Rammstein's Deutschland
April 25, 2022 11:42 AM   Subscribe

Deutschland This song and video sees the famously provocative and theatrical band return after ten years with a long, cinematic effort that delves into German history and folklore while setting Ruby Commey at the center of the narrative as a black Germania. (nsfw)
posted by es_de_bah (18 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite

This is incredible. Thanks for posting it.
posted by runehog at 12:39 PM on April 25 [1 favorite]

Huh, I'm shocked this wasn't posted when it came out 3 years ago! I guess it makes sense to be making the rounds if people are excited/marketing depts doing their job for their 2022-rescheduled-from 2020 tour coming up.
posted by JauntyFedora at 12:47 PM on April 25 [2 favorites]

I don't know how I missed this when it came out. I can only imagine the pending global pandemic was sucking up all the oxygen in the room. I can see why it was controversial, and I can see exactly why the band made the video the way they did. I love it.
posted by gwydapllew at 1:28 PM on April 25

YouTuber Three Arrows (also host of the Iron Dice podcast, an excellent podcast focusing on German history - the Fight for the Republic series is currently very slowly tracing the run-up to Hitler's rise to power) has a video extensively commenting on Deutschland.
posted by Jeanne at 1:32 PM on April 25 [2 favorites]

yeah. I saw that it was old, but it seemed interesting and under-reviewed.
posted by es_de_bah at 4:09 PM on April 25 [2 favorites]

New Yorker weighs in, of course.
posted by ovvl at 4:26 PM on April 25

Some beautiful shots, I just wish they didn't flash from one to the next so quickly; I can barely figure out what I'm seeing before something totally different goes on-screen instead.
posted by one for the books at 7:22 PM on April 25

Wow. Rammstein's never quite been my cup of tea musically, but that's an amazing video.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 7:52 PM on April 25

Maybe if you were German you would recognize the imagery more readily, one for the books?
posted by TreeHugger at 8:07 PM on April 25

The thing about Rammstein is, they want to be apolitical in the way the worst people claim to be, but they have this problem where they actually want everyone to be able to have a good time not just ignore problems, so they have spent their entire careers grappling with the baggage of their country and their industry. From accusations of "master race" imagery in their first album in 1995, to the sexism and homophobia rampant in metal, and yeah the wonderful pan-European revival of white nationalism. And, never one to be subtle about anything, they tend to address matters directly in a deliciously almost trolling manner. You hate gays? Here we are oiled up and swimming in a pile of naked men. You think nationalism is cute? Let's launch the personification of German empire into fucking space like the plague. You think anti-semitism is a joke? Fuck you, we would rather die beside the Jews than join in.

And sometimes their songs are pretty good.
posted by seraphine at 3:30 AM on April 26 [9 favorites]

I like your take, serephine. There's a reason I linked to that clip from the Family Values tour. They fit right along side that weird bit of american nu-metal that could be progressive and regressive but mostly just wanted to be loud and vulgar.

I think what stuck in my mind while checking out this project is the idea that Germany means all of Germany. So they feel like they get to/have to/want to/hate to embody the whole. You. I. We. Those Jews were German. Those Nazis were German. This black woman is German and may as well be Germania. There's an interesting thing going on with the (clearly not blind) race-blind casting. When you talk about country or nationality, how can you draw the parameters? In the US, we have the added wrinkles* of forced relocation and slavery, colonization, and internment. In Deutschland, they have imperialism and the holocaust. All of this complicating ideas of race and nationality and coloring one's sense of citizenship when it comes to pride or shame or identity. Identifying with a country is pretty much a universal, but it's problematic as fuck no matter what. While a blunt tool, this project hits a lot of the right notes while exploring this dread. And I guess that's kinda what I want from broad metal or punk.

*wrinkles might be too slight a word, but y'know
posted by es_de_bah at 4:10 AM on April 26

Yeah, Rammstein makes me wish I understood German. I usually like the tune, hope they're not evil incarnate. So yeah, like Dead Kennedys, or Dead Milkmen, or Die Antwoord, Sex Pistols... Might be 'metal' or 'punk' or 'hip-hop'... a blunt tool, but probably not evil per se. I just wouldn't skip that track or think too much about it besides enjoying the tune.
posted by zengargoyle at 6:25 AM on April 26

The video for Zeit is also stunning.
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 9:23 AM on April 26 [1 favorite]

or Dead Milkmen

surely anything under two minutes cannot possibly be evil?

thanks for the Rammstein links, my friend so loves this band and I highly doubt he's had time to keep up with their recent work.. shared and shared
posted by elkevelvet at 2:56 PM on April 26

Every time Rammstein releases an album, I hold my breath and hope they're still threading that needle of being tasteless and obscene and violent but not awful. So far, so good? They also released an album of piano versions a couple years ago, and I was mildly surprised at how pretty the songs are.

The first article misses one thing, or maybe cut it for space: the wolf cubs are a callback to one of Rammstein's old music videos, in which the band is a werewolf pack. (The discussion of werewolves makes me think the author was aware of the video and just didn't want to go into it.) The article talks about the monstrosity in the portrayal of Germania in that scene, which seems about right - but the band weren't just the hazmat-suit attendants, they're also the cubs. Germania gives birth to Rammstein.
posted by mersen at 7:51 PM on April 26 [2 favorites]

Yeah, Rammstein makes me wish I understood German. I usually like the tune, hope they're not evil incarnate.

When you're watching this video, you can turn on subtitles, then set autotranslate to English.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 3:14 PM on April 29 [1 favorite]

I’ll see them live (my first time) in Klagenfurt in May. Really looking forward to this show. Thanks for the links!
posted by syzygy at 12:36 PM on April 30

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