Interview With The Legendary Andrey Smirnoff

Greetings from Metalheads Forever Magazine Andrey Smirnoff, I’m Keith Clement, the Editorial Head of the magazine, how are you today? 

 Hi Keith! Nice to meet you!  

Thanks! I’m really good.  I’m busy with promotion of my upcoming album “Electric Gravity”, taking care of my family and playing guitar sometimes.   

You have planned to release your solo album “Electric Gravity” sometimes in September later this year, Being an Instrumental solo album, how long this has been going on in your mind, and why an Instrumental metal album? 

It’s not really a metal record. I would call it a mixture of different guitar-oriented genres. I have had that idea on my mind for a long time. I’ve been doing a couple of guitar clinics back in the days and I always enjoyed playing instrumental songs. I’ve created all of them just for fun but the idea to make a proper instrumental album was always there.

Instrumental albums are not so common these days, and it’s a huge thing for the listener to get in with the flow of the music, thanks for putting up this for the metal fans around the world, how do you feel about this project as a whole? 

To be honest, commercially it doesn’t make much sense to create instrumental music nowadays, but I don’t care.  I wanted to show the full spectrum of my music abilities to the World. Don’t get me wrong, I was lucky to participate on albums of my previous and actual bands. Since “Steelhammer”record and till now I am beyond grateful to write songs for the legendary voice.

 But “Electric Gravity” is a different thing. I’m a “lead singer” here, my guitar is my voice. In order to catch listener’s attention I decided to present this record song by song followed by music video.  

You have released two amazing singles from your upcoming album “Samurai “and “Dream It Out Aloud”, After listening to those two its just purely a magical experience to flow with the sound of guitars and the musical progression is fantastic, How has the reception been so far? 

Thank you! People seemed to dig it. I’m talking about real music lovers. I didn’t expect such a warm reaction to my 2 singles. A lot of people from every part of the World are supporting me and giving me a chance to be heard. You are one of them! I really appreciate it! 

Going forward are you looking to make more solo albums? 

Why not? Pandemic gave me a reason and time to record and mix my instrumental material last year. But I hope there will be more positive reason to make another one next time.  

 You have worked extensively with U.D.O Dirkschneider and a member of the band U.D.O. how has the work been and what would be the next plans with them? 

It became my main job almost ten years ago. It’s a great honor to work for one of the most famous metal voices in the industry. We had a lot of touring plans but they’re all gone because of pandemic. We’re constantly writing and recording new songs. I hope we can put out our new album this year.  

How was the experience with Paul Di Anno and Blaze Bayley, how did the bond of friendship start with them? 

It’s been a great time in my career. I was and still am a big fan of Iron Maiden. My 1st tour with Paul took place in 2010 and that was a 30th anniversary of self titled Maiden’s record. We played another tour one year later but with Paul and Blaze together. This was an amazing but exhausting experience. I’ve been on stage for 3 hours every night playing 2 sets in a row. So to say, with UDO we usually do 2 and a half hour which is also crazy.  

 As Covid has stormed our World, It has affected us all since early 2020, how as musician you are tackling the situation as concerts are the biggest thing for any band?  

We’re suffering without stage. Being on stage is like a drug for every touring musician. We are trapped now. Let’s hope that this nightmare will be over as soon as possible. 

 What would be some of the biggest moments in your life? 

It’s definitely my daughter’s birth in 2020. I was always scared to be far away on that important day because of touring. But this crazy worldwide situation had a positive aspect too; it gave me the time to be with my family when they need me the most.

 It’s more than 20 years of a musical journey for you , how has the road been for you so far? 

You’re right. It’s been a while but if feels like yesterday. I couldn’t imagine myself being in that position back in the days. So, I would call myself a lucky guy but of course it was a lot of hard work also.  

 What are the guitars you use and what makes it so special for you to use them? 

I have more than 22-25 instruments in my arsenal. I try to play each of them from time-to-time because instrument lives that way. It dies without a human touch. I love my ESP guitars for live shows. I have a massive support from them and I like their look and the way they sound. 

Thanks again for putting up an amazing instrumental album this year, and finally do you have a word for the fans around the world? 

Thank you, Keith!  

Stay strong and healthy, listen to live music and take care of each other.