Did your hectic touring schedule help or hinder you?
“We finished the album on the 31 March , and on the 4th we had to be in Russia - so we carried on for the next 3 months and the problem was the album wasn’t going to be released until who knows when? I’ve never had an album sitting there so long. It’s unbelievable – it’s so hard.
“I purposely put it away: I mixed it, mastered it, I put it away. I didn’t even play it to the others and they were actually pissed off about it. But I said ‘I can not play this right now, because it’s not going to be released for such a long time and it’s better to stay away from it and to listen to it later with fresh ears, and not be distracted while on tour, with ‘Oh, I don’t like this or that’: lets just wait, and even better stay away for four or five months and then listen to it again’. We can make final adjustments that are probably very valuable.’”
“And exactly that was what happened: by the time we reached July I eventually played it to them and then we collectively you know, especially having not having heard it for so long, we knew what we could improve. So we re-mixed it we added parts to it as good as we could and we worked with what we had and so it actually worked out pretty good, because I’ve never that done before: had the chance to sit and leave it for a few months - and that’s a long time, and you can really hear something you didn’t hear before. It’s incredible, and so it was a great move but that again was not planned, but the circumstances worked to our advantage, and you know here we are, the album is done, and it sounds great.”
The new album has tremendous energy – what fuelled that?
“It seems like life comes in cycles. I started enjoying myself on stage three or four years ago. It started with an image of beauty: somehow, something happened within myself. I started to enjoy being on stage so much and I didn’t understand why – but I was happy that it was happening.
"I was having feelings of when I was 16, 17, 18 years old. And because I was being more
on stage, I’m realising also what needs to be done in order to keep things exciting. And so the new album had to be heavy, melodic with a little bit of darkness. Also, we added more of Wayne’s 7-string and took advantage of that sound to combine the old with the new and so we kind of got a really unique mixture - a very dramatic kind of album, too.”
• For detailed studio insights into recording the guitar tones of Bridge The Gap read a full interview with Michael Schenker in issue 376 of Guitarist magazine