Helloween guitarist Michael Wekaith, a founding member of the band, is proud of the band's latest album, '7 Sinners.' That's not surprising information, since bands usually are proud of their latest efforts. But the guitarist did say that this album -- their 13th -- is one of the fastest and heaviest of the German band's lengthy career. That's a large statement for a band with a legacy like Helloween to make, but the material has the chops to back it up.

"'Walls of Jericho' may be more extreme, but it doesn't sound as good. And that record may have been fast, but we have faster parts on this one," Weikath told Noisecreep, comparing the new platter to one of the band's essential catalog pieces. "It is a matter of drum technique, and with Dani [Loble], it is a different thing. It's pretty intense and the sound is good."

Wonder what the members of Helloween are sprinkling on their Wheaties this deep in their career to keep them focused on forward progress and retaining heft? "As I have said on other occasions -- and I know [bassist] Markus [Grosskopf] is with me -- I don't know what else to do," Weikath said. "If you are a painter or writer, there is always someone who is better than you in a field. I am confident and I know the deal and what to do with those things.

"I think that I could easily have a mental breakdown if i had to do something else for real! I think we better stick to what we know. An office is impossible for me. You get used to it. We've been around 26 years now. What else can we do?!"

'7 Sinners,' which is out Nov. 9 via The End Records, boasts a song called 'Are You Metal?' It's the first single and the most memorable and catchy song on the record.

Overall, the has a thoroughly fresh and modern feel. "We didn't do click track recording," Weikath said. "Most of the parts are free playing with the drummer, so we could get the feel for the speed of the beats!"