BW&BK Exclusive: AVANTASIA Vocalist TOBIAS SAMMET On ALICE COOPER's Guest Performance - "He Interpreted My Ideas Perfectly, He Transported The Mood Of The Song Perfectly"

September 23, 2007, 10 years ago

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As previously reported, BW&BK; recently attended a listening session for the new AVANTASIA album, The Scarecrow. Over the course of the interview that followed - due to appear in BW&BK; #108 - vocalist Tobias Sammet (EDGUY) explained how he got Alice Cooper on board to sing lead vocals on the song 'The Toy Master':

“It was just a case of asking Eric Singer (Cooper's live drummer) to ask Alice if he’d be willing to sing on that song," says Sammet. "Eric just passed the song to Alice but he was busy at the time, so Eric suggested we ask him again later. It turned out that Alice was going to be in Los Angeles two weeks later or something and he could record the vocals in his bassist’s studio, but he had to listen to the song and like it. There was no guarantee he was going to sing on the track. I just sent him the song and hoped he would like it enough to do it. Three or four days later I got it back, and it blew my mind. You’ve heard it; his vocals are amazing. Me and Sascha (Paeth/producer) were like little kids; ‘Alice did it! Alice did it!’ (laughs). Even when we arranged the song and I sang the demos, I had a mental image of Alice singing the song. He interpreted my ideas perfectly, he transported the mood of the song perfectly."

Was there ever a fear that Cooper would deliver a performance that didn't live up to certain expectations or criteria? After all, you had zero input when he laid the vocals down.

"It could have been different, of course," Sammet admits. "There’s always a risk when you’re not there that you’re going to get back something you don’t like, but Alice has so much experience, and usually people of his generation that have been in the business and have been so successful for such a long time know what to do. They don’t give you shit performances. Someone like Alice, he listens to the song and he knows instinctively what the song needs."

Artists appearing on the new Avantasia album include Roy Khan (KAMELOT/vocals), Kai Hansen (GAMMA RAY/guitars), Oliver Hartmann, Jorn Lande (ex-MASTERPLAN/vocals), Bob Catley (MAGNUM/vocals), Michael Kiske (ex-HELLOWEEN/vocals), Rudolph Schenker (SCORPIONS/guitars), Alice Cooper (vocals) and Amanda Somerville (vocals).

The Scarecrow tracklist is as follows:

1) 'Twisted Mind' - Tobias Sammet, Roy Khan (vocals), Sascha Paeth (lead guitar)

2) 'The Scarecrow' - Tobias Sammet, Jorn Lande (vocals), Sascha Paeth (lead guitars)

3) 'Shelter From The Rain' - Michael Kiske, Bob Catley, Tobias Sammet (vocals), Henjo Richter, Kai Hansen (lead guitars)

4) 'Carry Me Over' - Tobias Sammet (vocals), Sascha Paeth (lead guitar)

5) 'What Kind Of Love' - Amanda Somerville, Michael Kiske, Tobias Sammet (vocals)

6) 'Another Angel Down' - Jorn Lande, Tobias Sammet (vocals), Sascha Paeth, Henjo Richter (lead guitars)

7) 'The Toy Master' - Alice Cooper, Tobias Sammet (vocals), Sascha Paeth, Henjo Richter (lead guitars)

8) 'Devil In The Belfry' - Jorn Lande, Tobias Sammet (vocals), Henjo Richter (lead guitars)

9) 'Cry Just A Little' - Tobias Sammet, Bob Catley (vocals), Sascha Paeth (lead guitars)

10) 'I Don't Believe In Your Love' - Oliver Hartmann, Tobias Sammet (vocals), Rudolph Schenker (lead guitar)

11) 'Lost In Space' - Tobias Sammet (vocals)

Fans should note that the Lost In Space EPs (Part 1 and Part 2), due to be released on November 16th, will feature non-album material including cover versions of ABBA's 'Lay All Your Love On Me' and the ULTRAVOX hit 'Dancing With Tears In My Eyes'.

The Scarecrow is due to be released in January 2008.

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