DAS ICH - Lava [Glut]

Das Ich - Lava [Glut]

10 songs
48:28 minutes
***** **


Having been around since 1989, Das Ich are not only of the longest existing, but also one of the most popular gothic bands from Germany. As I am not that much interested in dark sounds, I hesitated for a couple of days before I finally gave it a try, and I admit that I expected much worse. Lava is an album that has been released in two versions: Glut comes with the probably more accessible sounds, plus a DVD containing an entire live show, while the special-priced Asche contains dancefloor remixes of the Lava material.

I anticipated typical goth sounds, but Das Ich don't make things that easy by blindly heading into one single direction. Instead, the songs on Lava [Glut] combines proto-orchestral dark wave sounds with a clinical industrial coldness. While the music reminds me in a positive way of the more classical stuff from the Slovenian Laibach, Stefan Ackermann's vocals add a lot of pathos but still never sound like Rammstein, but more like incantatory chanting from medieval bands like In Extremo. Apart from mechanical drum computers and decent synth sounds, most of the instrumental parts are made up of emulated symphonic parts, that deliberately seem to sound fake, creating an atmosphere bordering on the cheesy, but never quite leaving a frosty atmosphere that was probably intended.

Lava [Glut] is a very synthetic record, but also a collection of good composing skills turned into a daring and experimental album that proves again Das Ich's reputation as not only initiators, but also innovators of the genre. I give this release a subjective 7, but admirers of darkness certainly will have more fondness for these symphonies of gloom.

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