A concert held on April 1, 1980 at the legendary Berlin club “Moon” is regarded as the official birth of Einstürzende Neubauten. After more than 30 years together, they are still among the living and are set to release a new album this fall, Lament.
Blixa Bargeld, N.U. Unruh and FM Einheit declared war on all conventional hearing habits with the release of their debut album “Kollaps” in November 1981. Tremendously noise-intensive, rhythmically ritual anti-pop was offered as an antidote for the frightened, paralyzed and media-sedated masses. It was made from a range of instruments carefully beaten together from mostly stolen construction site, scrap yard and do-it-yourself supplies, consisting of steel parts, barrels, drills, hammers, saws and an untuned electric guitar. The sound monster awakened to life was crowned by Bargeld’s blood-curdling screams and feverish texts, impregnated by doomsday fantasies that revolved around ruin and destruction, illness, downfall and death.
Lament is a different sort of Einstürzende Neubauten work, as it is a new performance piece commissioned by the Flemish city of Diksmuide to mark the centenary of the start of the First World War in 1914. Blixa Bargeld has explicitly noted the influence of being a child of the post Second World War era, and his upbringing in divided Germany.
The 100 years separating Einstürzende Neubauten from the 1914 events they’d been commissioned to mark quickly fell away, overcoming the group’s initial ambivalence towards the project they’d agreed to undertake. That the issues fought over by the world’s imperial powers a century ago, and then again with even greater ferocity 21 years later during the Second World War, remain unresolved made the project that much more vivid to Einstürzende Neubauten, a group that has been manically dancing along the unstable fault lines of 20th century history ever since they formed in the Western sector of the then divided city of Berlin back in 1980.
People should not treat Lament as a straight Einstürzende Neubauten album. More a byproduct of their compositional requirements for the commission than conscious design perhaps, but Lament’s use of van den Broeck texts, a writer with trans-european dada interests and connections, evokes how the First World War ran parallel with the advance of modernism and aggressively anti-state art tendencies like dada and futurism. Bargeld clearly acknowledges the impact of said nay-saying art movements on young Neubauten, but this time any such elements are parts of the period weave rather than a shaping force.
Blixa Bargeld, Alexander Hacke, N.U. Unruh, Rudolf Moser and Jochen Arbeit continue to maintain a tireless inventive spirit as they continue to search further on their eternal quest for those still undiscovered sounds. Be among the first to hear Lament when Einstürzende Neubauten comes to Berlin on November 11th.
Tuesday, 11 November 2014 | 21:00 CET
Tempodrom | Möckernstraße 10 | 10963 Berlin/Kreuzberg