Holy U.D.O.! - Blood-Curdling Screams From Inside The Sanctuary Page 2
by Martin Popoff

Have you ever thought about what U.D.O. might stand for, aside from it being your name? "Nothing special (laughs). It's just my name. When we were making up the logo, we just simply put some dots in between. That's the only reason, it's just my name. Some people call us the United Dipstick Organization, or United Democratic Organization (laughs)."

With 25 years of metal-making under his belt, one would think the urge to headbang might be waning. Not so, offers Dirkschneider. "I do it because it's still fun to make music. That's the only reason. I have fun going on stage, I have fun touring, I have fun making albums." But if and when he does hang it up (judging by his demeanor, don't expect it soon), it looks like Udo will stay involved with the biz. "Yes," explains Dirkschneider. "For the last year I've had my own record label. I've signed some bands from Germany and some from Scandinavia, so that is what I would like to do when I stop making music. I've built a second business, you know. So that means that maybe when I give up some day (laughs), it looks like I will still be in the music business. I'll give all my experience back to young bands, help them."

In terms of his own affairs, Udo sees the irony of years of negotiations with labels, and what that does to an artist. "Good question (laughs). So now I open up my own record label (laughs). In the end, I think after all these years, I don't want to sign a contract with a record company anymore. Now I do everything on my own, so I think this is the best way. I'm long enough in this business and I know where the money goes (laughs)."

Judging from the thirst for the man's pioneering form of power metal, Holy should be a big hit with traditional metal fans stateside, the album being stomping, old-style U.D.O., or conversely a blended average of all sorts of Accept finery, big choruses, war-like riffing, those signature twin axe weaves, and of course, Udo's hair-raising vocal imprint, one of metal's most distinguishable and distinguished voices, up there with Ozzy, Halford, Lemmy and Ronnie James Dio. The track Holy is a high point for the man, with a lyric about "how this music is holy to us" while closer Cut Me Out is a bit of a departure. "Cut Me Out is not typical for us. We used a gypsy riff and then a very jazzy solo, and in the end the song is not exactly heavy metal anymore. It's very different from the other songs." The rest? Groovy, old-style Germanic metal, the wellspring from which the power metallers of today have slurped to great success.

Holy U.D.O.! - Blood-Curdling Screams From Inside The Sanctuary Page 3