In a new interview with Sweden's RockSverige, ACCEPT's Wolf Hoffmann was asked what Eddie Van Halen meant to him as a guitar player. He responded: "Well, I guess that when he came on to the scene, it was, like, 'What the hell's going on? Where did this guy come from?' I remember that very vividly, and I remember everybody wanting to be like him and play like Eddie for a while. Everybody started doing the tapping thing, me included, but I realized I can't do that stuff. It's not in my hands somehow, so I found another way of playing.
"I grew up being inspired by other people like Ritchie Blackmore and Uli Jon Roth and other people, but not so much Eddie Van Halen," he continued. "I would say he was giant, but you just have to listen to me playing, and it's completely different. But it doesn't mean I have a hell of a respect for him, because he's probably right up there with Jimi Hendrix and some of those ultra-legends. He was really somebody who transformed everything when they came along."
Wolf was also asked what it feels like to have people like METALLICA's Kirk Hammett citing him as an influence. He said: "Well, first let me say that I think it's ultra cool and makes me very humbled to hear that from a band like METALLICA, because they're huge, and that's amazing in itself. Then I would say that that's the way it's supposed to be. Everybody growing up listens to certain people, and it's your influence, and then you take a little part of this and that and make your own style eventually. That's what we did. We grew up listening to DEEP PURPLE and AC/DC and, of course, JUDAS PRIEST, and there are certain elements in all that that we really, really like, and I liked it and kind of built my own, or the ACCEPT style, out of that. The way we write songs and the way we sound and now if people take a little bit of that from us and take us as an influence, we're just basically passing the torch to other guys. It's amazing, and it's the way it's supposed to work, and it's the way it has worked for centuries. Nobody comes to this earth and invents everything at once; it's all bit by bit, and it's how the times move on. I think it's amazing."
ACCEPT's new studio album, "Too Mean To Die", will be released on January 15, 2021 via Nuclear Blast. The LP will be the group's first without bassist Peter Baltes, who exited ACCEPT in November 2018. He has since been replaced by Martin Motnik. ACCEPT's lineup has also been expanded with the addition of a third guitarist, Philip Shouse, who originally filled in for Uwe Lulis during last year's "Symphonic Terror" tour, before being asked to join the band permanently.
"Too Mean To Die" was recorded in Nashville, Tennessee with British producer Andy Sneap (JUDAS PRIEST, MEGADETH), who has been responsible for the magnificent studio sound of ACCEPT since 2010.
ACCEPT's last album, 2017's "The Rise Of Chaos", marked the band's first release with guitarist Uwe Lulis and drummer Christopher Williams, replacing Herman Frank and Stefan Schwarzmann, respectively.