THUNDER (Eng.)

– Hello and first of all, thanks for taking the time. How is everything going right now with THUNDER? What are you currently up to?

It’s a very busy time. This week we are doing in-store appearances all over the UK to promote the new album.

– You are now releasing your tenth album so, how are you feeling about it?

Very good. We are all very pleased with the album and can’t wait for people to hear it.

 

– Furthermore you said you weren’t going to do another album after «Bang». What made you come back, or change your mind?

We toured the UK in 2013 with Whitesnake and Journey and the response from the audience was overwhelming every night so we thought it might be a good thing to make an album.

 

– «Wonder Days» is your first album without Ben, who we can now say has successfully fought cancer. Did not having him affect in any way the album and its creation process? As he got the all-clear I guess he will be back in THUNDER when he is totally recovered?

It was strange not having Ben in the studio with us but we had to just get on with it. It was a bit like when we recorded Backstreet Symphony. Back then Ben was brought in to engineer and play keyboards as he wasn’t part of the band. He will be playing with us when we begin touring next month so he is back!

 

– First off, I would like you to comment a little bit the idea behind the title of the album («Wonder Days») and the cover, as it all seems to have a certain nostalgic meaning.

The song Wonder Days is about being a teenager in the 70s and growing up in London and we felt that that was a good idea to apply to the visual aspects of the

album. We tried to re-create a 70s street scene that reminded us of ourselves as kids.

 

– In fact I personally think on a musical level «Wonder Days» is a little bit like going back to your roots, as it has a lot of Soul and Blues. Was this the idea you had in mind?

Not particularly. The songs really dictated the direction of the album and I never know what kind of songs I’m going to write until they come out! It’s always a spontaneous thing.

 

– Is an album with a lot of different elements, nuances and inspirations. After so many years into the music world, how important is to keep things fresh, diverse and entertaining?

I think you have to work as hard as possible and try to keep an eye on what’s going on around you but it’s important to interpret the world through your own eyes and ears, not somebody else’s.

 

– Anyway there are also more modern songs, sometimes reminding to what URIAH HEEP did during the 90’s. Due to this I would like to know if there are any newer bands that have inspired you in any way.

We all like the new album by Royal Blood which is a mixture of many rock styles down the years. I tend to find myself listening mainly to music that was made before 1980 but I’m not sure if it was better then or I’m just getting old!

 

– The sound is also pretty current. What kind of sound did you go for?

When we make a Thunder record we always try to make it feel like you’re standing in the room while the band are playing. We want it to be as exciting and real as possible,

 

– In fact yourself have handled production duties. How comfortable and positive is having a band member doing this? What are the pros and cons? As I guess no one like you may know what sound does the band want to get.

If you write and arrange songs then production is the next logical step. I have a pretty clear idea how things should sound before we record and the band trust me to take charge of things. We’ve been together a long time so everybody has their role within Thunder and we are all comfortable with that.

 

– Talking about the songs and the diversity in this album, I would like to highlight the song «The Prophet», really heavy and with a galloping rythmn in the beginning, wich reminded my to HEART’s «Barracuda», but I also thought it had an almost Metal flavour. What are your thoughts? What could you comment on this song?

This song was written about a guy called Simon Cowell who is responsible for TV talent shows like X Factor. I have a real problem with this sort of show as I believe it isn’t a good thing for the music industry. Maybe the way I felt about the subject helped create the fast, aggressive tempo of the song!

 

– «The Rain» also got my attention. Even though there are a few more tracks with an «American» twist, this one features a mandoline and has a certain Folk reminiscence. What’s the story behind this track?

I was teaching myself mandolin and read an article about Irish immigrants that went to America to find work and ended up in terrible poverty and hardship in the great depression and drought. Somehow the two things connected and the song came out of that.

 

– All this about «Wonder Days» being said; how could you describe it in just 3 words?

Splendid, sexy, sumptuous!

 

– You have always standed out with your Blues/Soul infused Rock n’ Roll. In fact I think during the 80’s British and American Hard Rock bands had really different sounds, British going for a more traditional sound, bringing back the 70’s and even 60’s essence. What do you think set apart European and American bands back then?

English rock music has always come from blues and r&b, which is ironic as both those styles of music came from America originally. American rock in the 80s was very pop orientated which is equally ironic as most great pop music came from England!

 

– And finally, what are your near-future plans? I see you have some acoustic shows ahead, as well as a date as supporters for ZZ TOP.

We aim to tour as much as possible this year to promote the album so hopefully we’ll get to Spain at some point soon. We’re looking at doing a few festivals in the summer as well. Everything we can do really!

 

– That’s all, thank you once more for answering our questions. If you want to add some final words; feel free to do it.

Thank you and I hope we see you soon!!!

 

Tania Giménez

tania@queensofsteel.com

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