Last updated 25.01.07
Alex: Hello Thomas!
Thomas: Hello Alex! How do you do in Moscow? [smile]
Alex: There is really warm winter, I guess first time in my life [smile] So let's start an interview [laugh]
Thomas: OK! [laugh]
Alex: Can it be said that your recent «Best Of...» compilation is a kind of continuation of «Zehn» album? Is it a kind of Volume II for «Zehn», or not?
Thomas: In a way, you could say, it's a follower, but... I have to take a look on it, because I really don't remember what it was... oh, I've got it... yeah, yes! Yeah, it is the kind of the same, «Zehn» is covering a period of time, and latest release, as you know, is covering a period of time... not from the very beginning, but the last few years [laugh]
Alex: He-he [laugh] But I have to say, when I'm listening «Best Of...»... yeah, «Best Of...» is great compilation album, I really like it, believe me, I listen it a lot of time...
Alex: ..Much more than «Zehn» album for example... I like how it compiled, how tracks follow each other and so on, but this album is starting from hitting «Foreigner» and ending with so down-tempo and so sad composition «6 Feet Underground»... Album in general seems a bit sad compilation.. It has no such positive «Subtronic» for example [smile]
Thomas: I don't think so.. I hope [laugh] It contains «We Fly.. Tonight» or «Love Will Find A Way»
Alex: But why you end with sad composition? Is it has any reason or meaning?
Thomas: The thing is we wanna have the latest singles, it was important, like «Miss You More», «I'm Not dreaming of You», «We Fly.. Tonight», so we put on it singles and our favorite album tracks. So it was very important to have such songs like «6 Feet Underground», even it wasn't single.. It's not the only singles compilation, you know...
Alex: I like an idea to place on compilation much more album tracks [smile]
Thomas: And of course, don't forget about remixes on CD2 [laugh]
Alex: By the way, at the moment album is available as Limited DCD only... Drakkar will release one CD edition later? [smile]
Thomas: I don't sure, but I think so [smile]
Alex: In case of speaking regarding Drakkar... This album is a kind of celebration of your being at Drakkar... do you satisfied years spent with them?
Thomas: Oh, we are very satisfied, we are very satisfied with the time we work together, because they simply trust in the way we work, they believe in what we do. They never complain on our songs [laugh] they keep us always in freedom we need, there is no pressure. Work with Drakkar is great, and I think for both sides.
Alex: If for me, I like the way Drakkar work, I like how they work with you, and how they works with other artists. So next question - was «Breathless» a track, initially written to «Subkutan» album?
Thomas: Yes, it was written for «Subkutan», it was planned to be putted on the album, but when the work on songs was finished, we just had a feeling that «Breathless» didn't really sits to the rest of songs. We decided to make it special, people could listen it via Internet.
Alex: OK, and next new song on «Best Of...» is «Love Will Find A Way»... Could tell some details about this song? Why it was released just like a promo single only? And in a way of distribution it looks like fan only single..
Thomas: We wanna to find out, is it make a sense for us to release a single, you know, because people don't buy singles anymore, it's getting harder and harder to sell singles, Drakkar decided to make a promo single, to take a look on people's reaction, I guess you know we made a video clip for this song.. The idea was to present our work to press and media.. But it was like with each and every release from us... [laugh] Radio stations said us it didn't sits in their programs... People are still believe that we are too dark whatever this song too poppy.. This is a problem you know..
Alex: When I'm looking at your MySpace page I always wonder how varied public are interested in your music, so I think only program directors have wrong opinion, public have the right one!
Thomas: I don't know why, because «Love Will Find A Way» is really nice pop song which sits in every program. No of us know what the problem is. We try to put it on some TV stations, like Viva, but seems they still don't believe in us [laugh]
Alex: Regarding your video.. Where and how it was filmed? It looks very tender, some of fans even linked it with some Moby videos, with foreigners from other planets...
Thomas: It was filmed in Berlin, the film team shot it for two days, we were involved only one day [laugh] I think it was Saturday evening [laugh], we met at the train station and we shot 5-6 hours, we really love to do it, as the robot have to do the main work, film team spent whole day without us.
Alex: Who is responsible for idea to put robot in your video?
Thomas: Oh, it was director's idea.
Alex: And who was director? I missed his name..
Thomas: I missed it too [laugh] I don't know [laugh]
Alex: No problem [laugh] Your upcoming 3 concerts in Russia seems as start of your Best Of tour... Are you already rehearsed the show?
Thomas: Not yet, just a few days ago we talks about songs we wanna play. It will be a kind of Best Of show [smile] We will do most of the songs of the new «Best Of...» album. Not all of them, but most of them.
Alex: Did you hear something about how Russian De/Vision fans suggested their ideas for set-list for upcoming Russian shows?
