14th December 2021

Q: Hello Steve, how are you?


SM: Good thank, Glenn. Yourself?

Q: Excellent Steve. A lot of things I’d like to cover in this so let’s get

stuck in.


MSG Immortal and gigs 2021/2022

Q: This is an MSG tour and not a Michael Schenker Fest (MSF). A

different band, a different set of songs…


SM: Well these shows of course are the ones we had scheduled for

2019 which had to be postponed because of the pandemic. The

first ones that got cancelled actually were the ones in Tokyo, the

ones with Simon Phillips and that was a real shame because we

only found out two days before the tour. Then we had the

European tour, Russian tour, UK tours that had to be kept

putting back and back and back…


Q: Wasn’t that the Michael Schenker Fest though?


SM: (laughs) Yes and that’s a good question. I don’t think anybody

quite knows at what point it changed its name. The last album was Immortal

which was early 2021 and it was somewhere around there that we became MSG and not MSF.

Getting back to the gigs, we are now just really catching up.


Q: Aside from learning the new material, any changes in the role for you?


SM: My role personally, probably hasn’t really changed much. With MSF, because we had the four singers, we used to do quite a bit of vocal harmony work and because I was the one who had the musical theory background, then I kind of naturally assumed the role of Musical Director. Before a tour started, I’d sit down with the singers, go through all the various parts and make sure everybody was singing their correct parts. We did some quite clever little tricks to let the guys know exactly where they should pitch on some of the choruses and I think now we have gone back to being MSG with Ronnie Romero in lead vocals, the backing vocals are not really a major role anymore. We do do backing vocals still, Michael is also doing some backing vocals but they are more chants, we don’t really do the three-part harmony thing. We’ve gone back more to the single voice the block choruses or maybe a single harmony somewhere so my role has gone back to being very much second-guitar and keyboards.  


Q: A quick look at the set list and Michael has dug deep into the UFO catalogue for this one.  


SM: He did! We are one of those bands that can still do new music and release new albums and people want to hear the music from those albums live whereas there are a lot of bands who are committed to having to play hits that they had 20,30 or 40 years ago. There is a big division between those bands that have to live in the past because that’s what the fans want to hear and bands that are able to move forward all the time and MSG is luckily one of those. However, it is inescapable that Michael’s UFO era is not just something the fans love but that we also all love. When we get to those UFO songs, it kicks along; it’s fantastic. Michael wrote those songs so it makes sense to do those because they are what people want to hear we really enjoy playing them.


Q: And by all accounts, Michael and the band are loving every minute of it.


SM: Oh absolutely! The line-up is now fantastic. There are no words to describe how good Ronnie is. I’ve loved his voice for a long time and I was very glad when I heard he was coming into MSG. Bodo is a sublime drummer and Barend on bass is a lovely guy who fitted into the whole MSG way of being very well; he’s a kind of big cuddly bear (laughs) a fantastic bass player and as soon as he turned up for rehearsals we hit it off straight away. I can’t tell you how much I am enjoying playing with this line-up.


Q: You rejoined Michael five or six years now and on the Immortal album released earlier this year you’re playing keyboards on all but one of the tracks. How much input do you have to MSG?  


SM: It’s much more different to how it was the first time round back in the 80s. This is what Michael would describe as the third phase of his life which is quite well known from interviews and he likes to oversee everything – not control everything but oversee everything. For live, he leaves me to decide what I play on keyboards; for guitar when we play together, we work a few little bits and pieces out together (he is very creative) and for the albums, he basically writes all the backing tracks, passes those onto the singers or singer as it is now and they then write melody and the lyrics over the top. So for me, it’s very much keyboard based, I put very little, if any, guitar on the albums. Michael tends to go into the studio and put down loads and loads of guitar ideas and then they sort it all out afterwards, arranging the guitar for the track. Back in the 80s it used to be we did our own guitar parts but now Michael does them all.


New Lionheart Album

Q: It’s difficult to fathom that it’s been a year and a half since The Reality of Miracles was released as I’m still spinning it quite often; how’s the new one progressing?


