JAG PANZER Twilight Years

The Age of Mastery, The Fourth Judgment, Thane to the Thorns or Mechanize Warfare-just to name some of the best records that Jag Panzer has ever released…If you were into 90s power metal that yuo should remember this US based power metal troop during that time they were indeed active.

Please, could you tell us something about your latest CD The Deviant Chord and present it from your point of view to our readers? Could we conclude that The Deviant Chord is a nackback offering when it comes to Jag Panzer?
Although the albums is seen as a comeback to many people, we in the band do not see it that way. We’ve been gigging in the U.S and Europe with this lineup for the past 3 years so to us this is not new.

Could you compare The Deviant Chord to previous Jag Panzer’s records? What’s the fresh that a brand new studio album brings to the band discography? or are there some noticeable similarities with your previous issues?
Each record is different and we work hard to give each record it’s own unique sound. I think that ‘The Deviant Chord’ has a little more variety than our other albums. I think that this album has moments on it from our whole history.

As a matter of fact The scourge of Light was released in 2011 so around 6 years have passed away until JP has unleashed a new studio record. Why did you need so much time to record a new issue?
I started writing this album 18 months ago and I’m a slow song writer. We had some downtime after ‘Scourge of the Light’ so it wasn’t like we were working on this album for 6 years. Close to 2 years is more accurate.

Since this is the very first interview that we have a chance to do with JP could you tell us which album was the most important in band’s history and which one is closest to your heart and why?
Many fans know us for ‘Ample Destruction’ so I think it’s fair to say that it was a very important album for us. I personally enjoyed the concept album ‘Thane to the Throne’ a lot. I’ve always been a fan of concepts, from everyone from Pink Floyd to Blind Guardian. I have always loved concept albums.

It seems that the period between 1997-2001 was the most important in JG’s history. From my own point of view during that time the interest in the band was very huge and JP have released 4 great full-lengths. But, yet what’s your point of view upon that time and period?
We played out a lot and had a good time. It was fun. We were in the middle of a long term record deal, so that made it easy to start on the next record. We knew the budget, the time frame, etc so it was easy to make one record after the other.

Well, one classic question these days: is there any possibility for the live performance anymore here in Europe? Anytime, anywhere? I guess that there are lots of your older (ancient) fans who would love to see once again JG live. Any offers from some of the festivals that might suit for the band?
Mark – We hope to come to Europe! We’re trying now. But we need to find a way to come over where we don’t lose money. We can’t do that.

While 90s were very important for JP and while your activity in during this particular period is quite known, what could you tell us about 80s period when the band has released only one full studio album in 1984, while all the other releases and recordings were demo ones?
We made a mistake in the 80s of waiting for a large record deal. We had many large record companies come see us play live, but we didn’t get a deal. That’s why those demos did not get released back then. Looking back, we probably should have just released a new album in 1986 and not wait for the right label.

How about the lyrical background of JP? During some period JP was quite known by some more so to say futuristic cover artworks and the same goes for the lyrical side of the band, too. Any comments and turning backs on that particular aspect of the group?
Our vocalist Harry writes all of our lyrics. He likes to write about a lot of different things – fiction topics, stories but most often he writes about the brotherhood of heavy metal. Metal fans world wide are great! It truly is like a brotherhood.

if I am correct JP was very active when it comes to live performances during the end of the 90s and at the very beginning of 2000s. So, could you sahre with us some expirience from that time of period? Where did you play and which were the most memorizing shows where you appeared?
Mark – We tried to do a tour every year, Europe or North America. Sometimes the hardest gigs are the most fun – like touring in the freezing cold winter. It can be fun moving gear in a snow storm! We also played some great festivals like Bang Your Head, Keep It True, Wacken, etc. And of course metal fans are great everywhere.

In fact, ”Century Media Years” were very important in JP’s career. So, what could you tell us about the relationship with CM during that time? Were you satisfied with the cooperation with them?
MCentury Media were great, they gave us a good budget and tour support. That allowed us to play everywhere. But the music industry has changed since then, so I don’t think labels are doing that anymore.

JP is very known by traditional heavy?power metal style so obvious, and so typical for US power metal bands. So, how do you feel to be a leader of that particular HM style?
For me, Riot was always the leaders of the traditional metal scene in the U.S. Manowar and Savatage also, but we were all such huge Riot fans that I have to pick them.

Well, the main question now remains has JP finally made a return to metal scene and what could we hope to see from you guys in next months and even years to come?
I hope you will see some live gigs from us!!!

  • Answers by Mark
  • Interview by Marko Miranovic
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