Kadavar Post “Tribulation Nation” Video; Tour with Mantar & Death Alley Starts Tomorrow

Posted in Bootleg Theater on October 11th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

kadavar

I admit I’m a little behind in posting the latest video from Berlin-based heavy rock magnates Kadavar. Do you think anyone noticed? Nah. The band’s been too busy reaping rightful praise for their just-issued stunner of a fourth album, Rough Times (review here), which follows the modernization of vibe that took place on 2015’s Berlin (review here) with a darker-overall sense of mood driven, no doubt at least in part, by the woes engendered across the sphere of current events. At least that’s the impression a track like “Tribulation Nation” gives, anyhow.

Ever mindful of their audience, Kadavar don’t necessarily pass outward judgment in the song, however, and the spirit of the track is more one of coming to terms with, attempting to understand the world than trying to critique or correct something so very screwed up about it. I try to keep it out of posts on this site — because, well, why make yourself mad if you don’t have to? — but I’m a pretty politically-minded guy and I think if you hang around here long enough you can get a sense of where my sensibilities lie in that realm if you want one, and I can’t help but wonder if part of the reason Kadavar don’t push their level of criticism farther is because of the generalized feeling of hopelessness of the progression of the world’s situation. What’s to be done? If there was going to be an answer, is it so unreasonable to think someone would’ve stumbled on it by now?

The three-piece hit the road tomorrow to start the touring cycle proper for Rough Times, which if past is prologue will likely keep them on the road through the end of 2018 and then some — they kind of go, go, go perpetually — and they go in the company of Mantar and the revamped lineup of Death Alley. Maybe that’s the answer. You just keep going. Because that’s all you can do is move forward. Hit the road. Take care of yours and try not to be a dick to everyone else. I don’t know if that’s the message here or not, but as takeaways go, at least it’s not “make riffs great again.”

Video and tour dates follow, as well as more info from the PR wire.

Enjoy:

Kadavar, “Tribulation Nation” official video

kadavar tour dates

Arguably the hardest working band in the current European rock scene, Kadavar made their entrance in 2010 with a vintage, retro style of heavy rock ‘n’ roll that called for comparisons to greats like Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin. The band quickly stood out amongst their peers with straightforward, no frills approach to their signature brand of rock that features classic song structure with a gritty contemporary edge.

Kadavar’s previous record, Berlin, set the scene ablaze, charting in both Germany and the U.S., and made them a household name among rock fans around the world. Now armed with their follow-up, Rough Times, the band seeks to reclaim their title as one of the best rock has to offer.

Guitarist/singer Lupus comments: “The album is finally out and we’re really happy. Last week, we quickly recorded a video for ‘Tribulation Nation’ in the studio. I think this song underlines how complex our new record is. Thanks to everyone for the support.”

KADAVAR w/ MANTAR, DEATH ALLEY
12.10. D Essen – Zeche Carl
13.10. D Hamburg – Markthalle*
14.10. D Leipzig – Conne Island
15.10. B Antwerp – Desert Fest
17.10. F Strasbourg – La Laiterie Club
18.10. F Paris – Le Trabendo
19.10. F Rennes – L’Ubu
20.10. F Bordeaux – La Krakatoa
21.10. E Madrid – But
22.10. E Barcelona – Bikini
24.10. F Lyon – Feyzin
25.10. CH Monthey – Pont Rouge
26.10. CH Aarau – Kiff
27.10. D Munich – Backstage
28.10. A Vienna – Flex
29.10. A Graz – PPC
30.10. HR Zagreb – Mocvara
01.11. H Budapest – A38
02.11. PL Warsaw – Progresja
03.11. PL Krakow – Kwadrat
04.11. CZ Prague – Nová Chmelnice
05.11. D Nuremberg – Hirsch
07.11. NL Amsterdam – Paradiso Noord
08.11. D Hanover – Capitol
09.11. DK Copenhagen – Pumpehuset
10.11. S Stockholm – Debaser
11.11. N Oslo – Bla
12.11. S Gothenburg – Pustervik
13.11. NL Deventer – Burgerweeshuis
15.11. D Cologne – Bürgerhaus Stollwerck
16.11. D Wiesbaden – Schlachthof
17.11. D Stuttgart – LKA Longhorn
18.11. D Berlin – Columbiahalle
*no MANTAR

