It has been a long time since your last visit in Greece, how do you feel and what do you expect?
We are very excited about our return to Greece, as we haven‘t played there since 2010! We expect to have a great gig and a fun time!
You have been severely injured by an attack. Is everything ok with your health and are you fully recovered now?
Unfortunately I will probably never be 100% again, as I suffered a lot of bone displacement and nerve damage….but I am doing my best to make positive strides and I consider myself lucky in many ways, as the outcome certainly could have been worse.
16 full-length albums! Did you ever believe you would have such a career and that after many decades you would still be active with Pro-Pain?
No, I never would have imagined such a thing, especially considering some of the more turbulent lineups that we have had over the years. I put a great amount of dedication into the things in life which I am most passionate about, and that speaks a lot for the longevity of the band. Sure, I could just as well do something else…but I would never take what the fans have given me for granted, and so I will continue for as long as I can.
Should we expect a new album from the band soon?
The plan is to release a new album in 2020. We intended to do so sooner, but I haven‘t been able to play rhythm guitar (my main writing tool) for some time now due to a problem with my left hand. I am scheduled to have hand surgery on July 3rd, however….so I‘m hoping to begin writing some new riffs soon after.
Through the years, many changes in the line-up occurred; how does this affect the band?
For Pro-Pain (thankfully) it hasn‘t affected anything in a negative way. The fans have always embraced our changes and they trust that we have a good handle on things when it comes to quality control, etc. Speaking for bands such as ourselves, I can say that we are just regular people who go through the same things in life as most other people. So, we have lost certain members along the way due to real life situations. In the end, we all remain as brothers and I can proudly say that there is no drama and or ill will between any of our members (past and present). Pro-Pain is like one big family.
Which is for you, Pro-Pain, the difference that makes you stand out from other metal/hardcore bands that worship the old school heritage? Why should a newcomer in metal/hardcore check Pro-Pain?
In my eyes, Pro-Pain has always stood out from the rest of the pack. We are a fiercely independent band who has always vowed to do our own thing regardless of what everyone else are doing. We are not a „scene band“, and as a result our fans aren‘t „scenesters“ . I think that speaks highly for them and for us. Musically speaking, Pro-Pain have an unmistakable sound. When you hear it, you know who it is, and we are very proud of that fact….as it took a lot of blood, sweat and tears to accomplish.
Your three favorite albums of all time?
Cat Stevens – Buddha and the Chocolate Box
Boston – Boston
Chris Rea – New Light Through Old Windows
How difficult is worldwide touring for a band, when there is a family back home or even a job?
It‘s always difficult when you‘re so far away. Sometimes it‘s a helpless feeling that‘s a bit hard to describe. As the years go bye and as children get older it can get less burdensome, however. I give a lot of credit to my peers and anyone else who can endure such a lifestyle.
Did you ever have any funny situation or accident happen on a tour, which you will remember forever?
Way too many for such a short interview, but here are a few short examples:
-soundman falls out of bus while driving on the Autobahn. Bassist for Life Of Agony catches him by his jacket, yet we all can smell the burning rubber from his boots from the upstairs lounge.
-tour manager eats an entire brick of hash at Swiss Bank because they discovered that one of his bills was a counterfeit. When they finally let him go, he went back to the bus and slept for 2 days straight.
-after just having been released from a Polish jail, I was walking back to the bus and noticed someone being put onto a stretcher and into an ambulance. Upon further inspection, that „someone“ was my guitarist Eric Klinger who just got hit by a tram.
I will save the rest for my coffee table book : )
“Run for cover” was an excellent album of covers; would you do something similar in the future?
Sure. We had a blast recording those songs, and recording another cover album is something that we certainly would consider doing again.
Your favorite Pro-Pain album?
Difficult to say, but for the sake of this interview I will say „Act Of God“.
If you could go back in time, what would you change in your career or which mistake would you definitely not make again?
As they say, „hindsight is 20/20“. I tend to just roll with the punches, stay positive and move on. I‘d like to think that everything happens for a reason. If we actually had the ability to change a past negative into a positive, who is to say that the next reaction would also be positive? Life is a sequential chain of events, and certain positive events would never have happened if it weren‘t for the preceding negative event. The essence of the name Pro-Pain is to achieve positivity (pro) through negativity (pain). This is done via accepting things as they are and by trusting that things happen for a broader reason, and also by not interfering with or disrupting the natural flow.
Thanks for this interview and we look forward to seeing you all in Athens on June 13th!!