Thursday, February 21, 2013

Music band review: Wolfsheim

While painting my Grey Knights I've been listening to Wolfsheim.  As some of you know, I listen to my iPod while painting.  Purpose is to keep myself on task and not be distracted by the "noise."  This is something I did when I was painting at Fantasy Flight.  I went there to model and paint not chat.  Time chatting = time not modelling or painting.

Grey Knights army list v1.1

Wolfsheim is/was a German band that does/did house/rave/techno/EMB (electronic body music) type music.  Pandora turned me onto them months ago with the song The Sparrows and The Nightingales.  Soon after Pandora played a couple more of their songs which made me extremely interested.  Wasn't really the songs as much as Peter Heppner's voice.  The lyrics really made me think, which is the best way to get me interested in a band.  Started ordering their discs from Amazon.  Purchased first one then second two weeks later.  Wanted to get a feel for the progression of their music, instead of listening to it all of it at once decided give each disc its due attention.  After the first two discs I ordered the next four and spaced listening to the albums one every two weeks.

Those who don't know.  Pandora is an online music radio station.  You type in band/artist or type of music and Pandora plays it.  It then starts branching out and adding new music you hopefully enjoy.  Utilizing thumbs up and down to rate songs allows Pandora to know what you do and don't like.  Thus playing music more appropriate to your tastes.

Note: All links lead to the song on Youtube.

The first album No Happy View was a refreshing sound to the usual techno music I enjoy.  While similar enough to rave/house/techno/EMB it was divergent enough to easily garner my ears attention.  Leading Men has to be one of the best songs the band has made.  Lyrics are profound and quite disturbing.  The big hit from this album The Sparrows and The Nightingales is an excellent song for a someone new to Wolfsheim.  While this is their first album it doesn't sound like it.  Wolfsheim's music is practiced, polished and seasoned.

Second album Popkiller showed promise of the band finding their sound.  Found the second album more comfortable than the first.  Could be I understood Wolfsheim more and what they were portraying.  Could be that its a better album.  An odd thing with this album.  One of the songs is named No Happy View.  Which is the title of their first album.  Perhaps they liked the sentiment enough to carry it into the second album.  Kaufrausch is hands down the best track on this album.  It talks about western society and the god Capitalism.  The desire to have more, and more, and more.  A rather appropriate song for commission painting.  The subtle message is not lost on me.  Almost surprisingly the number of songs in German are increasing.   They don't branch into German lyrics a lot but you can tell they are seeing how warm the water is.

Third album 55578 is an unusual album to say the least.  This album contains several songs from their first album.  They are different versions though.  Specifically long and original versions.  Prefer some of the versions on this album over those from the first.  Example Annie.  While I liked the version on the first album, the version on his album is much better.  I appreciate the lack of techno and more instruments in the original version of Annie on this album.  The Sparrows and The Nightingales long version lacks the feeling and atmosphere generated by the hit on the first album.  I often skip it.  German lyrics are growing.  Seem to be one song per album release.

Fourth album Dreaming of Apes finally does what I've been waiting for.  German lyrics.  Respect to hold onto the concept of making previous albums english.  That is where my appreciation ends.  This is also where I feel Wolfsheim fell flat trying to reinvent, or further find, their sound.  While there are two solid tracks Closer Still and Leave No Deed Undone they aren't enough to save the album in my opinon.  The second track of the album should be avoided at all costs.  Should you download this album please delete the second track and never consider it existed.  The album has an extremely short run time.  Usually their albums run between 40-50 mins.  Perhaps with all the short songs it seems the album has a short run time.  Speaking of which.  Another invention of their new sound are several short songs.  Indian Theme being the best of them.  The rest I can easily do without.  I feel Wolfsheim tried too hard with this album and really should've stayed with the voice from their first two albums and not attempt to branch out too far when reinventing their sound.

Fifth, sixth if you count live album (generally not a fan of live albums), album Spectators returns to the Wolfsheim sound I've grown to love.  Its a solid album easily on par with their first album.  Popular hits Blind and Once in a Lifetime are great  songs.  Two songs contending for the top spot are I Don't love You Anymore and Heroin, She Said.  Both songs have a deep message.  Former about a couple who are lonely together.  The latter about the monster within.  Touch is also a solid song, doesn't speak to me as clearly as the previous mentioned two.

Sixth, seventh, album Casting Shadows is a wonderful piece of music.  One of the top releases from this album Find You're Gone is the zenith of Wolfsheim's work.  In their latest/last album Wolfsheim has completely found their voice and know their talent.  The songs are great.  Overall an excellent album.  Easily the best they made.  Each song dominates my attention.  Lyrics are almost top form example; I Won't Believe.  The harmony between the band members is strong which is clearly portrayed in their songs.  They have learned from previous albums and know what they are providing for the listener.  Gone are the weird experimental instrumental songs.  Wolfsheim has gone with quality over quantity regarding instrumental songs.  The single instrumental song is rock solid.  Great example is Time the albums closing song.  Would say the same for the German songs but don't understand Greman.  To be honest the song I like the least is still compelling.  Would not suggest this album for someone new to Wolfsheim.  This album is clearly the creme de la creme.  It should be treated as such.

I would go on about the members of the band but frankly I would be regurgitating information from wiki.  Not that I believe wiki to be a reliable source of information.

slainte mhath

1 comment:

  1. Hm, if you chronicled you artistic time spent at something original and sold those works by auction you might get paid for time spent painting monkeys from a movie.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...