Nachtfalter – was bleibt
Release Date: 24/05/2019
Running Time: 42:23
Review by ‘Dark Juan’
Good evening, droogies, boozers, strumpets and losers! For which greeting we thank the puissant and magnificent Krusher Joule of Raw Power TV fame back in the nineties. This Hellpriest considers Krusher, a splendid gentleman of metal, a formative influence and a man to look up to, even if I was more interested in Ann Kirk in a short, tight dress at the time… If you’re of a similar age, you’ll understand. If not, you’d best get Googling, sunshine!
Anyway, in an effort (probably misguided; Most of what I do is…) to maintain some level of brevity in this review after what could only be described as an epic, last time out, I am resisting the urge to describe to you what is (might be… you’ll never know what shit I make up and what is real! Suffice it to say the more outlandish things I write about are more likely to be the truth) going on in my life and am of the opinion we should plunge straight into dealing with Nachtfalter’s “was bleibt”. That’s German for “what remains”, fact fans. Nachtfalter are a duo of talented gentlemen who wish only to be known by their initials and they play gothic metal with an industrial undertone with vocals in the German language. You’d imagine this to be so far up my street I’d be hailing (Satan?) a taxi to get there quicker, wouldn’t you? Normally you’d be right, but…
Unfortunately, this record is ponderous. And it has the world’s most inappropriate guitar sound. The vocals are sub – Till Lindemann German guttural and the whole sound of the record is off, somehow. It’s as if Nachtfalter could afford Stock, Aitken and Waterman to produce the album. The production is FAR too poppy for my tastes. Especially when we are talking industrially tinged gothic metal with low register German vocals. It should be shaking internal organs loose and making me make a large and unpleasant mess in my underwear, but it doesn’t. In fact, it is basically leaving me with a feeling that could charitably be described as, “Meh.” This is a crying shame because there are some fucking good ideas on this record and they are simply not taken advantage of, at all. The vocals are uninspiring and it would be brilliant, just once, to have a German metal band sing in their native language without doing their best Till Lindemann impersonation. Even Laibach (yes, I know they are actually Slovenian but they sing in German so the point holds, ok?) are guilty of this. Nena didn’t grunt ‘99 Luftballons’, did she? A bit more range would have been a definite bonus. It’s telling when the best song on the record is an electronic body music version of ‘Maschinenklang’. Actually, the electronic version (of already the best song on the album by a country mile) kicks serious amounts of arse and if it doesn’t end up being a cybergoth hit on the dancefloor of Sheffield Corporation then I’ll eat my flat cap (cos I am from Lancashire innit? I’m sending this one out to my homeboys in Radcliffe and Bury…) and put a ferret down my trousers. Other tunes worthy of note are ‘Vollkommenheit’ and ‘Folge Mir’, both being good songs ruined by terrible production values. I have issues also with the homespun quality of the production throughout the entire record. It sounds like it was recorded in a bedroom in suburban Leipzig. There’s no punch to any of the instruments, the guitar sounds like it belongs in a Pretty Boy Floyd cover band and the synths have a disturbingly 1980’s Bontempi quality about them. It sounds cheap as fuck, basically. I’m actually genuinely upset because this band could have been gothically magnificent. They could have been dark wonders. They could have had this Goth loving hellpriest crawling at their feet begging for their attention. Instead, they are pedestrian, inadequate and hollow. There’s no soul to the music. It’s mechanical, not in the industrial sense of the word, but it is gothic metal by numbers and that is extremely intolerable in a genre that is based on emotion. It should be melodramatic and bombastic and rich and lush and powerful and “was bleibt” is none of those things. “was bleibt” is the aural equivalent of the horrible feeling of bleak, crushing sadness you get when you discover a cold cup of tea you forgot about.
Heart. Broken. Send beer and nubile young metal chicks to cheer me up.
The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System awards Nachtfalter 4/10 for destroying his faith in a genre that has previously never failed to deliver some form of excitement. They have managed to corner the market in beige gothic metal. They are the metal equivalent of painting a wall magnolia.
(With helpful English translations for those of you too fucking lazy to use Google Translate)
01. Fur Mich (For Me)
02. Anderes Leben (Other Life)
03. Maschinenklang (Machine Sound)
04. Eine Stimme (One Vote)
05. Vollkommenheit (Perfection)
06. Im Schatten (In The Shade)
07. Folge Mir (Follow Me)
08. Nacht (Night)
09. Nur Noch Einmal (Just Once More)
10. Maschinenklang Elektro-Version (If you can’t work this one out for yourselves, go and see the doctor and get yourself seen to…)
T.S. – Vocals, bass, synth, drums (Vocals, Synth, Bass, Schlagzeug)
T.G. – Rhythm and lead guitars (Rhythmus und Leadgitarren)
Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dark Juan and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.