b.o.s.c.h have just registered as nine on the Richter scale somewhere in the North Sea as their new album Fleischwolf arrived in my inbox all the way from Wilhelmshaven in the north of Germany. For those among us who aren’t seismologists, this classification officially results in ‘near total destruction – severe damage or collapse to all buildings. Heavy damage and shaking extends to distant locations’!
This seismic industrial metal band is ably manned by Max Klee (vox), Christian Heil (guitar), Lutz Möller (drums/samples/programming) and Axel Mintken (bass). This four piece came together following a Möller side-project and led to their first album being released in 2009 (Einsam).
The band is keen to promote their friendship stating that it goes beyond music. Citing their creative relationship as a band, Möller admits they may argue about the music, often passionately, but always to ensure the best possible result. He adds that the band follow ‘strictly democratic rules’ when discussing direction and interestingly clarifies ‘there are no fundamental disputes within the band.’ Most musicians will recognise these points in an ambitious band and it is clear in Fleischwolf that creative edge is working for b.o.s.c.h.
Every track on this album is powerful. The seasoned metal fan will naturally draw comparisons with Rammstein, Megahertz et al but this has unique elements. Aside from the German lyrics and steel foundry rhythm section, there are some stand-out moments on the album.
The opening keyboard melody of ‘Schock’ suggests something big is going to happen. With the feel of a countdown, Mintken’s bass builds before the onslaught of the full band begins. Klee’s approach as frontman is unforgiving and he oozes passion as he bellows through this opening salvo.
‘Reiz Mich’ unlocks Mintken’s growling bass and ensures the opening track’s momentum is maintained. The unrelenting power is given texture by Möller’s sampling on ‘Blender’ where programmed dance rhythms are used alongside a jangly acoustic guitar as a pre-cursor to more power-riffing by Heil. This is unique in itself as is the hunting horn used in the intro to ‘Die Jagd’. It’s unusual but works well and doesn’t detract from the overall product.
Stand-out tracks on this behemoth come in the form of the title track ‘Fleischwolf’ (which translates as meat grinder) and the spine-chilling ‘Zu Spät’ (too late). These are rich in structure and will translate well to live shows. ‘Folgemann’ confirms the intelligence of the band and explores the difficult change that Germany has survived through the years. It is possible to be thought-provoking whilst delivering hammered metal.
If you have little or no German language, you will still appreciate this album if you look for music with the impact of a carefully-aimed scud missile. b.o.s.c.h are tectonic in their impact, and Teutonic in their approach - the perfect pairing to ensure Fleischwolf is a success across the globe. Give it a listen – you won’t be disappointed.
Fleischwolf was released on Laute Helden/SPV (www.facebook.com/lautehelden) on 13 October 2017.
FLEISCHWOLF (Release date: 13 October 2017)
You can check them out on their Website: www.bosch-music.de
And on their social media at Twitter: www.twitter.com/boschmusic
Finally, Fleischwolf can be purchased at Amazon by clicking here.