Dani Loble - Helloween, Rawhead Rexx, Blaze - Back
Interviewer: Cameron Edney - http://www.myspace.com/insideout666ints

Born in Zürich, Switzerland, dynamic metal drummer Dani Loble was always destined for a career in music. Growing up Dani's entire family were involved in music and it was only a matter of time before Dani himself would pick up a pair of drum sticks and bash his way to success. By the age of twelve Dani was obsessed with drumming, by fourteen he was playing in his first garage band. Over the next ten years Dani worked with different bands such as melodic metallers Glenmore, and acoustic rock outfit Element 58. In a few short years Dani's career would go from playing in small clubs to touring across the globe with one of the worlds best known heavy metal bands. In 1999, Dani helped to form German metal outfit Rawhead Rexx. The band had a large European following and had recorded two albums but in 2005 Dani had decided to leave the band to further his career drumming for the legendary Helloween.

Last year Helloween released their twelfth studio album 'Gambling with the Devil' and these legendary metallers are showing no signs of calling it a day just yet! Helloweenís latest album follows the bands most anticipated album in seventeen years 'Keeper of the Seven Keys - The Legacy'. An album which was met with mixed reviews and received mainstream press from all parts of the world. 'Keeper of the Seven Keys ‚ The Legacy' introduced a new wave of younger heavy metal fans to one of metal histories greatest achievers. 'Gambling with the Devil' has only furthered the bands popularity amongst newer metal fans and has die-hard Helloween fans thrashing away with pride.

After twenty-four years together, the wait is finally over... I caught up with Helloween drummer Dani Loble last week to talk about the bands first ever-Australian tour, the latest album 'Gambling with the Devil', life as a drummer and much more. Helloween who are currently winding up a European tour with good friends Gamma Ray are set to ravage Australian audiences when they touch down in late February for their very first Australian shows. Both the fans and band are extremely excited to see Helloween finally in Australia for a series of shows which will no doubt be memorable and mind blowing. The time has come to get out your drumsticks and bash 'The Bells of the 7 Hells' with Dani Loble.

Metal Fanatix: Hi Dani dude, how are ya?

Dani Loble: I’m a little bit tired but aright otherwise.

Metal Fanatix: You are currently in Paris and hitting the road alongside Gamma Ray, how have the shows been going?

Dani Loble: We played our first show here yesterday and it was really exciting! We had a great show. The crowd freaked out and everybody had fun! It was really hot last night.

Metal Fanatix: Dani, I want to start firstly by thanking you for takin' the time out to speak with me tonight. Australian metal fans are overjoyed with the news that Helloween are finally touring Australia; no doubt you are excited to be heading our way?

Dani Loble: Oh yeah! This is the first time in Helloween’s history and finally we are getting to play there. We’re coming over at the end of February. It’ll be my first trip there, I can’t wait!

Metal Fanatix: Why do you think it has taken so long for the band to set up an Australian tour?

Dani Loble: That’s a good question. I have no idea!

Metal Fanatix: [Laughs] It could be a number of reasons I guess?

Dani Loble: Everybody is really excited to be coming over to Australia, but I don’t know why the band has never toured there. I can say that it’s the first time that we have great management who realized we wanted to play in Australia.

Metal Fanatix: Will you have a chance to take in any of the sites while you are down here?

Dani Loble: I hope that we can see a lot of things while we’re over there but I have no idea. Maybe we can stay a little bit longer after the tour. I’ll keep my fingers crossed!

Metal Fanatix: The Australian tour kicks off on February 26th, what can the Australian fans expect when you hit the stage?

Dani Loble: When I look back on the whole tour and the shows we have been doing with Gamma Ray, the fans can expect a lot of great Helloween songs. We will be playing a lot of old stuff and some newer songs. We try to metal down every fan in the Helloween way!

Metal Fanatix: There is no doubt that you are a great drummer! Do you have any plans to do any Drum Clinics while you are in Australia?

Dani Loble: I’m not really sure? Pearl, my new endorsement company are planning some things with me, but I’m not really informed if anything will be happening in Australia. That’s a good question! I’m a freak, I’ll do it! I have to talk with Pearl and if it is possible to do some drum clinics there in Australia then I will do it!

Metal Fanatix: Dani, I want to congratulate you for your work on the latest album ‘Gambling with the Devil’! I know the band approached this album in a different way to every other Helloween album before it, looking back now were you happy with the process and outcome?

Dani Loble: We just put all our ideas down on the table; nothing was planned! Everyone just put out there ideas and worked on it. It was the first time in Helloween’s history where we didn’t practice together, we had no band rehearsals at all. We used the internet and made our own folders for everyone in the band to upload and download there ideas. I could work on Andi’s ideas in my own studio, I could add my ideas for everyone to listen to, which was really different for us. We would basically practice over an internet server. Once everyone was quite satisfied with the tunes I jumped into the studio. We had a lot of fun and everybody was in a really good mood making the album, and I think you can hear that in the songs. Every song sounds really fresh.

Metal Fanatix: How long did it take you to lay down your drum tracks for the album?

Dani Loble: I played them in two sessions. Two, three weeks maybe? Everyday I did one number, there is a lot of little stuff I needed to work on. You have to be precise with every cymbal hit. I never worked on more than two songs in a day so I could keep the drum sound fresh. That kept me happy and kept the producer happy also. I guess if I am including the bonus tracks and editing, all up it would have taken me about three weeks.

Metal Fanatix: Dani I want to go back into your past for a moment. Tell us about your early musical experiences growing up in Switzerland! You started playing drums at an early age… tell us about that!

