2003 - Supared
- Release date European edition: 2003/01/20
- Release date Japanese edition: 2003/06/21
- Recorded, produced and mixed by Michael Kiske in Studio 29.
- Mastered by Sandro Giampietro & Michael Kiske.
Nils Hansen: Overdub Guitar in 'Overrated'.
Michael Kiske: "Sandro is a crazy guy! He likes rock and roll, and he’s Italo-American. Our drummer is Dutch and the bass player is German, just like me. Sandro is the only guy in the band who likes heavy metal, he’s a big Iron Maiden fan and already knew my career in Helloween. The other guys didn’t even knew who I was when they joined in the band. They are part of a new generation, like Pearl Jam. Our bass player likes Korn very much, which I don’t. I find them too negative. They’re creative but has a very depressive style. Jurgen likes Pearl Jam, pop and jazz, it’s a very interesting mix!"
The artwork and the booklet was done by Michael Kiske.
Kiske: "I like the covers in that way. I like them when are simple. Also I didn't want it a cover with fantasy stuff. It's just a picture of the band. I wanted to do a typical cover of a Rock band."
The cover step by step
1) This is the original pic chose to make the cover, the pic was taken of photoshoot session.
2) Band members's silhouette selected and deleted the three colour channels, only black-white.
3) Changed the black-white to yellow-white painting the black/white channel or superimposing a yellow layer.
4) Added a yellow background using a special motive, it's not only yellow colour on this case.
5) To make growth the canvas "relative-height" to have more space at the top to paste the Supared logo.
6) It's only needed to add some shadows in the musicians silhouette layer to contrast their figures with the background and done.
This is the Korean edition of Supared album, as you can see is a digipack format. The original European edition wasn't a digipack, so it's very interesting.
The SupaRed's Russian edition is the same European's but it was published by a different company. The label was Soyuz Music and the album was released 2 years after the standard edition, in 2005. On the back cover of that edition has an inscription "For sale in Russia and CIS countries only".
Important note: There is a cheap pirate copy edited in Russia of this album. The label is Monsters of Rock records (Golden Blood Series), edited in 2003. The catalog number is: MOFR00370. So if you have chance of buy that copy, don't make it because is not official, the band will not get any for his job.
The pictures and the promotional images, with the band, contained in the album booklet and another promotional stuff - like posters - were taken by Corinna Wolke in a park from Hamburg, Germany.
Everything started when Kiske recorded his second solo album Readiness To Sacrifice, he began to think in the possibility of create a band. Kiske said: "The Rock music needs a band to grow. When I was doing the solo records, I had a lot of stuff to sort out and find new definitions for myself. Rock music is not meant for solo artists." The drummer Jürgen Spiegel arrange a meeting with a local guitarist Sandro Giampietro who played with humorist Helge Schneider. When the album was already composed Jürgen introduced Aldo Harms as bassist.
During the recordings of 'Supalbum' Kiske had some serious problems with his stomach and the vocal recordings of the latest five songs had to been postponed for almost one year.
After the previous problems in the Helloween years with the label Noise Records, surprisingly the band signed with them for three albums. According to some comments from Kiske because: "Noise conctacted me and at first time I didn't want to know anything about them, I had very bad memories of what happened in Helloween but later I thought, nobody from those years are still in the company so it made no sense to refuse the offer." Finally although nobody of the 'old' Noise company was workin' there, the 'new' workers of Noise promoted the album as the comeback of Kiske to Metal so the failure was secure a cause from that kind of pathetic promotion.
Kiske was in the worse moment as musician, first because of that shitty promotion of Noise, some people and also the media were waiting for another kind of album, and second, because his serious problems with his stomach which a few months later had to be operated on. In May 2004, Sandro Giampietro confirmed to Kiske fanclub that SupaRed does not exist anymore. A week later Michael did a statement to explain he will not make another Hard Rock album as solo artist.
Song by song
It's a good way to start the album because it has a nice riff. Perhaps a bit like U2, a nice feeling on it. The main part of that song comes of a composition of Ciriaco Taraxes I just have to change a little things. I wrote the lyrics, changed the arrangement and I gave my point of view about that song. It's one of my favourites because is the perfect start for the album. It's a modern song with a rock 'n' roll touch that kind of song need.
Can I Know Now?
That song has a sound half punk but with a nice groove... like 'We Will Rock You' of Queen, I liked that mix, it sounds interesting. I also like the chorus, it's a bit different, I like that.
Let's Be Heroes
I like the mix of out of tune guitars and also the chorus, it's a bit Pop. I think that is why it works in that song. More or less it happens the same in 'Freak-Away' which has a line of guitars very nice and change it when the chorus comes, it changes to much more melodic and emotional, but after that it changes again when the riff comes back. I thought it was a nice way to compose that song and it worked.
What I like of 'He Pretends' is refined, I mean is totally crazy in a certain way, is like to be drugged! Really crazy, the chorus seems Foo Fighters. Because the strange lyrics in one review they compared that song with Red Hot Chili Peppers. It was funny they said that because I agree but I never thought of them when I composed that song.
'Hey' is nice. I like it because it sounds like Brit Pop. It sounds a bit ironic and lyrics are crazy. But the song has something of existencial crisis. I have some difficult times in my life mainly when I try to do the things in my way. That creates a big hole between where I would like to go and what I could do. A lot of people like this song. It's also interesting the comparison between the lyrics and the chorus, in the lyrics speaks with irony about everything you can find at Tv and in the chorus speaks about the soul and it gets crazy.
