Being born in East Germany in 1981 impacted my path to metal music. Born in Brandenburg, just outside of Berlin, I was born into an era of rebellion with a generation of people, particularly in the area of Berlin, who were hungry for the knowledge of the other side. This was the era of Bowie, hiding out in West Berlin. These were legendary days of Punk and Thrash where stories of revolutionary music, parties, sex, and general insanity originated — right up to the protests that eventually tore down the wall. Thankfully, my father was one such rebel. True to the cliché, he is an East German Metal-head. In the 1980’s he managed to obtain contraband albums, his hair was long, and he wore a leather jacket. I am sure we were under Stasi surveillance, but that was simply life in those days. Under this influence, I had access to music that opened my mind and, at age 12, I also had the guitar. My father’s album collection could be described as the entirety of the heaviest part of the censored music list created by the Soviet Government’s propaganda machine. It contained the likes of Slayer, Judas Priest, Helloween, Kreator, Exodus, Venom, Anthrax, Destruction and Metallica. But, Metal was a family thing, and after Germany reunited as one nation, we gained access to more music. From my older sister’s collection I had my first taste of Death, Pantera, Sodom, Machine Head, At the Gates, and Carcass. My personal collection grew to include Deicide, Obituary, Dismember, Entombed, Sepultura, Testament, Megadeth, In Flames, Fear Factory, Napalm Death, Bolt Thrower, Meshuggah, Nevermore, Necrophagist, Unleashed, Vader, Morbid Angel and Cannibal Corpse. I tried to play the guitar, teaching myself chords from a book I picked up. For a time, as a teenager, I did put the guitar down…but, I assure you it was only for a moment. I started guitar lessons at age 15. A friend encouraged me to join a high-school Punk band called Radikale Erdbeeren (which translates to something like Radical Strawberries). We never had a gig. The same friend told me to join a Death Metal band called Supremacy instead. I had one gig with them. After that, I found more charismatic friends in Andreas Jechow (Ex-Desilence, Ex-Dew Scented) and Thomas Neitsch (KLONQUE, Holy Moses, Ex-Desilence), and we joined Hagen Hirschmann (Logan’s Diary) and Felix Gretzer (Logan’s Diary) to form the Thrash group Desilence. We were successful and worked well together—we had multiple gigs and made an album, but I left the group to study music professionally. When I came back from my studies, I joined the music project Purpose Effect created by Tom Gelschläger (Fountainhead, Ex-Obscura). Eventually, I joined Thomas Neitsch in the well-established, underground German-Thrash band Holy Moses, which tours internationally. I also found myself playing as a live-guitarist and eventually joining the Gothic-Industrial band, Nox Interna. In my adventures, I acquired friends, met and became friends with some of my role-models, and grew my artistic skills. After the success of co-writing music and lyrics on the last Holy Moses album, Thomas and I decided to start our own Death/Thrash Metal band, KLONQUE. We are currently in the process of writing a full album and intend to tour following its release.