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Interview DOUBLE DIAMOND

A talk with
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Erwin Suetens

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For all those who are not familar with DOUBLE DIAMOND, an introduction please.

Double Diamond is a Belgian Heavy Metal band who exists already for years no one cares how long anymore ;-))

 

As far as i know, DOUBLE DIAMOND has been together for several years.Lonf time ago, but can you remember how it all started? Tell Me some more about that period.         

It all started in 1990. Back then we didn't have a singer but we started with the recordings of our Reflections demo. The then with Twilight active vocalist Filip Lemmens helped us out on that demo. Filip became a permanent member of the band in 1992 when we recorded the Behind Your Eyes demo. The line up back then was:
Filip Lemmens: vocals
Luc Philippi: Guitar
Erwin Suetens : Guitar
Marc Vinckier : Bass
Jack Franken : Drums
Luc Philippi had to leave the band because he no longer would combine it with his job. Tom Van Steenbergen replaced him.

 

            

What about the releases so far? Let's start with the demo releases.

 Demo tape:  Reflections (1990)
·    Reflections
·    Trial By Battle
·    G-Force

Demo tape:  Behind Your Eyes (1992)
·    Spanish Inquisition
·    Behind Your Eyes
·    The Law Of The Runes
·    The Chosen One
·    Glimpses Of The Past

Live CD: Live In Turnhout (1996) - Belgium
·    The Law Of The Runes
·    Victim Of Changes
·    White Dead (Insanity)
·    Something's Out There
·    Another Sleepless Night
·    Operation Desert Storm
·    The Number Of The Beast
·    Let The Rider Decide
·    AC/DC medley
·    Paranoid
(No longer available)


Compilation CD: Asterion - Metal(1996) - Belgium
·    Let The Rider Decide


CD:In Danger (1998) - Belgium
·    Operation Desert Storm
·    Anubis
·    Crime Of Passion
·    The Law Of The Runes
·    Another Sleepless Night
·    In Danger
·    White Dead (Insanity)
·    Shadow Of The World
·    Something's Out There
·    Let The Rider Decide
·    Regrets
·    Bonustrack

Compilation CD: True Believers In Metal (1998)- Germany
·   Anubis

Compilation CD: Heavy Metal Maniacs (1999)-Holland
 .  Changes

 

Split Vinyl EP with After All (2001) - Holland

 .  Conquer With Steel/Metal Rules

 

The same but Picture Disc (2001) - Holland

 

Metal Coven Compilation (2002) Germany

 .  Metal Rules

 

Tribute To Overdrive (2002) - Belgium

 .  Run If You Can

 

Killed By Deafness 2 (2003) - Belgium

.  Conquer With Steel

 

Your first full length album entitled "In Danger" which was released in 2000(am I  right??), was a great Metal album to me. Produced by ex-Scorpions drummer  Rudi Lenners. How did you get involved with him?

In fact it was released in 1998 - It was a very nice experience to work with Rudy. We met him at a time when  we had a deal with Asterion Records were he was the house-producer. They went bankrupt and we decided to do In Danger by ourselves and to keep Rudy. He had a very positive influence on us and pushed us to a higher standard. He is really a very nice guy. The only thing about In Danger is that it sounds too clean, it misses the power that we have when we play live. We sound a lot faster, harder and rougher live. Rudy had however a positive influence on us. I think he pushed us to an excellent performance. But he made the CD too clean, it all sounds too polished. At that moment we were impressed with how everything sounded. It is only after a while that you can judge your own work more objectively. If you record all instruments separately you automatically get a less aggressive sound so we lost a big chunk of our power because of the way we recorded. We went back into the studio with Rudy later  in 1998 to record Changes. That song got a much more powerful production, more aggressive, simply because we knew far better how we wanted to sound. Rudy can give you whatever sound you want, its however not always obvious to the band to decide on how the end result should sound.

 

 

Satisfied with the final results and hows the response from the Metal maniacs out there?         

Look above the response was very good (a few exceptions but who cares) over the whole world..

 

It was a self financed album, right? I suppose pretty hard for a Belgian band to  put a lot of cash together for making a debut album?

Yep, it is. We had some money invested in the cdin fact, all we had. We were lucky that the guys Rudy, Denis (the engineer and studio-owner) and Eric (Philippe the art designer) worked relatively cheap.

 

Who's the songwriter in the band?

The main song-writer of the band is me the rest brings a few ideas when the song comes together sometimes a few things are changed after playing the songs a lot.

 .

Can you tell me something about the lyrics?

The  lyrics are telling lots of stories.  Im personally a lot interested in Fantasy, Sorcery and Conan-kind stuff. When I look at that kind of movies, read books or play our songs, its like Im in another world! For some it might be cliche ; I dont care! Heavy metal is a way of life and they cant take it away from me! But even reality is told in my lyrics Flash In The Sky is the story about the space shuttle Colombia for example, or Be Strong about dictators like Saddam.

 

Later on a promo EP was recorded included two songs. Also very Metal loaded tracks and did it scores very well by the audience?

The response was really incredible, we never expected this. Maybe you can find the answer in the long period of silence since our last recording. And again, the sound is much different from our In Danger CD. It has far more power and the songs are a lot heavier. Untill now all reviews were very positive.
 

I saw you a couple of times live and each time the performance was fantastic! The last time I saw you , two covers were played. A traditional D.D. cover from Manowar-Battle Hymns and also Savatage-Hall Of The Mountain King which was amazing to me. Who's idea to make a Savatage cover and why.

Thanks for the compliment! The idea was mine! Im a big Sava-fan and think the main riff of HOTMK is the ultimate metal-riff, lets say, one of the ultimate metal-riffs.

 

No doubt about, you guys are die-hard Metal maniacs. A few faves of all time please?

This is a very difficult one! I will give it a try maybe tomorrow it will all be different! There are so much excellent metal albums

Walls Of Jericho Helloween

Tokyo Blade Tokyo Blade

Tygers Of Pan Tang Spellbound

Firewind Between Heaven And Hell

Black Sabbath Heaven And Hell

Primal Fear Primal Fear

Angel Dust Bleed

Savatage everything

And lots and lots more

 

Besides playing in a Metal band, some other interests?

Im also interested in military fortifications the ones around Antwerpen, Liége and Namur, the German Westwall and Atlantic Wall, Maginot Line and all those concrete pill-boxes over the world. Once, I will try to write a book about this with lots of pictures

I collect also strip-albums, not the American comics but the European ones like Thorgal, Aldebaran, and lots of others thats why I want to have Eric Philippe to draw all our sleeves, he is an amazing artist and his drawings are beautiful.

 

What about the new DD material? Maybe a new upcoming album or are you  guys, still searching for a record deal? 

Well, normally I may not tell this for this moment butMausoleum has contacted us for recording a new album until now the contract isnt signed but I hope it will happen any day, thanks to Alfie!

 

Can we expect the same DD style or is something changed?

No, we will do what we can do the best playing heavy f*cking metal that will blow your brain away.

 

Any concerts to play this summer? Where?

Luxemburg Germany Belgium: watch our concert dates at the website: http://doublediamondmetal.cjb.net

 

OK Erwin, thanx a lot brother. Any final comments to our readers?

If you like Heavy Metal support it in any way you can!

Heavy Metal is for me a way of live, I do hope that this year we get to  release  a follow up to our In Danger full length and that we get plenty of live gigs offered. Last but not least, I hope that more of the rock/metal press get  turned on to  those bands who do not stand for renewal but which stick to the old standards .

And thanks to you for your support and for this interview we will never forget that!.

DOUBLE DIAMOND HOMEPAGE

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