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|a needless pain ...
you bear in vain ...
unless you can see
there is nothing to sustain
- A Million Miles, Wolfsheim
(Peter Heppner - vocals, Markus Reinhardt - keyboards)
"Wolfsheim was formed in 1987 by the brothers
Markus and Olli Reinhardt, and Pompejo Ricciardi. The name wasn't taken from
the city in the Rheinland-Pfalz, but from none other than Scott Fritzgerald's
novel, The Great Gatsby. They recorded a demo tape and three months later
Ricciardi left the band, to be replaced by Peter
Heppner. (...) Shortly afterward, Olli left the band while Markus and Peter
carried on. At first, they sang the songs Ricciardi had written, but wanting a
fresh start Peter began writing new lyrics. (...) Wolfsheim's debut album, 'No
Happy View', was released in 1992. Selling over 40,000 copies, the material on
the album was recorded over a span of two- to three years, and re-mastered in
(...) In 1998, Wolfsheim prepared to release their most successful album to date by releasing the first single from it, Once in a Lifetime, in October, and the second single, It's Hurting for the First Time, around Christmas. Finally in February 1999, Wolfsheim released their fifth album, Spectators. The album remained at number two on the German Media Control Charts for several weeks, and became one of the most sought-after synth-pop albums of all time."
¼ 1992: No Happy View
" The Sparrows and The Nightingales, which was well received on Germany's pop charts when it came out, is an incredibly catchy song with powerful electronics driving the melody. Not far from being a perfect song, you can't resist to sing along after hearing it a few times. The pace of the album is slowed down with the serene This Time. Violins and an array of quiet electronics lie behind Heppner's peaceful, calming vocals. This song is by far the most minimal that I've heard from Wolfsheim, but it is executed every bit as well as the rest of their work. It has to be hard for anybody not to be impressed by this band. Their music draws an audience in like few other bands out there. Though "No Happy View" lacks the perfection as a whole that "Spectators" achieved, it is still one of my favorite CDs. Any fan of darker, more thought-provoking synthpop, should enjoy it."
-- Scott Mallonee, RE/VOLT, 6/8/01
1993: Pop Killer
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A best-of compilation spanning 91 to 95, including two new songs from the EP Elias released in '95 (Elias, Love Song), and remixes of older songs.
1996: Dreaming Apes
Includes two songs with lyrics in german and four instrumentals. The track A Million Miles, is one of their best songs, and would perfectly complement their 1999 critically-acclaimed Spectators CD. Closer Still is another hit single. The album is a bit more lush than their previous work, but still holds some catchy synth-pop tunes.
-- Said Sukkarieh, Musicfolio, 11/01
"It's obvious that the band formed in 1987; the heyday of Gothic-tinged synth-pop bands -- Sisters of Mercy, Depeche Mode, Love & Rockets -- didn't necessarily leave much of an impression on American music, but its influence elsewhere has been surprisingly resilient. Something about pounding beats, tortured synthesizers providing minor key washes of sound, and despondently Romantic lyrics continues to possess an undeniable appeal. The album's not all doom and gloom, despite the heavy sentiments expressed in lines like 'Seven hundred lies/Seven hundred ways/To hide the fact/That I am longing/Longing for you.' In fact, it's kind of fun: the operatic vocal that opens Spectators, quickly joined by a dance-floor-filling beat that just begs for a blacklight and overworked smoke machine; the frantic drum 'n' bass propulsion of Sleep Somehow; the thundering Funky Drummer breakbeat of Heroin...She Said. It's the music on tracks like these -- not the melodramatic portrait of a junkie searching for the perfect high in Heroin... -- that lifts the album beyond the level of pure nostalgia. Spectators will make a believer out of you, whether you're wearing black lipstick or not.
-- Ryan Tranquilla, splendidezine.com, 8/01
"Comparable to Depeche Mode's Violator, Spectators grabs hold of you and leads you down iridescent halls of radiance conveying messages of love, loss, and relationships while reminding you nothing is perfect and we are only human."
¼ 2003: Casting Shadows
Tracklisting: 01. Everyone Who Casts a Shadow 02. Care For You 03. I Won't Believe 04. Kein Zurück 05. And I... 06. Underneath the Veil 07. Find You're Gone 08. This is for Love 09. Wundervoll 10. Approaching Lightspeed 11. in Time.
"The latest from German synthpop act Wolfsheim is called 'Casting Shadows', and they may be the first group of their kind to show a Depeche Mode influence without wearing it impossibly on their sleeves. They inject an individuality into the genre that is rare. Aces at lovelorn balladry, the duo weave romanticism into a type of music long-revered for its humanity. Care For You is damn close to perfect, with its sympathetic tones and filtered drums. Organic elements (like the drums in And I ) would easily throw off critics of synthetic music who cry that electronics are cold and sterile. Peter Heppners voice is instantly recognizable, too, so theres no mistaking Everyone Who Casts A Shadow for anyone elsethough the closing instrumental In Time is also so very Wolfsheim.
... Very worth your time if you are a fan of synthesized pop music. "
-- Jack Alberson, fac193.com reviews
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