New Renaissance Records had served us alot of classic Metal albums back in the 80s, like AT WAR, BLOOD FEAST, INDESTROY, ANVIL BITCH, DREAM DEATH etc. etc. – of which most can certainly be found in various collections of the Voices readers. With that in mind and due to the fact that label owner (and HELLION singer) Ann Boleyn is still involved in the business side of things these days (she’s currently putting together a brand new edition of the legendary "Speed Metal Hell" compilation), Lacy figured it might be a cool idea to come up with some in-depth feature on this company, so read on and find out a lot of first hand, inside information from Ann herself…
Hello Ann! Have you ever done interviews in the name of New Renaissance Records? When did you do the last one?
"I used to do many interview many years back with magazines like Kerrang, Metal Hammer and Metal Forces. But, I do not know when the last time somebody contacted me to talk about New Renaissance Records!”
How and when did you get in touch with Metal music? Which bands were your faves? Which bands did have an effect on you?
"I have been a fan of heavy music since I was a child. When I was growing up my favorite bands were ALICE COOPER, URIAH HEEP, THE ALLMAN BROTHERS, BLACK SABBATH, PINK FLOYD, ELP and DEEP PURPLE. I started out as a keyboard player and I specialized in Hammond organ. I also played bass. My favorite albums were "Machine Head” and "Made In Japan” (by DEEP PURPLE), the BLACK SABBATH album with "Paranoid” on it and "Volume Four” and both "Billion Dollar Babies” and "School’s Out” (by ALICE COOPER). For female singers I liked JANIS JOPLIN and TINA TURNER. In general I am not a fan of female singers.”
Please tell us about the first records and gigs that you have bought and seen!
"The first record I ever bought was by THE MONKEES, when I was very young. The first real serious concert I saw was DEEP PURPLE with ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA and ELF (with Ronnie James Dio singing). I managed to get backstage and saw first hand how crazy things were with Ritchie Blackmore and the band. I remember that Ritchie Blackmore had his own seperate dressing room.”
Did your parents support your goals, your hobby? Was listening to Metal music a kind of hobby for you?
"My parents were not happy about my involvement in music. By the time I was 13 I was already making money in bands with people who were a lot older than myself. At first my parents weren’t too worried. But, by the time I was 15 or 16 it became clear that I wanted play music for my career. I got to know Tommy Bollin (who later played for DEEP PURPLE). He had a band called ZEPHYR, who had a female singer. He wanted me to play keyboard and said that his band would make more money if there were two girls in the band. When I asked my parents if I could go on tour, they told me they would call the police if I tried to go on the road with ZEPHYR. A few years after the ZEPHYR offer, in early 1976 I got a call from Kim Fowley, who was managing an all-girl band called THE RUNAWAYS. I was still in high-school, and not yet legal age. Kim asked if I would come to Hollywood, which was about a thousand miles away. By this time Tommy Bollin had already become a star and I was still angry with my parents for not letting me play with ZEPHYR. This time my parents and I became violent. They finally let me go. For me, music was never a hobby.”
Did/do you play instruments too?
"Yes. I started as a keyboard player. I play other instruments, too.”
From where did the idea come to establish a record company? To what did the name of the label refer?
"In the early days of HELLION, we recorded a couple songs on Mystic Records, which was a Punk label. We put out a cover-version of DEEP PURPLE’s ‘Black Knight’ and another song. That’s where I learned how small record labels worked. During the 1980s, however, nobody wanted to be signed to an indy label. And, in Los Angeles, the members of HELLION had a friend that we saw getting rich over-night. Even though HELLION was one of the top-drawing bands in Los Angeles during the early 1980s, all of the bands that were being signed had male singers. The only female-fronted acts getting signed were Pop bands. So, we recorded a demo and pressed it on Bongus Loadus Records, our own label. The demo sold much better than we expected. And, soon Music For Nations, a label in England put the demo out in Europe. The demo became known as the HELLION Mini-LP. And, it climbed to number six on England’s Rock charts, and was voted the Number Three "Record of the Year” in Kerrang. In the United States, even though people like Ronnie James Dio and major producers like Ken Scott were helping us out, we were never offered a record deal. During this time, however, the distributors who had sold the HELLION Mini-LP were asking me to bring them more Metal records to distribute. Since I didn’t have any money to record other bands, I started doing compilation albums. In the early 1980s many people thought that Metal music died in the 1970s. Since the renaissance was a period when art and music thrived, I decided to call the label New Renaissance with the idea in mind that Metal again would thrive.”