KADAVAR live:
20.12. D Bremen – Tower
21.12. D Mannheim – Alte Feuerwache
22.12. D Münster – Sputnikhalle
28.12. D Chemnitz – AJZ Talschock
29.12. D Siegen – Vortex

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Kadavar, Rough Times: To Chronicle

Posted in Reviews on September 6th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

kadavar rough times

It feels like every time Kadavar release a new album, it’s a crucial moment for the band. On some level, this has to be because the standard of quality they’ve set for their work continues to seem impossible to maintain over the longer-term. Not that they haven’t earned respect as a special group in more than just their haircuts and fashion sense through their songwriting, constant touring, and three full-lengths to-date —  2015’s Berlin (review here), 2013’s Abra Kadavar (review here) and 2012’s self-titled debut (discussed here) — just that the echelon of craft at which they’ve worked for the last half-decade is exceedingly rare and even more rarely maintained over a stretch of years and releases. Yet, with the arrival of their fourth long-player and third for Nuclear BlastRough Times, one doesn’t at all anticipate the three-piece of guitarist/vocalist Christoph “Lupus” Lindemann, drummer Christoph “Tiger” Bartelt and bassist Simon “Dragon” Bouteloup will fail to meet the expectations of their massive fanbase.

Indeed, if Berlin proved anything at all about the band’s sound in the clearer, more modern, less vintage-minded production approach it brought forth, it’s that Kadavar‘s sonic and aesthetic reach is even greater than anyone could’ve anticipated from the warm, ’70s-fueled sounds of their earliest work. Rough Times, with 10 songs and 44 minutes divided over two distinct LP sides, is no less brazen in pushing even further. Side A cuts like “Into the Wormhole” (video posted here) and “Skeleton Blues” turn the crispness of Berlin on its head with the outright heaviest low end the band has ever conjured and a gnarled-out fuzz in the guitar — see “Into the Wormhole” after about 2:45 especially — that maintains the modernity of the preceding offering and most importantly, the memorable songwriting Kadavar have proffered all along, but is nonetheless immediately distinguished from the rest of their work in intention and execution. They’re a big enough band at this point that opinions on anything they do will be divided, but in listening to Rough Times, the band make their mission clear and accomplish it with poise and purpose alike. If you were anxious, rest easy. Kadavar have done it again.

About that mission, though. The chief clue would seem to be right there in the title Rough Times. Through the initial tumbling chaos of the opening title-track, the key-laced weirdness of “Into the Wormhole,” the “fake news” reference in the nod-stomp of “Skeleton Blues” and even the later drift of “The Lost Child,” Kadavar seek to capture something essential about the moment in which we live. As an American hearing songs like “Skeleton Blues” and the thrust-laden urgency of side B opener “Tribulation Nation,” my mind immediately turns to politics, and for Germans whose home country has been called the last and best hope for stewardship of the European Union, the case may or may not be the same, but Rough Times avoids direct engagement with the issues of the day in favor of a more general impression of the confusion and pessimism engendered thereby.

That’s not to say there’s no hope, which one readily finds in the penultimate romance of “You Found the Best in Me” — though it’s only fair to be skeptical of sentiment coming from Kadavar after “Pale Blue Eyes” (video posted here) from Berlin turned out to be an inside joke written by Lindemann about Bartelt in a dress — but especially as the first half of Rough Times proceeds into the horrors of “Die Baby Die” and “Vampires,” the impression is unquestionably the darker than any of Kadavar‘s prior output. And it’s supposed to be. That’s the point.

kadavar

Particularly through “Rough Times,” “Into the Wormhole,” “Skeleton Blues,” “Die Baby Die” and “Vampires,” with flourish of keys in and out among the guitar bass and drums, varied tonality, still-righteous hooks and melodicism from Lindemann on vocals, Rough Times channels the turbulence of 2017 — and thankfully, it does so with none of the exhausting despair that each week seems to bring. Instead, even “Vampires” keeps an uptempo swing behind its midsection solo, and “Die Baby Die” stands among the catchiest tracks Kadavar have ever written. Likewise, as “Tribulation Nation” and “Words of Evil” begin to transition into side B, the former with perhaps the most direct political theme here in its lyrics, they mark the starting point of an expansion that will push outward in multiple directions until atmospheric, French-language spoken word closer “À L’Ombre du Temps” (“to the shadow of the times”) brings Rough Times to its end.

