Holy U.D.O.! - Blood-Curdling Screams From Inside The Sanctuary
by Martin Popoff

Still alive and well, despite a two-pack-a-day cigarette habit which he says with a laugh "just might be my secret", consummate metal vocalist Udo Dirkschneider is pleasantly surprised with the continued interest in all things Accept, one of which is his ongoing U.D.O. project and their seventh record Holy.

Holy has been out for about five months in Europe, but now America gets to buy it domestic, just another one of those wee signs that metal is on a slow, methodical upswing. Given that every track on Holy is a co-write between Udo and Accept drummer-turned-guitarist Stefan Kaufmann, with Stefan also producing the album, one can solidly consider U.D.O. to be the incarnation and the reincarnation of Accept's unparalleled legacy.

Udo heartily agrees. "What we did on the new album is we went back to the roots of Accept. We're trying to keep the spirit of Accept alive. We used all the things that made Accept popular, the big choirs, all the melodies and especially the groove of Accept. I've got the former drummer for Accept Stefan Kaufmann with me, and he is now the guitar player in U.D.O. So in a way it's very easy for me to get that groove."

How do you prepare yourself to get creative? "That is very hard to explain. Let's just say that it happens more easily in the evening. I cannot write lyrics or make up melodies in the morning. I still work very, very close songwriting-wise with Stefan, so we don't have to talk that much. He comes up with some music ideas and I put my melodies and lyrics on them. It's very easy to work with him. I've known him now for 22 years. And so far we've had good success with the album here in Europe. We've done already half the European tour, and everything is going really well. For me, I know what Accept did in the studio for all those years, and when I see the reviews for this album, they all just say it's an Accept album without the name Accept. That means to me that we did the right thing."

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