Let's talk a bit about touring now. You played lots of concerts and festivals this year. What is the most important factor to not get tired?
Making new music all the time! Last year, we did the Volume I tour, and we played almost always the same 20 songs. The concerts were divided into three acts, just like the Spektrum concert was, and this is what we did every day. This year, we took 60 songs and varied between them on the club tour, and the concerts were built up very differently than last year. In addition, we had five different concerts to choose from. And now when we start playing the festivals, we have to play for a somewhat broader audience. There are many Bjørn Eidsvåg fans here, Jarle Bernhoft fans and so on, not only Kaizer fans. So of course you play more of the songs that work for people who are not only Kaizer fans, but might just have heard a song on the radio. In addition, it's cool to be headliner, because this means that we have to prove how good we are again and again, every night. That makes it more varied for us. But still, after a year you do get a bit tired - and then it's great to have a new album out, ten new songs, so you can take them into the setlist. For Volume III, the main emphasis will likely be on the new album, and then Volume I and II and a few old songs. So that will give you 20 songs, which is about one and a half or two hours.
So regarding the next tour; that one will start with the premiere ...
... at the opera, yes. One week there, and then we go on.
Will there be concerts with an orchestra in Bergen and Stavanger as well?
With the symphonic orchestra, we'll play in Oslo and Stavanger only. That's it. But then we'll play Bergen, Trondheim, everywhere, of course.
And that will be right after the premiere?
I don't know the dates now, but it will start with the opera concerts, and after that we will tour every week throughout the whole winter and spring. And then we'll play a tour in Europe, about 17 or 18 days, at the end of Februar and into March, those two weeks. We'll play the biggest cities in Europe then.
And this time, "the biggest cities" will not mean some rather small German towns?
No. In Germany, we'll probably play Berlin, Köln, Hamburg, München. This time, we'll do the biggest cities, since it's the last tour there.
I just thought it was really funny last time, when you said you'd play "only the capitals", and then it turned out to be Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, and Leipzig in Germany.
Abroad, we can't play in the same city every year. We don't have a position that permits that. We can do that in Norway, but not abroad.
So the European tour will be the conclusion of the tour, and then there will be festivals afterwards?
No, this is in February/March. After that, we will continue in Norway for the remainder of March and April, and then it's Easter vacation. But in the last week of April, we'll do a last club show for Kaizers Orchestra, after the trilogy is finished on a club level. And then we'll do something that is quite spectacular: Our very last show - I don't know the exact date now, but it's the last week in April - will be in London!
Oh, cool! Why that?
Because in England, they've been asking for Kaizers for ten years now, and we said no. And so we thought that now, when we are done, we will do one show in England, and that one will be in London and it will be the last club show for Kaizers Orchestra. And it won't be in a tiny pub, but more of a "Grand Theater", very nice, basically ...
And you'll fill that up?
There will be fans coming from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and all of Europe and England to fill that up! And then the festivals will start. For Volume III, we'll play more in Europe than in Norway.
Do you already have an idea which festivals you will play?
We will extend it to Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, thus the south, and then of course up through all the usual countries. We just want to plant Kaizer seeds everywhere one last time.
Especially on Facebook and Twitter, there are lots of fans from other countries like the US or Brazil who want you to play there once. What do they have to do to arrange that? Talk to festival people?
Yes ... the best chance to get Kaizers to Brazil is if fans convince a festival - and not a small festival, it must be a big and established festival! - to invite us and give us a nice spot and a reasonable pay. Because it is very expensive to fly Kaizers Orchestra to Brazil just to play one gig there and then back home again, with all the equipment. This alone is terribly expensive, and on top of that, we need to have some salary. And that is the reason why usually, nothing comes out of it. Actually, we have offers from all around the world! Nobody knows about that, because we don't talk about it. But we have offers from Japan, Australia, Latin America, England, Europe, USA, New York, Washington, LA - there's offers everywhere. But all would just be some kind of vacation ... And we work so hard, so much, we neither have the time nor do we want to do that, and there's no money in doing it. But if Kaizers wanted, Kaizers could have played over the whole planet next summer, no problem. We have offers from everywhere. But ... ain't gonna happen.
And after the festivals, you will take a break ...
Yes, then we'll take a break and have time off, and we will stop for a long time. We will play many festivals throughout the summer, about 40; most in Europe but also many in Norway. And then we will have a last Kaizer show in early September. Somewhere, but it's not decided yet where.
But this will be only Kaizers, and not a festival?
No, this is only Kaizers. But we'll have to see how that will go, where it will be and all the details. But we want to do a final show.
Do you have any plans at the back of your mind already for what will happen after the break?
At this point in time, we've been in it for fifteen years, every year together, all the way. It has just gone on and on. When we have time off from touring, we're composing songs and practicing and working and such, so for us, we've kept on going for fifteen years straight now. This has been such a long time of our lives ... Just the trilogy took six years to make. This is why we all totally agree that when we are done with the touring for Volume III, Kaizers Orchestra will stop. We won't quit or break up! And we don't have any problems either; it's just that we all agree that we will stop now and take a break for an indefinite time. There's no plans for when we will start again. We want to have so much time off, so many years, that it can feel like we can get a new life, with our families. So that we can be with our families, do other projects - some want to move and live in other countries, travel, experience things ... things that you can't do because you play in Kaizers now. So this is our plan, and this was also part of the plan that we had even before Volume I; that everyone is game and goes "all in" during the trilogy, if we all agree that when that is finished, then it's over for many years. And we all agreed that this sounds fantastic.
Not for us!
(smiles) No, but Volume III is so complex that it will take you many years to listen to it. So this is also part of the plan.
Do you have any big goals or things that you want to do some day? Spektrum probably was one such thing.
Yes, and the opera as well. And London.
So everything you want to do is already planned. No further "dreams"?
Well, yes ... what I and Geir continue with. The band stops, but I and Geir actually continue, and we will do that musical. It's not Kaizers who make that, it's me and Geir.
Like the theater play?
Yes, but with much more music and script. I and Geir do everything. This time, there will be no Tore Renberg or Kaizers Orchestra band; there will be a symphonic orchestra and me and Geir who have produced everything, together with the theater. Thus we will put everything into that and do only that. And surely other things as well - side projects and main projects, the next five, six, seven years. During this time, we'll put everything into the musical, get it set up ... Maybe first and foremost start at home in Stavanger, and then try to get it out to other countries. Denmark would be a logical start, Germany, maybe Austria. Maybe try Canada, Toronto, Sydney ... and finally maybe try Westend and Broadway! We have goals and dreams that are ten times bigger than what Kaizers have achieved so far. But this is something that'll take ten years. But this is what we'll be doing.
That sounds exciting! And even though thinking of the break is quite scary right now, we're looking forward to Volume III and a lot of touring first. And maybe we should book a hotel room in London already ...
Thanks so much for the interview! =:-)