The turn that commences with “Tribulation Nation” is key, since while “Into the Wormhole” and “Die Baby Die” and “Skeleton Blues,” etc., certainly have their mood and ambient aspects, the rhythm of the side B opener is practically space rock in its approach, and each song that follows — “Words of Evil,” “The Lost Child,” “You Found the Best in Me” and “À L’Ombre du Temps,” in that order — offers something different from its surroundings. In the case of “Words of Evil,” that’s a motor-ready chug of a riff feeling in conversation with the post-Priest vibe of Berlin‘s “Into the Night,” brought to bear over a quick-running three and a half minutes light on frills other perhaps than some echo on Lindemann‘s vocals and a winding groove that feels likely to build momentum on stage as well as it does leading into “The Lost Child,” which immediately turns again. An intro of keys lead the way to softer tom hits as part of a subdued verse topped with eerie crooning, and though the chorus will bring a swell of volume and tone, the longest track on Rough Times at 5:52 shifts just before its fourth minute into acoustic-strummed, whistle-inclusive Spaghetti Westernism, ending with sampled waves to set the stage for Tiger‘s drum intro to fluidly begin “You Found the Best in Me,” on which Kadavar marry Beatlesian pop hooks with Skynyrd-derived Southern rock in a way that, after the reaches of the previous track and the morose spirit of some of the other material surrounding, is a welcome moment of relief.

The message in the context of the rest of the album? Whatever or whoever the song is actually about, it would seem to be that we’ve still got each other. And fair enough. “You Found the Best in Me”‘s classic feel is the strongest tie on Rough Times to Kadavar‘s first two records, but while its roots are classic, there’s precious little about it looking to retread either their own or anyone else’s past. Instead, like “The Lost Child” before and “À L’Ombre du Temps” after, it finds the trio once again in new territory, and as its finish moves into the keys, background drones and whispers of “À L’Ombre du Temps,” the flow of side B is only further emphasized — all the more a masterful realization given the range — and the quiet epilogue comes across as no more out of place than any of the brash stylistic changes before it.

Granted, “À L’Ombre du Temps” isn’t without a spiritual predecessor either — a cover of Nico‘s “Reich der Träume” was included as a bonus track on the last album — but still, as an original piece and in its place as the last statement on Rough Times, it stands out in a way very much intended to be striking, and it is. One might take it as a last-minute confirmation of the fact that, four LPs deep into their tenure, Kadavar are able to go where they please in theme and sound alike, but as relates to the rest of Rough Times surrounding, the closer is one more example of the strength of their songwriting and their ability to work within multiple contexts to create not just landmark individual singles like “Die Baby Die” or “Tribulation Nation,” but an album as an entirety that’s strengthened by the various sides of personality shown throughout. In this, Kadavar prove once more why they’ve become one of the most crucial heavy rock acts currently going, and as they engage with the roughness of our times in theme and sound, they almost can’t seem to help but make the days a little easier to endure.

Kadavar, “Into the Wormhole” official video

Kadavar, “Die Baby Die” official video

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Kadavar Post “Into the Wormhole” Video; Rough Times out Sept. 29

Posted in Bootleg Theater on September 1st, 2017 by JJ Koczan

kadavar photo joe dilworth

I’ve got Kadavar‘s new album, Rough Times, slated for review next week, so you’ll pardon me if I don’t say too much about it here while I’m still gathering my thoughts for the inevitable brainsplurge to come, but suffice it to say that when I think about the record, this song plays a big role in the overarching impression I get from it. Like their preceding video for “Die Baby Die” (posted here), this one for “Into the Wormhole” speaks to the more metallic tonality on display in Rough Times‘ earlier cuts, whether it’s the opening title-track or the surprisingly thickened “Skeleton Blues.”