Did you have experiences as far as the music industry, money, financial things etc.?
"When I started New Renaissance Records I had no experience in business. And the only jobs I’d ever held was being a DJ at KROQ, modeling and acting, and working briefly at a variety of temporary jobs.”
Did you run the label alone or did you have colleagues? How many people did work at the label?
"I started it on my own. Then very soon I needed help. Innitially I had volunteers who worked for no money. Often times the bands on the label would come and camp out at my apartment and help mail-out albums to radio stations. Later, some of the volunteers became very valuable, and I hired them.”
What was the standard New Renaissance contract that you were offering to the bands?
"It was pretty simple. I’d usually start working with a band by putting them on a compilation album. That way I could see how the public reacted to them. And, I got to know them. If everything went well, I’d do a deal where they’d bring me a master and I’d put it out with the options for a couple more albums. If the album sold enough to pay for the costs of the pressings, the band got royalties. And, the budget for the second album was usually determined by how many units were sold. A band like AT WAR, for example, which sold a lot, would get more money to record than a band who didn’t sell as well.”
How did you pick those bands you wanted to sign? What was the criteria exactly? Did the bands send you demos? Did you see them live?
"Innitially the distributor, Greenworld, encouraged me to sign some of the bands. And I signed a couple that I personally didn’t like too well. Later on, I became pickier. The first thing I looked at has always been the drummer. If a band’s drummer is no good, the band sucks. The drummers of AT WAR, SARCASTIC and BLOOD FEAST for example, really impressed me. The next thing is if the band is tight? I hate bands that are sloppy. And, there have to be good songs. And, finally, the band needs to play shows. If a band doesn’t play shows it is almost impossible for them to succeed. That was the one thing that SEPULTURA had going for them in the early days. They played any little place that would have them.”
Do you still remember which group you signed first?
"I don’t remember because I was doing the compilation albums back then.”
How many albums did you release altogether? Could you speak detailed about them? Could you sum up the releases of the label?
"The last time I counted, I think we were up to about 65 albums. If I talked about each of them in detail I would be here all night.”
As far as I know you have released also compilation albums, like "Thrash Metal Attack II”, "Speed Metal Hell”, what kind of goals did they serve? Did you consider it important to release such records?
"I think compilation albums played a major role in spreading the word about bands in the 1980s. The only problem with them is that they don’t sell many copies, and they take a lot of time to put together. Right now I am working on putting together the first new edition of "Speed Metal Hell” in almost 20 years. I am looking for unreleased fast-paced Metal songs from up-and-coming bands. The only requirement is that the song not be included on another album – or that it be a different recording or mix of something that’s on another album. These days every band seems to have their own record label, so having a CD out doesn’t mean so much any more. However, my compilation albums have a record of finding new bands before they become well known. MORBID ANGEL, FLOTSAM & JETSAM, ARTILLERY, AT WAR, BLOOD FEAST, WEHRMACHT, PRONG and many more all started on the New Renaissance compilations. The key to a successful compilation album / CD is to have unreleased songs from bands that have lots of fans. If the fans of the bands buy the compilation to hear the band they like, they also get to hear other music. And, when the bands each work to spread the word, everybody benefits.”
Did the compilations draw the fans attention to the band?
