Studio-Interview during the "Eyes of darkness" production
mit Berny

berny im Soundworxx-Studio

Berny und Harry sind wie immer gut druff !!Some years Axxis seems "very quiet", then came back with the Accept tribute. What's happened in this meantime??

After the tour with U.D.O. Walter(guitar) and Markus(bass) left the band. During this time Walter told me that 15 years with AXXIS were enough and he wanted to make up his mind for a change in his life. That's the reason why he changed to the other side of the business to be a producer . I could understand his decision and because we are still friends, I supported him. Markus the bass player moved his flat back into Switzerland and so it was not possible to met him for rehearsals anymore, because of the distance. So the rest of the band was searching for new members...but we couldn't find some. The most important thing for AXXIS is the family, I mean the relationship between the members. For us it is not important to get professionals who are doing everything only for money. So it took a long time to find Kuno the new bass player and Guido the guitar player. Both are good friends since a long time and so they are feeling comfortable from the beginning in the band. You can imaging that the integration of new members in a band who plays together than 15 years is not very easy, but with these two guys we found the right persons, who have the same point of view and we are still happy. The AXXIS family has changed but it's still a family.

The deal with EMI was finished and we have to find a new record label. Everywhere in Germany the techno and hiphop sound was popular and everybody told us that rock music is dead. In spite of all we decided to go back to our first CD "Kingdom of the night" to produce, against all advices, a CD who sounds like the opposite of everything what's on the market in this time. That's the reason why we titled this CD "Back to the Kingdom". I was sure that there are lot of fans who like this kind of melodic, mystic and powerful rock and ... I was right ! We got a lot of fan mails who supported us and they have given us the power to continue against all odds.

For a lot of people, include me, it was a surprise that the CD Back to the Kingdom was going directly into the German charts...puh, that was a good feeling.


Which are the differences between the "old"and the "new"Axxis?

I think there are not so many differences. Guido and Kuno ( okay they are younger than the old members;-) ) are playing the same style like the old members. The only change is that we are producing our CD by ourselves. To work with Keith Olsen and Joey Balin was a good experience but we know ourselves better than people from outside. Now we have a studio and we are able to produce our music in the way we want.


How did the fans react of your modern sounding albums like "Voodoo Vibes"?

Bad, because this was our first try to transport our kind of songwriting in a modern time with modern instruments like samples etc. It doesn't work. This cd was very important for us , because we have to learn, that our fans don't want a different, modern AXXIS sound. During this time we were very confused about the fact that everybody told us that traditional, melodic rockmusic is dead. If you listen to the demotapes, the songs are in a better mood and sounding like AXXIS.


So, und jetzt das ganze mit gestimmten Gitarren;-)After the split with EMI, you recorded the CD "Pure & Rough" which was only available through Please tell us more about it and the songs.

No, we didn't recorded this cd after the split with EMI. A lot of songs were on the demotapes of the "Matters of survival" and "Voodoo Vibes" albums. We just released it after the split. One reason for this was the release of our homepage and the knowledge about the internet. We just want to check out if the people are interested in aspecial internet offer..thats all.


I think "Back To The Kingdom" is a returning home,in other words your roots, what can you tell us about that?

You're right. After all experiments during the recording session of the VoodooVibes record, where we used drum loops and stuff like this, we decided to go back to the Kingdom of the night record. The problem was that in the studio everything sounds really cool but during our life performance all this modern influences are disturbing the energy and the power. As a studio musician I must say that is was a good experience but as a live performer...puh.


How were the fans' reaction to "Back to The kingdom"?

The reaction were unbelievable. After the tour with UDO in Europe we have had a two years break, 'cos Walter and Markus left the band, Harry baby died and we have a lot of private problems. Everybody in the business told us that Hardrock is dead and we need a lot of power to produce a new CD .We had to look for new members and it took one year to find Guido and Kuno. The only thing we have had was our vision and the hope that there are some people outside who still love hardrock and heavy music.We expected only a small amount of people on tour and only a small success for the cd.

But after the release of Back to the kingdom everything changed. The tour was sold out, the cd was very successful and here we are... back in the business ! To be honest to you, we never expected this good reactions.


You have a new EP out called "Collection Of Power". Please tell us more about it.

This EP should be a special thanks for our fans who give us the special "welcome back Axxis" in the year 2000 and supportet us so well during the last tours. For us it was a big surprise that both tours were such a success. It seems to me that melodic rock or hardrock is still alive - stronger than everybody expect !

There was a time , especially in our 2 year break where everybody in the musicbuiz told us that this kind of music is dead. To be honest to you... I believed that. So you'll understand that we are very happy about our patient fans and that's thze reason why we want to appreciate this with our fanep.


