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Interview with

Alex Holzwarth (drums) of Rhapsody of Fire

RHAPSODY OF FIRE belongs to the most important and leading Symphonic Metal bands of the present, having success since the late '80.  There huge breakthrough came with albums like 'Legendary Tales' (1997)  and 'Symphony Of Enchanted Lands II (2004). Since the release of Triumph And Agony in 2006 the band hasn´t published new material. At the official homepage the band has written, that “The band activity relatively to album releases and touring has been suspended, independently from our will, for an unspecified period of time”. The friendly drummer Alex Holzwarth was so kind to answer some questions about the band and his other projects.

Reflections of Darkness (RoD): It has been a long time since the fans got new information of Rhapsody Of Fire. At the official website the band has only written that there will be no activities for an uncertain time. Can you give us new information about the current situation?
Alex Holzwarth (Alex): I am sorry, but at present I cannot tell you anything new.

RoD: But the band still exists?
Alex: Yes, for sure. RHAPSODY OF FIRE is still alive!

RoD: What do you think about the nearer future of the band?
Alex: Of course I hope that we will make music and go on tour soon.

RoD: As long as RHAPSODY OF FIRE does not have activities – has gitarist Luca Turilli planned a new solo album? Maybe with you on the drums?
Alex: I am really sorry again but I cannot tell you anything about that topic, too. I hope you and the fans understand.

RoD: Ok, then let´s talk about another theme. Actually you work with Tobi Sammet at a new AVANTASIA album. How did this cooperation come about?
Alex: I always had contact to Tobias and someday I offered him to ask me, if he needs a drummer for AVANTASIA. One day he called me and since I had free time because of the Rhapsody break I agreed. The cooperation is great and makes lot of fun.

RoD: Is there a difference concerning the teamwork with AVANTASIA in comparison to RHAPSODY OF FIRE?
Alex: Yes! The musical conception of AVANTASIA is different in compare with Rhapsody. Tobias gives more space to insert own ideas. The music can “breathe” if you know what I mean. The songs of RHAPSODY OF FIRE are more intellectual planned and detailed checked out. It is another kind of music and we have to bring in different instruments which needs these detailed arrangements. But don´t misunderstand me – I have also the opportunities to bring myself in at the Rhapsody compositions, but in another way.

RoD: By listening to all the albums you played drums I mentioned that you played totally different styles. RHAPSODY OF FIRE is very fast and heavy while SIEGES EVEN is much more progressive and much softer. And concerning the “Steps” album of SIEGES EVEN your style was Jazz-influenced…
Alex: Finally someone who mentioned it (laughs). Yes it is true. I like to play different styles of drumming but I admit that I prefer to come off. At SIEGES EVEN I often had to play with a kind of handbrake but in general this is against my nature.

RoD: Are you involved in other projects besides AVANTASIA?
Alex: Yes, at present I work with my brother Oliver and Uwe Lulis (REBELLION, ex-GRAVE DIGGER) on another project. We follow our musical visions and the teamwork is great. We have already written 9 songs and each one of them have attitude and class.

RoD: Actually Mike Terrana is drummer on TARJA TURUNEN´s tour. Your brother Oliver plays bass for her. Didn´t he have the chance to deal something for you?
Alex: (laughs) Unfortunately not. But Mike is a great drummer and I am looking forward to see Tarja and the guys in Munich where I will certainly go to the gig.

RoD: As long as RHAPSODY OF FIRE does not record a new album – can you imagine to reunite SIEGES EVEN again?
Alex: No. It is all about the music and I have recognized that I prefer harder and faster drumming. My softrock times are over. And – as I have said – I have something new on start. I still believe in “band chemistry” and our teamwork is absolutely great. We compose all the songs together in studio … no other way. I can live myself out and I am really satisfied with the current project.

RoD: Last not least: do you want to say anything to the RHAPSODY OF FIRE and / or SIEGES EVEN fans?
Alex Holzwarth: Yes, I like to. To all the RHAPSODY OF FIRE fans: I know that you have hard times but our time will come! Just believe in us and we appreciate your patience. And I would like to thank all the SIEGES EVEN fans who supported us during all the years. You know who you are! Take care and check out Thank you all.

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