Music to Look Forward to

You are reading an older blog post. Please be aware that the information contained in it may be technologically outdated. This text may not necessarily reflect my current opinions or capabilities.

This is an English translation of a blog post that was originally published in German.

September 18th, 2010

You could almost think that my blog exists only for my bachelor thesis. Of course, this should not be the case, so today I'll open a completely different, non-computer-science topic, namely music. I don't know if you're interested, but if not, I guess I'll find out… and you can decide to skip this entry. But the fact that a new album of my favorite band is coming up is a good occasion for a bit of advertising, isn't it?

On October 1st, in two weeks, it is time: The new album “Heilig” by the band Letzte Instanz will be released and I'm looking forward to it as if it was Christmas. If you know me personally, you might have noticed that I sometimes – quite rarely – wear band shirts. And if it's not the one with the “Nord Nord Ost” cover motif by Subway to Sally (which is way too large for me now anyway), it's most certainly one of my many Letzte Instanz shirts. I have a fairly broad taste in music, or so I tell myself. But this band has been consistently at the top of my personal list since 2006.

Letzte Instanz press photo

Letzte Instanz has been around for quite a long time, but they have also had many line-up changes and thus ensuing changes in style. If you like the albums from after 2006, you don't necessarily like the ones from before 2004 and vice versa. I also like the old stuff and I own a couple of discs from that time, but musically I think they are less mature. What kind of music does Letzte Instanz make today? I would describe it as gothic-influenced alternative rock. Due to the usual rock line-up with a singer, guitars, bass and drums, the whole thing has a lot of boom, and with the additional strings (violin and cello) it gets a slightly symphonic, orchestral touch. The lyrics are mostly in German and since the change of the main vocalist they have evolved away from social criticism and towards philosophy and poetry, a change which I realize not everyone may love.

So now there's a new album coming soon. Here's a list of the samples currently available:

By the way, I'm not a big fan of the cover motif, which is why I'm not showing it here. Ingo Römling can draw very well, but I find the motif a bit too trite and too clichéd. At least it's a little better than the previous one.

On November 2nd the band will be here in Hamburg, at Grünspan. I'll definitely be there. Anyone else interested?

Do you know any other bands that play this kind of music? I know a handful of rock bands that also work with string instruments, but none that bring it together this well. Are there any other bands (aside from Chamber and Apocalyptica) that showcase the strings well? I would be very happy to hear any other tips.


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