SM: Brilliant! Since we got back together again in 2016, the chemistry in Lionheart has just stepped up and up and up. When I listen back to Second Nature, I was so proud of that album when it came out but now, I think ‘Oooh…I would never release an album like that again’ because we did it relatively quickly, just thinking it was going to be a one-off comeback album. I probably didn’t give it the total care and attention that I could have done although we were very proud of it, it was very much a kind of bridging album with songs from the 80s and 2010s. Then when we got to The Reality Of Miracles, that’s when we realized it was an ongoing thing so the quality level stepped up again – I can still listen to it and be very proud of it – but this new album is definitely a step forward yet again. The song writing and the way we write together and I think in particular the way I work with Lee, we have a fantastic understanding now about how each other thinks and works which was very new with Second Nature and were developing with The Reality Of Miracles. We are a very good song writing pair and outside of Lionheart we would probably write songs together as well so I will say that the quality of the new songs on this new album and the production values are definitely a step-up from The Reality Of Miracles.

Q: You said ‘a step-up’ which can mean a lot of things. Is it more of the same with extra time and creativity, higher production values, etc. or a move in a different direction?


SM: That’s a very good question Glenn. Ok, it’s a concept album. I mentioned to Lee about six months ago about wouldn’t it be a good idea to go back to this whole idea of a concept album and then I forgot I had said it. Then when Lee started writing the lyrics and the melodies, Lee came back and he had got a concept! (laughs) So it is a step-forward in that sense in that there is a link between all of the songs.


Q: Ok but let’s clarify: this isn’t like Tales From Topographic Oceans where a side is one complete piece of music is it?

SM: No it is nothing like that. It’s still a bunch of songs but there is a theme that runs through the songs. When I say concept album, take that with a little pinch of salt. The songs are about a particular theme but they don’t tell a story and we can shuffle the order around. Otherwise, it is essentially the same formula with lots of vocal melodies which is what Lionheart is all about and it is very important for us to have great songs so there is no song where we say ‘Oh it’s ok’. There is no filler which was the same for The Reality Of Miracles so in that sense it is the same. From my own point of view, I have recently very deeply got into playing lead guitar simply because I have been at home for two years because of Covid and being able to put my heart into my guitar playing is something that has really helped me. I’m not someone who will sit there and practice diminished arpeggios or stuff like that, I tend to play melodies and themes on guitar and that’s something that for me on this new album is very very important. So, rather than just do a solo because there is an eight or sixteen bar gap there, it has become a blank canvas for me that I can put my art on. Now, whether anybody notices it or not I don’t know (laughs) but for me, it’s a very good way of getting emotions out.


Q: It’s a funny thing isn’t it that this pandemic has had a lot of positives for musicians and creative people even though they are far outweighed by the negatives. I inherited a keyboard and started to learn to play which I would never have done if I wasn’t isolating.


SM: Well, you know the feeling then. I think what it is, is that when you are going out and doing gigs and rehearsing together and stuff, that is a release because every musician has to express themselves; we do it because we want to express ourselves. It’s very important and there’s something in the hearts and minds, artists and actors as well or any of the arts, there is something inside them that has to come out. Now if something comes along that stops that happening like Covid, what you don’t realize is that at the start you think ‘Oh well I’ll have some time off the road, spend some time with the family’, etc. which I have to say was fantastic and a big positive for me as a family man but as a musician, you start to get bottled up. You find yourself getting emotional or a bit down and that’s because the normal way of expression, either through your instrument or in a band to an audience has been stopped. I think that’s how it’s come out in my guitar playing; it’s become a very important instrument for me to get my feelings out and obviously that’s not just me, that applies to every other musician through Covid.


Q: I fully agree. The last time we chatted which I think was on the Zoom thing with Dennis and Rocky, you all wanted to tour Lionheart and UPP-Tone certainly still want to bring you but what’s the reality of that with schedules assuming our collective world leaders have realized they can’t control a pandemic and opened everything up again?

SM: We really want to but that horrible Covid word again. With regards to schedules, I have a lot of respect for Michael, his manager and the booking agency for literally, every few months putting a tour back rather than just not bothering and waiting until it’s over. Psychologically that was important to for us and the fans in that the gigs haven’t gone away, they just kept being put back and now hopefully they will finally take place in April. With Lionheart, we didn’t have the gigs booked in the first place so there wasn’t anything to put back and the last time we came to Japan which was with Praying Mantis was absolutely fantastic so it’s something we 100% want to do again. So, as soon as we can get to a situation where it looks possible, absolutely, we will be there.