Dani Loble: Yeah, I actually started playing drums in the womb of my mother [laughs]

Metal Fanatix: [Laughs]

Dani Loble: My whole family are musicians, so it was quite easy for me to jump into music as my profession. I grew up with music. I was playing a little trumpet. I got the chance to play with Helloween because I already had recorded a lot of albums with my old band [Rawhead Rexx] and Helloween’s producer Charlie Bauerfeind. The last album I did with my old band was completed in Andi’s studio so I was already in contact with the band.

Metal Fanatix: Before joining Helloween you were drumming with Rawhead Rexx. A great project which lasted for 5-6 years! Was your very first encounter with Helloween during those last sessions with Rawhead Rexx?

Dani Loble: Yeah, due to the recording of that last Rawhead Rexx album I became involved with all of the guys! During that time I kept in contact with Andi and his family. When it came time for the band to put together ‘The Legacy’ [‘Keeper Of The Seven Keys III’] everything went wrong with Stefan Schwarzmann leaving and so on…. the guys remembered me and Charlie [Bauerfeind] had recommended me. I got the chance to play some tracks in the studio with them. After three or four tracks the band gave me the chance to join the band.

Metal Fanatix: What were your first impressions of all the guys, that very first time you met them to rehearse!

Dani Loble: It was really funny actually… Markus [Grosskopf] is a really good guy, very friendly. Andi [Deris] was really friendly. It felt like coming home, everyone gave me such a great welcome. The mood was amazing, considering at the time the band was under a lot of pressure to get ‘The Legacy’ recorded. They had lost a lot of time with Stefan leaving, I had to get up to speed really fast because of the pressure the band was under, but everyone treated me great. They were really fine guys!

Metal Fanatix: What lies ahead for Helloween once the current tour winds up? Are there any plans in the works for a new DVD or another studio album by the end of 2008?

Dani Loble: There are some plans for a new album in the summer of this year. A special album I have heard. It’s not a regular album, it may be an acoustic album… I have no idea! We have no concerns at this time to make a new live DVD.

Metal Fanatix: Dani, you were saying earlier that you have played a little trumpet and grew up in an active musical environment, can you pin point the moment you knew you wanted to become a drummer?

Dani Loble: Yeah, of course. No question. I will play drums til death. It’s my passion, it’s my life! To play as a professional musician in Helloween is a gift from god.

Metal Fanatix: These days especially when it comes to the more extreme forms of metal, all the drummers seem to be trying to out do each other on who can play the fastest, what’s the best advice you can give drummers these days who are trying to come up with their own unique styles?

Dani Loble: The best advice is to just follow your heart. It may sound gay [laughs] but that’s it!

Metal Fanatix: [Laughs]

Dani Loble: Play what you want to play, never surrender, never give up. Someday you will get the chance to play in a great band. Don’t take drums as a sport, or to become the worlds fastest drummer. I'm not the fastest drummer or the world’s best drummer but I love every song, every hit, and every tone of Helloween’s songs. If you love music and you play music, you should not see it as a job. Fall in love with your drums, practice as much as you can and don’t take up drums as a job. You have to love your instrument and use the drums to play the music you love. That is the best advice I could give anyone. Everything else comes easier.

Metal Fanatix: What's the strangest/funniest thing that has ever happened to you on stage?

Dani Loble: [Laughs] The funniest thing was when I had to play onstage and my drum technician was really close to me and suddenly he was moving a few steps away from me looking at me strangely and laughing. I was thinking to myself… why the fuck is he laughing? And slowly I could smell it [laughs].

Metal Fanatix: [Laughs]

Dani Loble: It was so horrible and it stayed around for some minutes. It was so disgusting and here I was playing, and smiling for the crowd. I will never forget that! It was one of the funniest moments I can remember. The whole crew was laughing. I couldn’t run away so I had to sit there and smell that fuckin' fart [laughs].

Metal Fanatix: [Laughs] Dude, that’s when you turn around, grab a drum stick and throw it at him [laughs]!

Dani Loble: Yeah, [laughs] that’s right! At that moment I wish I could have stood up and done that [laughs].

Metal Fanatix: Dani, what is the craziest rumor you have ever heard about yourself?

Dani Loble: About myself… there is nothing special I can remember. I did an interview not too long ago, for a magazine in Norway I think it was, the interviewer was asking me if the rumors were true that, if my old band [Rawhead Rexx] seen me that they would all want to hit me because they really hate me. It’s a strange rumor and I really hope that it’s not true.

Metal Fanatix: What is the one band you never want to hear again and why?

Dani Loble: [Laughs] How much time do we have left [laughs]!

Metal Fanatix: Actually, we only have a few minutes left [laughs]

Dani Loble: There are many bands, So many bands will probably hate me now but I can’t stand Reggae music. It is so horrible for me to listen to that music, especially Bob Marley. It is really horrible for me.

Metal Fanatix: [Laughs] Dani it has been a real pleasure speaking with you tonight. I look forward to seeing you in Australia next month. Do you have any last words for our readers?

Dani Loble: Yeah, don’t miss the show, don’t miss my drum solo! Buy our new album ‘Gambling with the Devil’. Hopefully you all enjoy our new studio work and enjoy the shows. We give our best and we’re looking forward to playing for you all in Australia! Thank you!

Helloween’s latest album Gambling with the Devil is out now. Grab your copy where all killer albums are sold!

To keep up with all the latest news on Dani and Helloween head to the following websites:

http://www.helloween.org - Official Helloween Site
http://www.myspace.com/helloween - Helloween MySpace Site
http://www.myspace.com/insideout666ints - Inside Out 666

© Cameron Edney January, April 2008 Not to be re-printed in any form without written permission.