|biography . discography . members|
|Founded out of the ashes of ZENO (bassist Ule W. Ritgen played on the band's first 2 records) and V2 (the band in which singer Tommy Heart was involved before joining ZENO), FAIR WARNING debuted with their self titled album in 1991 for WEA. The line-up was completed by guitar players Helge Engelke and Andy Malecek (ex S.A.D.O.) and drummer C. C. Behrens.
Given the general negativity towards traditional melodic rock back in the early 90's, it was a great success for the band to sell a considerable amount of copies of their debut album, especially in Japan, where FAIR WARNING were voted "Newcomer of the Year" by the readers of the Metal magazine BURRN.
At that time FAIR WARNING toured Germany with GIANT and appeared on several European festivals, before landing on the Eastern Sun land soil. Such was the band's impact in the Far East that the Japanese immediately launched a concert recording, "Live In Japan", to celebrate the event.
After the success of the Rafe McKenna (GIANT, TEN, BAD COMPANY) produced debut, the band opted to produce follow up "Rainmaker" themselves. "It wasn't that we weren't happy with Rafe", Ule Ritgen explains, "but when we'd finished the debut, the record company asked us to remix some of the tracks because they preferred the sound of the original demos. So we did, which they were very pleased with and ever since then it just seemed like the logical thing for us to produce ourselves. It just feels right for us really to do it that way".
Whereas the “Fair Warning” album had an upbeat vibe, very close the late 80's USA Arena Rock sound, its successor was a much more mature sounding record. "Rainmaker sold something like 140.000 or 150.000 copies in Japan", recalls Ritgen. "It also gave us our first hit single with 'Burning Heart'. In Europe too, it got some great reviews. Aardshock magazine in Holland, voted it their "Album of the year".
Another successful tour in Japan followed and one of the nights was recorded with a troupe who filmed the entire show held in Club Citta in Kawasaki, on April 18th 1993. The result can be finally now enjoyed in a DVD which lands on the European markets for the first time ever on Frontiers Records.
FAIR WARNING have later on released two more studio albums: "Go" and "Four" before disbanding in the year 2000. Many of the band members have pursued different project with Tommy Heart heading the hard rock combo SOUL DOCTOR and Helge Engelke (with C C Behrens) resurfacing later in DREAMTIDE, who released 2 albums with Frontiers Records.
2005 - The Reunion
More than five years after their last album "Four", the German Melodic Hard Rock sensations Fair Warning are back! Their brand new album – their fifth - entitled “Brother's Keeper”, includes 13 powerful rock songs again displaying Fair Warning's highly acclaimed ability to use all kinds of stylistic musical elements and yet having their own unique identity.
The band reunited after a five years break and is now formed by singer Tommy Heart, guitarist Helge Engelke, bassist Ule W. Ritgen and CC Behrens on drums.
Similarly to what happened with some of their previous albums ("Rainmaker", "Go" and "Four"), the band withdrew in an old mansion, where they recorded a big part of the new album from August 2005 until March 2006.
According to Ule W. Ritgen the new record is “the most powerful we have done so far” and even if “we have tried to be heavier this time, we managed to keep our melodic approach intact. We kept and refined the typical Fair Warning style, yet the approach and performance of each member is so much more unrestricted and intense ”.
The first reactions to the new material are stunning . The first single "Don't Keep Me Waiting", scored a sensational 92/100 points in the Japanese leading rock magazine "Burrn!". That does not happen that often for single releases !
However it looks that not only in Far East (the traditional stronghold of the band with several gold awards) the return of the four founding members - including original drummer CC Behrens - is very well received and welcome through out the scene. Ironically during the five years break, the band has achieved a cult status with the rock fans world wide.
“Brother's Keeper” was released on the 25th of August 2006 in Europe, anticipated by the European re-release of their debut album "Fair Warning" and the band's breakthrough album in Japan "Rainmaker", together with the first world wide release of the DVD "The Call Of The East" - a live concert in Tokyo.
Fair Warning have already announced their participation to some festivals throughout Europe in 2007 after joining Festivals like the second edition of the United Forces of Rock Festival in Ludwigsburg, Germany or the Firefest in Nottingham (GB).
A full European tour is planned for 2007.