As the sun finally warms this beautiful yet infallible behemoth known as Berlin, it becomes increasingly difficult to imagine that this place was once the realm of the apocalypse. A city that was once a fitting backdrop for the brutal emotional separation of the expatriates in Possesion is now, for some, little more than a backdrop for the hedonistic separation of expatriates in possesion.
As we slowly try and overwrite the national hardcoding of our brain with a new one, it becomes increasingly obvious that we will never, ever, truly understand the all-prevalent sadness that once enshrouded this city like its November fog. There are, however still resonances of the for the cultural pathologist to apply his stethoscope to. Most of the crumbling derelictions may have been repaired, but the street are by no means paved with Geld. The abject poverty that provides many creative nomads with novelly reduced living costs, is the same abject poverty that provides some of its inhabitants with a bleak, futureless existence. Even though die Mauer Stadt is long gone, like most capital cities, Berlin is still a place from which some would like to escape.
Out now on AVANT! Records, Cccandy’s Lonesome Berlin offers us 10 postcards of its contemporary darkside delivered via the Deutsche Welle horseman of the 80s. The title track is a bedroom krush of the perceived international crapulence of nu Berlin, an expression of the cold detachment felt by many in cities the world over, with charity shoppe bass tones and a synthetic vocalist reminiscent of the robots in THX 1138 depicting a view the flipside of a city which you won’t find in the Guardian travel guide. We may well be part of the handsome expatriation depicted therin, but we know well the bottomless pit. And as such, Cccandy, my time is yours. Only 300 copies of this one so we recommend picking it up ASAP.
On first listen, this uneducated foreigner wondered why anyone would want to hark back to the bad times that many are eager to forget, or simply don’t care about, but after reading this old interview with Alexander Hacke may we begin to understand. In fact the closest we have come to feeling the vibez of the Westside of old, was when we were lucky enough to attend the Einstürzende Neubauten 30 year seminar disco last week. Unfortunately, we were not yet linguistically adept enough to understand many of the talks given, but the simple act of listening to many of their classics through a contemporary techno soundsystem spoke volumes. This blog has probably already posted half of Neubauten’s back catalogue so if uninitiated, we refer you to these. We greatly thank Pale music for cordially inviting us to experience this most magnificent of parties, and we wish the new buildings alles Gute zum Geburtstag.
And if there’s one thing recorded music is good at, it’s being able to turn our feelings into a tangible relic than can be poured over and felt by future generations. A nice gentleman named Amir sent us this song in response to a recent post by xxjfd and it seems more than apt to appear here.
A record so obscure that we could find absolutely no info on the original release that Amir sent in (although you can catch another track here). It is possibly believed to be an old tape distro and although this song featured on a couple of compilations, we know little more. All we got is this – ‘Der Letzte Zug is Abgefahren’ is an idiom in German referring to a missed opportunity, when combined with the sweetest of melotrons and unsettlings of key clashes, one hears the distant evocation of the disappointment of young men in sparse times. If this one doesn’t tug at the heartstrings then we politely suggest getting them fixed.
This second part in an occasional series about Berlin comes with a disclaimer. We do not wish to come across as negative, here we were merely trying to understand the work of the artist. We deeply love our new surroundings, but the smoggy 1up pac-man grid from whence we came gives us a certain amout of rose-tinting when comparing our societies. As they become ever clearer, and we try and see things from the point of view of others, we discover many things that yr typical lite travelogue may carelessly omit.