009 revival, the vow by Wolf Hoffmann to “never change a winning team” may sound trite to Udo Dirkschneider holdouts, but the intent is well-meant and well-kept. Sneap knows the ACCEPT sound so intricately, it’s no wonder he’s backing them once again. He’s a considerable factor to why they still sound so loud and powerful after all these years. His understanding goes straight down to fusing the masculine whoa-oh chants and baritone gang backers on the choruses for “Dying Breed”, “Wanna Be Free” and “Fall of the Empire” to complete the illusion this as much an ACCEPT album as any that’s come before it. Continue reading…
In the spirit of LL Cool J, German thrash lords Accept reunited in 2009 after an almost thirteen-year hiatus following their breakup in 1997. Though the band’s origins date all the way back to 1968, it wasn’t until 1976 when guitarist Wolf Hoffmann and bassist Peter Baltes joined vocalist Udo Dirkschneider that Accept became the battering ram of thrash and power metal that would influence generations of metal to come. With former TT Quick vocalist Mark Tornillo replacing Dirkschneider, Accept embarked on what’s revealed itself to be a comeback for a band that’s less interested in riding the gravy train of past success and more hellbent on the creation of new riffs for an entirely new generation of listeners as well as older fans who’ve been there since the beginning. Their upcoming full-length, Blind Rage, will be Accept’s third since reforming and gives every indication that age and time mean precisely dick when it comes to the riff. I recently talked to Hoffmann about the band’s history and why he’s glad heavy metal is more relaxed and chill now.
Noisey: Blind Rage will be Accept’s fourteenth full-length, Wolf. Just looking at the band’s history and career, have you seen the way you guys approach making music change very much since that 1979 LP, or is it still a matter of drawing from that original creative catalyst for Accept?
Wolf Hoffmann: Yeah, good question. I’ve never really thought about that, to be honest. We just go about our business the best we can, and sometimes I wonder where it’s really coming from, all that creativity. Sometimes I don’t even wanna think about it. I’m just glad it’s still there, you know? Every time we go to make a new record, we sorta have to do the same procedure which is get serious, lock ourselves away into a room somewhere, and get to work. Other than that, we’ll never come up with any song. It’s not like we wake up one day, and they’re finished in our heads. I never have any middle-of-the-night inspiration that just sorta comes flying my way. It’s just something that you have to tell yourself: “Well, if we wanna have a new record out next spring or something, we better start writing stuff now,” because counting backwards we’ve gotta get it done by such-and-such date, and that’s when the pressure starts building and you think to yourself, “Oh shit, we better start working on some ideas here.” [Laughs] It always happens. I don’t know how. Usually if you just try hard enough, something will take shape and then the songs start appearing before your eyes before you know it.
That simplicity is something that’s benefited you guys for years now, and that longevity is something that’s a bit of a rarity in any genre, much less heavy music. What was it that initially brought you guys together in the beginning, and in your mind what’s kept that drive to create and continue intact?
When Peter and I got to know each other which is by now 35 plus years ago, we were just pretty much kids, teenagers in the same village or hometown. We just loved making music, and that same love is still there. When he and I get together for these songwriting sessions, that mutual understanding and that love for jamming, that’s still the same, and that’s never gone away. I don’t think that ever will go away. As long as that is there, we can keep this going. As soon as you say to yourself or feel maybe where it becomes a routine or a chore or “Oh god, we have to,” and it’s no longer fun, then I think it’ll all go downhill from there. That to say it’s a magic time in the studio with the songwriting process when you start with just a basic riff, and at the end of the day you look back and you’ve created a song that maybe will stand the test of time. It’s just a miracle. But also, one should never forget at the end of the day it’s also a lot of work. You have to put in the hours. It just doesn’t come by itself. It just doesn’t work that way, and that’s something that you can easily forget sometimes. It just takes time and practice and hopefully after you’ve done it for so long, you get better at it. And really the magic or the miracle is can you differentiate between a crappy idea and a good idea early on, because so many of us get sucked into believing it’s just magic automatically, but it’s not. Only a small percentage of what we write will ever see the light of day. The rest just has to be tossed aside for good reason.