By Stefan Nilsson, Roppongi Rocks
The voice of metal Udo Dirkschneider is back with some of his old Accept and U.D.O. band members in a new project.
Udo Dirkschneider’s characteristic voice is one of the most recognised in the history of heavy metal. His voice has been anchored in your brain through countless recordings and tours globally with the bands Accept, U.D.O. and Dirkschneider. In this new project called Dirkschneider & The Old Gang, Udo has reunited with two of his old Accept band members, bassist Peter Baltes and guitarist Stefan Kaufmann. Stefan, who played drums in Accept, later became a producer and guitarist for the band U.D.O. Dirkschneider & The Old Gang also features guitarist Mathias Dieth (Sinner, U.D.O.), Udo’s son Sven Dirkschneider (U.D.O., Dirkschneider, Saxon) on drums and Manuela Bibert on vocals. On the EP’s three tracks – “Face of a Stranger”, “Every Heart is Burning” and “Where the Angels Fly” – we get quality grown-up melodic metal. It is less dangerous, not as fierce and slower than the classic Accept and U.D.O. music. It is still good and it is obvious that this gang is enjoying playing together again. Udo’s voice is still there and works well with this music. Udo shares vocal duties with Manuela Bibert (what a great find!) and Peter Baltes in this project. The male/female voice combination on the songs makes it less predictable and more interesting. This music won’t scare anyone, but it has enough musical references to Udo’s and the other members’ past to make it enjoyable. It is part nostalgia but in the form of new songs. It is feelgood, sing-along music that can work well at festivals in front of old and new fans. “Where the Angels Fly” is my favourite track due to its great guitars and melody, its delicately slow start and effective build-up to the more dramatic chorus.
Dirkschneider & The Old Gang’s EP “Arising” will be released on 27th August in 12” vinyl, CD and digital formats via AFM Records.