Thomas: No, I don't know about it [smile] We were at festivals, and we didn't know anything about what's happening at Russian forums [laugh]
Alex: If for me, Thomas, believe me - I would like to listen that set which De/Vision would like to play themselves [smile]
Thomas: Yeah, of course, you know, all I know that promoter of the concerts ask us to play a kind of Best Of show, basically songs of new release. We decided to do some surprises. We will play some songs we didn't play for a long time. So it will be mostly songs from new album and some other songs. I think it will be 2 hours show, as seems from songs we already speak, but maybe if we will have a feeling that it's too much, we'll make our show a little bit shorter.. but right now I would say we have 2 hours program.
Alex: I hope you will never short up your show after Kaliningrad [smile]
Alex: By the way, you said, that you would like to perform something else instead some fan favorites like «Try To Forget»... so what you would like to do onstage, and can we expect it soon? What tracks you would like to play?
Thomas: [smile] You know the problem is, we had so many releases last years, so many songs I would like to play, «6 Feet Underground» for example, and many others from «6 Feet Underground» album, I like many slow songs, but you can't play too many slow songs [smile]
Alex: Yeah, it would become (as I said in the beginning) The Sad Tour [laugh]
Alex: We are all dark wave lovers, we like sad songs [smile]
Thomas: Yeah, me too! [smile]
Alex: Maybe you will do special short tour...
Thomas: ...of all darkest songs [laugh]
Alex: And, at other hand, what songs you are always play, and you are always like to play? Few titles that you play for your own pleasure?
Thomas: OK... Of course, songs like «New Drug», it's the song we really like to play any time and any place, at De/Vision concert or at festival, it doesn't matter if there are just 10 songs in set list.. «I Regret», «New Drug» - these songs are always in the set. And we play «Try To Forget» each concert... awful, I don't like this anymore!!! [laugh]
Alex: I can imagine [smile]
Thomas: But of course, this song is fan favorite.
Alex: Any plans to release new live CD/DVD later this year?
Thomas: Hmmm... we had talk about it, maybe after next official release, you know, in August, we will be on tour in October-November, so maybe.. Right now is only the talk, idea but nothing else. So maybe next tour will be released on DVD.
Alex: When you are planning to hit Germany and Europe with The Best Of Tour?
Thomas: No-no-no! We just had 3 gigs in Germany, two festivals and one De/Vision show, now 3 dates in Russia, and that's all right now. Because the problem is - we are working on the new album, we can't go long tour, ten or more days tour, it's too much... it's not really a tour, I won't call it a tour, it's just 3 fucking concerts in Germany and Russia [laugh] it's just few gigs, it's not really Best Of Tour.
Alex: Returning to your new album - so you are already working on it? When did you start? On which state it right now? Which direction you choose for it?
Thomas: We are on the very early stage right now, we're just starting writing few weeks ago, maybe in November-December or something, when we really started, right now we only have a few, I think, 6 or 7 songs, but songs of course are not finished, you know, we have some melodies, we have some vocal lines, I just 2 weeks ago wrote first lyrics, and things like that, so songs are not finished, we have melodies, drums, sequences, vocals.. One song is almost ready. So we just started and we have a lot to do. As I said before, release is planned to August, we wanna finish album I think end of April or beginning of May, or June. We still have long way to go, and you are asking about style/direction, all i can state it going back to the roots...
Alex: Again [smile]
Thomas: Again! But much more than before! The songs we have now are really go back to the 80x in the way you know, that's how we feel it right now. All of us - me, Steffen and producer team..
Alex: The same team (Schuhmann/Bach)?
Thomas: Yes, the same team, Schuhmann/Bach, we all have feeling right now, trying to reanimate the 80x sound in a good way. It feels good, it sounds good for us, and we have some very nice tunes for our new album, so I think it will be surprise.
Alex: It sounds great! I wanna wish you good luck and a lot of inspiration! By the way, in case of upcoming 3 Russian shows, do you have a drive to visit our country again?
Thomas: It's really special, you know. It's always very special for all of us, come to Russia, and I'm really looking for coming again to Russia, to have fun with people on party [smile]
Alex: And now time for some questions people is always like to know [smile]
Thomas: Ok! [smile]
Alex: Last movie you seen in cinema?
Thomas: Ohhh... last movie...
Alex: Or DVD? Movie that you like?
Thomas: The last DVD... oh, I have to look at my DVDs... [laugh]
Alex: I guess, you don't like to often go cinema? [smile]
Thomas: When I go to cinema, it's has to be a big film, you know, like «Pirates of Caribbean», I'm watching in cinemas only these movies, the big pop-corn cinema [smile] Last movie I see on DVD was about Kung Fu [laugh]
Alex: Do you still attend karate classes?
Thomas: Of course, I still work in Berlin, I have my own karate school. I opened this school with two my friends, we are three teachers, I do my exercises 3 days a week, you know, we have to training Tuesday, Friday and Saturday, I'm doing it for 15 years now. We are not a big school, we are a small school. When I came to Berlin, when I moved from my hometown, where lived my karate teacher, I had to find a place where I can do my training. So I checked some karate schools in Berlin, and I couldn't find right place for me to go and do my training, so it was necessary to open my own karate school. We found some students, we have group of 10, or maybe 13 people, small group.
