Krokus frontman Marc Storace recently participated in a career-spanning interview with Andrew DiCecco of Vinyl Writer Music; an excerpt follows:
Headhunter proved to be the band’s breakthrough album and has incredibly stood the test of time. What do you recall from the recording of the 1983 classic?
“That was the recording process that I loved most, and I had actually not experienced it in that way since the TEA days with Dieter Dierks; he had a big studio up in Cologne, where the Scorpions would go to, and everyone had his own booth. So, to start off the recording, the first thing you do is, you have the drummer in the middle of the biggest room and all the amps are in different rooms. And the band stands around the drummer, and you go through the paces. I have my lyrics, and I kind of do a little bit of directing, letting the band know the chorus is coming now; now it’s the bridge; now it’s the verse. With sign language! This whole shit is really exciting, and I miss that. And that happened again for the Headhunter album. So, what I do in that first stage, whilst we’re laying down the basic tracks, is I concentrate more on the arrangements. So, it’s the guide vocals that I’m singing, which I then repeat everything else. I go over the whole stuff again, but this time, I’m alone in the booth wearing headphones, and I have all the basic tracks of the band. And everyone else has gone home, in the hotel, or in the club, or whatever. And I’m in the studio alone; I was alone with Tom Allom, and Chris used to hang out there, and Fernando [von Arb] to go over the whole thing.
I was really happy. I think five of those were first takes. ‘Screaming In The Night’ was also one of them, and ‘Eat The Rich’ was one of them and a couple of the others. And there were others that I repeated just because I wanted to repeat them and try maybe different angles and different approaches, but they were kind of rejected later on. In the end, you sit in a control room and start jumping tracks. You record maybe 3-5 tracks of one song and start choosing the best sentences out of five tracks, or you throw out the obviously bad ones and start narrowing it down until you have the favorite track. It’s a process that I like, and it still works the same, only today you have pro tools.
But the recording I’m doing now for my solo album, the basic tracks have been done the same way as I did in Florida in Bee Jay Studios for the Headhunter album. With the whole band in one big room, and I’m behind the glass and helping them with the guide vocals to know what’s coming next. You’re so into this stuff sometimes, you’re not reading your notes, maybe.”
The video for “Screaming In The Night” received heavy rotation on MTV and exemplifies the band’s innate musicianship. Tell us about your memories from the video shoot.
“Oh yeah, I remember that very well. It was one of my favorite video recording experiences. It was recorded by Joe Dea. He’s from San Francisco; we’re still in touch. He’s an artist now. We were put together by the record company, I guess, and we met in Los Angeles. We were rehearsing for the tour at SIR Studios on Sunset Boulevard, somewhere close to the Chinese Theatre. Joe came in and we started talking, he asked me about the lyrics and stuff, and he said, ‘Well, here’s an idea. It’s not gonna literally be following your lyrics.’ I said, ‘Well, I don’t care. As long as it makes sense and it’s rock ‘n’ roll.’ So, he came up with this concept that reminds one of the Road Warriors movie. It’s like after the Holocaust or after the end of the world, or after a big, nuclear war; humankind has to do with whatever’s left and you’re still fighting evil, as always. It was a great concept, and what was really special to me, was the part where my chains are broken and I put on my Nikes. [Laughs] and climb down the ladder into that diner, then go walking over all the guys’ breakfasts after seeing see my loved one is alive reading the news on TV… crossing dimensions!”
To read the complete interview, visit this location.