(Earsplit) U.D.O. is pleased to announce that Peter Baltes has official joined their ranks as a full-time member. Baltes made his live premiere in Australia and Japan last week.
Baltes comments, "Since my departure from Accept, I kept myself very busy writing and recording for film/TV productions and various artists around the globe. That's how I reconnected with Udo working on his solo album My Way, the U.D.O. album We Are One, and the Dirkschneider & The Old Gang album Arising. Since [guitarist] Stefan Kaufmann [ex-Accept drummer] was also involved, it all had a very familiar feeling.
"That's why, when Udo called me in September to fill in for his injured bass player, I did not hesitate. The set list had mostly U.D.O. songs which I was not familiar with, and a few Accept tunes. When I arrived in Berlin a few days later for the first show, I was nervous and had no idea what to expect. But as soon as we all took the stage standing next to Udo, it felt like home: His voice took me right back to where it all began. It was a total surprise for the audience at first, but as we played on, I realized they were as happy as I was to see Udo and me together again.
"Over the next three months, I really got to know Sven, Dee, and Andrey as extremely talented musicians but also as very humble and respectful guys. It all feels very authentic. That made my decision to say, 'yes,' very easy when Udo asked me to join the band permanently."
Dirkschneider adds, "I have a very long friendship with Peter Baltes which has never been shadowed by the disagreements with Accept over the past few years. The arguments were exclusively with another person and his wife. It should be clear to everyone who is meant. All other Accept members have always been united in friendship. It meant a lot to me when Peter spontaneously helped us out on some U.D.O. tour dates last year. From the first day, I experienced the great feeling and trust from the past with him again. A feeling that always connected us throughout the years in Accept.
"I'm aware that Peter had many lucrative offers from other bands on the table, all of which he had turned down over the years. To be honest, he can't earn these sums with us. It means even more to me that he still decided to stay with U.D.O. and to also join DIRKSCHNEIDER as bassist. This shows me that he has a real metal heart beating in his chest and that friendship and fun are more important to him than money. Thank you, Peter! We are very happy that after so many years you are finally having fun on stage again!"
European fans can catch U.D.O./DIRKSCHNEIDER live in the coming weeks.
U.D.O. / DIRKSCHNEIDER Live:
5/05/2023 Karmoygeddon Metal Festival - Kopervik, NO *
5/07/2023 Wildstyle & Tattoo @ Arena Nova - Wiener Neustadt, AT
5/14/2023 Wildstyle & Tattoo @ Messehalle - Innsbruck, AT
5/21/2023 Wildstyle & Tattoo @ Stadthalle - Vienna, AT
6/08/2023 Sweden Rock Festival - Solvesborg, SE
6/10/2023 Lisaa Loylya Festival - Laihia, FI
6/16/2023 Metal am Kiez - Augsburg, DE *
6/18/2023 Graspop Metal Meeting - Dessel, BE *
7/14/2023 Bang Your Head!!! - Balingen, DE *
7/21/2023 Open Air Pforring - Pforring, DE
8/12/2023 Leyendas del Rock - EVillena, ES *
8/17/2023 Rock Castle Open Air - Moravsky Krumlov, CZ
8/20/2023 Rock The Lakes - Vallamand (VD), CH
9/16/2023 Beast of Rocks @ Stadthalle - Tuttlingen, DE
10/07/2023 Keep It True Rising III @ Posthalle - Wurzburg, DE *
10/22/2023 Wildstyle & Tattoo @ Tabakfabrik - Linz, AT
10/29/2023 Wildstyle & Tattoo @ Messezentrum - Salzburg, AT