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Album review: Stahlmann’s ‘Bastard’–dark, industrial music at its best

Stahlmann

By Chyrisse Tabone, Rock At Night Tampa Correspondent

Album review: Stahlmann’s Bastard—July 7, 2017 (USA)  AFM Records

Back in the 1990s I definitely was into the goth/industrial dance scene. In fact, the scene in Tampa was so “famous” that SNL (with Chris Kattan and Molly Shannon) created a few skits poking fun at it.  The Castle was the place to be and is still alive and well in 2017.

Well, I was thrilled to have discovered Stahlmann, a German industrial/electro dance/metal band which reawakened my love for the genre.  Often compared to Rammstein (another fav’) they often perform wearing silver face make-up and spooky silver skeletal masks.  I believe the comparison is likely due to Mart Soer’s deep, whispering, hoarse voice. Stahlmann released the first single from Bastard “Bastard/Nichts Spricht Wahre Liebe Frei” along with two videos which can give you a taste of the album—dark, gloomy, goth-like industrial music full of keyboard/synth riffs, driving drum beats, and rhythmic metal guitars that make you want to don dark eye liner, black clothes, and head out to the nearest Goth club. I have played the CD a bunch of times around the house and each time I like it more and more. The engineering of the CD is perfectly balanced with vocals, bass, guitars, and percussion.  I have visions of stark industrial buildings with smoke stacks, grinding clock gears, an East Berlin Stasi prison I visited a few years ago, and scenes from Metropolis. Dark, growling, yet grooving…

 

Since I do not understand German I am basing my opinion on the actual music—the sound and how it makes me feel.  Some of the stand-out songs are “Leitwof” which has a driving beat, symphonic riffs, and the distinctive determined, dark, hoarse voice of Soer. “Judas” has Moog-like synths and more of a hard, metal sound which changes pace within the song for great dramatic effect. In fact, I noticed this with a lot of the songs, it’s almost like a bass drop. “Bastard” is definitely dance metal full of synths, electric guitar, and a bad ass chorus.  The song “Nichts Spricht Wahre Liebe Frei” starts with a classical music or “Proggy” sound with full string accompaniment and may be deemed a “romantic” ballad (as romantic as industrial can get, that is).  “Alptraum” is another “romantic” song with a slow, catchy, almost pretty melody.  “Wachter” has a very dark sound full of heavy metal riffs and would be great in the soundtrack for a modern vampire film. Another one of my favorite tunes is “Supernova” with its very cool, full-sounding synth riff and sexy beat.

Overall, Bastard is one of my new favs’ this year and is a must hear for every fan of industrial, Goth, and symphonic metal. Honestly, this album is going to stay in my play list for some time.

Band Members:

Mart Soer-Vocals; AblaZ-bass; Frank Herzig-guitar; Max Thiele-drums

Track List:

  1. Leitwolf
  2. Judas
  3. Bastard
  4. Nichts Spricht Wahre Liebe Frei
  5. Wächter
  6. Von Glut Zu Asche
  7. Alptraum
  8. Dein Gott
  9. Schwarz Und Weiss
  10. Supernova

 

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EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

I grew up in a household full of rock music, studied journalism in college, and then became a scientist.Although my science career has served me well, music has always played a major role in my life. I grew up reading "Creem" magazine; I play several musical instruments as a "hobby";and it seems a camera has always been in my hand. Now, I am combining what I love the most--music and photography--serving as editor of Rock At Night. My motto: life is short...no regrets. Chyrisse
Chyrisse
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About Chyrisse (288 Articles)
I live and breathe music through playing, writing, and photography.

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