Though that’s only part of what the full record ultimately has on offer before moving into the classically motoring “Words of Evil” and the Southern-tinged “You Found the Best in Me” on side B, the cynical worldview (and why not?) and harsher approach is new ground for Kadavar, who even in modernizing their production style across 2015’s Berlin (review here) after positioning themselves are retro-rock forerunners with their first two albums, 2013’s Abra Kadavar (review here) and 2012’s self-titled debut (discussed here), didn’t come nearly as close to anything quite so aggressive in tone as they do in “Into the Wormhole.”

But as the title says, these are Rough Times. There’s a ton or two of PR wire info included with the video — tour dates and all that — and again, with the review coming up, I’m going to leave it there, but the moral of the story is that if you thought after Berlin you knew what Kadavar were all about or where they were headed in terms of sound, “Into the Wormhole” will very likely make short work of that notion.

Enjoy:

Kadavar, “Into the Wormhole” official video

Berlin, Germany-based rock overlords KADAVAR have released the official music video for the brand new song “Into The Wormhole”. The track comes off their eagerly awaited fourth studio album, Rough Times.

The video was shot at Sphaèros Art Cave in Paris, France, directed by Luizo Vega (Studio V). The video starring actor AQUA NEBULA OSCILLATOR singer David Sphaèros follows a concept by drummer Tiger.

Commented Tiger: “The darkness that surrounds us when reality seems like a big black hole, those times when we try to turn around trying to escape the gravity of modern life looking for the shortcut to a more pleasant one, our biggest wish is that wormholes do exist and can take us to another dimension. A place where our thoughts are not poisoned and our souls can resonate freely. Playing music together has always been an attempt to enter this rare state of mind where everything is fine for just a second. While ‘Into The Wormhole’ is rather slow and possibly the heaviest song we have ever written, it philosophies about the shortcuts to enter the state of bliss at speed of light, the WORMHOLE.

Our history with our french buddies in AQUA NEBULA OSCILLATOR, goes far behind and each of us has tried in their own way to find salvation through music. This is why I’ve had the idea to ask singer and main brain David Sphaèros to open the doors to his infamous caves in the Parisian underground for us to collaborate for this video. Being able to get Luizo Vega on board as a director, who has just worked on Dracula’s Not Dead, pushed the whole thing just in the right direction.”

The pre-orders for Rough Times and brand new merchandise can be viewed here.

Rough Times will be released on September 29 via Nuclear Blast.

KADAVAR live:
30.09. UK London – The Dome
01.10. UK Sheffield – HRH Doom vs. Stoner
20.12. D Bremen – Tower
21.12. D Mannheim – Alte Feuerwache
22.12. D Münster – Sputnikhalle
28.12. D Chemnitz – AJZ Talschock
29.12. D Siegen – Vortex

w/ MANTAR, DEATH ALLEY
12.10. D Essen – Zeche Carl
13.10. D Hamburg – Markthalle*
14.10. D Leipzig – Conne Island
15.10. B Antwerp – Desert Fest
17.10. F Strasbourg – La Laiterie Club
18.10. F Paris – Le Trabendo
19.10. F Rennes – L’Ubu
20.10. F Bordeaux – La Krakatoa
21.10. E Madrid – But
22.10. E Barcelona – Bikini
24.10. F Lyon – Feyzin
25.10. CH Monthey – Pont Rouge
26.10. CH Aarau – Kiff
27.10. D Munich – Backstage
28.10. A Vienna – Flex
29.10. A Graz – PPC
30.10. HR Zagreb – Mocvara
01.11. H Budapest – A38
02.11. PL Warsaw – Progresja
03.11. PL Krakow – Kwadrat
04.11. CZ Prague – Nová Chmelnice
05.11. D Nuremberg – Hirsch
07.11. NL Amsterdam – Paradiso Noord
08.11. D Hanover – Capitol
09.11. DK Copenhagen – Pumpehuset
10.11. S Stockholm – Debaser
11.11. N Oslo – Bla
12.11. S Gothenburg – Pustervik
13.11. NL Deventer – Burgerweeshuis
15.11. D Cologne – Bürgerhaus Stollwerck
16.11. D Wiesbaden – Schlachthof
17.11. D Stuttgart – LKA Longhorn
18.11. D Berlin – Columbiahalle
*no MANTAR

