“How are you?” Steve Lamos’ voice delivers pleasantries from down the line. He sounds far …
The Germans are quite possibly some of the most excitable people in the world, none more so than heavy metal queen Doro who, marking 35 years in the biz this year, is breathless with excitement as she begins to talk about her new album, Forever Warriors, Forever United.
MORE: TROPHY EYES: The Dreamers And The Doers // ALPHA WOLF: … And Out Come The Breakdowns // OUTRIGHT: Don’t Holler Atcha Girl
REVIEWS: TROPHY EYES: The American Dream // AS IT IS: The Great Depression // PLINI: Sunhead// DORO: Forever Warriors, Forever United
It’s her 20th release and her first double album, chock full with 25 brand new songs. “I just love to make people happy and to make people feel something,” she says, “That’s why it’s a double album.
“It was flowing, writing the songs, there were about 35 or 40 songs. I had to cut 12 songs but as my 20th album I thought ‘Go for it!’”
Doro’s energy and passion reminds this humble writer of a recent chat with fellow countryman Rudolf Schenker. “That’s funny,” Doro says with a tinkling laugh, “We did a TV show together in America, That Metal Show with Eddie Trunk, and there we met! There were so many coincidences, it was really strange. We even looked a little bit the same, maybe [it’s] the blonde hair and blue eyes.
“I felt close [with Schenker], like family kind of. I didn’t know him that well, just form playing some festivals together in the 80s–it’s funny you should say that.”
It’s interesting Doro should use the word family because of course, she’s very well known for her collaborations with other musicians and throughout her career, those musician have become family to her. “The fans, the bands, all the other musicians which I love to stay friends with for a long time. [One of] my best friends was Lemmy [Kilmister] and I miss him every day. ‘You’ve gotta stay alive and do your best,’ that’s what I learned from Lemmy.
The world is in so much turmoil and everything is pretty confusing, politically and stuff. Even when we go on tour it’s not the same anymore.
[ Doro ]
“When he died I thought, ‘Oh man, it’s a wake-up call that life isn’t forever,’ which I always liked to believe, especially about Lemmy.
“We toured together many times, we were in the studio many times and I always thought, every fan always thought, Lemmy, that’s forever.”
One song in particular was written by Doro by way of tribute to her great friend. Living Life To The Fullest is on one hand super heartbreaking and sad but on the other, it was the start to writing many great songs now living within the new album, Doro taking Lemmy’s lessons to heart. “I said to myself, ‘You never know when it will end,’ so I thought I wanna give it my all as long as I can. I felt such sudden urgency that the time is now, because nobody knows.
“The world is in so much turmoil and everything is pretty confusing, politically and stuff. Even when we go on tour it’s not the same anymore.”
Not only does Doro touch on so many frank and profound sentiments in Forever Warriors, Forever United, she, as is fitting for the queen of heavy metal, took this opportunity to explore a lot of different styles, many of which she’s touched on throughout her tenure. “I think [it’s] the whole spectrum of human nature,” she says, “Human emotions and feelings, memories, everything is in there.”
This collection in a way, represents everything Doro has ever achieved in her career, and yet she’s put a wonderful 2018 twist on it so it feels fresh but is nevertheless, telling a pretty big story. “I just go for it, I feel it out,” she says. “You just have to follow the vibe of the song and you can tell when something doesn’t feel right.
“Let’s say you have a great song you love and then the mix is not coming out as you wished. I can’t sleep at night. My heart is beating. Then when it’s coming out good then everything is at peace and you feel happy, and then it can go on, and on, and on.
“But I love them all. It’s all coming straight from the heart. There was no plan to do it like that, it just all came out, out of the heart, the soul.”
Doro is clearly very much in love with the new music she’s tended to for so long and in typical Doro style, she’s going to enlist the help of another member of her extended music family to decide which of her now vast catalogue of songs she performs as she tours for her anniversary–the fans. “I would like the fans to choose the ones they love the most and that they want to hear live because I couldn’t make the decision.
“I love them all. I’m really curious what the fans will pick. And we will make sure to come to Australia, it’s been so long [since] we have been there! We have to work hard that it will happen soon.”