Dear We Butter the Bread With Butter,
I’m not here to shit on you. I don’t care about your silly name – despite the fact that I imagine tanktop-clad, Redbull-chugging dudebros chucklefucking about it in between sacktaps. I don’t care that you choose to play “metalcore-electronica” – hell, Feed Her to the Shark’s last album was more or less that same genre, and I loved it. I don’t care how your last album, Golderkind, left your fans “irritated,” and how with Wieder Geil! (“Horny Again”) you aim to win them back. I don’t care that your target audience seems to be people who were jamming Attack! Attack! circa 2008. I don’t care, because I’m only here to judge your music. And unfortunately, you make that so goddamn painful.
I get what you’re doing here. Mixing chug-heavy metalcore with rave-inspired synths, growled vocals with big arena-ready choruses, bouncy rhythms with slick grooves, all with a less-than-serious demeanor – it’s supposed to be simple, lighthearted, and fun. Sure, there’s some cringe-worthy moments – take the circus music synthesizers in the second half of opener “Ich Mach Was Mit Medien,” or the annoyingly repetitive synth line in “Rockstar,” which I swear comes from Casino Night Zone off of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 – but those tacky annoyances come with the territory in this genre, I guess. I even found myself enjoying a few songs: “Anarchy” is driven by a catchy groove that erupts into a great gruffly sung chorus, while late-album highlight (and only track I can enjoy in its entirety) “Warum Lieben Wir Nicht Mehr” features what is one of the few tasteful uses of electronics on the album, joined by an awesome call-and-response chorus that mixes growls with female singing.
No, the real issues aren’t the irritating kitschy missteps, or even the mean DR of 4 (with some songs as low as 3). Gents, my real issue is that in the end, Wieder Geil! is just totally banal and repetitive. The worst offender is your aforementioned opener “Ich Mach,” leaning way too heavily on a menial two-note phrase that was far too weak to ever build a song around. But even beyond that, the majority of these songs are built off simplistic bone-headed chugging – loud, bombastic, and with no finesse, subtlety, or anything remotely compositionally interesting. I’m sure nobody expected a progressive masterpiece, but when nearly every track follows the same verse-chorus-bridge structure, one can often predict how a song will unfold within its first 90-seconds. The attempts to drum up interest – like the pitch-shifted Biggie Smalls-sounding vocals and slam death portion of “Bang Bang Bang” – end up sounding tacky rather than amusing. At least if you guys went for the balls-out zaniness of say, Eskimo Callboy, I could respect the effort. Wieder Geil! just feels uninspired, an attempt to summon a youthful sense of fun from an empty well, the musical equivalent of a guy in his mid-thirties showing up at a college bar with a shit-eating grin, a Hawaiian shirt, and a bunch of jokes that everyone got tired of hearing in 2005.
I’ve already mentioned the brickwalled production, but if I do have one thing positive to say, it’s that the mix is balanced enough that every element rings clear. There’s no “mushiness” that’s common with such low DRs, nor is it particularly fatiguing – in fact, I didn’t even realize it was that low until I ran the DR Meter myself.
Look, in the end, if you guys enjoy playing this stuff, and you’ve carved out an audience that genuinely enjoys it, fine. But to me, amidst all the trivial amusements, it feels like you forgot to write music with any substance. Wieder Geil! feels built solely for the sake of trendiness and throwaway entertainment, destined to be forgotten in a few years – but worse than that, it’s capitalizing on a trend that is itself already dated, and feels restrained and uninspired to boot. A few head-bob worthy moments are hardly enough to redeem the entire package. In the end, I think you need to reevaluate what your definition of quality music is, because the beatdown rhythms and laughable social commentary of closer “Zombiebitch” is definitely not it. Ultimately Wieder Geil! is a skip for me, and, I would hope, anyone with a half-decent taste in what can loosely be described as metal.