 Q: I get a lot of stuff, physical and digital, in my physical and digital mailboxes Steve and quite frankly, 80% of it too me is inaudible, not because of the playing but because of the production. Being a producer yourself, what’s your opinion? Has music moved on, am I just old school or do the new producers not understand production anymore?


SM: Ok. My opinion is that I love the technology that has come along as it enables me to work fast and furious and to just record stuff, save it as a song and then two weeks later, I might go back and think ‘Oh I just need to change one guitar note there and then the solo will work’ and I can do it and it’s done in twenty minutes. Previously, if you had mixed and mastered a song, that was it so if something bothered you afterwards- tough! So I love that flexibility and that freedom but the downside of all of that, what it has bought is that people think that if they have a really fast computer, great software and loads of professional plug-ins is that their album will automatically sound great and that is not the case. Still, the most important thing is engineering experience. To have grown-up recording drums on four-tracks or eight-tracks (because that is all you had) and getting it right the first time…to do a solo and if you want to replace a note you have to do a ‘drop-in’ and then if you screw up the drop-in, you have to do the whole solo again! If you have a great compressor, you can only use it once on the mix and then it’s gone, you cannot drag that to another track or pug it into every channel that you want to. That experience doesn’t exist these days, the equipment does but the experience doesn’t and the best productions come from people who combine both. Those that have lived through the engineering of the 70s, 80s and 90s when it was analogue and hard and can bring that forward with the new technology and then you get a great result. If you want a big, open sound for example, as long as you recorded real drums in a real room with room mics, you can do with it whatever you like. In the old days, if you’d say used your favourite compressor on the guitars bus and would like to use it on the overheads, you couldn’t because it was a piece of hardware but now you can because you can just drag another one onto the track. So, the flexibility is there but the danger is overdoing it. The compressor works on a vocal so you drag it to all the others expecting it to sound great on everything and these are the decisions inexperienced engineers make. So yes, I think there is a lot of rubbish; badly engineered, badly mixed and badly mastered. It’s par for the course and on the other hand there is a lot of stuff that sounds great!


Q: I have to say though that when producers do get it right – and the new Volbeat album is a prime example – it makes all the difference to an album. The last Cats In Space album as well has terrific production values.


SM: Yeah and they are all good friends of ours and the previous singer, Paul Manzi came into The Sweet. At one point, we were discussing doing a UK tour together as we are in a similar vein with the vocal harmonies and everything. Gregg has been in the business for years, he knows what he wants, finds great engineers and sticks with them. He finds great amps, the vocals are sublime – Jeff Brown is a very underrated singer, bass player and showman; he’s a great overall musician Jeff who has generally been underrated. His voice is very strong and live, he is pitch perfect as well which is very impressive. Going back to production values, their production is based on experience as well.


Q: Where did you learn your craft?


SM: It’s a bit of a story. Back in 1971 when I was playing guitar, I borrowed a tape recorder from a friend of mine because I had an idea for a song and wanted to record it. This was a reel-to reel and he said yes I could borrow it but I had to promise not to take it to bits and unsolder the heads or anything like that and so I said ‘Yes, my word is my bond, etc’, borrowed his tape recorder, bought it home and the first thing I did was unsolder the erase head (laughs). I recorded the guitar, went back and made a little mark on the tape where the guitar started and put it into record again. When I saw the little mark, I started singing because I thought that was where the guitar would be. I got away with that for about four bars and then the two started to drift out of time because I couldn’t hear the first part but that triggered a life-long fascination with engineering. By 1972 I was doing sound-on-sound, bouncing tracks; I got my first 4-track machine in I think 1977 which was a TEAC A-3440S. That had little buttons where you could switch from the playback head to the record head which meant that when you recorded, it was in sync with what you were listening to. Then I stepped up to a Fostex B16 in 1985 and then in 1988 I set up Frida Park Recording Studio in Hannover which was initially 16 track but quite quickly went to 24 track. So to answer your question, since 1971 I’ve just learned by doing which I had to because there was no such things as audio institutes or anything like that. The only thing that was available at that time was a magazine called Home and Studio Recording which was written by Paul White; I bought every month and would read through it avidly. Whereas everyone has a home studio, in those days, if you had a home studio, you were absolutely one in a million and the only other guy I knew who had a home studio was John Verity from Argent so it was him, Paul White and me. There were just us three guys I knew who had home studios.


