Festivalphoto interviewed Kreator founder and frontman Miland 'Mille' Petrozza shortly before they played the main stage at this years Bloodstock festival.
Festivalphoto: You started writing new material for a new album to follow the 2009 "hordes of chaos" album earlier this year. Will you be recording the album in live conditions as you did with "Hordes Of Chaos"?
Mille: We'll see, I mean we definitely want to get in one room together to do the basics. Yeah we talked about it with our new producer Jens Bogren and we'll see what happens - whatever is best for the music. We definitely want to get a live vibe to this, I mean it worked with Hordes of chaos, and we might continue on that vein, but on the other hand we want to take more time because some of the materials will be very complex, not like in the way of progressive but more, more in the way of a lot of melodies, lot of things happening and a lot of heavy riffs and stuff, so its got to be nailed you know, whatever is the best for the songs will be done.
Festivalphoto: Is there a common theme to the songs on the new album ?
Mille: There will be but I can't tell you right now. It's not that its a secret or anything but we definitely want to.. You know what we do with Kreator is we try to capture the zeitgeist kind of thing and we definitely will do that for the next record as well, so it will be a dark album but you know with a very positive outlook. That's what we have in mind you know and we think there's a way to overcome all this negative energy and move into something positive, so that's basically what the next album's going to be about, lots of positive energy in a negative world.
Festivalphoto: Were there any particular things that inspired you for the new material?
Mille: So far yeah there are a couple of songs that are inspired, but it smostly like emotions, it's mostly stuff that it feels like I want to capture, lik some feeling I had at a particular time when I wrote those songs. I think what it will talk about is mostly the struggle, not the struggle in a negative way but more like we are all living on the planet earth and we seem to destroy it and I think it is possible to stop the destruction and look ahead into the future. There's also this year 2012 when the Mayan calendar ends. I don't think its going to be the end of the world but it might be, ahh, I'm not like one of those guys but I think there might be some kind of change coming, not necessarily in 2012 but there will be change coming, there will be a change in the way people perceive things and people handle things that happen on this planet and in general you know we'll see. This is mostly what I always talk about you know.
Festivalphoto: When is the album likely to be recorded and released?
Mille: Sometime next year, middle of next year hopefully.
Festivalphoto: What can we expect from your set tonight?
Mille: It's going to be a best of set, typical festival, all the goodies, lot of new stuff also.
Festivalphoto: You played Wacken last week - how was that?
Mille: Great, amazing, I mean like Wacken is like THE metal festival of the world, its just byond...but this should be good also tonight, I'm looking forwards to Bloodstock.
Festivalphoto: Over the years you've played shows in many countries. Are there any countries where you havent played that you would like to play?
Mille: We'd like to go to, yesterday I ran into some guys from a band called Nervecell, they're from Dubai, we havent played that part of the world yet. We haven't played certain parts of Asia yet, I think we've never played Thailand, and Africa we only played once, so there's still a couple of spots left.
Festivalphoto: With so many albums of material to choose from, how do you pick the setlist?
Mille: It's getting harder of course, but on the other hand its like its not a bad thing to have to pick from so many songs people want to hear, it would be worse the other way around.
Festivalphoto: It must be difficult - if you played everything people wanted to hear then it would be a three hour set.
Mille: Yes but I look at it as a privilege, you know we have many songs that people like, and many that we like, and we know which ones are working in a live situation, we know our strong songs, and we know there's a certain amount of songs which we have to play which is not a bad thing.
Festivalphoto: How would you say the Kreator sound has changed over the years?
Mille: I think we've grown as a band you know, this lineup has lasted for 11 years almost so the band is stronger than ever and I'd never have imagined that 15 years ago in the mid 90s - things went out of hand you know and so I think yeah and the metal world has changed, metal is such a huge culture these days, a a worldwide culture and this is just the way it should be, it should have always been and it has always been in the underground but now its a good thing you have a festival like Wacken and you have 80,000 people and the main major German television is doing a huge report on it so it seems to have gotten into the mainstream as well.
Festivalphoto: After over 25 years of Kreatorare there any things you look back at and say "that was a real highlight for me"?
Mille: I never really think about the highlights too long. Last weekend we played Wacken and since then we already played the next festival at Brutal Assault in the Czech republic so I dont really have the time to think about the highlights of the career, I'm thinking of the highlights still to come, but on the other hand, yes there have been ups and downs of course. Highlights, well it might sound like a cliche to you but for me every show is a highlight, if it works well. If you have technical issues or something goes wrong then of course its not a highlight but most of the time nowadays, we're sucha team now that most shows become a highlight which is nice.
Festivalphoto: It must be an amazing feeling standing on stage knowing that a crowd of 80,000 is there to see you.
Mille: It was good last week, but yesterday was also good and that was only 15,000, only *laughs*
Festivalphoto: You get a very different feel from different types of show, small venue, festival and so on.
Mille: You have to look at the real world, we know that festivals have become so strong and huge, we know where we come from and we know when we go on tour in the US and play Tucson Arizona we'll play in front of a couple of hundred people which is great also, its a great feeling if you get those people to like you, its harder to get a crowd going than when you've got 80,000 people all ready to party.
Festivalphoto: In a small venue its more up close and personal whereas at festivals you are quite a long way from the crowd.
Mille: Exactly, so its all good and what we should do is a UK tour soon, a proper UK tour - that's something that I want to do.
Festivalphoto: What bands do you listen to if you ever get spare time?
Mille: I have all kinds of stuff on my ipod, I listen to some witchhouse stuff, and heavy music I listen to Ghost of course, I'm a big fan of Ghost, but I think a lot of musicians are these days, then of course the classics - Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, but also a lot of strange stuff that you wouldnt know because its from Germany like some german rap stuff - I'm not a rap fan but there's one band that's really good, but in my heart I'm a metahead. To me the last great great band that came out is Ghost because there's something about them that I like.
Festivalphoto: Do you ever get time off to relax at home or are you constantly recording and touring?
Mille: We all have to work you know, and at this point I'm working more than I'm relaxing. I mean I have a job where I can choose when I want to work, if I want to work one day then I work and if I don't then I don't. I'm privileged to say ok today I can try to sit down. What im doing right now is because I'm in the songwriting mode, I have a music room where I can go into and sit down for eight hours a day and see what happens. Sometimes I'm in there and just frustrated at the world because nothing is happening and I come out with no riffs, and sometimes I go in there and just record like this click click click, so its an adventurous feeling at the moment.
Festivalphoto: How would you say the music industry has changed during your career?
Mille: We started as teenagers in the 80s and we experienced a lot of good things and bad things. On the business side we realised after a while that a lot of the people that you work with are not your friends, they want to make money with you. Nowadays we are experienced and have a team of people working with us that we trust - I do everything myself. I do the management, I work with a couple of agencies of course but I'm, we're all kind of do it yourself these days - pretty much do everything by ourselves which has gotten very easy these days in the age of the internet of course.
Festivalphoto: The internet has made a huge difference in terms of being able to find out about new bands.
Mille: You know what, I think what's realy great about the internet is that the MTV bullshit has gone, nobody cares about that any more. I've been waiting for that for so long because those people man they can be so fucking radical. You spend months recording an album and a lot of money doing a video and they go like "we might play it, we have to decide", like they're the kings of the world, and now they can fuck off, and this is really great, something that I really like because TV doesnt have the same meaning that it had, and music television is gone - thats history.
Festivalphoto: With the internet the small bands are able to get their music out there without having to go to the big companies.
Mille: Its pure anarchy man, in a good way. Its great, amazing.
Festivalphoto: Thank's for your time - its been a pleasure.
Mille: Thank you man.