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Kadavar Post “Die Baby Die” Video; Live Dates Underway

Posted in Bootleg Theater on August 8th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

kadavar-photo-Elizaveta-Porodina

Fresh off appearances this past week at Wacken Open Air and the Los Almiros festivals, German trio Kadavar have unveiled the first single from their forthcoming Rough Times album. Set for release via Nuclear Blast on Sept. 29, Rough Times follows 2015’s Berlin (review here) and once again marks a turn for the highly-stylized outfit, keeping the sonic modernity of its predecessor while embarking on a much more tonally weighted feel overall, especially in the low end. “Die Baby Die,” the single which is also being issued as a 7″ with an accompanying cover of The Beatles‘ “Helter Skelter,” finds Kadavar‘s underlying songcraft as catchy as ever, but in theme and sound, represents the LP’s heavier side well.

Could it be Kadavar are reacting to the somewhat cleaner feel that Berlin had coming off the more vintage-sounding 2013 outing Abra Kadavar (review here) and their 2012 self-titled debut (discussed here)? Listening to the opening title-track to Rough Times, with its buzzsaw fuzz, deep-running bass and riotous crash followed by the even thicker push of “Into the Wormhole,” it certainly sounds like it. As the name would lead one to believe, Rough Times has a darker overarching atmosphere certainly than Berlin, which even at its moodiest kept a celebratory vibe, but is still definitively Kadavar‘s own, and that comes across in “Die Baby Die” in the melody of guitarist Lupus Lindemann‘s vocals, the bounce of drummer Tiger‘s snare and the foundation of warmth from Simon “Dragon” Bouteloup‘s bass.

These are preliminary thoughts, and I’m planning on having a full review up prior to the Sept. 29 release date, so I’ll park my brain there for the time being and let you dig into the video below and the info that follows. Kadavar, as they will, have a substantial amount of touring planned in support of the impending long-player, including a full European run alongside Mantar and Death Alley in October and November. You can see the dates for that in the PR wire info that follows the clip.

Enjoy:

Kadavar, “Die Baby Die” official video

Berlin, Germany-based rock overlords KADAVAR have announced the details for their upcoming fourth studio album, Rough Times. The 7″ vinyl single “Die Baby Die” including the BEATLES cover ‘Helter Skelter’ is available now via nblast.de/KadavarDieBabyDieNB

The official music video for the “Die Baby Die” as well as the pre-orders for Rough Times (in various lavish formats, see below) and brand new merchandise can be viewed here.

Commented singer & guitarist Lupus: “I always wanted to do a trashy VHS styled green screen video. Milan from the band ROTOR got my idea and we shot it on one day at Felsenkeller in Leipzig. As you can see it was great fun. Lots of layers, colors and fast cuts. A lot of chaos. I think it fits the song pretty well.”

Rough Times will be released on September 29 via Nuclear Blast.

After announcing a string of summer shows as well as an extensive European headline run with their label mates MANTAR and DEATH ALLEY, KADAVAR, have also revealed more dates for December 2017. Dates as follows:

KADAVAR live:
30.09. UK London – The Dome
01.10. UK Sheffield – HRH Doom vs. Stoner
20.12. D Bremen – Tower
21.12. D Mannheim – Alte Feuerwache
22.12. D Münster – Sputnikhalle
28.12. D Chemnitz – AJZ Talschock
29.12. D Siegen – Vortex

