HIGH HEELER HEAVY METAL FROM AUSTRIA Band Question answer by POISEN POSER and ANDEE
Please introduce yourself and the band members briefly. PoisonPoser: Hey, I'm Poison Poser, singer and bass player of HIGH HEELER. We have two guitarists   - stage left is Andee Overtone on Flying V and Charvel, stage right is CC Stiletto on BC Rich, Guild and Charvel. He's writing all of our riffs. In the back we have Dynamike on drums, inherent to the signature Heeling Sound. What does the band name mean and how do you get it? PoisonPoser: Actually it means nothing at all, but of course it's a tribute to the striking power of the High Heel. Andee: Apparently, it follows the secret Heavy Metal-dogma of having two cool sounding words as a band name. Besides that, i like the associations at hand: high heeled guys and dames, 80ies flashbacks and maybe that grasp for the stars! Where and how was the band founded? Andee: The idea of High Heeler was born in the dark 90ies in a dark place: the catacombs of CC Stiletto’s parents. We’re friends since the middle of the 90ies, and used to sit together in the cellar of the Stiletto Manor, just to rehearse on the guitar and bang to good old 80ies Metal – which at this time was rather depreciated – and of course there was also a lot of booze. Shortly after, Poison Poser, at the time a classmate of CC, stepped in as a bass player. There was only one direction to go for us: back to the 80ies. Have you played in other bands before? PoisonPoser: No, I started with HIGH HEELER. The other guys, though, had bands before. Dynamike was a singer and guitar player before he switched to drums for us, Andee played Bass in THUNDERLORD and occasionally in SIREN'S CRY, and CC - being the most experienced of us - played Progressive Metal with MIRAKEL and Death Metal with EPITAPH, among others. Was it hard to find suitable band members who fit musically and humanely with the band? PoisonPoser: We were lucky and always put personality and musical taste in front of technical skills. As we knew each other before we started the band, there was no need to search for musicians. We kind of exchanged the pub with the rehearsal room and learned what we had to, in order to be the band. Andee: Yeah, we’re good friends all together, maybe that’s the most important thing. There were slight changes in the beginning of our journey, however since about 15 years we have a stable line-up. What are the lyrics about and who of you is writing them ? PoisonPoser: Andee and me are writing. Mostly me on the newer songs, I also write all vocal melodies. We like to sing about strong female characters, sometimes mythology and literature, relationships and life in general. Stuff that we find interesting and that fits the concept of HIGH HEELER. Which bands inspired you and how would you describe your music to someone who has never heard a sound from you? Andee: 80s Heavy Metal in all shapes and forms is our main inspiration. You could name some of the many great outfits like Shok Paris, Jag Panzer, Obsession, however we think, that it’s still possible to put a new twist to the genre!   So, besides getting famous, one of the band's main goals was to put out a record who could stand in the shelf besides all the beloved heroes’ records, without being recognized as a work of modern times – mission accomplished! PoisonPoser: How our music sounds? It's riff-driven Heavy Metal with Twin Guitar Harmonies! You have been around for fifteen years before you released your first album - Why? PoisonPoser: Yeah, it took some time. We never focused on the band in a professional way, we just did what we liked. Rehearsing, drinking beer, playing live. 80ies stuff was pretty uncool at the time we started, the scene for Heavy Metal in Vienna got smaller and smaller. We didn't feel the need to record our material, also we didn't have the budget or the experience. As time went on and Heavy Metal gained back some popularity, we did a demo and then a 3-track EP. We learned a lot during these recordings and finally started recording the album. It took a lot longer than we thought, and finally 2015 we were happy to release it. Better late than never! Force and Finesse   - your debut album - was released in 2015 by the American label Sword andChains. How did you get in contact with them and how does the collaboration work? PoisonPoser: We were in contact with them since the release of our EP and they also distributed it in the USA. As they wanted to take a step up from being a tape-only label to proper CD releases, we thought this could be a nice match, as we only had plans for self-releasing a vinyl-version of the album. They did a limited edition of 500 numbererd CDs and did a great job in distributing them. Are you working diligently on new songs and when can we expect your new album? PoisonPoser: Definetly, we're permanently writing new material. At the moment there are no plans for a new album, but we have recorded 3 songs that will hopefully be released soon. The tracks are "Burn Out", "Stormwaves" and "Ophelia". They sound fantastic, definetly superior to the album, and we can't wait to see them released! What were your live highlights and with which bands did you play? PoisonPoser: It's great to play with all these bands you know from your record collection and never dreamed about getting