Alex: When you started your karate lessons?
Thomas: I was twenty when I started (now I'm 36), before I started karate, I did aikido and other combats.
Alex: Last CD in your CD player? By the way, do you have MP3 player? Also - do you listen music via headphones?
Thomas: I never use headphones, you know, I don't have MP3 player. Itís very-very rare when I use headphones, only with Mini Disk player. So I never use it. Recently I realized that I never listen music last years. So that I put CD in my CD player it's happens not very often. Every morning when I'm in bathroom, brushing my teeth, I turn on the radio, and listen to the radio for few minutes. So for several years now I don't listen much music anymore. Sometimes when I surfing Internet, I turn on CD or something in the computer. So I almost live without music.
Alex: So you live in music, in your own music, without outer music, and it's great! [smile]
Thomas: I really don't know why.. of course, when I go clubs, there are a lot of music. But when I'm in home there is no music, most of the time, very seldom. The last CD I bought it was Queens Of Stone Age.
Alex: And you like it?
Thomas: Very much, very much [laugh]
Alex: As I could remember, Steffen liked this CD last year?
Thomas: Yeah [smile]
Alex: Do you like MySpace?
Thomas: It's very popular platform, not only for bands, everybody can represent themselves to whole world. It's a good platform for bands like us, its perfect for bands like us, the good way for promotion.
Alex: Steffen has his own page, but you are not..
Thomas: Oh no! As I said, it's great thing, but there are many other great things, not only MySpace [laugh] it's not my cup of coffee you know [laugh] I'm spending my time doing my exercises you know, if I have to decide - search an Internet for next two hours or do my karate training, I will do my exercises next two hours instead of searching internet, it's what I prefer to do.
Alex: Maybe you like, beside your exercises, read some books?
Thomas: Yeah, of course!
Alex: Maybe you can say some titles you read recently?
Thomas: Recently I don't read books, I listen it - it was «Code Da Vinci» audio book, bought by my girlfriend, she is buying them all the time. To be honest, normally I don't prefer this kind of books..
Alex: And what you prefer?
Thomas: Normally, when I read books, I prefer books about history or philosophy. I read of course a lot of karate books, I read a lot about Asian philosophy, religion and things like that. I mad for history you know, Roman Empire, Age of Greeks you know.
Alex: Cool! [looking at clocks] Ohhh, maybe you are already tired, we're talking one hour already [smile]
Thomas: I'm already tired, I slept just 2 or 3 hours a day before... [laugh] I went out last night at 10, and I returned at 2 o'clock afternoon today [smile]
Alex: So before you go to rest [smile] as always say something for shout.ru visitors [smile]
Thomas: Yeah, I probably say what I always said [laugh] «Hello all Shout! readers, I wish you all Happy New Year, I hope you had a great time, and I wish everybody all the best for the future and hope to see you, see you soon, in Moscow, St. Petersburg and Kaliningrad!»
Alex: So my best wishes for you and Steffen, and see you on your Moscow Best Of show!
Thomas: Thank you very much for interview, Alex!
Alex: Thank you very much too!
Thomas: See you!
Alex: See you!
[ © 2007 shout! - all rights reserved. Exclusively for SHOUT! Online, taken by alex davie on January 14th, 2007 via phone. Our thanks to Russian Synthpop Community for help in organizing this interview! ]
:: Best Of...
:: 6 Feet Underground
:: Just They Two
:: Progressive Pop
US version of «Noob»
De/Vision's «Electronic Set» in US and Europe again!
De/Vision 20th Anniversary Party
NOOB [ lyrics ]
Flavour Of The Week
Love Will Find A Way [ lyrics ]
SUBKUTAN [ lyrics ]
Turn Me On
6 FEET UNDERGROUND [ lyrics ]
I'm Not Dreaming of You
UNPLUGGED AND THE MOTION PICTURES DVD
PICTURES OF THE PAST DVD
I Regret 2003
DEVOLUTION [ lyrics ]
Live 95 & 96
TWO [ lyrics ]
Exclusive interview with Thomas (De/Vision) (January 2007)
De/Vision - Live in Moscow (May 2006)
Exclusive interview with Thomas (De/Vision) (January 2006)
De/Vision - Live in Moscow (October 2004)
Exclusive interview with Thomas (June 2004)
Thomas as keyboard player of In Strict Confidence (May 2004)
Exclusive interview with Thomas (October 2003)
De/Vision in Moscow (October 2003)
Exclusive interview with Thomas
ELECTRONIC SET 2009
ELECTRONIC SET 2008
6 FEET UNDERGROUND TOUR
DEVOLUTION TOUR Part 2
DEVOLUTION TOUR 2003
Russians on TWO tour (October 2001)