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Reviews
Allerseelen - Neuschwabenland
Wednesday, July 01 2009 @ 03:00 AM PDT
Contributed by: ZG

Neuschwabenland

Artist: Allerseelen Austria

Title: Neuschwabenland

Label: Ahnstern Austria

Genre: Industrial/  Experimental/  Military Folk

Track Listing:

01 Sturmlied (MMVII)
02 Suchst Du Die Wintersonne
03 Wir Sind Schwäne
04 Edelweiss (MMVII)
05 Einstieg
06 Mit Fester Hand
07 Nornar Nagli
08 Gläserne Kugel
09 Cordon Dorado
10 König
11 Idun
12 Hartung
13 Julmond
14 Neuschwabenland
15 Blonder Wein
16 Wiederkehr


The Neuschwabenland I hold in my hands is a promo CDr of the 2008 2xLP version, which contains additional 4 new songs, grouped on one side (Sturmlied, Suchst Du Die Wintersonne, Wir Sind Schwäne and Edelweiss), a new cover artwork and the old spirit. This exceptional release is being issued by Ahnstern label (a result of collaboration between Aorta and Steinklang Records), limited to 600 copies. The promo CD doesn’t have two songs that are present on original double LP release – Panzergarten and Islandische Umarmurgen, I guess due to the length of the piece and lack of space on a CD.
   
Allerseelen is a band that is considered to be one of those to give a start to Martial folk (Military pop) music. If we have a look at the nowadays scene, we'll see that the direction of the style might change a bit, however the main elements still remain. Allerseelen was always unique and bringing innovation into industrial genre. He perfectly mixed industrial with folk elements. Looped fragments with the addition of narratives hypnotize the listener, it is a brittle balance between calming one down, making him feel relaxed and driving one mad.
   
The original Neuschwabenland CD was issued in 2000 by Aorta. We may notice that it has quite a straightforward, cold and pure sound with clanging, chimes and reflections, as if the sound was travelling among the smooth mirror-like surfaces creating numerous reflections, mystic and enveloping. Nornar Nagli features the samples from Hávamál, if I recognised it right, with the voice of Sveinbjörn Beinteinsson, the chief of Ásatrúarfélag, the Icelandic heathen organization. Music refers much to the North, as well as the title itself. Neuschwabenland is a section of the continent Antarctica between 20°E and 10°W, which was claimed by Nazi Germany in January 1939. It was named after the German region of Swabia.
   
Three songs of the original CD – Sturmlied (which is still performed live), Julmond and Hartung – were issued prior on Sturmlieder CD in 1995 and Gotos=Kalanda CD in 1996 accordingly. On König track Italian pioneers of electronic scene, Kirlian Camera, appear, to be exact, the track, König  is inspired by Kirlian Camera’s “Motionless”. Lyrics on Blonder Wein are by Rainer Maria Rilke, a Czech poet, whose haunting images focus on the difficulty of communion with the inexpressible in an age of disbelief, loneliness, and deep anxiety. These themes tend to position him as a transitional figure between the traditional and the modernist poets. Voice on the Blonder Wein track belongs to Oskar Werner, an Austrian movie and theatre actor, now deceased. “Edelweiss” song, which is not on the original album is a version of the song that appeared on Infernal Proteus and Edelweiss compilations. However, this version is really different form the ones mentioned above and therefore difficult to recognise.

     


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