Joey Tempest labels bands who don't retire after final tours 'ridiculous'

Joey Tempest says Europe have no intention of slowing down or calling it quits and they plan to keep on touring as long as it’s fun while promising not to backtrack on ‘ridiculous’ live performances billed as a final tour.

The Europe singer also admitted he was surprised that ‘The Final Countdown’ became as big a global smash hit as it did after penning the track while he was still in college.

Speaking to he explains: “Now, we’ve sort of been joking about that a little bit because there are so many bands that have said they’ve done the final tour for twenty years now.

“We’ve said were never going to say we’re doing the final tour. We’re going to keep going as long as we feel like it’s fun. I doubt if we’re ever going to do something like that. But you never know! If we do it, it will be the final tour because we don’t believe in saying something and then doing something else. I understand some bands — they think they’re going to do their final tour and then they feel like ‘Oh no. We can’t stop.’

“And there’s a lot of fans coming to see you and they change their minds. I mean that’s OK too. I don’t want to do it to trick people or anything like that. That’s ridiculous.”

The Swedish rockers hit the number one spot in 25 countries around the world in 1986 with ‘The Final Countdown.’ Tempest insists he believed the band had a strong song on their hands but even they were taken aback by its global success.

“Yeah, we were surprised and I was too,” continues Tempest.

“I wrote it when I was still in college and that was only a small part of it — the riff, the main theme. When we did our third album which we called ‘The Final Countdown’, we thought it was special though and we wanted to open the album with it. We wanted to open the show with it. We knew it was special as it stuck out.

“It was different. It was even different from what we did. Yeah, we knew it was special but we never had an idea that it would have a life of its own and there and still be played so much around the world. No, we didn’t know that. But of course, it’s flattering and it brings people into the band and people get curious about more songs so that’s cool.”

The track follow-up to ‘The Final Countdown’ has been in musical hibernation for almost 20-years before being given a new lease of life on the band’s most recent record ‘War Of Kings.’

Tempest reveals that ‘Days of Rock N’ Roll’ was penned at the same time as ‘Countdown’ but it wasn’t until more recently that the song got the greenlight and was finally completed.

“That’s the only idea that’s kind of from way back,” he recalls.

“It was actually a song that was meant to come after ‘The Final Countdown’ album but it was written completely different. I wrote the song on the keyboard. That hook [sings a couple bars] was done on keyboards and it never really worked.

“A few years ago, I started playing it on the guitar as a ballad and John Leven heard me playing it and he loved the melody. We just redid the shuffle and made it into a straight forward rock song with a great hook. Lyrically you know, it’s just ours.”

He adds: “I’m just interested in everybody’s comments about rock n’ roll is dead and we’ve just been circling for ten years and it was just a reflection on that. But that’s just one. It’s just a kind of an up tempo fun track on the album I suppose.”