anywhere near them - crazy! Lizzy Borden, Grave Digger, Heathen, Vicous Rumors, Helstar, ... lots of fun shows. I loved to play Budapest with hungarian heroes Stress and our friends Wildhunt! Great party, great people! It's just fantastic when the crowd sings your lyrics. Also it's great to team up with all the great new global metal warriors out there and have some drinks. Hello toCauldron, Visigoth, Toxic Holocaust, Mega Colossus, Sin Starlett, ... cheers! Andee: I like our self-organised little concerts best, when we share the stage with bands we really like and appreciate! Two years ago we celebrated our album release in Vienna together with Wildhunt, Liquid Steel and Ravenous, it was a really great night! What do you think about the Austrian scene in general? PoisonPoser: It was a catastrophe in the late 90s and early 2000s. Since 2010 it changed for the better, but back then - especially here in Vienna - everything was about (rather bad) Death/Black Metal and Crossover NuMetal. Every shit you can imagine, but almost no other local Heavy Metal bands. We really had to fight our way up from the gutter, nobody took us seriously. Today things are much better, there are some really great new bands and that's the reason why we co-founded the Austrian Heavy Metal Alliance. Andee: Yeah, we just had the idea to unite forces and get more attention this way, exchange gigs etc. Finally this cooperation resulted in the AHMA vinyl compilation in 2015, which was released by The Doc’s Dungeons. Currently the AHMA has 7 members: High Heeler, Wildhunt, Roadwolf, Diamond Falcon, Liquid Steel, Küenring and Grim Justice. Check these bands out if they're playing anywhere near you! Have these contacts already resulted in friendship ? Andee: As Poser mentioned, the situation has gotten better in general, because the scene for Heavy Metal grew a little bit stronger since 2010. Before, we were playing some gigs, where we felt at the wrong place, eg. in the middle of a death metal fest. Now, since there’s more interest in Heavy Metal, there are better gigs. We have good relations with some promoters, who offer support slots and we’ve been organizing some gigs with our pals from the AHMA. Besides that, I would not say, that there’s a big friendship, everybody is getting along well, and we’re trying to reach more interest together instead of competing in a childish manner. Why do you think that in the Austrian media the hard rock or heavy metal, regardless of whether national or international, is almost not considered (I remember a rock and metal show that ran centuries ago in orf on Saturday night)? Andee: There is mainly just one broadcaster, the Austrian National TV, which is also controlling the big radio stations. And the big fish in the pond doesn’t like the hard rock! PoisonPoser: Actually there's more Hard Rock airplay nowadays than 15 years ago. Back then, they used to cut-out the guitar-solo of Bon Jovi's Always" because they thought it's too annoying. Nowadays they are sponsoring Metallica gigs etc, still all they play is "Nothing else Matters".   Yeah, you really rock. Go fuck yourself! Austia has no tradition in respecting the rock, there is no Austrian Thin Lizzy or stuff like that. Everything beyond Whitesnake has alway been underground and fore sure will stay there. Why do you think Austrian acts are not supported by national record labels? e.g. Napalm Records ! PoisonPoser: Well, Napalm Records did exactly that as they rose out of the Austrian Black Metal Scene and released all this stuf like Abigor, Summoning, the ABMS Sampler etc back then in the 90s, so you can't really blame them. Nowadays they are a big player and have to sign bands that sell, the same as Nuclear Blast etc   - I guess there's no other way to survive in the business. I tend to think that Austrian acts have the same chances to end up on the Napalm roster as any other band. The problem is: Austrian bands seldomly get "big enough " to be signed by such a label, as there's not much support beforehand (not politically, not by the media and often not by the fans, regardless of the quality of the music). How do you earn your money except with the music? PoisonPoser: I'm a Graphic Designer. Andee: I’m a technical co-worker and that’s where the money comes from. We don’t earn a cent by our music! How important are social media for you as a band? PoisonPoser: It's crucial if you wanna sell your own music and bring people to the shows. Still I'd prefer the old school (Poster, Flyer, Fanzines), but if you're not famous, this sadly doesn't work anymore. What would you want to achieve with the band? PoisonPoser: To furthermore record and release our songs, so they can live on after we're gone. Andee: Play the big arenas! Just kidding, I think just to improve constantly on all levels to satisfy our distinguished minds which are getting more and more stubborn with the age. PoisonPoser: Indeed. Maybe you can recommend some bands from your area? PoisonPoser: Listen to Wildhunt, and if you don't like them try again, because they're the best Austrian Thrash Band. PERSONAL QUESTIONS ! Where did you grow up and how was your childhood? PoisonPoser: I'm a happy child from Vienna. I used to play Masters of the Universe with my cousin, built Carrera race-tracks and liked American Muscle Cars. Not much