Review Summary: Die Krupps' first new release in over a decade can't overcome the fact that it's not 1982 anymore, and that they're better than this.
Thirteen years is a long time to go without releasing any new material. In fact, it's probably pretty safe to assume that most people had given up on hearing new music from these guys a long time ago. The optimistic among us, though, would be forced to point out that this band has faded in and out of existence more times than Marty McFly while cock-blocking his father and that it was only a matter of time before they reappeared once more. Als Waren Wir Fur Immer
proves that the 'half-full' crowd was right about this band again, but vindication can be bittersweet. Some might expect that after a decade of downtime the band would be ready with a full-length album or at least an EP of meticulously crafted songs, but that's simply not the case. Instead, they're content to dump five songs and three remixes on us; songs that revert back to the band's earliest days as EBM pioneers.
Of course, we could sit here and complain about the band's one-eighty turn away from the industrial metal that they had slowly made their own and we could wonder what would compel them to return to such a dated sound, but it wouldn't make a difference. Suffice it to say that Die Krupps' first new music in over a decade is a paltry collection of no-frills electro-industrial that only manages to not be a total letdown because the songs aren't bad for what they are. For eight tracks, Die Krupps are content to take us back to a time when a rhythmic beat, a few layers of synth and a simple vocal track were enough to get people excited. Obviously, it's not enough to make people excited anymore, especially after ten years of silence and a solid discography that proves that they're better than this, but it's pretty good if taken autonomously. Despite any bitterness related to the circumstances surrounding this release it's not hard to let these songs get in your head. If nothing else, the music's simplistic approach allows the synth lines and beats to sink in with relative ease, and the choruses are pretty damn solid. The problem is that it's just not an exciting album, even if the songs are well-written.
We could argue forever about why the band would choose to ignore the metal-influence of their final four albums or why they would step all the way back to their eighties roots, but speculation won't change the end product. The fact is that Die Krupps have finally released new music after over a decade of reissues and compilations, and that will be enough for some people. For the rest, their enjoyment will primarily ride on whether or not they can accept the band re-embracing a sound that was already dated when they initially dropped it in the nineties. In the end, the songs on Als Waren Wir Fur Immer
are good enough that fans aren't going to skip them if they randomly play on their iPod, but they're not nearly compelling enough to warrant any effort to seek them out.