PÄNZER, the heavy metal "supergroup" featuring DESTRUCTION frontman Schmier alongside Pontus Norgren (HAMMERFALL) and V.O. Pulver (G.U.R.D., POLTERGEIST) on guitar and Stefan Schwarzmann (ACCEPT, ex-RUNNING WILD) on drums, will release its second album, "Fatal Command", on October 6 via Nuclear Blast. The follow-up to 2014's "Send Them All To Hell" will mark PÄNZER's first release since the departure of guitarist Herman Frank (ACCEPT, VICTORY), who left the group to focus on his solo project.
A new song PÄNZER song titled "Satan's Hollow" can be streamed in the YouTube clip below.
"We pay tribute to our early days and the era of NWOBHM," comments Schmier. "The new songs are faster, heavier, catchy and even more melodic, without being commercial at all. We wanna keep the old and original metal spirit alive."
"Fatal Command" lives and breathes heavy metal like a few other albums of recent years do. It is a monolith of a record on which the tempestuous music, the provocative artwork and Schmier's social criticism come together under a metallic and indestructible hide, courtesy of Little Creek Studio in Basel, Switzerland. One thing, however, is setting "Fatal Command" apart from the perfect heavy metal record: "There's no ballad! But as the singer, I wanted to spare mankind," Schmier laughs. Consequently, PÄNZER prefer to hit the throttle and concentrate on kicking as much ass as possible. "Fatal Command" proudly wears the insignia that so many current bands are lacking, a bold statement against wimps and posers. PÄNZER swear a solemn oath on "Fatal Command": They will be true to heavy metal in good as well as in bad times, in sickness and in health. They will love it and honor it all the days of their lives until death does them part. Amen!
In a recent interview with Metal Master Kingdom, Schmier said about PÄNZER: "Lineup changes are always a little difficult, but, basically, the backbone of the band didn't change at all; we kept everything rolling. And it's great fun. To me, it's a great alternative to play heavy metal — just straight metal and maybe very German also. And there's no limits; we just do what we want. There's no high expectations that we have to sound like this or that; we just praise the good old fucking metal."
Regarding the musical direction of "Fatal Command", Schmier said: "It's a lot of JUDAS PRIEST, ACCEPT… but there's also a lot of fast-forward music. There's no ballads… I think the new one is even more melodic [than the first one]. There's some really catchy choruses and nice hooklines, a lot of great lead guitars, double harmonies everywhere and stuff."
Pulver and Norgren officially joined PÄNZER in December. At the time, V.O. stated about his decision to hook up with Schmier and Stefan: "After producing the debut with PÄNZER, the guys asked me to help them out live to help provide the double axe-attack on stage. Of course I took the opportunity to rock out with my buddies. And when the chance came up to join them permanently, I didn't hesitate to accept and now I can't wait to play the sound of my youth!"
Norgren was just as excited to join the heavy metal war machine. "It was not a hard decision when I got asked to join the PÄNZER project; it was a straight-up YES!" he said. "To be able to create music with good friends is the most important thing in my world and in this band, having fun when making music, is number one. I'm looking forward to all of the craziness that the future is going to bring with these guys. So let's kick some serious...!"