Aug 21, 2009

The Germanic Internationalism of THE BLECH

Hubl Greiner, Rupert Volz (photo from THE BLECH site)

Founded by HUBL GREINER and RUPERT VOLZ, THE BLECH was one of the most interesting avant-rock bands came from Germany in 80's. Their love for unorthodox mixtures and subversive art marriages sent them to dig unsual (for the rock customs) territories, so that the jazz/electronic/alternative pop basis of their music is full of small (or big) curiocities of retro-germanism or eclectic internationalism: euroarabian motifs, third world percussive patterns, grotesque vocals, linguistic eccentrities, eastern european melodies, mad cabaret/Kurt Weillian marches and numerous other heterogenous elements, all treated with a distinctive, dadaistic passion for irony and seriousness.

THE BLECH were: HUBL GREINER (drums, piano, electronics, bass, percussion, various sounds), RUPERT VOLZ (vocals, brass instruments, trumpet, guitar, lyrics)... also contributed: THEROFAL (vocals, piano, bass), HELMUT BIELER-WENDT, SHIRLEY HOFMANN, ACHIM SCHMIDT, JENS VOLK and others...

The Blech, 1985
Zip Zip, 1987
Ich Wollte Meine Schuhe Zerschneiden, 1989
Liebeslieder, 1992
85-91 , 1993 several other Greiner and Volz works as DER VOLZ, HULU PROJECT, etc...

THE BLECH - die einsame traene (from "Ich Wolte Meine..." LP)


gidouille said...

I have Ich Wollte and Liebeslieder and they're superb. The emotional resonance Volz is able to wrest from his absurdist texts is quite extraordinary.

I think this quote from the booklet for Ich Wollte, partially obscured by Kanji text, sums them up well: "(One might imagine Joel Grey singing Kurt Schwitters' Ur Sonata.) The Blech are referring very much to the hybrid pomp of German cabaret of the 30's, 40's and 50's, when a native popular entertainment was alienated from its people and continued on artificial terms until it became mass culture. The Blech perform in an apparently straight forward manner, their music driving along a host of stray gestures which gradually assume a greater function than the songs themselves."

paramo said...

Cabaret influence is only a small part of the picture. BLECH music explores deeper and wider the history of german groundbreaking art movements developed during the early 20th century and goes further beyond...