If your talking about today’s European top metal acts, the discussion is heading straight towards Primal Fear. Former Gamma Ray vocalist Ralf Scheepers and bassist/vocalist Mat Sinner, two of the most respected German metal musicians founded the band in late 1997. They recorded their first Primal Fear songs for the Japan based record company JVC Records and signed a deal with JVC for their debut album some weeks later. Germany’s best kept secret was soon a target for most of the European record companies and the band signed to Nuclear Blast Records in early 1998 for the rest of the world. The debut album, simply called „Primal Fear“ was released in March 1998 and entered the German Media Control album charts straight ahead on position 48, soon followed by chart success in Japan.
After touring together with Running Wild and Hammerfall. The second PF album „Jaws Of Death“ entered the German Charts on position 49 in July 1999, followed by their first headlining World Tour incl. countries like Brazil, Japan and of course Europe. A kind of PF hysteria broke free and surprised all metal heads, who couldn’t understand, what kind of thunder was raging above them! In this fantastic mood, PF started the songwriting for „Nuclear Fire“. The result was their heaviest and strongest album so far. Typical PF trademarks like twin guitar solos, killer riffs and a catchy choruses marks „Nuclear Fire“ as a classic. Nuclear Fire has set new standards and charted in Germany Pos. 37, Italy Pos. 71, Switzerland Pos. 77 and Japan Pos. 23! The following headlining European Tour was a huge success and Primal Fear were named as one of the hottest live bands. PF played 10 countries with packed audiences and a fantastic response with co-headliners „Children of Bodom“. Their 4th album „Black Sun“ released on April 29th 2002 The album was mixed this time at the Sonic Ranch in El Paso/Texas. „Black Sun“ charted in Germany on Pos. 55. The following tour through Europe and 11 countries was a huge success, followed by a fantastic and successful tour through South America in December 2002 with the highlight show in Sao Paulo/Brazil at the Via Funchal.
In April/May 2003 the band headed to their first US & Canada tour to be a part of the Metal Gods Tour together with Halford, Testament, Immortal and others. The long awaited first DVD The History Of Fear was released in September 2003 including a superb packaging with fantastic reviews by the metal media. During this time, the Metal Commando was actually in the recording studio and started the sessions for their new album „Devils Ground“. A video clip was shot in Stockholm/Sweden for the first single of the album and the all time metal hymn Metal Is Forever! After touring, the band started the songwriting for their sixth album „Seven Seals“ and this album was a new start and a fresh breath to reload the sound of the band. The album was prodced in the legendary Warehouse Studio in Vancouver/Canada by Mat Sinner and AC/DC engineer & mixer Mike Frazer. Two video clips were shot for the songs Evil Spell and Seven Seals. The band toured together with Helloween for 3 month through Europe, followed by an extensive tour in Japan. Mat Sinner’s book biography „The Book Of Seven Seals“ was released in the middle of the tour and the great packaging was sold out in a short time.
At the peak of their career, Primal Fear ended up the partnership with Nuclear Blast & JVC Records and signed a worldwide multi album deal with Frontiers Records. Both Nuclear Blast and JVC released a final BEST OF album Metal Is Forever, which was a huge success in Japan and stayed for three month in the album charts.
The first album for Frontiers Records was released in September 2007 and named „New Religion“. Epica’s lead singer Simone Simons was invited to studio to sing the first duet in the Primal Fear recording history and the first single „Everytime It Rains“ plus the all time favorite „Fighting The Darkness“. Magnus Karlsson from Sweden was introduced as the band’s new guitarist and the band embarked on their „10 Years Of Metal“ 2008 anniversary tour! The next studio album named under the mysterious banner of „16.6“ was released worldwide in May 2009. „16.6“ charted in Germany on Pos. 46 and the following 16.6 World Tour incl. shows in Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Mexico, South America, USA, Canada & an extensive European tour. Some shows in the USA and Europe were recorded and ended up in the first official LIVE album „Live In The USA“ and the concert DVD „All Over The World“ incl. a playtime of 3 hours and total metal mayhem, video clips and backstage scenes. Primal Fears new outstanding „Back To The Roots“ message called „Unbreakable“ and was released on 20 January 2012 incl. the video-clip and first single „Bad Guys Wear Black“. Unbreakable charted in Germany #31, Sweden #48, Finland #50, Japan #27, Austria #74, Switzerland #51, Netherland Top 200 and in the US Billboard Heatseeker charts for the first time on #44. A second video clip was released for the opening track of the album „STRIKE“ with now more than 1 million Youtube views.
After a very serious songwriting sessions, the band started to record the new album „Delivering The Black“ in summer 2013. The direction was to create the most powerful Primal Fear album ever. The band moved to Denmark in September to finish the album with acclaimed producer/engineer Jacob Hansen (Volbeat) handling the mix. „Delivering The Black“ combines the strongest Primal Fear moments ever, with a well-balanced typical Primal Fear trademark riff-vibe crushing songs and some very ambitious musical journeys. Less experiments, more metal! „Delivering The Black“ became the most successful album of Primal Fear’s history and charted in Germany #13 – the highest charts entry of the bands 10 released albums in Germany, plus chart entries in Switzerland, Austria, Sweden, Finland, Japan and on the US Heatseeker Billboard charts on #18. The band extensively toured Europe, North America, Japan and played Open Air festivals in Europe, plus the 70000 Tons Of Metal cruise and Latin America.
In summer 2015 Primal Fear will record their new album „THE END IS NEAR“ with producer Mat Sinner and engineer/mixer Jacob Hansen. The new album will be released on January 15, 2016 in Europe/Japan and January 19, 2016 in North America by Frontiers Music!
PRIMAL FEAR line-up:
Ralf Scheepers – Vocals
Alex Beyrodt – Guitars
Magnus Karlsson – Guitars
Aquiles Priester – Drums
Mat Sinner – Bass & Vocals