Archive for Blutzukker

Interview with Ben Blutzukker

Posted in Interview, Metal with tags , on 5th October 2017 by izaforestspirit

Iza had a little chat with Ben Blutzukker to discuss Lego, heavy metal and his new EP ‘Ripide’.

Iza: What is behind the name ‘Blutzukker’?

Ben: It’s a song from the Swedish Vampire-Metal-Band Notre Dame. It should have that name, but it was never released. But I liked the spelling and so I named my first band after it. A short time later my own name transformed then to “Ben Blutzukker”.

Iza: Earlier this year you decided to put an end to your dark electro project Blutzukker to focus on your heavy metal project. What led to this decision?

Ben: I just felt like that. Since the last Blutzukker album in 2012 I no longer had  ideas to do new electronic tracks. And as the solo projekt “Ben Blutzukker” was my only focus for the last years I decided to tell everyone that “blutzukker” is over now.

Iza: Aside from the obvious differences in genre (dark electro vs. heavy metal), what other differences do you see between Blutzukker and Ben Blutzukker?

Ben: Hmm. That is a difficult question. I think there are many things that are the same in both projects. The vocals are absolutely the same. I also did not change my lyrical writing. So yes, mainly only the musical genres are the mail difference.

Iza: Let’s talk a about your new EP ‘Riptide’. Based on the cover art and the title track I’m guessing that it has something to do with the sea. Can you tell us a little bit about the themes for this release?

Image result for ben blutzukker riptide
Ben: When I was searching for a great artwork for this EP I saw this one and felt in love with it. Until then the EP should have a total different name. But I saw that artwork and it directly reminds me to when I wrote the lyrics for the song “Riptide”. So I decided to make “Riptide” the main song of this EP.

Iza: I’ve noticed that your sound has changed slightly since the first EP ‘Analog Blood’; the new songs seem darker, with a hint black metal in addition to the thrash metal guitars. Are you a fan of black metal, if so which bands do you like?

Ben: That is trve. I like a lot of black metal bands, especially Abbath and Winterfylleth. The recording of the EP was done by myself as I did it on “Analog Blood”. But this time I gave the job of mastering to the same studio where also the Abbath album was mastered. Nevertheless I like to mix the styles of black, death and thrash. And maybe next time there will also be a bit of Goth Metal in it.

 

Iza: On the EP, there is a cover of Illwill’s song. What made you decide to choose that particular band and song?

Ben: To push that great song, because no one knows it! Just a joke… My favorite musician is Snowy Shaw from Sweden. He was involved in Illwill (and he was also the main-figure of Notre Dame). And with “blutzukker” we played this song on stage several times. So I wanted to close the circle by recording my own version now.

Iza: Also, there is a collaboration with Pale Violett on backing vocals on the same cover track. What made you decide to work with her?

Ben: Pale Violett was part of “blutzukker”, so we made a lots of stuff together over the years. But to be honest: her recordings for this song are now 10 years old.

Iza: You have recently released a new video for the title track ‘Riptide’ which features a Lego pirate ship. This is the second of your videos to feature Lego figurines. You even have Lego USB-sticks available. I have to ask, what is it with the Lego?

Ben: I love it! I always loved it! Don’t you still love Lego?

Image result for ben blutzukker

Iza: Your previous band featured lots of humour in the lyrics, mostly connected to vampires and horror stuff in general. Is this humour element something you plan to continue with as Ben Blutzukker or is this more serious?

Ben: I think I will automatically continue like that, because that is just a part of my person. For me it is normal to not take everything too serious. Not even the blackest metal.
Iza: Is Ben Blutzukker a studio only -project or do you plan to play some live shows in the future?

Ben: I see, this question is the one I hear the most. But no, currently I like it to just be a studio project.

Iza: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions.
Ben: Thank you! 
For more information visit:

http://facebook.com/BenBlutzukker

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Blutzukker calls it a day

Posted in Industrial, Metal, Misc., News with tags , , , on 11th January 2017 by izaforestspirit

The German musician Ben Blutzukker has recently announced the decision to end his horror themed dark electro project Blutzukker. This news comes just a month after the dark electro project released their greatest hits collection via their Bandcamp page.

The artist has decided to focus all his efforts on his solo heavy metal project Ben Blutzukker. He has also added that he is currently working on some new material for Ben Blutzukker which will be influenced by bands such as The Vision Bleak, Abbath and Cradle of Filth.

