Holland's Lords of Metal e-zine recently conducted an interview with former MASTERPLAN vocalist Jorn Lande. A few excerpts from the chat follow:
Lords of Metal: A while back I was quite surprised by the announcement that you left MASTERPLAN. Of course musical differences was given as the reason, but can you be a bit more specific about the actual cause for the decision?
Jorn: Musical differences is part of the truth, there are in most cases unofficial issues about somebody's departure from a band. The main reason for me to leave MASTERPLAN was the fact that for the first two records all material was written by Uli [Kusch, drums] and Roland [Grapow, guitar]. I just got the tunes that they had written and had to add the melodies and lyrics to it. I don't really like this situation, because for me this is not a natural way of songwriting. I wanted to have a bigger contribution and try to change the songwriting process into a band thing. As it became obvious that this wouldn't change, I decided it was time to go and leave. Furthermore I wanted to have less experimental and modern influences in the music and get back to the more straightforward metal style. You know what they say: sometimes less is more. These two things combined led to my decision to leave MASTERPLAN.
Lords of Metal: In the past we've often seen you participating in a promising band (like for instance BEYOND TWILIGHT and MILLENIUM) and leaving that band after a very promising start. Are you such a difficult person or is this just coincidental?
Jorn: Let me correct you on this, since I believe that only MASTERPLAN was a promising band both from an artistic as well as a commercial standpoint. The other bands were good, but they didn't sell any records. Take BEYOND TWILIGHT as an example — there was no tour, no investments by the record company, no real support in general. Therefore is was impossible for me to stay, because I have to make a living from singing you know. Same story with ARK — great band, 'Burn the Sun' was a great record, but we didn't get anywhere. There were no actual results. So to answer your question, I'm not a difficult person at all, I just need to provide a living for myself which makes it sometimes impossible to stay in a band. I want and need to be productive.
Lords of Metal: Another collaboration which was very promising was the one with Russell Allen (SYMPHONY X). What was the actual [impetus] to do something together?
Jorn: The request came from Frontiers Records label boss Serafino, who thought that a collaboration between the two of us would work out great and it did. In fact, we are planning to release a second album around springtime next year called "The Revenge". The new record will be mixed around Christmas time, since we both just finished our vocal parts. It will be in the same vein as "The Battle"; maybe a bit heavier. At the beginning Bob Catley of MAGNUM was also considered to be one of the singers, but because of the reunion of MAGNUM it didn't fit in his schedule.
Lords of Metal: Your solo career is the on that is showing the most continuity of them all, having released already four records before these two new ones. Is your solo career going to be the only direction that you will be focussing on for the next period of are you still going to collaborate in a band type of format?
Jorn: Of course you never know, but at this moment I'm not planning to start a new band. The days of supergroups are over, so there is no use to try and start up one any more. For the time being I will focus purely on the band JORN. If an established band would ask me to be their vocalist, I might be interested. That remains some kind of a secret dream for me.
Lords of Metal: Can you be more specific, which bands would be interesting for you?
Jorn: That is a difficult question, but if I could sing in Ritchie Blackmore's RAINBOW or BLACK SABBATH (from the Dio era) that would be fantastic.
Lords of Metal: Personally I think your voice is best suited for the WHITESNAKE, RAINBOW and DEEP PURPLE songs, since you have a strong resemblance with David Coverdale and Ronnie James Dio. What kind of material is best suited for your voice in your opinion?
Jorn: I think that "On And On" [by MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP] is the best track on the album [referring to the JORN album "Unlocking The Past" featuring covers of hard rock classics — Ed.]. It's a great performance and I feel that we made it a Jorn song. I believe it's more powerful than the original. WHITESNAKE, RAINBOW and DEEP PURPLE have been very important for me in developing myself as a vocalist and I sung these songs quite a lot and so they are very natural for me, which you can hear in my performance. I really feel at ease with this kind of material.
Read the entire interview at www.lordsofmetal.nl.