"Absolutely. My own band, HELLION, started out in the early 1980s. We were on compilation albums with bands like METALLICA, SLAYER, ANTHRAX, VENOM, and the likes. In my opinion, it really helped HELLION devop a following. That was one of the ideas that led me to do my own compilations.”
In the 80s compilations were very popular, like "Metal Massacre”, "Beyond Metal Zone”, "Stars On Thrash” etc, how do you remember about them? Would you say that the Metal Massacre compilations were the most known and famous ones?
"I know "Metal Massacre,” but I never heard of the others you mentioned.”
How was your connection with the bands? Did you get on well with them? Were they colleagues or friends?
"It all depended on the bands. Most of the bands were pretty cool. However, some of the managers and band members did not have a clue about the music business. Sometimes you would have bands that were sure they’d sold a million albums, when they hadn’t even sold a thousand copies. Just like in normal life, there are all kinds of people in the music business.”
In my opinion, you have had great bands, like BLOODFEAST, AT WAR, WEHRMACHT, do you agree with me? Did you like all of the bands?
"Yes. I have remained in contact with all of those bands. In case you don’t know it, AT WAR is playing together again. Myself and Brenda Umbrell, who has been my assistant for many years, flew out to New York last weekend to see AT WAR play the World War Four Metal fesitval in Brooklyn. AT WAR is getting ready to record another album and everybody is very excited.”
As far as WEHRMACHT, hadn’t they never have problems with their name? It sounds provocative.
"I never had any problems with WEHRMACHT’s name. The only problem we had with WEHRMACHT was when they recorded a song called ‘Suck My Dick’ on the "Biermacht" album. A lot of the chain stores didn’t like that and returned the products they’d ordered. That was the only problem.”
Did you pay the studio costs as the bands entered the studio to record their material? Did you have an own, home studio, where the bands could record their albums? Did you have mixer, sound engineer etc.?
"As a rule, I let the bands decide where they would record and who they wanted as a producer. However, I eventually realized that this was a mistake sometimes. For example, when BLOOD FEAST was recording "Chopping Block Blues” there was lots of problems with the studio. Finally, I flew out to supervise. When I got to the studio I saw that the studio had a good mixing board and take machine, but they didn’t even have the most basic of microphones. So, I started getting involved in the production after that unless I knew and trusted the producer. Most of the bands on New Renaissance are located all over the world. I know a lot of producers and a lot of great studios for Metal. So there was never a need to have our own facility.”
How did you support your bands? Did you pay adds in Metal magazines or fanzines? Did you send them on tours?
"In the 1980s I believe New Renaissance Records had the best promotion department of any label – including the majors. Yes, we took ads out in the both the top magazines and fanzines. But, we did a lot more, too. I think our strong point has always been radio. After all, I’ve never bought a new CD by looking at an ad in a magazine. The thing that will make me go out and buy music is actually hearing it. So, I spent a tremendous amount of money on radio promotion. I had a policy of contacting each radio show host at least once a week. We had phone bills of about $5,000 to $7,000 per month just on phone calls to radio program directors. As far as touring goes, there are very strict laws in California. It is against the law for a record company to book a tour for a band. All of the labels based in California risk having their contracts be void, if they get too involved with the tours. Since I have a degree in law, I am very much aware of the regulations. However, to solve the problem we would have licensed agents book the shows. And, we’d support them by advertising the shows and giving the band merchandise to help support themselves.”
How were the bands promoted at that time? Did you send the albums on tapes to fanzines and magazines? Did you always send the whole album or only an advance tape?
"We had about 2,000 people on our promotions list. This included magazines, newspapers and radio staions worldwide. A marketing plan was made for each different artist. With the big releases like KING KOBRA, it was not unusual to send out 2,000 promo packets.”
Could you tell us, how did a day go? I mean, what were your daily tasks?