 

More details about Ben Blutzukker coming soon. In the meantime, fans of his dark electro project can enjoy the band’s last video here:

For more information visit:

https://www.facebook.com/blutzukker/

http://ben.blutzukker.com/

https://blutzukker.bandcamp.com/music

Iza’s Highlights of 2016 (part 1: Industrial/EBM/darkwave)

Posted in Editorial/Opinionated, Industrial, Misc. with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 30th December 2016 by izaforestspirit

2016 is almost over which means that it’s now time for my annual “Best of” or “Highlights” as I prefer to call them. This year’s edition will be in two parts – industrial and metal. I’m still working on my list of top ten metal albums so I’ve decided to list the industrial ones first. So here are my favorite industrial/EBM and electro releases of 2016:

1. Lord of the Lost – Empyrean
Genre: Industrial Rock/Dark Rock

Lord of the Lost is a new discovery for me. I’ve been ignoring them for years, thinking that they were some sort of glam rock band. Then this year I had the pleasure of seeing them live when they supported Combichrist and I was totally blown away by their performance. I ended up buying all their albums. They sound like a mixture of HIM and Deathstars. ‘Empyrean’ is their heaviest and most complex album to date. Stand-out tracks: ‘Drag Me to Hell’ and ‘In Silence’

2. Heimataerde – Aerdenbrand
Genre: Medieval Industrial/Aggrotech

The German brotherhood of dark electro Templar knights are back with a new album. Fans of their work will know what to expect from this one; atmospheric dark electro with a medieval tinge. It’s a delightful mix of creepy and catchy Aggrotech with both ballads and dancefloor hits. Favourite tracks: ‘Fühl die Zeit (featuring Joachim Witt)’ and the kids’ nursery rhyme -inspired ‘Hick Hack Hackelbeil’.

3. Combichrist – This is Where Death Begins
Genre: Industrial Rock/Aggrotech

This album was not the easiest one to get into. Fans of Combichrist’s older songs will be shocked to discover just how guitar-driven this band has become. The previous album ‘We Love You’ was just a taster of what’s to come. The industrial and harsh electro elements are still present, but guitars are making inroads and they are here to stay. Combichrist is now an industrial rock band. As soon as you accept that you might actually start to enjoy this album. I did. Favourite songs: ‘Exit Eternity’, ‘My Life My Rules and ‘Skullcrusher’.

4. Memmaker – Let There Be Lasers
Genre – Power Noise/Rhythmic Noise

Eight years is a long time to wait for an album and that’s how long it’s been since Memmaker released their debut ‘How to Enlist a Robot Uprising’. Luckily the follow-up ‘Let The Be Lasers’ was worth the wait. The Canadian power noise band have essentially picked up from where they left off. So if you like power noise and songs about space travel and robots is your thing, then this is the album for you. Best tracks: ‘Doom Ray’, ‘Manipulate’ and ‘Race to Space (feat. Detroit Diesel)’.

5. Nachtmahr – Kampfbereit
Genre: Techno Industrial/Aggrotech

Nachtmahr are a bit controversial band within the industrial scene. Their music has always had a militaristic theme which has led to allegations of fascism. They sure like to harbour a fetish for women in uniform but I never quite got the fascist or misogynistic connections. I personally I like their music and I try not to think too much about their imagery. This year was the first time that I chose not to buy a physical copy of their new album. I have enough coffee-table books and these days I mostly listen to their music at the gym. So I bought the digital version instead. It’s great treadmill/cross trainer music. Best tracks: ‘Kampbereit’, ‘Tempus Fugit’ and ‘Burning Bridges’.

6. Scandroid – Scandroid
Genre: Synthwave

Scandroid is a side-project of the American musician Klayton (Celldweller, Circle of Dust). It was originally a two-man project featuring Klayton and Nick Pittsinger (Varien) who took on the identities of “Red” and “Raven” in the futuristic cyberpunk world of Neo-Tokyo, where the Scandroid story takes place. “Raven” left the project in 2014 which means Scandroid is now a solo project with “Red” as the main character. The music is a mixture of ’80s -style synth-pop/synthwave with a sci-fi tinge. The album tells a story so it’s difficult to pick out any specific individual tracks, but personally I’m very fond of ‘Aphelion’, ‘Empty Streets’ and ‘Neo-Tokyo’.

