2016 Accept interview with Wolf Hoffmann
This week, German’s premier traditional metal export, Accept, will play a couple of US tour dates to stay loose as they busy themselves with the songwriting for the studio follow up to 2014’s Blind Rage. Accept has toured more in support of the Blind Rage album than any previous effort. In the midst of this touring cycle the band replaced guitarist Herman Frank and drummer Stefan Schwarzmann with Uwe Lulis and Christopher Williams respectively. As guitarist Wolf Hoffmann shared with Metalholic this week, the newest members have blended quite well he, bassist Peter Baltes and vocalist Mark Tornillo.
Hoffman and Baltes have been in the process of writing songs for the next Accept record which Wolf says likely not be out till 2017. He offered a quick update of their progress so far:
“Yeah, we started in January, and we’ve done… We’ve put a few things down already, and it’s sounding quite well. It’s by no means finished. Peter and I write together for weeks at a time and just see what we can come up. Then we give [our ideas] to Mark and he puts the final vocals on it. That’s the way we’ve always been working. Peter and myself, we usually start… We do the first step, we do the rough demos, and Peter does some scratch vocals on a lot of the songs, and then Mark does the final [vocals] in the studio.”
Accept will spend most of 2016 writing and recording the new record, and I asked him now that he’s had some time to live with Blind Rage, how he feels it fairs in the canon of Accept albums:
“I think it’s one of the most mature ones we’ve done. I mean, of course, I love them all, and I think they’re all equally strong, but I would definitely put Blind Rage maybe at the top of the list — at least on par with 2010’s Blood Of The Nations. [2012’s] Stalingrad, every time I hear the album, I feel like I wish we would have had a little more time to round out the songs and to go at it again, but we were under immense time pressure. So, to me, I hear that sometimes in the record. But some fans tell me that’s their favorite album, so go figure. At the end of the day you could probably produce an album, produce it to death and work on it again and again, and it probably wouldn’t get better. At a certain point, it is what it is, and you’ve gotta let it go and live with it, I guess.”
“It’s in the can, baby — it’s done. It’s out of my system. Now it’s in the hands of the gods of the label and everybody else. And it will be released sometime in the spring — late spring, maybe — worldwide. We’ll have to see what the best release date is; we haven’t settled on that yet. But my part is done… It’s gonna be in line in respect to that I’ve taken well-known classical melodies and sort of just ‘metalled’ them up for guitar. The difference is I actually recorded this one with an orchestra, so I used real string players. I flew to Prague and worked with a Czech national symphony orchestra, so it sounds a lot more… bigger production and much more dynamic and grandiose than the first album.”
Given that the current Presidential race has been a hot topic for discussion, I asked Wolf, since he has the perspective as both an American citizen and as someone who lived much of his life in Germany and abroad, what his thoughts were on the matter:
“Well, it’s always been insane. I’ve never quite understood why, to be quite honest… I mean, I live here [in Nashville], I’m a [U.S.] citizen and all that, but I have both perspectives. And I love it here — don’t get me wrong — but the political circus sometimes is so bizarre. I mean, just the whole concept of doing this campaigning for two years. What the hell? In Europe, they go to the elections and it takes — the whole thing, the whole process — takes, like, three or four weeks or whatever. They do a little bit of campaigning, debating, and then they all go to the elections. They don’t [have] caucuses and delegates, and there’s this and there’s that, blah blah blah. Why does it have to take so long? It’s way to involved, I think, and the money that’s involved is just insane.”
Check out the full interview with Hoffman below as he talks about some of the tracks on Blind Rage, his passion for photography, and his favorite shows to binge watch.
Thanks to our friends at Blabbermouth for doing the transcription work.