"Usually I would work through the night. I have always done a lot of business with Europe. So it is good for me to be awake at night. It is also quieter and I can get more work done. Usually I work late into the morning, and usually sleep late, too. When I stop work, I would leave a list of things that needed to be done the next day for my assistant. When my assistant would come in in the morning, she would tell everybody what had to be done that day. I would usually come in in the afternoon, after sleeping, and have a meeting in about 3:00 in the afternoon, to find out what was going on. Then at about 4:00 the whole office would have a meeting. We would discuss the events of the day, our accomplishments, and things that weren’t going so well. After the office staff would go home for the day, I would usually go to a restaurant and eat food. Then, I would either go to band practice, or to excercise at the gym. When that was done, I would begin my real work. I would do things like write the bios, answer letters, review the production, look at the reports of where the bands were getting radio airplay, etc. This may sound like a strange way to work, but, it worked best for me. In the 1980s, if I went into the office, there would be so many phone calls and people stopping by that I would never be able to get any business done. So, I had the office staff take care of the routine business. And, I would work with the detailed and serious business when the office was closed."
By which label were your releases distributed in Europe? Did you often get letters from European fans who liked your records?
"I worked with many labels in Europe. But, my main partner was Music For Nations, based in London. HELLION got loads of letters from Europe, and I’m sure the bands on New Renaissance did also.”
Was it hard to concentrate both on HELLION and on the label? Didn’t you think about giving up HELLION and only handling the label?
"No. It was not hard to concentrate on both New Renaissance and on HELLION at the same time. Everything I did for every band, helped every other band. For example, with HELLION, we gained many major contacts at major TV stations. This opened doors for other bands. The only time there ever was a conflict was if I was on tour, which didn’t happen very often. Even then, I was making new contacts which opened the doors for the other bands."
Would you say that both the band and the label was important for you?
"Yes. Both were very important. My experience as a performing musician who has been signed to other record companies makes New Renaissance Records very unique. For example, I know what it is like to be out on tour and not have records in the stores! I know this because I’ve made plenty of calls to other record labels to ask them what the Hell is going on! My dissatisfaction with some other labels was one of the reasons I started New Renaissance Records. I know how important it is to have somebody who is contacting the small radio stations and getting them to play your band’s music. I think this is something a lot of bands today who have their own labels are forgetting! Its very nice to say you have your own label. But, having your own label is no good unless you have other people working to support you – calling radio stations, getting interviews, etc."
Did you give your bands artist freedom or did you chip in what they have to do? Were you satisfied with the approach of the bands?
"I let the bands basically do what they wanted. If it worked, it worked. If it didn’t, it didn’t.”
As far as the cover of the albums, did you have a designer or an artists who drew, painted the covers? Did you also make motion covers for different records? I mean, did you submit, what kind of covers the bands have to use?
"The album cover is very important. I think the band has the right to design their own ideas for what goes with the music. But, some of the bands would ask for help. In those cases I went to Drew Elliot, who was and is my friend. Sometimes he would have a painting he had done that was ready. If the band liked it, they could have it for their album cover. That was the case with the album covers for the first records by PHANTOM and SAVAGE STEEL. However, later, Drew liked hearing the bands and coming up with a concept based on what he heard. I think the covers he did for NECROPHAGIA, KILL FOR PLEASURE and INDESTROY are all pretty famous.”
Did you always pay royalties to the bands? Could the bands earn some money as far as the selling, merchandise etc.?
"Yes, I always pay royalties, so long as they are owed. But, sometimes bands take advances, and they have to sell enough money to pay for the advances before they get royalties. I even pay royalties on my compilation albums. I have nothing to do with merchandise. Merchandise is the most important way for a band to make money. Bands need to retain their merchandising until it no longer makes sense for them to do it on their own.”
Did the bands of New Renaissance shot videoclips at that time? Did you consider it important to shoot videoclips? What kind of importance do videoclips have? Is it a kind of promotion?
"Yes, we shot videos on some of the New Renaissance Records bands. This was especially important when MTV was playing Metal. These days, with U-Tube, videos are also imporant.”
