INTERVIEW: Headbangers Lifestyle (Michael Wilton)

On March 1st of this year Queensrÿche released their 15th studio album called ‘The Verdict’. The band is still on tour and before the show in Eindhoven I had the opportunity to talk to one of the QR guys, which I grabbed with both hands obviously. On the day it became clear that Michael Wilton [guitarist and co-founder of Queensrÿche in 1982] would be my partner in crime, so I was really looking forward to talk to this QR “hero”

,,Well, you know the way you do it in the USA with the record companies is you put on YouTube basically videos with words, so, that’s how it started. We did ,,Man The Machine” and once that hit it kind of goes viral, so you get interviews, blogs, reviews; you know what it is like. All the hard-core fans listened to it and they were very positive. Lots of fans really enjoy the fact that QR has gone back to the way they used to be. The power metal, semi-progressive sound with lots of melody and exciting, you know. I think the first single really catapulted everything!! Of course, the record company also had to promote the album and I did over a 100 interviews. In these days it is feast or famine; you have lots of opportunities as a band, but you have to take them as there are so many bands out there doing what we are doing, so…. The reviews of ‘The Verdict’ were really positive in the press. In Germany `The Verdict’ charted top 10 and that has never happened for QR in the whole history. So, that was a great springboard to go out live and promote this album and this year is fully booked and we are going to tour ‘The Verdict’ next year as well. However, I also want the guys to write new songs, get another album out as I am getting older and I cannot wait 5 years between records, you know, ha ha…. The title of the album does not have a special, deeper meaning, but I believe that it deals with some of the semi-political/sociological means of the songs. `The Verdict’ is kind of symbolic as we are possibly in troubled times but there is always a bright side. It is definitely not a concept album and it is also not really thematic. There are different topics and viewpoints, like for instance inner unrest and troubled relationships.”

Could you please tell something more about my favourite track of this album, ,,Bent”?
,,That has a lot to do that the really important decisions are being made for the few and not for the many. I think it makes reference to the oil drilling in secret areas and the question is: “Is that right or does it just make jobs?’’”

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