Boiling Points Of No Reburn
Seize the things as long as they are hot and do them as long as you are kindled by them, because there is no way to turn back the time and it is difficult to rekindle a fire once it is burnt out. You should also have a slightly critical view on our fun-generation which is without real values and meaning (contents)..
What I really like of 'Ride On' is the verse because the vocal lines are very straight, the guitar movements over the vocal lines are very well worked, I like that mix. In the chorus you can hear the old Michael Kiske way to sing. It is a really good ballad, you know? The verse is done in a tone down and then up in the chorus. It's a song who ending very good. I like the combination between the guitars and the voice. The chorus is very powerfull and sometimes is really difficult to sing. It's needed a special intonation and I had to work a lot with that song.
This is a song I've never thought would end so good. The first time we recorded we didn't know where it would end. It has a little production... and it was recorded in a little room with a sound of rehearshal room, we want to give a few punk sound but it didn't work. Another day I decided to re-record in a different way, I want to sound more low and fast, I even want to add more guitars and we just recorded in a few minutes. Faster worked. The other versions aren't so good and I was surprised how it ended. That's one of the reasons why I want to do things a little different the next time. Songs I thought it will be great where deleted of the album after the mixed and songs like 'Hackeneyed' finished working fine. I think the better option is to record around 20 songs, do it the mix and them to choose what songs will join in the album. If I can make in that way the next time my work will be 100% better.
That song is of Sandro, at least the main part. He did some vocal lines and the lyrics of course. We worked a lot with that, in things like the tone. Lyrics are about being different about climb to a mountain not only because people say nobody did, about not being a loser and don't try to do things because somebody tell you that is difficult to do. If I would hear the typical people around me I would never become musician. Some people said me "Oh It's difficult! I wish you luck but who knows if you'll get. A lot of people are mediocres when we speak about dreams and ideas. They always have doubts about everything that's why our world is so vulgar sometimes. If people would be more courageous and they will try more things without fear to fail a lot of good things will happen. I will always surrounded for people like that.
A Bit Of Her
Ummm, that... it's about a experience I had, I mean, the music is very American. I listened a lot of excelent country music of America. But not in the traditional side I found horrible. I mean for example Martina McBride... a song like 'Whatever You Say' of Evolution album... 'A Bit Of Her' had a touch of that. The chorus is American and also another elements on it. Lyrics are about lose the inocent and the youth. If you look the young people who didn't have to suffer bad experiences on his life, still is positive and have the hopes in their eyes. But is also a love song because the song speaks about a woman.
I only want to have some acoustic stuff in the album, close to an unplugged song. I don't want to include that song in the album but it turned so good that it joined finally. It's the favourite song for the woman who live with me.
That song was a whole song, you know? I mean it has the verses, a bridge, a chorus and then a part before of chorus and came back to verses. But I hated the chorus and I decided not to use in the album. But I thought: "The verse is right and the bridge too!" So I cuted everything I didn't like and pasted what I really like. I wanted that song like a hidden track, I didn't want it in the cover but all persons who listen that song, they like it. So at the end the song was placed before the last song 'Turn It' because a lot of people think that song was better of 'Turn It'.
I can't speak a lot about that song because it was written by Sandro. My only contribution was to add some little guitar lines.
What SupaRed means?
Kiske: "Nothing really, the translation means "a strong red". I wanted a name which can´t be easily defined, which has no special meaning, a name that just sounds good. I like to compare it to U2: a name sounding well, modern and fitting for a rock band. Red is a beautiful colour and can easily be remembered; a strong colour with a very alarming effect. I think this effective alarm is important for rock music."
Did you know the band was going to be named Insense or Incense?
The first band name chosed by Michael Kiske was Incense, when they checked the name it was already registered by other acts so they tried again with Insense but it was also registered.
After a while he finally thought in Supared, and the third option was the definitive.
- Michael Kiske will join in Stratovarius as lead vocalist to take of place of Timo Kotipelto.
After Timo Tolkki Hymn to Life's collaboration, a few rumours started and when Stratovarius had the first crisis between Timo Tolkki and some of the others musicians at the end of 2003, the rumour grew. I have not idea about where this rumour started but never was credible. Anybody who were more or less updated with information about Michael, knew he won't join in Stratovarius. First because he was in the hardest moment of statements about Metal and Hard Rock scene and second because if he wanted to team with a band everybody knows what band would be the chosen one, it starts with Gamma and ends with Ray. Perhaps some people who weren't updated in Kiske latest news felt he had a good relationship with Timo Tolkki and created that rumour. At the end it was a statement at Supared site shooting down the rumours:
"If you really followed Michi's thoughts and statements over the last [few] months, do you really think that this is what he wants to do? OF COURSE NOT, so all these talkings are nothing but senseless rumours as Michi will definitely NOT join Stratovarius. When do you guys start to accept and first of all to respect Michi's decision concerning his musical future?!!"
Timo Tolkki himself did another statement to clarify that point:
"I have not been in contact with Michael Kiske about being the replacement for Timo Kotipelto. I know Michael well enough not to suggest anything like that to him and I have enormous amount of respect to him and his musical career. He knows what he wants and I am sure it is very different from what I want."
- SupaRed was close to make a tour.
It's true. The band received a few offers of some promotors who where very interested in to make a few dates but Michael had serious problems in that moment with his stomach which a few months later had to be operated on.