Country Gone Listenable

I’ve got this catchy, cool, country-ish (hear me out) song looping over and over in my mind. And that was the case after the second listening. In fact, the first time had me hooked! It is that good.

So, who and what you ask? That’s the thing. I’ve had this band keep popping up on my recommendations niggling, niggling, over and over, still niggling. You know, when you keep seeing the cover and just know who it is without a second glance and kind of go “ah, not again”? I don’t know why, but I never got around to having a listen. But, for some reason (maybe it is with music as it is with books – finding you when it is meant to be), I finally listened to Nach uns die Sinn Flut by Harms & Kapelle and all I can say is “wow!” and naturally “why didn’t I listen to these guys sooner?”. So, no, not pure country and definitely not singing about the girl down the prairie, but dark, gritty and with a great rock-type (I hate putting music into genre boxes) undertone which makes it so darn good and much more listenable than most country music (I just struggle to get into it, sorry).

Listen with a good pair of phones and you’ll pick up such cool underlying nuances, sounds and background “effects”. Adds even more atmosphere but I won’t tell – you need to listen yourself.

Ah, and then…the lyrics are in German. And it works so well. Quite refreshing actually (in this style). Come to think of it, German is just perfect for this heavier country-rock hybrid. Don’t need the typical twang or drawl.

Even the music video is brilliant with atmosphere of note! The singer, Chris Harms, mesmerises you, but at the same time, the band is intriguing as you never really get to see their faces (initially). They also have you wanting to pull up a chair, order a drink and enjoy an evening of good music ahead. I appreciate how they achieve even more mood through seamlessly integrating a modern band with a feeling of being in the past, yet, not really (watch it! hear it! you’ll understand). It gives a surreal, unsettling kind of feeling. But in a good way. A very good way!

Watching closely you’ll pick up the effects which make all the difference, albeit subtle but “in your face” when you actually spot them (or, maybe I’m just reading, I mean, watching, too much into it). Like, the reference to Heaven and Hell (with Heaven higher visually than Hell) which you’ll probably miss the first few times. Oh, and the angel wing smoke effect (very clever, intentional or not) in the one long shot. And believe it or not, the first time I totally missed a huge prop in the group shot during the last few seconds of the song. The old film reel effect is fantastic. Check it all out – I hope I haven’t given it all away.

So, now I’m off to devour the rest of this album (did I mention it is called Meilenstein?). The snippets I’ve sampled sound like they will have me addicted too. So far, I like those chord progressions in Bis zum letzten Mann; Mein Leib has me tapping my feet; Es ist ein Meister vom Himmel gefallen wonderfully mellow and Das Narrenschiff promises to be another catchy one. Oooh, I can’t wait! I suspect I’ll have the album on repeat at work tomorrow. And will tell everyone all about them – music like this deserves to be shared!

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