Were Heavy Metal programs broadcasted by the TV channels at that time? Did the TV channels, radio stations support the Metal scene?
"The media is changing all the time. In the 1980s there were lots of TV and major radio staions playing Metal. Now it is different because you have the internet. But there is still lots of support for Metal.”
Was it easy getting in touch with radios, TV channels, magazines etc.?
"Innitially I did all of the press myself. However, soon I was too busy. So I started hiring people to help. I think it was easier for me, because I already knew so many people from HELLION. I think it was easier for me to pick up the phone and get somebody from MTV to pick up the line. Because the music business is based on personal relationships, I solved that problem by making sure my assistants came with me when I went on the road and for business trips. Once the radio people and magazines got to know my assistants, they would take their calls. But, sometimes it takes personal contact."
Could you tell us how many items were sold from the releases of New Renaissance?
"I don’t know what you mean? As far as number, both HELLION and KING KOBRA were on the national charts. SEPULTURA, AT WAR, WEHRMACHT and BLOOD FEAST did pretty well also.”
Would you say that BLOODFEAST’s "Kill For Pleasure" became a Thrash Metal classic?
"Yes. I think there are many Thrash Metal classics that came out on New Renaissance Records! Many people don’t remember this, but New Renaissance put out the first album by Sepultura, for example. Back in those days all of the other Metal labels were telling me I was crazy to put out albums like "Morbid Visions" by Sepultura and "Under The Sign Of The Black Mark" by BATHORY. That is just getting started."
Did it happen that the same record was released with two different covers, like in the case of DEATHROW or DARKNESS? "Riders Of Doom” from DEATHROW was released at that time with two different covers and the band knew nothing about it.
"I’m sorry, but I don’t know anything about that. But, sometimes you get pressure from the distributors. For example, the distributors hated the first cover of "Retaliatory Strike” by AT WAR so we changed it. Now, in the next pressing, I am going to change it back to the original.”
Which was the most successful record? Do the fans, the media like your releases?
"The most successful record was probably "King Kobra III” followed closely behind by HELLION’s” Screams In The Night.” A lot of people think that it would have been "Morbid Visions” by SEPULTURA but that album didn’t take off until later.”
Which fanzines and Metal magazines do you remember from that time? In your opinion, what kind of role do the fanzines play in the underground?
"Aardschok was the first zine that was helpful to HELLION, followed closely by Kerrang. Metal Forces, Metallion, Hit Parader and many more come to mind. But, at one point I had a list of 600 really tiny ’zines. The ’zine scene was huge.”
New Renaissance was a Thrash label, do you agree with it? What does / did Thrash Metal mean to you?
"New Renaissance Records was a Rock and Metal label. I pattterned the company off of Music For Nations. Yes, we had Thrash bands. But, we had a lot of other great bands too. KING KOBRA, which was Carmine Appiece’s band certainly was not Thrash. Neither was SCREAMER, PHANTOM or GARGOYLE. And, you have to remember that I also signed ROCK CITY ANGELS when actor Johnny Depp was in the band.”
In your opinion, why was Thrash Metal popular during the 80s? What do you remember about the American Thrash scene of the 80s? Could you tell us detailed about it?
"I think people were sick and tired of the same bands. Take a look at the bands that got signed in Hollywood in the 1980s. All of them had white males with a certain look. The producers made the bands all sound the same, too. After a while people were sick of it.”
In my opinion, in the States there were four big Thrash scenes: in New York / New Jersey, in Los Angeles, in the Bay Area and in Texas. Do you agree with me? In your opinion were there differences and similarities between these scenes or bands?
"You are probably right.”
Most of the bands of that time could only release 1 – 2 records (HOLY TERROR, KUBLAI KHAN, BLOODFEAST, AT WAR, WEHRMACHT, HEATHEN, VIKING to name a few) only few bands could survive the death of Thrash Metal, I’m thinking of e. g. TESTAMENT, SLAYER, SADUS, SEPULTURA, ANTHRAX, EXODUS… Why did many bands disappear after releasing the second album? Was the Thrash market supercharged?
