SFM: Hey guys! I want to start by going back to the Beastival festival earlier this year where Tankard, Kreator, Sodom, and Destruction all played as the Big 4 of German Thrash. What was it like to bring those four great bands together? Is it likely that this will happen again?
Olaf: Hi Scott! Olaf here - the drummer from the bunch of clowns.
It was funny as always when we meet some of the other bands. We usually have different tour schedules so it was not easy for the promoter to find the dates for this event. Same for the future.
SFM: You guys have had a lot of success playing festivals in Europe, but you have fans all over the world. Will we ever see Tankard ever come over to North America?
Olaf: We did a show in Minneapolis in 2006 and actually we think about doing one in Baltimore next year but that's not confirmed so I can't promise that we will do that. (And maybe I'm not allowed to tell you that??)
SFM: The most recent Tankard record, “A Girl Called Cerveza” was a great addition to your discography. After this long, do you find it easy to write albums because you have been doing it for so long? Or is it difficult because you don’t want to repeat yourself?
Olaf: It is difficult but we are fine with it. If somebody comes up with words like " you repeat yourself" I always answer " No we just go back to the roots"
SFM: This album also featured the legendary Doro Pesch on “The Metal Ladyboy”. What was it like to work with her in the studio?
Olaf: Sadly I have to tell you that we usually enter the studio with a complete preproduction in our hands. That means that I'm going there without the other guys. Just me and a headphone with the pilot tracks. After recording the drums I'm out of the business so I can't tell you who did whatever with Doro or not...
SFM: With so many albums out, how do you guys go about selecting a live setlist, particularly at festivals where you have a limited amount of time?
Olaf: We always try to do a mix between old stuff and some new tracks but it doesn't matter what we put on the list or remove - Somebody will always be disapointed cause we didn't do song X or Y.
SFM: Are there any Tankard albums that you feel are underappreciated, either by fans or in your setlists?
Olaf: Maybe "The Tankard" from 1995 deserves more attention but who am I to dictate that to the fans?
SFM: Since 1998, Tankard has released a new album every 2 years. Does this mean we can expect to see the next Tankard album in 2014?
Olaf: Good news for all of you. The studio is booked and we just started with songwriting....
SFM: What can fans expect from a new Tankard record? Will there be any more guest performances like Doro’s?
Olaf: It's a little to early to say something about that cause we just started with the new material.
SFM: Let’s move on to Tankard’s favourite topic: beer! After this many years, how do you come up with original lyrics about beer?
Olaf: It's easy cause it's for real. We like it a lot and that's why we always have to tell something about it. On the other hand most people forget that we also have some serious lyrics on every record as well.
Maybe it's our own fault that we always get reduced to this beer thing but I think it's more true than doing songs about sacrifice a virgin or running thrue the woods with swords and bows in the hand or fighting against dragons.
SFM: What would you say to a fan such as myself who doesn’t drink any alcohol?
Olaf: You have my full respect but in our case I can say that drinking beer was helpfull to see half of the world.
SFM: Any last words for the fans?
Olaf: Cheers for now and have a good time !
SFM: Be sure to check out and like Tankard on Facebook!