Q: You mentioned engineering schools. I’m sure they have a place somewhere in the audio world but personally, I don’t think you can engineer by numbers.


SM: Yes I agree with you and that goes back to what I was saying before in that experience is everything. You can learn what the knobs do but in all honesty, you can learn that in a few weeks just by studying the manuals. You know, that does attack, that does release, etc. but there is absolutely nothing like experience. I use a software called Studio One and I am a member of the Facebook forum that trades ideas and there are a lot of new people who come along and say ‘I have just bought Studio One, just getting into home recording, have a really fast Mac M1 computer, lots of plug-ins and everything but I can’t work out why it doesn’t sound like a record…’. When did you start doing this? Two weeks ago? Well that’s why it doesn’t sound like a record. It’s like buying an F1 car and thinking you can just win a race.


Q: I was talking to someone quite recently who was an engineer/producer (non-professional I might add but doing decent demos in a decent studio) and he informed me that for one band he did CD mix, one for vinyl, a download mix, an mp3 mix, a Spotify mix and an iTunes mix. Is that excessive or is that normal now?


SM: Excessive. I think what your friend needs to be aware of is that a lot of bands come into a studio and just quote what they’ve heard but they don’t understand it. You always mix to a 24 bit WAV file and after you have mastered, if you want an mp3, you just run a program that converts it to an mp3 – you don’t need to do a new mix for it. Spotify (streaming) and download sites have developed so fast that when they have been uploading the back catalogue, they have not had special mixes, they have just ripped the CD and uploaded it so all of the songs you hear from the 50s to the 80s are straight from the CD, no one has gone in and remixed or remastered them and that is what you are competing against. Now when you master, there is a thing called a Loudness Level and Spotify for example will say that their Loudness level is -14 (LUFS which stands for Loudness Units relative to Full Scale) and when I saw that I thought ‘Ok, that’s what they want, that’s what I’ll do’ so with the last two Lionheart albums, I did them at that level. What I didn’t realize is that if you don’t have normalise on, Spotify plays the tracks at the original level so suddenly Lionheart is competing with a whole bunch of bands which have uploaded at -9 which is 5db louder or about twice the volume. If you listen to The Reality Of Miracles and compare it to other bands that have uploaded at the ripped CD level, it sounds quiet and weak and since that it’s sorry Spotify, you can say whatever you like but I am uploading now at CD level. I do a CD mix at -9 and that’s it. If you want other mixes, just convert so yes, overkill, you don’t need to do all those mixes.


Q: Why do people use mp3’s Steve? I admit I’m a bit of an audiophile but I remember when I first heard them back in Australia when I lived there in the late 90s and they sound awful.


SM: They were very useful when music players had a limited capacity. You know those early iPods where if you had 3G you were laughing and with the mp3 format you could get your whole library on there but now where you have 128GB or much more, space isn’t a problem any more but people are so used to mp3s; you should go for the highest quality you can get. The basic format is a WAV file and most upload sites want it in WAV format now and mp3 is just a convenience for people and going back to the last question you should never, ever think about mixing to an mp3 because it is meaningless. You have just spent all that time working in 32 bit floating point, mastering in 24 bit and then to mp3? What’s the point? If somebody insists on an mp3 convert from a WAV file but don’t mix to mp3. It makes no sense.


Q: You guested on Love Is Like Oxygen on Sweet’s Isolation Boulevard album which is essentially the classics re-recorded with the current line-up. Lots of bands are doing this, I understand why they do it, I flip and flop on it, how about you as you come at it from three different directions; producer, musician in the band and presumably liking the songs when you were growing up?


