Thursday, March 24, 2011
Interview with Paul Speckmann of Death Metal legends MASTER!
No offense to anyone that I've interviewed in the past but this interview was definitely a great opportunity for me and I'm glad that I was able to interview this man, as I'm a HUGE fan of Master. In this interview Paul Speckmann talks about the recent cancellation of the North American tour, the early days of Master, and current plans for the band. Anyway here's the interview and I hope you guys enjoy it as much as I did.
SFM - Recently you were forced to cancel your North American tour due to visa issues. Have those issues been resolved and are there any plans to return to North America in 2011?
Paul - Well, yes the governmental control in the USA is beyond belief these days, but on the other hand this is not really a new problem. Back in 1991 I came to the states with Krabathor and they had 10 years visas issued by the the US government and it still took several hours and speaking with me to let the guys in the country. Then again a few years later they were refused entry in the USA due to a small amount of money at the Mexican border. After Dusty Plutz from Texas had his sister wire a 1000 dollars to Mexico then the guys were let in the US. I guess they just don't like Eastern European citizens and they need to collect taxes from musicians to pay for their wars. Hell, it's so important for the USA to be involved in every war and force their democracy on every country. Big brother is getting stronger. It's really sad for all the people and families that suffer when they lose their loved ones in these wars for oil. We may return in March 2012 but it depends if I can find American musicians wiling to play with me again.
SFM - Well that's pretty bad, I know there were a lot of people looking forward to seeing you guys terrorize the States, so hopefully soon you will return. Master is a band that is originally from America. What was the reason(s) for the move to the Czech Republic?
Paul - First of all I was offered a position to play bass for band called Krabathor from the Czech Republic. Of course I took the offer because nothing was really happening for me in America and at that time the US scene was stagnant. I came to Europe for the music scene and have been playing concerts and festivals every year since I came here in 2000. This was the best move for me as I have been working in the music business ever since then.
SFM - That's definitely a good reason to move and continue playing music. Speaking of continuing to play music, your most recent album "The Human Machine" was released last year. How has the feedback been for that album?
Paul - The feedback for the album has been excellent across the globe, it's just that all the illegal downloading makes sales suffer sometimes. Why buy a CD if you can download it for free. This is the attitude of the new younger generation. Of course the diehards purchase CDs so it still works for me, but sales could always be better. Many of the earlier releases will soon be available again on vinyl and people are buying vinyl again myself included. Records just sound better!
SFM - It's good to hear that the fans continue to like music that your putting out after being out for such a long time. Now being originally from Chicago, you guys were forming when Thrash was becoming quite prominent in America. Was Master at any point in it's beginning a thrash band?
Paul - I have never really liked these silly categories. Master has always just played Metal. The subgenres are not important.
SFM - You've definitely always been good at playing metal that's for sure! Now Master has gone through quite a few guitarists and drummers in the past while you've remained the main focal point keeping the band alive. How well has the current line-up been doing?
Paul - The current lineup has been recording and touring together since 2004 and it works, so why fix it? The albums and the band progresses every year with all the live performances as well as the recordings. We will record a new CD in the summer and once again shop for a new contract.
SFM - Are there any tentative plans for a new Master album?
Paul - Yeah we will always continue to record, but let's face it, The Human Machine was just released in 2010 so there really is no hurry at the moment.
SFM - It's good to hear you guys want to continue recording, I'm definitely looking forward to that. Besides working on new material, do you have any major festivals or tours coming up this year?
Paul - We begin the Master tour on April 15th in Berlin and a few festivals in Europe like every year. I just cancelled South America due to too little concerts.
SFM - Well Paul I'd like to thank you for your time, do you have any words for your fans?
Paul - Yes, if you want to hear the real Master then check out the last few CDs. If you are looking for merchandise you can go to Facebook and check it out.
For more info go to master-speckmetal.com