changed since then. Andee: Mee too, Masters of the Universe and Knight Rider! How was your school time you were rather the good student or the break clown? PoisonPoser: Actually i was rather good and focussed. Andee: The classic under-achiever, I guess. How did your parents react when you started making metal music? Did they support you and how do you feel about your music today? PoisonPoser: It was a natural progression, not a big deal. My parents always supported my endavours. Andee: My parents didn’t oppose my musical aspirations. I don’t know if they would have been more pleased, if I chose to play the piano instead. Today, it’s like it was at beginning, I guess if you’re once caught by the Heavy Metal spell, it won’t let you go! Would you be successful in making music as a musician? PoisonPoser: No, i guess not. I enjoy making music with my band, but i'm not really interested in becoming a technically good musician or doing it like a job. Andee: I guess the situation nowadays is different, however, for me, it has   never been an option to start out as professional musician, because I simply couldn’t imagine to make a living from it. Are you someone who loves the hustle and bustle of the big city? or rather looking for peace and relaxation in nature? PoisonPoser: Actually both. Andee: Vienna is a very nice city to live in. If you’re living rather in the outskirts, you’ll have a litte bit of both worlds! Do you actively practice sports or are you more of a passive spectator? PoisonPoser: I was never interested nor talented in any kind of sports. Still I do some jogging and stuff, to keepmy body and mind in shape. Andee: Cycling! When it comes to your physical well you can cook or let you cook for you PoisonPoser: I'm a passionate cook and generally love to eat Andee: Me too What does your environment tell you about your passion for metal (friends / family / colleagues) ? PoisonPoser: My wife says I have too many records. Andee: I’ve got metal friends and others! How do you see the problem with the haters on the internet who have to announce their mental garbage in anonymity always and everywhere? PoisonPoser: It's ridiculous and sometimes I instantly wanna punch someone in the face. Really hard. Nazi Scum, but also people with really bad musical taste. But usually I try to be a nice person. Andee: I’m really astonished of how big the influence of some silly posts can get. The best thing you can do is to ignore it, even if you feel the urge to react, and to focus on constructive criticism. What do you think about the internet in general? A blessing or a curse? PoisonPoser: It's a blessing that also brings endless problems. But if I could choose, I possibly would   go for a world without all that digital shit. Reading books, Listening to records, taking photos. Kinda enough future for me. Andee: As far as I’m concerned, there are some good things about the internet and social networks, howeverfor the bigger part I wish people would be more reasonable and see it for what it is: a big bubble of nothing. There is a lot of information to be found, but it’s so instantaneous and short living and people tend to confound it with real wisdom which is always a progression! What would you personally like to do in your life? PoisonPoser: NOTHING. And then some things if I'm in the mood. Andee: Have a good time, all the time! Which question would you like to have answered and why? Andee: Why am I here? Is it really just a coincidence or is there a meaning to it? PoisonPoser: Is there an edition of the Sports Almanac 2000-2050, and where do I get it? Iron Maiden or Ozzy Osbourne PoisonPoser: Iron Maiden with Paul DiAnno Andee: Ozzy, but mainly for his guitar heroes! Judas Priest or Poison PoisonPoser: Judas Priest Andee: Yeah, Priest! Stiletto Heels PoisonPoser: Very dangerous. Andee: Style and Danger! Glam Metal PoisonPoser: Good fun, but I'm definetly on the Metal side of things. Andee: Great, but only with the attitude! Live play or Studio work. PoisonPoser: I like both. Performing is great, but usually the stage is much too small and the stage-sound is shit. It's great to work in the studio if there's enough time. Andee: Live is raw energy, Studio is hard work. Live is in the moment, Studio is for eternity! Beer or Cola PoisonPoser: Hmm, both - but not mixed. Andee: Beer! Red Bull PoisonPoser: Too expensive for me, I go for Power Horse Andee: One of the richest men in Austria invented it, a good metaphor, i think. Rich from useless things! Your top 10 all time faves PoisonPoser: Iron Maiden - Iron Maiden Queensryche - The Warning Manowar - Sign of the Hammer Manowar - Triumph of Steel Martyr - Darkness at Time's Edge Pokolgép - Ejszakai Bevetes Candlemass - Epicus Doomicus Metallicus Shok Paris - Steel and Starlight Deadly Blessing - Ascend from the Cauldron Reaper - Beyond all Time Andee: Shok Paris – Go for the Throat Jag Panzer – Ample Destruction Pokolgép – Ejszakai Bevetes Sortilège – Larmes de Héros Savatage – Hall of the Mountain King Adramelch – Irae Melanox Tokyo Blade – Night of the Blade Aria – Igra s ognem Judas Priest – Metal Works Accept – Balls to the Wall The closing word is yours Andee: Thanks for the interview, raise the fist! PoisonPoser: Don't listen to shit and buy vinyl rules
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