Sometimes our simple ideas take on a life of its own, and what started as something simple ends up taking more room in our lives than initially expected. That seems to have been the case with Tobias Sammet, who decided to do a project called Avantasia as a side project from his main band Edguy. The initial plan in 1999 was a studio only initiative, with two albums. And yet here we are in 2022, with Avantasia having released nine albums and becoming one of the most successful tours in the metal circles.
October 21st brought the latest offering from Avantasia, entitled “A Paranormal Evening with the Moonflower Society”. As the long title suggests, the album is a dream come true for fans of metal operas. Sammet’s method of having guest vocalists in each track is maintained, with Primal Fear’s Ralf Scheepers and Nightwish’s Floor Jansen being the only two additions to the guest list. Eric Martin (of Mr. Big fame), Geoff Tate (ex-Queensryche), Ronnie Atkins (Pretty Maids), Michael Kiske (Helloween) and Bob Catley (Magnum) are mainstays of Sammet’s output, and once again lend their voices to his vision. Jørn Lande is also a returning guest.
“A Paranormal Evening with the Moonflower Society” is a captivating, deeply magical universe that Tobias Sammet has built over the past two decades. Since his debut “The Metal Opera” (2001), the Peter Pan of international rock and metal has romped between metal, classical and rock, beguiling the biggest festivals around the world with his traveling circus and working with the greatest voices in the metal world including Alice Cooper and Scorpions’ Klaus Meine.
Musically, the album is as diverse and grandiose as one would expect, with the emotional “Misplaced Among the Angels” and the fast-paced “The Inmost Light” being the immediate highlights. The closing song, “Arabesque”, combines Celtic and Middle-Eastern influences, ending the album with the pomp and grandiose it deserves. From the mystical, driving title track to fragile moments like in “Paper Planes” AVANTASIA go all in. And hit the jackpot.
Sonic Perspectives collaborator Rodrigo Altaf caught up with Tobias to discuss the makings of the album, touring plans, and much more. Watch or listen to their all-encompassing conversation below and remember that for more interviews and other daily content, Sonic Perspectives is on Facebook, Flipboard, Twitter and YouTube, where you can be notified about new content we publish on a daily basis.