Bring Back Glam! interviewed Miljenko Matijevic, lead crooner for Steelheart, just minutes after he left the Rocklahoma stage. During the interview, Miljenko spoke about the re-birth of Steelheart, the time he died, and the band's new album. Transcription follows.
Bring Back Glam! What was it like playing Rocklahoma?
Miljenko Matijevic: Well, it felt like…the beginning of a whole new vision. We were supposed to play up in Germany at the big open air festival (Wacken Open Air) and I was kind of waiting to see what show opened up the doors so to speak. The freedom. That didn’t happen and I’m actually glad it didn’t happen because I felt the need for it to start in the United States. That’s why this was the new beginning, of Steelheart.
BBG: It’s already been announced there will be a Rocklahoma 2008. Do you want to come back and play again?
Miljenko: Yeah, sure. In fact, a promoter just talked to me…and already ask me to come back…they want to put me up in a later night sort of thing. So yeah, absolutely.
BBG: What was it like playing so early? (Editor's note: Steelheart played around 2:00 p.m.)
Miljenko: It was…fine. Great. It’s nice to be playing before more people. But it don’t matter. The people we played for…if we touched them, I’m sure they’ll tell others. It’s the way life puts it together, you gotta do what you gotta do.
BBG: What’s up with your new album? (Editor’s note: The Just a Taste EP is already available)
Miljenko: The new album is complete. It has been complete for awhile now. We are just trying to find out what is the right release date. That is what’s going on. What we’re thinking about is releasing it in October, the end of October. In a weird way, I was trying to release it on the way I died. October 30th, when I had my accident and I almost died (Editor’s note: Miljenko Matijevic was hit with an improper lighting truss in front of 13,000 people while opening for Slaughter. The result was extensive brain damage).
BBG: What do you think programs like the Hairball John Radio Show are doing for this type of music?
Miljenko: They’re giving a good energy. Putting that out there in the United States…it’s a positive thing. It’s giving people power. A smile. And that is so powerful…I’ll check this guy out. You’ll hear me…then they’ll play RATT…then something else. The 80s were such an incredible, good time of energy that the 90s…I don’t even want to talk about the 90s. Now, it’s like “What the hell is going on? These guys had something going on in the 80s.” There’s an energy. A vibe. So now, it’s coming back. At the same time, it can’t come back just like the 80s. If it does, it will last ten minutes and end up in Vegas –
BBG: Why do you think that?
Miljenko: Because…you haven’t evolved. Need to twist it and grow as a person. Change your music so you can prove you know what’s up. Give the people a little bit of what’s today…but not forgetting yesterday. That’s important.
BBG: So, the new Steelheart album will be modern, with a reverence for your classic sound?
Miljenko: When I started from day one I said, I want to make a record with elements of the past, present and future. I don’t forget about everyone in the past, but still be modern.