Xmal Deutschland - EARLY SINGLES 1981-1982 - CD

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SKU
162312
Release Date
2024-03-08

The "Gothics" believed in the do-it-yourself punk ethos that anyone could pick up an instrument. Grey clouds gathered, and in the unlikely city of Hamburg, a brash and insistent gang of five women, Caro May, Rita Simon, Manuela Rickers, Fiona Sangster and Anja Huwe, formed Xmal Deutschland. And as befits a true punk, they did so without any prior musical knowledge. The 7" single "Schwarze Welt" was released in 1981 on local punk label ZickZack and introduced the band as an unsettling swarm of intensity. The urgency of the repetitive lament, the swirling mania that continues on the B-side with "Die Wolken" and "Großstadtindianer", whose crude synthesiser noises heighten the tension. Above all, Huwe's uniquely venomous German vocals were quickly embedded in the unbridled and burgeoning scene of glamourous gloom. Punk's independence from the rigid grip of tradition allowed the band to find solace in an anti-establishment art and music, far removed from the conventions of the past. With their peacock hair and thickly kohl-rimmed eyes, Xmal Deutschland's music retained both a restlessness and a delicacy that, with the release of the single "Incubus Succubus" in 1982, transcended the boundaries of "Neue Deutsche Welle" (similar to their colleagues and friends DAF and Einstürzende Neubauten). It immediately became a post-punk classic. The guitar churns through the melody, while the eerie primitiveness of Huwe's voice hints that maybe, just maybe, she's the nightmarish creature to be wary of. The B-sides, "Zu Jung Zu Alt" and "Blut Ist Liebe", stick to strict militaristic dance beats while teeming with excitement. That same year, the band performed in London supporting the Cocteau Twins; it was the platform they needed to crash into the arms of the ripped net masses. "Early Singles 1981-1982", is a map of Xmal Germany's foundational movements, just seconds before they took off. The bonus tracks on the compilation, "Kaelbermarsch" and a dark live version of "Allein", emphasise the fusion of heaviness with the quixotic decadence of atmospheric synthesizers. The band's striving for something bigger is palpable, at a time when new possibilities for making music were opening up after the emergence of punk.

Tracks:
SCHWARZE WELT
DIE WOLKEN
GROßSTADTINDIANER
KÄLBERMARSCH (FROM THE COMPILATION "LIEBER ZUVIEL ALS ZUWENIG")
INCUBUS SUCCUBUS
ZU JUNG ZU ALT
BLUT IST LIEBE
ALLEIN (FROM THE COMPILATION "NOSFERATU FESTIVAL")

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