SM: Yes. My take is that – and this refers back to the earlier answer about bands who are locked into their original material and ones who can do new material and get away with it – The Sweet are one of those bands who are locked into their old material. When the fans come to a show, they don’t want to hear stuff from a new album, they want to hear the old songs. In some ways, it’s a bit of a difficult situation for Andy (Scott) because what does he do? Does he release new songs or does he release the old songs again with a new performance and new musicians and everything. It’s a tricky situation and I don’t envy him in that sense. I feel I am quite lucky because I love playing with The Sweet and it’s a lot of fun and the guys are great – the same as MSG. I have to admit, I like the MSG way of doing things because we can come out with new albums that don’t contain remixes of old tracks, you know, another version of Doctor Doctor yet again and all that stuff. For me, that is quite important so I do think it is quite difficult for Andy to tow that line in the middle because he does want to do new material. There will be a new album coming out where there will be a lot of new material so he does want to go in that direction but the fans want to hear the old stuff so it’s hard. With Love Is Like Oxygen from the Isolation Boulevard album which is what you are referring to when you say I’m the musician, I didn’t even know I was on that to be honest (laughs). The album came on and my wife was looking through the credits and said ‘Do you realize you are on the new Sweet album?’ and I had absolutely no idea. I forgot to mention this to Andy but I can only assume he took my keyboard part off one of the old recordings because I certainly didn’t re-record it and then gave me the credit for it. I probably realised I was on that after all the fans realized. (laughs)


Q: I think that’s a lovely way to end this chat. Steve. Very quickly, any other projects you’ve been working on that will surface soon?


SM: Yes I’ve been working with a guy called Chris Ousey who is a fantastic singer from England. We finished the album actually last May and I think it’s due for release in the Spring; I think it’s just going to be called Mann/Ousey so that’s something to look out for and I know I’ve been saying this for forty years but I would love to do my solo album…maybe this time I will get around to doing it. There are other things being palled as well but I can’t talk about them. (smiles)


SM: Perfectly understandable. Good to catch up with you Steve and let’s natter again soon.


SM: Yes, absolutely Glenn!


スティーヴ・マン インタビュー2021












SM:(笑) ああ、それはいい質問だね。どの時点で名前を変えたのか、誰もよく分かっていないと思う。最後のアルバムは2021年初頭の『Immortal』で、MSFではなくMSGになったのはその頃だね。ライブの話に戻るけど、今はようやく追いついているところなんだ。
















Q:『The Reality of Miracles 』が発売されてから1年半も経ったとは思えないほど、私はいまだによく聴いていますが、新作の進捗状況はいかがですか?

SM:素晴らしいよ!(笑)。2016年に再び一緒になってから、ライオンハートのケミストリーは、どんどんステップアップしているんだ。『Second Nature』を聴き返すと、発売当時はとても誇りに思っていたけど、今となっては、「おっと...あんなアルバムは二度と出さないだろうな」と思っている。というのも、一回限りのカムバック・アルバムだと思って比較的早く作ったからなんだ。80年代の曲と2010年代の曲を収録した、いわば橋渡しアルバムのようなもので、僕らはとても誇りに思っていたんだけど、僕は恐らく、細心の注意を払っていなかったと思う。その後、『The Reality Of Miracles』に至って、これは継続的なものであることがわかったので、クオリティー・レベルは再び向上した。今でも聴いて、とても誇りに思うことができるけど、今度の新しいアルバムは間違いなくまた一歩前進した。曲作りや共同作業の方法、特にリーとの共同作業のやり方については、お互いの考え方や作業方法について素晴らしい理解が得られている。これは『Second Nature』で初めて実現したことで、『The Reality Of Miracles』ではさらに発展した。僕らは、曲作りがとても上手なペアで、ライオンハート以外の場所でも、おそらく一緒に曲を作るだろう。だから、このニューアルバムの新曲の質とプロダクションの価値は、間違いなく「The Reality Of Miracles」よりもステップアップしていると言えると思う。





Q:分かりました。でもはっきりさせておきたいのですが、『Tales From Topographic Oceans』のように、1面が1つの組曲になっているわけではないのですよね?

