ACCEPT Guitarist Interviewed By K.K. DOWNING's Official Web Site

Jari Asell and Kimmo Tattari from JUDAS PRIEST guitarist K.K. Downing's official web site, Steel Mill, recently conducted an interview with guitarist Wolf Hoffmann of reformed heavy metal legends ACCEPT. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Steel Mill: You've got the excellent, new album "Blood Of The Nations" out, and some heavy touring behind you. How has the response been out there?

Wolf: Wherever we played live this year we had a phenomenal fan reaction. People are blown away by how good the band sounds now with Mark [Tornillo, new ACCEPT singer].To be honest, we had no idea how the fans would react to the new album and the new lineup. We knew we had made the best possible album we could have made but in the end it is always up to the fans to decide whether they like it or not. So we are more than happy that we are getting this amazing reception. Some people call it the metal album of the year. That's not bad after a 15-year break…

Steel Mill: Was it so that Andy Sneap (producer) gave you some homeworks before final songwriting sessions, did he tell you to listen out "Breaker", "Restless And Wild" and "Balls To The Wall" to bring back the right ACCEPT sound and attitude?

Wolf: Ha, yeah, that's right! Over the years we had sort of forgotten a bit what ACCEPT is all about and what exactly it is about ACCEPT that the fans liked. That is something that is hard to recognize yourself as an artist, I guess… Keep in mind, some of the classic riffs and songs were written almost 30 years ago! So how do you write something that sounds as fresh and as typical ACCEPT as those old songs NOW? Not easy… Andy made us break out the old classic recordings and pointed out nuances and elements that made ACCEPT special in his eyes. Andy is an amazing producer but also a lifelong ACCEPT fan who grew up with our music. So he knew the stuff inside and out , almost better than we do. Once we were focused on the direction things went pretty smooth and an abundance ideas kept coming. We must have worked on about 30-40 songs all in all.

Steel Mill: [In 1981] you toured Europe supporting JUDAS PRIEST [see photo below]. Do you still remember that tour? Are there any anecdotes you could share with us?

Wolf: We were dirt poor and literally hungry most of the time. It was a self-financed tour, without any label support. So on occasion we tried to sneak into JUDAS PRIEST's dressing room and steal something from their deli tray. One day we got caught by their tour manager and thrown out of the room, ha! The tour was a great and eye-opening experience, though, our first tour with a "real" band. Of course we wanted to be just like them and subsequently there were quite a few JUDAS PRIEST influences in our next records. Also, here is another episode from that time. Peter [Baltes, bass] had his only bass stolen one day in this tour. One of the guitar players, can't remember whether it was K.K. or Glenn [Tipton], was nice enough to drive home and bring us his own personal vintage Fender bass to use for the rest of the tour. It was pristine, with not a mark on it. Well, let's just say it wasn't pristine anymore when Peter got done with it after the tour! There were scratch marks and belt buckle marks all over it!! Remember, in those days we all wore these studded belts — they left terrible scars on the instruments. Ah well… battle scars give an instrument more mojo!

Read the entire interview from the Steel Mill web site.

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