Laibach is an industrial group whose members prefer to be known as a collective rather than reveal individual names; they’ve been seen as fascists and of practicing Germanophilia because of their music’s Wagnerian thunder and their military attire. According to Laibach, “We are fascists as much as Hitler was a painter.”
Since fascism needs a scapegoat to flourish, the members of Laibach mocked it by becoming their own scapegoat and willingly sought alienation. Showing a ridiculous lust for authority, Laibach’s releases featured artwork influenced by anti-Nazi photomontage artist John Heartfield, and the group’s live shows portray rock concerts as absurd political rallies. In interviews their answers are wry manifestos, and they never break character.
Formed the same year longtime Yugoslavian leader Marshall Josip Broz Tito died, Laibach started activity in 1980 in the industrial coal-mining town of Trbovlje in the center of what is now Slovenia. They took their name from the nearby city Ljubljana’s title during Nazi occupation. Their first performance was canceled by authorities for their controversial use of symbols, and military service kept them away from performing until June of 1981.
Laibach | Live is Life
Laibach first played Ljubljana in January of 1982, and the Ljubljana-Zagreb-Beograd collection captures some the group’s performances from this time from cassettes sold at shows. The Laibach/Last Few Days cassette from 1983 was the group’s first proper release, and cassettes from labels like Staal Tapes and Skuk followed.
Milan Fras joined as vocalist, and his distinctive growl and grim stare still makes him the group’s most recognizable member. An appearance on Yugoslavian TV with shaved heads and military attire provoked the state to issue a ban on the name Laibach in Ljubljana that was not lifted until 1987.
Wax Trax! in America and Mute in the U.K. gave 1987’s Opus Dei Laibach’s first widely available release. Included were bizarre thumping cover versions of Queen’s “One Vision” and one-hit wonder Opus’ “Live Is Life,” and videos of both were shown on MTV.
A worldwide tour followed, and Laibach was invited by John Peel to do a Peel Session and Michael Clark commissioned the group to provide music for his dance company.
In spring and summer 2012, Laibach present and promote the science fiction dark comedy film „Iron Sky“. Laibach has composed the soundtrack for this film and will at the concerts perform selected songs from it live, beside other material, including some preview songs from their two forthcoming albums, plus a set of a classic Laibach songs, spanning from early 80’ till today.
Iron Sky is a dark science fiction comedy about Nazis, escaping to the dark side of the Moon in 45’ and return to Earth in 2018. Towards the end of World War II the Nazi scientists made a significant breakthrough in anti-gravity. From a secret base built in the Antarctic, the first Nazi spaceships were launched in late ‘45 to found the military base Schwarze Sonne (Black Sun) on the dark side of the Moon. This base was to build a powerful invasion fleet and return to take over the Earth once the time was right. Now it’s 2018, and Nazis are returning…
Tuesday, 03 April 2012 | 21:00 CET
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