Einstürzende Neubauten (translated from German means something like “Collapsing New Buildings”) is a legendary industrial music German band that has always been able to renew themselves in these almost 3 decades of existence. They are currently on tour and will visit Helsinki pretty soon at the end of April. A piece of European music history still alive and kicking!
Berlin now and then
In fact, the historical changes have played an important role when shaping the career of the band: The fall of the Berlin wall was a turning point in the member´s lives. Alex Hacke, who joined to the 3 original band members, Blixa Bargeld, N.U. Unruh and FM Einheit, some few years after their appearance, tells us more about his personal vision of what is going on in the German capital nowadays:
“I am still based in Berlin, but it turns out, that I spend the main part of the year everywhere else, which is good because obviously the place has changed to the extent where it is fair to say that the spirit, which once possessed this city has forever departed, to put it mildly. Certainly, West-Berlin was a special place, but it doesn’t exist anymore. Where there was room and artistic headroom resides now the government of this country and where there was intuition and rebellion rules now the struggle of survival and competition”.
But if a great part of the bohemian spirit is getting lost, is music still able to inspire and excite the minds of the listeners?
“Of course! I like all kinds of styles and genres and better still it is to combine a choice of them. To me it is all about friction. 1 + 1 = 3. It’s that third kind of music I’d like to create” affirms Alex.
A straight relation band-supporters
The band has recently released his new album Alles Wieder Offen (“All Open Again”), and once more, there is space for a committed and risky tone in tunes like Nagorny Karabach, a line that is not new at all, since the Germans have always been very politically active in their lyrics, like in their previous work Armenia (1983). Innovation is their way of life. Years ago they recorded albums just using pieces of garbage picked from the streets, but this time the change comes when we talk about producing the album. There is no record company behind the creative process, and the album is just founded by the fans themselves, who paid even before the album is completed. On exchange, they have a much more active role giving feedback and advice to the band members via Internet.
“To have an immediate response to the music we create is the most stimulating aspect of working in this set-up. It’s very much like playing a show with an audience in attendance. Besides that we just do what we choose to do, but we are able to tell when we are going astray, because at that point the attention of the supporters will quickly fade. What I like about this album is that for the first time it seems to deal with us, as a group of individuals, who spent the major part of their lives together. And it does that in a very intimate and loving manner. If you open yourself to that extend and let your guard down all the way, you certainly put yourself in a rather fragile position” explains Alex.
There is also time for a more relaxed and lascivious tone in their music, like in the new track “Let´s do it dada”. Simply love for Marinetti´s artistic movement? Hacke discovers the meaning behind it:“DADA is a French slang- or children-word, which means rocking-horse. It is also position in sexual intercourse, where one person is lying on its back, while another is straddling the former and therefore riding him like a horse…”
Einstürzende Neubauten will visit Finland on April 24th, playing at Tavastia club in the capital, Helsinki. If you want to listen to one of the bands that have defined the industrial music in the European scene, do not miss them!