Alpha Tiger, Beneath The Surface, back to the future

If you need a good shot of traditional heavy-speed metal, the second album of Alpha Tiger, “Beneath The Surface”, is for you ! Somewhere between Queensrÿche and Helloween, the german musicians put together a collection of good tracks that can bring you back to the golden age of the 80’s. 

How can you introduce Alpha Tiger to people who don't know the band ?
Peter Langforth (guitar) :We started in 2007 under the name of Satin Black. In the beginning I was the singer. First we played some Metallica Coversongs (I guess, like every young band). But soon we started to compose our own songs. In 2009, our singer Stephan joined the band and we changed our name in Alpha Tiger. But we were never a thrash band. We ever had many different influences, but thrash was just one of these influences. In 2011 we got a deal with Sonic Attack and released our first official record "Man Or Machine" in 2011. We played some awesome festivals and got finally a offer by Century Media some months ago. We play a kind of speed metal with many different influences There is a huge range within our songs. For example, a speed metal song with acoustic middle part, or a ballad which ends in a explosion. The songs are complex but catchy too. A lot of melodies but also from time to time some thrash metal elements.

Do you have special memories about your live performance at the Hellfest 2012 ?
Hellfest was awesome! It was a great experience to play with all these fabulous bands and to meet some of them in the Vip Area.  Hellfest is a very unique festival, because it has its own special design with all these rust buildings and sculptures. We thought that we were on a Mad Max film set ! The people in France were very kind and we really hope to get the chance to come back to France someday for more shows!

What is your most vivid memory of the recording process of "Beneath The Surface" in Berlin ? Has there been any difference in the writing/recording process this time around ?
We used the same studio, but we changed the mixing engineer on our second record. We wanted to have a different sound from Man or Machine because we didn't want to sound too much retro, or too nostalgic, but also not too modern. We always try to improve our self. When we are in studio we don't have the time for parties, unfortunately. Because we work from 8:00 am to 22:00 pm, sometimes even later. But there are anyway a lot of cool memories. For example, there was  European soccer championship when we were in Berlin. So we always went every evening to the pub after work was done, to watch the games. And we were visited by our friends of Space Chaser, the sung with us the chorus to "We Came From The Gutter". You can hear it on the record.

Is there any concept behind this album ? Can you tell us more about the lyrics and your inspiration ?
There is no golden threat in the songs, and I would not talk about a concept album. But the title track "Beneath The Surface", "Eden Lies in Ruins" and "We Came From The Gutter" are about all the things, which going wrong in this world, money, corruption and greed. I write about all things, which are important for me in my life. But there are not just songs about conspiracy stories, there are songs about Love and Desire ("Crescent Moon"), about personal loss ("Waiting For A Sign"), about Reincarnation ("Rain"), or about finding oneself ("Along The Rising Sun"). Those songs mean a lot of me. It is not hard for me to find a topic for a song, because it happened so many things in this world and in my life. The most difficult part is, to write a song which accord to the lyrics.

How do you see the importance of the 80's scene on your sound ?
When I started to play guitar, my main influence was Metallica, but soon I went deeper and deeper into the scene and I found bands like Iced Earth, Helloween and Manowar. But first when I listen first time to Fates Warning, Riot, Queensrÿche and Crimson Glory, I knew that I wanna do something in this direction. I love this special spirit on these records and the high standard in matter of songwriting. Those bands are really important for our style. But we tried to open our view more and more to different inspirations, like Queen, Rush or Dire Straits.

What will be the next step for Alpha Tiger in 2013 ?
We went on tour with W.A.S.P. some weeks ago, it was awesome. We played every night in front of 1000 people and got a lot of really good reactions. It was not easy all the time, but we earned a lot of really important experiences on this tour. In january 2013 we finally release our album "Beneath The Surface", after this we'll gonna do some release shows all over Germany. In April, we plan to realize a own little tour and in summer we play a lot of big festivals, like Bang Your Head Festival and Wacken. It looks like a awesome year ! I really hope that we get the chance to play in foreign countries like the UK, France, Italy, or Spain and to become more and more popular in Europe.

Edited by Laurent Gilot
Photos : Mike Auerbach 

Alpha Tiger, Beneath The Surface (Century Media-EMI)
Sortie le 28 janvier 2013


Alpha Tiger, Karma/Along The Rising Sun/Queen Of The Reich, Live 2012