RH: You have a reputation for being shy. Is it always so painful for you to go out on stage?
Till: Yes. “Excruciating” is not an exaggeration. But now things are improving, I’m more used to the stage. Though I always worry about the concert. And what I do not like - thank God, it happens less and less often - is performing in small clubs: the audience is so close, it looks at you from head to toe, I feel like a victim of voyeurs who can see the fear oozing from the pores in my skin.
I took lessons for two years with an opera singer, twice a week. She lived in Berlin on the other side of town. I hated it. The trips themselves were very long, and she was very harsh. She sang in the German theater, was the star of Gershwin’s opera “Porgy and Bess”. I had to sing, holding a chair over my head - to work with the diaphragm, or, for example, she made me do pushups while singing.
You all saw it coming, don’t deny it, lol. But, yeah, Richard is my favorite and has been for years now. I’ll have to say, tho, that the six of them are very important to me, make me happy and I can see pics or gifs of any of them and instantly it will cheer me up, and, honestly, I love the six of them to death. When I first saw them, Till was the one who caught my attention. I liked him a lot (I still do, a lot more than before) and would fangirl and show my friends pictures of him. Now, here’s a secret: I used to dislike Richard because I thought he was an asshole lol I swear to God I was like ‘what everyone sees in this jerk?’, but one day I just gave him a little bit more of attention and… Yeah, he got me. Now I’m all Richard, I can’t shut up about him, he’s my wallpaper, and all through the concert all I could do was stare at him and be like ‘goddamn look at how beautiful he is’. He’s my precious baby, I’ll fight you haha. (All of them are my precious babies, tho lol). Here’s the deal: I tend to think of them as a little family I’d be a part of, y’know? Till would be like a father, Ollie would be my precious son (dude I’ll protect him forever), Paul, of course, my older brother, Schneider would be my twin (I don’t look like him, yeah, but put the two of us together, we’d bring chaos lol) and Flake would be my favorite and extremely supportive uncle. But Richard I’d see more as a best friend, lol, someone to lean on and talk about random stuff. (He couldn’t be blood related also lol y’know why). I guess that’s it, I love all of them but Richard is my babyboy and will always be.
Metal Hammer: How long does it take to choose appropriate lyrics for the music?
Till: It varies, sometimes five minutes, sometimes three years. What really helps is the “Rammstein-technical-inspection-agency” I submit ideas for lyrics and members of the group express their opinions or make their suggestions about words. There are songs with forty different options. Members of the group are extremely difficult reviewers, sometimes they are so rude that it makes me sick. But when I calm down, I understand that their objections are justified. I just wrote too much. I want to tell the story, as in the song “Spring”, and they say: “Till, that’s too long! We threw out one verse. ” I’m absolutely crushed: “WHAT!? How could you?! Then I try to cram the information from the missing verse into the remaining ones. Everything is mixed together.. Months of work, goes out of the window in one moment. Sometimes it makes me furious, creating lyrics is no easy task…