SM:うん、そのようなことはない。たくさんの曲が入っていることに変わりはないけど、曲の中にテーマがあるんだ。僕がコンセプトアルバムと言ったら、それはちょっと大袈裟かもね。曲は特定のテーマについて書かれているけど、ストーリーがあるわけではないし、順番を入れ替えたりもする。その代わり、基本的には同じ方式で、ライオンハートのアイデンティティであるたくさんのボーカル・メロディーが入っている。また、素晴らしい曲があることは、僕らにとって非常に重要なことで、「まあこれでもいいか」というような曲はない。『The Reality Of Miracles』でもそうだったけど、穴埋め的な曲はないので、そういう意味では同じだね。僕自身の観点では、最近、リードギターをかなり弾くようになったんだ。というのも、僕はパンデミックのために2年間家にいたわけで、ギター演奏に心を込めることができて、本当に良かったと思っている。僕は、座ってディミニッシュ・アルペジオなどを練習するタイプではなく、ギターでメロディやテーマを演奏することが多いんだけど、この新しいアルバムでは、それがとても重要になっている。だから、8小節や16小節の余地があるからといって、ただソロを弾くのではなく、そこは自分の芸術を表現するための真っ白なキャンバスになっているんだ。誰かがそれに気づいてくれるかどうかは分からないけどね(笑)。僕にとっては感情を吐き出すのにとても良い方法なんだ。

















SM:ちょっとしたストーリーがあってね。1971年、僕がギターを弾いていた頃、曲のアイディアが浮かんで録音したいと思い、友人からテープレコーダーを借りた。テープレコーダーはオープンリール式で、彼は「貸してもいいよ」と言ってくれたんだけど、ヘッドのハンダを取ったりして壊さないと約束しなければならなかった。それで、「うん、僕が言う言葉は友情の証だよ。」などと言いながら、彼のテープレコーダーを借りて家に持って帰り、まず最初にやったのは、消去ヘッドのハンダ付けを外すことだった(笑)。ギターを録音した後、テープに戻ってギターが始まったところに少し印をつけて、もう一度録音したんだ。その印を見て、ここがギターの位置だと思って歌い始めたんだ。4小節ほどそうしていたら、2つの時間がずれてきた。最初の部分が聞こえなかったからなんだけど、これで僕の人生を懸けることになるエンジニアリングというものへのスイッチが入ったんだ。1972年にはサウンド・オン・サウンドやバウンス・トラックをやっていたんだけど、1977年に初めて4トラック・マシンを手に入れた。TEACのA-3440Sだったと思う。これには再生ヘッドと録音ヘッドを切り替えるための小さなボタンがついていて、録音する時に聴いている音と同期するようになっていた。その後、1985年にFostex B16にステップアップし、1988年にハノーヴァーにFrida Park Recording Studioを設立した。このスタジオは当初16トラックだったけど、すぐに24トラックになった。質問の答えだけど、1971年以来、僕は自分で学ぶしかなかったんだ。当時、唯一あったのは、ポール・ホワイトが書いた「ホーム&スタジオ・レコーディング」という雑誌で、毎月買っては熱心に読みふけっていた。誰もがホームスタジオを持っているのに対し、当時はホームスタジオを持っている人は100万人に1人の存在で、ホームスタジオを持っているのは知り合いではアージェントのジョン・ヴェリティだけだったので、彼とポール・ホワイトと僕の3人だけだったと思う。



SM:そうだね。先ほどの話に戻るけど、「経験がすべて」だ。ツマミが何をするのかを学ぶことはできるけど、正直なところ、マニュアルを勉強するだけなら数週間で習得できる。これはアタック、これはリリース、といった具合にね。でも、経験に勝るものはない。僕はスタジオ・ワンというソフトウェアを使っていて、フェイスブックのフォーラムで意見交換をしているんだけど、そこには「Studio Oneを買ってホームレコーディングを始めたばかりで、すごく速いMac M1コンピュータを持っていて、たくさんのプラグインやその他もろもろを使っているのですが、どうしてレコードのような音が出ないのかわかりません......」という初心者がたくさん書き込んでくる。これはいつから始めたのですか?2週間前?だから、レコードのように聞こえないんだよ。F1マシンを買えば、レースに勝てると思っているようなものだからね。