"A lot has to do with age and money. When you are 18 or so it is easy to get in a van and go out on the road and live on peanut-butter sandwiches and beer. When you get older lots of the musicians had children. Or, if they haven’t signed with a major label, a lot of them get tired of working so hard for so little money. Most people don’t realize how hard it is to go on tour when you are a small band. You have to drive hundreds of miles, carry your own gear, and it’s not fun all the time.”
Why did Thrash Metal go out of fashion in the late 80s / early 90s? Was it necessary?
"You can blame it on the advertisers who buy ads on radio stations and TV stations. The advertisers always want to advertise to males between ages 18 – 25. These are the people who haven’t started families yet and have lots of free money to spend. The problem with Metal in 1990 was that the advertisers thought the fans were too old. The advertisers wanted young fans. So, there were some major advertisors who started saying "I will not advertise my product on any radio station that plays Iron Maiden” or whoever. I used to be a DJ at KROQ long ago so I knew lots of radio people. I remember them telling me that they were substiting the Seattle style of music for Metal because the advertisors thought it attracted a younger audience. And, after the radio stations followed the pressure of the advertisers, there eventually was very few places for Metal in the media. And, when there are few outlets supporting Metal, anybody knows it is going to be very hard to make money.”
I think you’ve reached a cult underground status, New Renaissance was a famous underground label. What would you say about it?
"I am honored. It is great to see that the music has withstood the test of time.”
What does underground mean to you, respectively to be underground?
"It doesn’t mean too much to say you are undrground. All it takes is luck and something that is underground can become mainstream, if it is good.”
What kind of relationship did New Renaissance have with the other Heavy Metal labels at this time or later on? I’m thinking of such labels, like Torrid, Combat, Shrapnel or Megaforce.
"I don’t know anybody at any of those labels. Instead, I was friends with people like the owners of Black Mark, which was BATHORY’s label, Pony Canyon in Japan and Music For Nations in England.”
Is there any band from the early days or later on that you regret not having signed or failed at the last minute because another label made a stronger offer?
"No. But, you have probably heard all about the SEPULTURA story. SEPULTURA wanted to sign to New Renaissance Records. At that time I had a license partner in Europe who told them he was my agent, so they signed to him, thinking that they were signing to New Renaissance. That became a very big mess. We put out the first SEPULTURA record, and worked very hard to break that band. But, because of the messed-up deal, we never got to enjoy much of their success. My biggest regret was not going to Brazil and signing them in person.”
Didn’t you think about signing European bands too? Were there at that time European bands that have got an offer from you, but they didn’t accept it?
"Yes. I work with European bands. For example I put out some of the side-projects of the KING DIAMOND and MERCYFUL FATE guitarists.”
Although New Renaissance has a website, does it mean, that the label is still alive and existing?
"New Renaisance Records is very much alive. I took off several years to go to law school. But that is done now, so I am back. I am doing a couple of re-releases in the next couple months. The first will be CDs by POST MORTEM and MEDIEVAL. Each of the CDs will have the bands’ first two albums on one CD. I am also looking carefully at new bands.”
In my opinion the releases of New Renaissance are hard to find, didn’t you think about re-releasing them? To release DVDs with live footage of your bands? I think nowadays there’s a big demand towards the releases of the 80s classics.
"The New Renaissance cataloge is available. I have distributors worldwide.”
Nowadays a lot of Thrash bands have reunited, like DEATH ANGEL, NUCLEAR ASSAULT, HEATHEN, NASTY SAVAGE, AGENT STEEL, DEFIANCE etc. What do you think about it? It is worth to return 15-16 years after splitting up?