You have been on tour with Pink Cream 69 recently. For the second time this year. Why?

The first tour worked so well and we got to know each other very well, so it was very easy going on tour with this band spontanouasly. The idea was growing up during the first tour, because it was such a success . The other reason was that Axxis want to go on tour abroad and Pc69 is wellknown in other countries. So we had the chance to support them.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------Na, stinkt der Strumpf, berny ?

Axxis signed with Massacre Rec for Germany/Europe, are your satisfied with the label's works?? How about Moria Records, the brasilian cd store/label that released Back To The Kingdom??

We are very satisfied with Massacre. In the beginning we have to understand that we cannot compare Massacre with EMI. You must know that EMI was our first label experience and they have made us big in Germany. The problem with this major label was the worldwide deal and like you know, we never got a chance to release our CDs in your country for example. Now with Massacre we have the chance to offer our music to labels outside of Europe and we are very happy about Moria Records who supported us in Brazilian. I know it is not an easy job for them because we are totally unknown . Hopefully we will get the chance to play in your country to show the people our live performance. The image of AXXIS is live totally different than the imagination you get when you listen to our CD's. In Europe we have slayer, metallica, and BackstreetBoys fans in the audience..and you must agree, that sounds strange ?! It's a phenomenon and nobody understand this...even me, but it's a lot of fun to see so many different fans together, banging their heads.


Instead of many other germany bands that sounds melodic or extremely brutal, Axxis sounds like 70's with modern production/skills; for example Shadowman, Like A Sphinx, etc sounds like classic Heavy rock bands as Deep Purple, Rainbow, etc Which are the band's influences and from each member?

That's right. We don't want to specialize our music for only one direction. I say, we are not only a heavy metal or hardrock band, we are a rock band who included all of these different rock styles in their songs. It's a lot of fun to be not bounded in one direction.

On the AXXIS II record we have the THE WOLF a speedmetal song, on KINGDOM OF THE NIGHT we have TEARS OF THE TREES a orchestra ballade,on the next CD EYES OF THE DARKNESS" we have a very dark sounding song with a lot of tempo changes and so on. The most important thing is that we are working song-orientated . We don't want to be imprisoned in only one style. Our influences are Kiss, IronMaiden, Yes, and bands like these.


Many critics are still complaining about the unique but strange voice of singer Bernhard. How do you react?

Haha, I just read only a few critics, but anyway, a lot of people dont like the sound of Brian May's guitar for example but when you listen to some tones you realise Queen directly. You can compare this with my voice. The voice polarizes... and that's cool! If you hear it you know,- ups..that's berny;-)


Can you please told us about the subject from the most important compositions in your opinion in "Back...

Ups , all of these songs are important for us. But special songs are "Only god knows" and "My little princess" . "Only god knows" deals about the death of Harry's (Keys) baby during the birth. In this time we were touring with U.D.O. As we get the message that the baby was dead ,we have to understand the first time in our life what it means to say:"The show must go on". Everybody was very sad but we continued the tour without showing our emotions. It was a psychical torture.

On the other side my daughter Anna was born a few month later and I was totally happy. I have to wrote the song"My little princess". A mixture out of emotions with happiness and sadness were close together.It was a strange time.


Whose was the idea to record "Na na, hey, hey, say goodbye"?? It's a 60's or 70's song isn't it???

This songs was written by the band STEAM in 1969 (released September 1969)


Harry übt?!I heard you are in the studio again, when is the album coming up, what's it like? How is the recording Going?

The recording is going on very well and we will start to release the new cd called Eyes of the darkness or Eyes of darkness in 17th September. The cd is a mixture out of mystic , powerful and melodic songs. Again we puit a coverversion of the song "The four horsemen" from the band Aphrodits Child on the cd. It sounds like a real AXXIS song;-)

If everything works well we will put an small AXXIS game and a videoliveclip on the cd. It depends on the CD-space. The game is a small but very funny shooter. Your are driving through a coalmine, and you have to shot a lot of crazy things during a fixed time.It should be in 3D.You will like it...and its freeware !!


Do you've plans to re-release some from your old albuns? How about the future, which are your future plans??

Oh, we have so many plans. First of all we want to be a little bit more known in other countries like Germany. From this point of view we have to make new 15 years with the EMI.

This year we starting our own publishing company called AXXISWORLD Publishing to support bands. There are so many problems for newcomer bands especially in these times, that we want to make use of our contacts in the musicbuiz for helping them. I'm sure that rock music is still living and that all these computer productions are going down the drain in the future..hopefully! Kids who wanna learn an instrument must get a vision to play in a band or to be a star. Dreams are so important to get a motivation and the urge to create something special. We try to find and support these kind of people in the future.


Pressinfo to "Eyes of Darkness"