by Derric Miller
Staff Writer —
Hardrock Haven: Congrats on the great new album, 2012, Mario. To start things off, why don’t you give the readers a bit of the inside story on why the band went with 2012 as the title. Obviously, it’s the year 2012, but what about the numerology, the mythology behind the numbers, etc.?
Mario: 20.12 is the birthday of singer Jens, who has his birthday on Dec. 20. And the month December stands for the “12.” So we have 20.12. Also there should be a little bit mythology with the Mayan calendar, but I do not expect that world will going under on December.
HRH: Tell me about the opening track, the title track, the instrumental. Has Wild Frontier recorded an instrumental before?
Mario: Yes, on the Thousand Miles Away album we did also an instrumental intro which was called “In The Middle Of Nowhere.” And on Bite The Bullet we have “Lost And Found.” We love to produce mystic intros. This brings diversification to an album.
HRH: 2012 has been receiving some great reviews since it’s been released. The one track some people might not have accepted as fully is the ABBA cover, “Gimme Gimme Gimme.” Why’d the band decide to go that quirky route and cover ABBA?
Mario: Because we have also a second band called “Wild Night” which is a cover / tribute band and there we perform a few ABBA songs and many, many people suggested us to record one ABBA song as Wild Frontier and so we did it. And we want to show that Pop songs can also be Rock songs. We have also performed songs from the Backstreet Boys, Kim Wilde etc.
HRH: The first single was “It’s All Over Now” and you also have a kick ass video for it, one that already has about 6,000 views on YouTube. How’s the single doing for the band in Europe? And any other videos in the works?
Mario: Yes, I must admit that I am surprised that we got more than 6000 views in a month. We recorded a second video, for “Why don´t You Save Me,” which will be released on June. This video was filmed at the Sababurg, a castle where the Grimm fairytale “Sleeping Beauty” originated. The reactions of the video in Europe are very good, but let me tell you that the most visitors to our website are Americans. More than 65 percent of the visitors are from the United States and that shows us how important the market with their fans is.
HRH: Wild Frontier recently held a release party for the new album. Tell us a little bit about the party, who attended, and all that good stuff.
Mario: It was a familiar party with 250 of our closest fans. And we performed the best of Wild Frontiers from the last 22 years, and on the second set we performed the new material and finally Gary Moore’s “Out In The Fields”. That’s the song which brought Jens and me to Metal music.
HRH: On the “special thanks” in the liner notes, I snuck my way in there but so did a Hardrock Haven favorite Phil Vincent. Did the band write with Phil or how did he contribute to 2012?
Mario: We’ve known Phil for many years and he is also correcting the lyrics for us, because English is not our native language and therefore it is important to have someone like him and Derric Miller. Thanks a lot for their endless support.
HRH: Wild Frontier has finally found some permanent members this time around. Who are the new guys in the band?
Mario: Jens and me founded the band in 1990. In 2003, Thomas Ellenberger joined the band and in 2011 Sascha Fahrenbach and his brother Nico joined. Those guys both make us very happy because they have enormous musical potential. I think you can hear it on the album. Also it is more powerful performing live on stage with two guitars. They both were good guys who love good beer. We have had lot of fun with them so far.
HRH: On your website, it appears that you have a passion for brewing beer. What kind of beer do you make? Lager, ales, stouts, dark or light, etc? And what is your opinion on what we Americans call beer, like Miller Lite and Budweiser. Don’t hold back, cuz it’s truly awful stuff.
Mario: Yes, I love beer and I have a small home brewery. Mostly I´m brewing a German Helles which is not comparable to American beer brands. It is a vintage style and very smooth. Let me tell you that I am also a beer label collector. I own more than 35,000 different beer labels from all around the world. I know many American brands and my favorites are Schmidt, Michelob, Coors, Gordon Birsch.
HRH: Well, the festival season is hitting Europe now. What do Wild Frontier’s tour plans look like this Summer and into the Fall?
Mario: It is very difficult to join good shows at festivals here in Europe. We started working with a concert agency a few weeks ago (by the way the same agency who works with Bonfire) and we´re looking forward to some great shows. For next year we can announce a few shows in the Summer. This season is nearly closed. Maybe we will perform a few shows in Fall.
HRH: Is there anything I left out that you’d like to leave with all of our Hardrock Haven faithful?
Mario: We would like to thank you and all our fans around the world for supporting us. For us, it is a great honor to bring our tunes all around the world. Music connects people and that’s what we want. We’re doing music from fans to fans. That’s it. It makes me very proud to know Melodic Rock fans from all around the world. Thank you all!