Interview with Matthew Greywolf, Powerwolf (June 27th 2007)

Hi, first off all I want to congratulate you with your new album “Lupus Dei” awesome album. Are you satisfied with it?


Powerwolf - Absolutely, we love it! And it’s a great feeling to see that both media and fans seem to love the album too.


How has your new album been received by the media?


Powerwolf - Very good so far, even though I have to say that this is not what we care about most. The most important thing for us was that our fans would love the album. Our debut album Return in bloodred was highly appreciated by a lot of people, and they made this album a success – now with the 2nd album we didn’t want to disappoint any of them, as they are the ones who give power to the wolf, you know? Well, and it seems they love it and that’s something that really makes us proud.


Where do you see the main difference between “Return in Bloodred” and “Lupus Dei”?


Powerwolf - We have become more spiritual. We grew together as a band and thus allowed ourselves to unleash our spiritual sides, which then as well influenced the music quite a lot. Especially the touring for our first album was important for us, as we learned to know each other quite well in this time and so had a more intense and close band feeling when we started writing the new album. Apart from that I think the new one is much more heavy and much more metal than our debut. And not to forget the use of the church organ which adds a great symphonical horror feeling to the sound of the wolf!


How did you get your name, Powerwolf?


Powerwolf - It was Attila’s idea and is based on Charles' and my family’s name.


In what words would you describe the music and moods of Powerwolf for someone that has not heard you yet?


Powerwolf - Spiritual and dark heavy metal passion!


To what subjects do the lyrics of Powerwolf refer to, and who writes them?


Powerwolf - There’s a concept making the album a full circle: in the introduction “Lupus daemonis” the wolf, who’s the protagonist of the concept story, looses belief in everything, he struggles with god and finally descends. He becomes an evil creature being greedy “We take it from the living”, signs a contract with the devil “Saturday Satan” and believes in nothing but blood anymore “In blood we trust”. During the album he starts seeing rays of light again, realizing the misleading practice of some religious groups “Mother Mary is a bird of prey”, and finally witnesses god in the final “Lupus dei”.

We write the lyrics together and this is an important part of Powerwolf. For us this band is much more than just playing music together. We are a circle of five individuals who share much more than just the passion for metal. We all are religious people and especially during the song writing for Lupus dei we discussed that in deep. We spent a lot of evening’s philosophing and discussing and this is how a lot of lyrics arise.


Who writes to music?


Powerwolf - We can only write music when we all are together in one room. A wolf can’t exist without his tribe, haha…. We believe that you can’t plan to write a good song. It must happen, and for Powerwolf a good song can only happen when we all are together and let our passion for metal flow. We are a spontaneous band, and when we are in the right mood we can write a song within one hour. I remember we wrote “In blood we trust” and “Prayer in the dark” in one rehearsal which lasted two hours. The best songs are the ones that come out of a band without thinking about it!


Who has produced and mixed the album? Are you pleased with the result?


Powerwolf - We recorded the album in several studios, and in a medieval church, and then went to Sweden to have the album mixed by Fredrik Nordström at Studio Fredman. Fredkrik also produced our first album and we loved the sound as it’s heavy as hell but organic anyway. We don’t like the way most albums sound nowadays: they all sound heavy and loud, but clean and constructed. Too much pro-tools shit going on and too much perfection. This steals the soul of the music – at least for the kind of music we play. Fredrik is a master in combining both: he manages to get a fucking heavy punch, great tone, but organic breathing sound at the same time. And he shares the same kind of passion for metal and the same kind of ironic humor with us, haha….


What’s the song you consider most representative of the new album and why?


Powerwolf - I love “Prayer in the dark” as it contains everything this album is about: great old school metal parts, a hymnic chorus, that church choir part adding a lot of dramatic impact – and some nice Iron maiden guitars to party along with, haha…


Do you feel that your sound will evolve in some different direction, in the future, or you will still follow the same path?


Powerwolf - We don’t plan anything so I can’t tell you which path the wolves will follow.


How long do you need to practice to feel comfortable with your songs before you record them?


Powerwolf - We never practice. Practising is for cowards. We write a song, and once it’s written we never rehearse it anymore, otherwise it would loose the spontaneous feeling. When recording an album it’s all about catching the spirit of a song in studio – and I think you can catch this spirit best when you record a song that you haven’t already rehearsed 157 times. That’s why a lot of albums don’t carry the spirit bands have when playing live. We want our album to sound like the listener is a witness of the wolves going wild writing the music

They love – and that works best when you record songs when they’re “fresh”. We write a song, tape it in the rehearsal room – and then listen to the tape in studio and record it, that’s it.


The music scene really changed between the 70's, 80's and 90's. What would you say has been your strongest influence?


Powerwolf - For Powerwolf it obviously is the metal of the 80ies, even though I wouldn’t call us a retro orientated band. We also like music that is released nowadays. In all these decades there was good music and a lot of shit, I couldn’t tell it was better 10 years ago or whatever.


Any plans to go on tour? If so, when and where?


Powerwolf - First of all we’ll play on some of the summer festivals now, and in autumn we’ll go on tour. We’ll play some shows with Grave Digger, but only in Germany, and at the moment we’re into negotiations for a full European tour. Watch out!


Who designs your CD artwork and who has the final word on what actually goes on the album cover?


Powerwolf - We develop the concepts ourselves. For the front cover this time we had the help of Mr. Niklas Sundin, who’s a great artist and did a killer job. All the rest as the booklet art etc is done by us.


Let's speculate - you have been granted a free slot on a tour of your own choice - who would be your ideal touring partners?


Black Sabbath with Ozzy. Just to have the chance to watch them every night, haha…


What are you doing besides Powerwolf, job wise as well as hobbies?


Powerwolf - No. We focus on the wolf and on our religious duties.


What albums or bands do you believe have had the greatest impact on the history of metal?


Powerwolf - Black Sabbath, no questions. They invented it all and up to date no other band has been able to write a riff that’s darker and heavier than the riff of “Black Sabbath” – and I guess no band ever will…


Thank you very much for participating in this interview and sharing this information and your thoughts with us - these last lines are entirely for you…


Powerwolf - Thanx for reading… and prey for metal everybody!!!!!!


 Interviewed by Jørgen Ditlev.
Powerwolf - Lupus Dei.

Album out on Metal Blade Records.

For more info on Powerwolf - click on the album cover.