Listening Lately: Bethlehem, Rammstein, Saint Ripper, and More

Hi, friends.  Today’s column will take a different format from previous Listening Latelys, but you guys can handle it.

Last weekend, Owl Maker played a show up in Salem (awesome!) with Dust Prophet, Sisters of Shaddowwe, and Saint Ripper.  Let me tell you, they do not fool around in the Salem scene.  Every goth young adult, battle vest enthusiast, and handsome ship captain for miles around had dressed themselves to the nines and packed into Koto, an Asian restaurant that magically transforms into a rock club when the clock strikes nine thirty.  It was great to finally meet and perform with Dust Prophet, as the blog has been in touch with them for months now.  (Download Volume Doom to get their killer track “Revolutionary Suicide”! COUGH COUGH)

Sisters of Shaddowwe’s brooding, keyboard-heavy rock seemed to be what was bringing the goth crew, so I was a little surprised they shared members with Saint Ripper, a fists-in-the-air hardcore punk band.  Switching genres is fun!  Saint Ripper closed out the night with an energetic set, inciting goths, ship captains, and squares from Connecticut to bop along to the music together.  Overall, it was a great night with welcoming bands and audience members!  Check out Saint Ripper’s tunes below:

Anyhow, as I was sitting down to format Thunderbird Divine’s Show Me Your Patches column, I popped on the Hear She Roars playlist on Spotify.  It features heavy bands with women members; although it’s curated by the blog Hear She Roars, anyone can add to it.  Some gems that caused me to press Alt Tab and see what was playing included “Body of Christ” by Nausea and “Goddess of Death” by Derketa.  Have a listen and make some of your own additions!  (Lemme go see if Saint Ripper is on Spotify…. Alas, they are not…)

After I finished the article, I was doing some Facebook scrolling and saw a post about the new Rammstein video “Deutschland.”  I paused Spotify and checked it out….  HO-LEE CRAP.  Like, WHOA.  You should stop reading this article right now and watch it, all the way to the end.  Actress Ruby Commey portrays the character Germania, appearing in various guises throughout German history and some sci-fi futuristic episodes.  The imagery is violent and disturbing, including some scenes of concentration camp executions.  The band has been criticized by the Israeli Foreign Ministry and others for using Holocaust themes for what they deemed as advertising…  But there is nothing gimmicky, promotional, or glorifying about this video.  Rather, it seems like a reflection by Rammstein on the deplorable parts of their homeland’s past.  I don’t see how that’s any different than making a book or movie about the Holocaust, of which there are many.  IDK if it was because I had too many “sips of Sunshine” last night, but honestly I was a little choked up by the end of the video.

BUT NOW LET’S MOVE ON.

Rammstein’s fellow depressing Germans Bethlehem are releasing a new album, Lebe Dich Leer, on May 17th through Prophecy Productions.  Describing the band as “depressing” isn’t meant to be a burn; apparently Bethlehem defined the genre of suicidal black metal.  If that’s not depressing, I don’t know what is… Almost thirty years into their career, this album will showcase newish frontwoman Onielar’s wide range of expression; the teaser track alone is an emotional rollercoaster.  I’m not going to embed it here because it will soon be offered somewhere else….  (COUGH COUGH COUGH follow AltCtrl’s bandcamp COUGH COUGH COUGH)

So I guess you should go follow our bandcamp page, huh?  Check out Volume Doom for now, pre-order Bethlehem’s cool album, and stay tuned for…………..


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