"In my opinion it is better to not get back together unless you are going to put on one hell of a show. AT WAR just headlined the World War Four Metal Fest in Brooklyn and they did things right. They brought out their full stage show from the 1980s, all the drums, the double marshall stacks, the SVTs, etc. – and they were well-rehearsed and true to their sound. They played the songs the fans wanted to hear and left them wanting more. That’s the way to do it!”
Did you already listen to the comeback albums of NASTY SAVAGE, AGENT STEEL or DEATH ANGEL? Did you listen to the demo 2005 of HEATHEN?
"No, I haven’t heard any of those.”
Would you say that it’s easier than before to promote a band nowadays for a label with the new tools, such as internet, or is it just a totally different world and nothing can’t be compared?
"In the 1980s it cost a fortune to have a record company. Just the costs for color separations for the full color album covers could cost $10,000. It usually cost me $20,000 to $60,000 to put out a new product. And, because it was so expensive, it meant something to have a CD or album out. Now it means very little. Everybody and their grandmother has a record label! What people seem to forget is that to be successful in the music business requires the work of a lot of people. And, also, nobody takes you serious when you talk about how great you are. Regardless of the internet, it is still better for a band to be signed to a good record company. It is the only way to stand out from the rest of the bands.”
As far as the internet, what do you think about downloading of music? Do you support it or are you against it?
"I remember when everybody thought that the reel-to-reel was going to destroy the music business. Then it was tha cassette that was the cause of all the problems of the music business. Then it was the DAT. People have always traded music. I am absolutely against the old services like Napster, which was a blatent rip-off to artists. But, based on what I’ve seen, the record companies are not entirely blameless. I remember buying albums and cassettes for $7.99, and then in one year only being able to get albums on CD for $20.00! No wonder why people were downloading! But, now, when you can download music for $9.99 an album, I think the prices are more fair.”
What do you think about the present music scene compared to the 80s one? What did change, how much did it change, wherein did it change?
"This would take me a book to discuss. Things go in cycles. Music gets very corporate, then people rebel. Then it goes back again. It is a cycle that repeats itself.”
In your opinion is it easier to get a deal nowadays than 15-20 years before?
"Based on the fact that there are hundreds of labels, it seems like its no problem to get a record deal. The problem always has been to get a good record deal with a label that understands and supports the music.”
After 20 years of silence you’ll release the next "Speed Metal Hell" compilation, where did the idea come from to release the continuation of this legendary compilation?
"I just finished law school. And, I just finished taking the "Bar Exam.” The "Bar Exam” is probably the hardest exam there is. It takes three days to complete. And, just to prepare for the exam takes three or four years of college, and two months of doing nothing except memorizing the law, 14 – 16 hours a day! Then, after the exam is over, I don’t know if I passed until almost Christmas. So at the moment I have nothing better to do! I always had fun putting together the compilation albums. So why not do another one?!”
Do you plan to release further albums? Didn’t you think about re-releases of all of the New Renaissance records with bonus material?
"Most of the New Renaissance albums are available now.”
My last question: please tell us your 20 alltime Metal classics!
"DEEP PURPLE – Machine Head, DEEP PURPLE – Made In Japan, ALICE COOPER – Billion Dollar Babies, SCORPIONS – Taken By Force, AT WAR – Ordered To Kill, MOTÖRHEAD – Ace of Spades, BLACK SABBATH – Heaven And Hell, OZZY OSBOURNE – Blizzard of Oz, OZZY OSBOURNE – Diary of a Madman, KING DIAMOND – Abigail, IRON MAIDEN – Number of the Beast, JUDAS PRIEST – British Steel, URIAH HEEP – Easy Livin’ , RAINBOW – Live, DIO – Last In Line, HELLION – The Black Book, METALLICA – Master of Puppets, MERCYFUL FATE – Don’t Break The Oath, BLACK SABBATH – Volume Four, AC/DC – Highway to Hell."
Any closing words to the interview?
"Thanks a lot for the patience and time, I hope that this interview made you fun, although it was a little bit long ha-ha! I wish you all the best and good luck."