The Timeless Metal Reveries of Wardress
The Timeless Metal Reveries of Wardress
Wardress from Germany present their own dynamic brand of traditional heavy metal for the modern age. With roots in the 80’s and an album called Metal Till The End that has just been unleashed through Black Sunset Records, Wardress is a metal band ready to rock and rage your world for all time! Highwire Daze recently interviewed guitarist Gor Moore to discuss the the making of the almighty Metal Till The End, as well as how his son inspired him to release the old Wardress tapes on their first magnum opus entitled Dressed For War. Also of note: drummer Andy Setter is the guitar tech for the legendary (and always touring around the around) Sabaton – and we discuss how this affects booking shows for Wardress. Read on and discover the timeless metal reveries of Wardress.
Introduce yourself, tell me what you do in Wardress, and how long the band has been together.
My name is Gor – I’m the guitarist – and for many songs the main songwriter – and I joined the band about 1985. The band was split in about ’86 and we relaunched the band in 2018.
Before we get back to the modern day, what was it like to release your first album Dressed For War after all of this time?
The fun thing was it all started when I was in our cellar and searched for something – and found that old tape from the rehearsals back then. So many bits and pieces – some choruses – some riffs – some parts were recording during the recording session. So it was a fun moment to remember all the shit we did in our youth. And I asked my kids what do you think? Is it good or should I leave it as it is? Because I thought it sounded surprisingly good even after almost 35 years – and they said “yes dad, it sounds as good or as bad as the other shit you are listening to” because they don’t listen to much heavy metal. My son likes Metallica and stuff like that, but he’s not that much into heavy metal. So, it was a fun moment. When he said it was as good as the other stuff I’m listening to, it can’t be that bad. (Laughs)
How did the pandemic affect the band if at all, especially with the recording of the new album Metal Till The End?
Let’s describe it this way – we had to realize that we won’t play any shows over the next month at the moment when the pandemic started – until we realized it was not only months but some years. And so we thought, okay, the first album went quite well. We were on the charts in Germany – at least the metal/rock charts, and we sold a good number of albums. So, let’s keep it, but we need new stuff to continue. So, I thought, well then let’s do it, write new songs. And I began to write new songs and exchanged ideas with Erich (vocalis) at that time – and with Kimon our other guitarist – and many things were done with Andy our drummer who is the guitar tech for Sabaton – that’s his main job.
We were not allowed to work with more than two people for many months. So, we met at the rehearsal room and checked some ideas. I did somehow work the way we could during the pandemic, so I tried to keep control over how we do it, because I was the center point for all things that happened. So that’s how we worked during that time, and we wrote one track after another. And then we said “Okay, we have enough stuff to put out a new album.” This took 3-4 months because we had more time to write the songs because we couldn’t find quick solutions to work on these. So this digital exchange of ideas kept us running – otherwise we couldn’t work on new songs.
Metal Till The End – what does that title mean to you along with the fact that you are releasing a second album at long last?
Metal Till The End – our belief is that this music is not a time period – it’s the music that we listen to until we die. That’s the idea behind it. We wanted to write timeless music, but with this old school spirit. And again I’ll talk an example where I asked my son if this is the music if he thinks it’s for old farts or is it something that younger guys would listen to. And he clearly said that it has no time stamp.
Does your son have any music aspirations at all? Does he want to be in a band?
No, not at all. He’s more interested in soccer rather than music. But he likes music very much. He sometimes comes to our concerts. I play also in another band which is more of a tribute band, and he was at the last concert that we did over in Frankfurt – and he went to both Wardress shows we did. So, he’s a big fan of the band, because he thinks it’s great music.
One of the songs you did on this album was a cover of Mr. Crowley by Ozzy Osbourne. What made you decide to cover that song and what do you think now that Ozzy is pretty much retired?
The second part is a very sad one. I met Ozzy in person in 1996 I think when I worked for a German hard rock and heavy metal magazine. I had an interview slot with Ozzy Osbourne in Colonge and we had half an hour – and I was the last interview that day. And we spent one hour together – had a lot of fun, and talked about everything that was interesting from my side and his side. I had a great interview with him, and that’s one of best memories I have. I also went to some concerts, taking some photos and doing a review of the concert – that was really wonderful, because I’m an Ozzy fan from 1980 when he released Blizzard Of Ozz.
And so, we come to your question why we had chosen Mr. Crowley. It’s an iconic song and we love it. We’ve had it on our live setlist for years now, so we’ve played it many times. And we give it the Wardress effect – the version that we did is slightly heavier. The intro includes the keyboard part, but the melody line is played by our bass player with a distorted bass. So if you remember what Cliff Burton did, that’s the style he used and it sounds great. The middle part is these twin guitars, and Erich has this very unique voice. So we didn’t want to just copy it – we wanted to put some tasty Wardress elements to it. But for sure we kept Randy Rhoads solos as they were – I didn’t want to change anything on that because they were perfect.
Will there be any touring or shows coming up?
Yes, we’re working hard on that. The reason behind it is our drummer Andy is the guitar tech for Sabaton. During the pandemic he was mainly here because he had no job or very little jobs. Now they tour a lot, so we have to find a solution on how we solve that by not excluding Andy because he’s our drummer. So, we found a solution. The brother of our bassist Mirco is a drummer (named Guido) and he helped out in other bands I played with and did a very professional job. So, we asked him if he could help out and asked Andy if he agrees. So, when Andy’s here, we play with him and when Andy is on tour, we play with Mirco’s brother. This solution is quite new. We just arranged it the last two weeks. And now we start booking. So, we have our first show on the 1st of May in Frankfurt and we have some smaller festivals that we will play in autumn.
Erich Eysn – vocals
Gor Moore – guitar, back vocals
Kimon Roggenbruck – guitar
Mirco Daugsch – bass
Andy Setter – drums
(Interview by Ken Morton)
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