Last updated: 08/25/2004 08:59:01 PM
Q: What does Taraxacum mean; where did the name come from?
A: Hello again, friends!!! Hehe, so many people and magazines have already asked us "What the hell does Taraxacum mean?" or "Taratza...-what???" or "Is this a death metal band?". Some in-scene people even advised us not to choose this name "You'll destroy everything with a name like this!" and we said " a strange band needs a strange name", hehe! The meaning of Taraxacum is not very easy to describe for non-germans (german: LÖWENZAHN; engl; DANDELION). Our first idea was to call the band "Löwenzahn". A "Löwenzahn" is just a small yellow flower that you can find almost everywhere in green grass during the summer. If you want to translate this word into english word by word, it won't come out "Dandelion" (that's only what you would find in a dictionary). You have to translate "Löwe" and "Zahn" into "lion" and "tooth"...which means "tooth of the lion". Strange name for sweet little flower, isn't it? We like the "double meaning" of "Löwenzahn" very much: on the one hand you can think of this sweet little flower that could not do harm to anyone, and on the other hand you could use fantasy and imagine a big mighty lion; the king of deserts, spreading his mouth wide open, showing his teeth and roaring loud and threatening you!! It fits very great to our music and to Rick's singing. It has something out of each, sometimes the little flower and sometimes the roaring lion!!!! Franky used to work as a botanist and he knows a lot about flowers. Finally he translated "Löwenzahn" from Latin into "Taraxacum". And here we go!
Q: What is the history of Taraxacum?
A: Taraxacum was founded by Tobias Exxel and Franky Wolf in early 1999. During the years before, since both of them left the band Squealer (Franky in early 1995 and Tobias in early 1998), they used to be very good friends and they also used to play together just for fun as a two-man-band, only guitar and drums. Somehow they developed their very own style that is now the trademark of Taraxacum: traditional (speed, power and heavy) metal mixed up with some new ideas, influences and experiments without sounding like a progressive metal band or one of those countless bands that are technically brilliant but have lost the feeling and the soul of powerful heavy metal. Of course they both didn't want to keep playing as a two-man-band until the end of their lifes, but it was really difficult for them to meet some good musicians who are not just good musicians but also fit personally to the "band" and understand the (sometimes very strange, hehe) way of thinking. So Eggi (I prefer using Tobias' nickname) and Franky decided to record a 3-track demo in March 1999 with the very rough versions of "Spirit Of Freedom", "Delirium" and "Alone", only drums guitars and bass. At this point of time those three songs were just called "Number one", "Number two" and "Number three". Right after this Eggi went on european tour with Edguy, Gamma Ray and Steel Prophet and of course he got to know Steel Prophet's singer Rick Mythiasin. A really good friendship came out and moreover Rick had the same "problem" like Eggi: they didn't like melodic power metal anymore, haha, no, no, just kidding!!! But both of them (and also Franky who is a power metal freak) have a very big variety of musical tastes and interests and therefore they wanted to try out some more musical experiments, but without changing the styles of their main bands Edguy and Steel Prophet. There was only one way out: Taraxacum as the second band (not just as a project!!!).
Back home after the tour, Eggi sent the rough demo tape to Rick and also to another friend called Ferdy Doernberg who was already famous for his big musical variety and for being a musician 24, better 28 hours a day. Both of them loved the songs and the atmosphere of the tape and joined the band immediately. Rick even already finished the lyrics for "Spirit..." and "Delirium" and shortly later Eggi and Rick did their legendary rehearsal session on the telephone (remember Rick lives in L.A. California and Eggi in Frankfurt, Germany!!!) singing along and working out all the details for their 4-track demo called "Spirit Of Freedom", the one with the gorilla face on its front cover. Finally in August 1999 Rick went to Germany and the whole band came together in one room for the very first time to record this demo-CD. They were very happy and satisfied with the result and moreover they loved the way of team work within the band. It seemed that the big distances between their homes didn't matter at all!!!!
After finishing the demo-CD the four guys became more self confident and so they sent the demo to all metal magazines and of course also to the record companies. Reactions were great from both, the magazines and the record companies and therefore it didn't take long time till they subscribed a contract with the german label MAJOR MTM MUSIC. They continued writing songs for a full lengh album, still rehearsing and exchanging ideas sometimes by telephone (man, how expensive, hehe...) and finally in late 2000 they entered the studio again to record the album. Also Felix Bohnke of Edguy appeared as a guest musician and played the drums on the two songs "Blast Off" and "Think!". The album, again called "Spirit Of Freedom" was mixed by Kai Hansen and Dirk Sclächter of Gamma Ray in Hamburg, Germany and was finally released on May 14th.
That's it so far about Taraxacum until the present. Let's get surprised what the future will bring for them and let's wait and see how your reactions and opinions are like.....