7. Terrolokaust – Dissensions
Genre: Industrial Rock/Aggrotech/Dark Electro

This year I finally got to see this Spanish harsh electro duo live at Resistanz Festival. That was a good show which served as my introduction to the band. They are similar to Combichrist in a sense as their style has changed from Aggrotech towards a more industrial rock sound. Their latest opus ‘Dissensions’ contains a mixture of both styles. There is something here for fans of either genre – whether it’s dance tracks like ‘Pursuit of Ruin’ or guitar driven industrial rock song such as ‘A Masochist’s Tale’.

8.Ost+Front
Genre: Neue-Deutsche-Härte

I have to be honest here in that I have mixed feelings about this album and Ost+Front in general. They give the impression of being essentially a Rammstein-clone, adapting not only the music and vocal style but also the themes and the imagery of their world-famous countrymen. Despite this I decided to include their new album on this list because of a few tracks that stood out – the sombre and profound ballad ‘Sternenkinder’ and ‘Bruderherz’. ‘Fiesta de sexo’ also deserves a mention due to guest appearance of Erk Aicrag (Hocico).

9. My Own Sorrow – The Entity
Genre: Dark Electro/Occult Ambient

‘The Entity’ is the latest album from the Swedish dark electro artist My Own Sorrow. His music is primarily instrumental, atmospheric dark electro with strong themes of horror and occultism. All the songs have an eerie feel to them. It’s like listening soundtrack to a horror movie. Best tracks ‘Succubus’ and ‘Rats In The Walls’.

10. Blutzukker – The Ultimate Collection
Genre: Dark Electro

Blutzukker is the dark electro project of the German artist Ben Blutzukker. He is currently involved in two projects; a heavy metal band under the name of Ben Blutzukker, who released an EP last year and the aforementioned dark electro act Blutzukker. What we have here isn’t really a new release but rather a collection of all Blutzukker’s works including some rarities and unreleased demos. So if you like dark electro, horror themes with a touch of humour then I would strongly recommend this. Best tracks ‘Fright Club’, ‘Queen of the Nite’, ‘The Vampire Strikes Back’.

Biggest new discovery: Lord of the Lost
Best live show: it’s a tie between Combichrist live in Tampere and Memmaker at Club Infektio, Helsinki
Most Anticipated albums of 2016:
Marilyn Manson – Say10
Blutengel – Leitbild
New albums by Suicide Commando and Grendel

Stay tuned for the metal edition, coming soon!

Ben Blutzukker – Analog Blood

Posted in Metal, Uncategorized with tags , on 8th January 2016 by izaforestspirit

Ben Blutzukker
Analog Blood (EP)
Released 7h January 2016
Heavy Metal
Self-Released

‘Analog Blood’ is first EP from the German heavy metal artist Ben Blutzukker (ex-Jormundgard). All the tracks were originally released back in 2007 on an album called ‘Digital Blood’ by the artist’s dark electro project Blutzukker. This EP features the re-recorded metal versions of four original Blutzukker songs.

The transition from electronica or industrial to metal isn’t always easy but as demonstrated by a band such as Dawn of Ashes it can be achieved with good results. I happen to like both genres and so I decided to check out the original, dark electro versions of these Blutzukker songs prior to writing this review. This only made me even more curious as how you could make a metal song out of such dancefloor-friendly electronica…

Well, it seems that you can and if these four songs are anythng to go by, the transition between genres is not only relatively straightforward but almost flawless in its execution. Had I not known that Mr. Blutzukker originally recorded all four tracks without a single guitar or drum kit in sight, I would have just assumed that this guy has always played heavy metal. I guess that the four years Ben Blutzukker spent playing bass for Jormundgard has had a lasting effect on his style.

“Heavy Metal” is a good, albeit simplified way to summarize Ben Blutzukker’s new signature sound. The vocals made me think of Motörhead, Chrome Division and to some extent Dimmu Borgir. Also, if you listen closely you will discover elements of hard rock and black metal in the guitars on the tracks From Hell and Digital Blood.

Overall, this has been a really enjoyable EP. I like Mr. Blutzukker’s dark electro and having heard this, I’m looking forward to hearing more of his heavy metal music.

4/5

Iza Raittila