SM:過剰だね。君の友人が気をつけなければならないのは、多くのバンドがスタジオに来て、聞いたことをそのまま引用するだけで、それを理解していないということだと思う。君は常に24ビットのWAVファイルにミックスし、マスタリング後にmp3が欲しければ、mp3に変換するプログラムを実行するだけで、新たにミックスする必要はない。Spotify(ストリーミング)やダウンロードサイトは急速に発展しており、バックカタログをアップロードする際には、特別なミックスは行わず、CDをリッピングしてアップロードしている。そのため、50年代から80年代までのすべての曲は、CDからそのまま再生されており、誰もリミックスやリマスターを行っていないんだ。例えば、Spotifyではラウドネスレベルが-14(LUFS:Loudness Units relative to Full Scaleの略)と表示されるけど、それを見たときに「これは彼らが求めているものだから、自分もそうしよう」と思い、ライオンハートの過去2枚のアルバムではそのレベルで制作したとする。気づかなかったのは、ノーマライズをオンにしていない場合、Spotifyはトラックを元のレベルで再生するので、突然ライオンハートは、5db大きい、または約2倍の音量である-9でアップロードされた多くのバンドと競争することになるんだ。『The Reality Of Miracles』を聴いて、リッピングしたCDレベルでアップロードしている他のバンドと比較すると、静かで弱々しい音に聞こえる。Spotifyはあくまで一例に過ぎないけど、僕はCDレベルでアップロードしている。僕はCDミックスを-9でやっているけど、それだけだ。他のミックスが欲しければ変換すればいいだけだから、確かにやり過ぎだし、そんなミックスをいろいろする必要はないね。






Q:あなたは、スウィートのアルバム『Isolation Boulevard』に収録されている「Love Is Like Oxygen」にゲスト参加していますが、このアルバムは、基本的に古典的名曲を現在のメンバーで再録音したものです。多くのバンドがこのようなことをしていますが、彼らがそうする理由は理解できますが、私はそれに翻弄されてしまいます。プロデューサー、バンドのミュージシャン、そしておそらくその曲を聴いて育ってきた子供だったという、3つの異なる方向からアプローチしているあなたはどうですか?

SM:うん。私の考えでは、これは先ほどの「オリジナル曲に囚われているバンド」と「新曲を作っても大丈夫なバンド」という答えに戻るのだけど、スウィートは古い曲に囚われているバンドの一つだと思う。ライヴに来たファンは、新しいアルバムの曲ではなく、昔の曲を聴きたがっているんだ。ある意味では、アンディ(・スコット)にとってはちょっと難しい状況だね。新曲をリリースするのか、それとも古い曲を新しいパフォーマンスと新しいミュージシャンでリリースするのか。難しい状況で、その意味では彼をうらやましいとは思わない。僕はスウィートで演奏するのが大好きだし、とても楽しいし、メンバーも素晴らしいので、自分はとてもラッキーだと思っている-MSGと同じだよ。正直に言うと、僕はMSGのやり方が好きだ。なぜなら、古い曲のリミックスが入っていない新しいアルバムを出すことができるからね。「Doctor Doctor」の新たなバージョンなんて入れないんだ。僕にとって、それはとても重要なことなんだ。だから、アンディは新しい曲を作りたいと思っているので、その中間の線を引くのはとても難しいことだと思う。新曲がたくさん入ったニューアルバムを出す。彼はその方向に進みたいと思っている。でもファンは昔の曲を聴きたがっているんだから、難しいよね。君が僕がミュージシャンとして参加したと言った『Isolation Boulevard』に収録されている「Love Is Like Oxygen」は、正直なところ、僕が参加していることすら知らなかったんだよ(笑)。アルバムがリリースされて、妻がクレジットに目を通していた時に『あなたはスウィートのニューアルバムに参加していることに気づいているの?」って言ったんだ。アンディに言うのを忘れていたんだけど、彼が古い録音から僕のキーボード・パートを取り出したとしか思えないんだ。なぜなら、僕が再録音したわけではないのに、僕をクレジットしたからね。ファンのみんなが気付いた後で、僕自身は参加していたことに気付いたのかもしれないね(笑)。