w/ MANTAR, DEATH ALLEY
12.10. D Essen – Zeche Carl
13.10. D Hamburg – Markthalle*
14.10. D Leipzig – Conne Island
15.10. B Antwerp – Desert Fest
17.10. F Strasbourg – La Laiterie Club
18.10. F Paris – Le Trabendo
19.10. F Rennes – L’Ubu
20.10. F Bordeaux – La Krakatoa
21.10. E Madrid – But
22.10. E Barcelona – Bikini
24.10. F Lyon – Feyzin
25.10. CH Monthey – Pont Rouge
26.10. CH Aarau – Kiff
27.10. D Munich – Backstage
28.10. A Vienna – Flex
29.10. A Graz – PPC
30.10. HR Zagreb – Mocvara
01.11. H Budapest – A38
02.11. PL Warsaw – Progresja
03.11. PL Krakow – Kwadrat
04.11. CZ Prague – Nová Chmelnice
05.11. D Nuremberg – Hirsch
07.11. NL Amsterdam – Paradiso Noord
08.11. D Hanover – Capitol
09.11. DK Copenhagen – Pumpehuset
10.11. S Stockholm – Debaser
11.11. N Oslo – Bla
12.11. S Gothenburg – Pustervik
13.11. NL Deventer – Burgerweeshuis
15.11. D Cologne – Bürgerhaus Stollwerck
16.11. D Wiesbaden – Schlachthof
17.11. D Stuttgart – LKA Longhorn
18.11. D Berlin – Columbiahalle
*no MANTAR

Video Credits:
Kamera, Schnitt & Postproduktion – Milan Pfützenreuter
Licht & Bühne – Alexander Jung & Marco Schulz
3D und Titelanimation – Denny Münster
ein Dankeschön an den Felsenkeller Leipzig und Meyer Bros. Leipzig

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Kadavar Announce New Album Title Rough Times; Cover Art Posted; New 7″ Coming Soon

Posted in Whathaveyou on June 19th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

kadavar-photo-Elizaveta-Porodina

German traditionalist heavy rock forerunners Kadavar have set Rough Times as the title of their impending fourth album. When we heard from them at the end of last month, the Berlin-based trio had newly finished recording and set a Sept. release date through Nuclear Blast, and in addition to announcing the title of the record and posting the striking cover art which you can see below, Kadavar now put out word that Rough Times will be preceded by a new 7″ featuring the Beatles cover “Helter Skelter” and the album track “Die Baby Die.” That’s available for preorder now.

Rough Times, of course, will be the follow-up to 2015’s Berlin (review here), which was arguably Kadavar‘s high-water mark to-date. Below, the band explains their motivation behind the title and details the single. More as I hear it.

Goes like this:

kadavar rough times

Kadavar – Rough Times

Our album “Rough Times” will soon be released!

Tiger: “The process of making this record was quite intense. I kind of went through my inner hell. Working all day, you’re fine but at night all these things were torturing me. The new songs are crazy and absurd sometimes, but also serious and very personal. It’s the ambiguity that holds »Rough Times« together. Every song evolved from a certain strong feeling.

We chose the title because it has this duality. It’s not just funny, yet it’s not a complete serious title. we’re doing fine, but something’s missing in this world. We don’t really fit in or want to but at the same time we’re stuck in this. the times are rough when you wake up and just wanna die, but times can also be rough for very trivial reasons, the latter I have the feeling is very zeitgeisty.

This collage for the cover is the perfect match for the title. I had this picture in my head throughout the whole process. It’s a little rough, but this picture tells a lot.”

Added singer & guitarist Lupus: For me it’s a very serious title, bar any humor. We maintain the achievements of our elders, such as women rights, peace and a corporate Europe by touring through clubs, sniffing 100 euro bills through our noses and call attention to ourselves by posting insta stories. Meanwhile people rising to power decline economy, free thinking and progress. If we don’t start to really care for this heritage and leave it to people who just want to enrich themselves, we will soon face »Rough Times«.

The album itself is a journey through our states of mind. The first 3 songs is us venting our spleen. About everything and everyone we despise – until towards the end when there’s something kinda like hope.”

Aside of the big album announcement, the band also revealed to be releasing an exclusive 7″ vinyl for the first single off the album, called ‘Die Baby Die’. The single will also contain the BEATLES cover ‘Helter Skelter’ and is available for pre-order now: http://nblast.de/KadavarDieBabyDieNB

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Kadavar, “Lord of the Sky” official video

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