Second Supper recently conducted an interview with SCORPIONS guitarist Rudolf Schenker. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow.
Second Supper: On your past albums, the SCORPIONS have drawn controversy for cover art such as "Virgin Killer". Do you believe such art would be acceptable on new albums today? How have artistic standards in rock changed since you started out?
Schenker: "'Virgin Killer' was an idea of the record company. The company guy came up and said, 'Even if I have to go to jail, I will do it.' As a German band, the journalists never went through the lyrics. We came up with 'Virgin Killer', and had the song, and the album cover, and the journalists said we can't do that. We told them to go to the album and listen to the lyrics. The 'Virgin Killer' is time. We wouldn't do that today. It's too far away from what the SCORPIONS are. What we liked very much was album sleeves like 'Lovedrive', which was pure rock 'n' roll. Also, the days of vinyl with the big album sleeve was the time when you could really see this piece of art on the cover. With the sales of CDs going down and people downloading, this part of what we had is gone. Today people don't want to listen to the whole album anymore."
Second Supper: Are artists tied down by this lack of emphasis on albums?
Schenker: "Of course. It's not so deep anymore. The record companies don't have the money to support bands that make experiments. You go to a record company, you have to have a hit with the first album, or you can go. There is no chance to build up a band like PINK FLOYD or GENESIS or LED ZEPPELIN. So they're not thinking too deeply. It's not good, but maybe times will change again."
Second Supper: The SCORPIONS have certainly been a career-building band. What's next in your career?
Schenker: "We're still watching the world. We want to be a part of this revolution. By traveling around the world we can see things coming up, warning us, and trying to put it into music. We're still on the road with 'Humanity Hour 1', and then we'll see what we'll do recording-wise. It's more important that we go on tour — more important than it was 20 years ago. We can see how much young kids enjoy live concerts. You can't download [the experience of] live concerts. We have a great chemistry and friendship in the band, and when we have an idea we put it on tape and bring out a new album."
Read the entire interview at www.secondsupper.com.