Release Date: Feb 10, 2004
Genre(s): Rock, Electronic, Experimental
Record label: Mute
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In Britain, industrial band Einstürzende Neubauten are best known not for a song or an album, but a gig in 1984, during which they destroyed the ICA's stage with pneumatic drills and threw bottles into a cement mixer, showering the crowd with broken glass. The concert ended in a riot, securing Neubauten's reputation as rock's most nihilistic cacophony-merchants. Still pervasive two decades on, the image no longer fits: inspired by the band's disillusionment with, and departure from, their native Berlin, Perpetuum Mobile is a largely hushed and melancholy album.
It's been a long road for Einstürzende Neubauten, and a lot of it's been pretty rough. From 1981's Kollaps through what may remain their masterpiece, Halber Mensch, to 1987's mysterious Feunf Auf Der Nach Oben Offenen Richterskala, the group attacked music with a seeming determination to obliterate. Over a backbone of metal percussion and noise, singer Blixa Bargeld's surrealistic lyrics seemed to combine nightmare visions with oblique political references.