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Schlafes Bruder – you might ask yourselves who´s behind this. The answer is pretty easy – once members of E Nomine, now they are Schlafes Bruder: Fritz Garner and Kris Weller. The two got together and created this concept album about crusades. In their songs, they´re telling the stories of different crusaders´ fates, whilst combining a nearly typical E Nomine sound with heavier and driving beats.
This, together with mystic melodies, results in an overall picture that fits together nicely but, on the other hand, is also lacking some real highlights. Also, some of the used electronic sounds seem unwilling to harmonize with the rest but luckily, this doesn´t happen very often, so that music and vocals generally fit together rather well and often create a fascinating atmosphere. When it comes to the vocals, it seems to me that there´s a lot more potential, which for some reason remained untapped on this recording – thus, if you listen long enough the singing becomes monotonous and this even though the singer´s voice appears to be expressive and full of emotions.
You should definitely listen to „Abendland“, as well as „Heilig“ and „Ich bin Liebe“. “Abendland” manages to evoke a really special feeling, adding a bit of oriental feel and thus is simply captivating. The many diverse musical influences, e.g. the intense sound of string instruments that carry the melody, are the reason why this song is the strongest one on this album. “Heilig” reminds you of an anthem that is, vocal-wise, really strong and convincing, and also the music manages to emphasize the vocals nicely. “Ich bin Liebe” stands out a bit from the rest of the album since it is much quieter and more melancholic, maybe it is even a bit romantic. Here, you will not find any electronically made sounds - the pure and unaltered sound is indeed impressive.
Therefore, the album as a whole surely is an interesting piece of work topic-wise – but, especially vocal-wise, cannot convince fully. A lot of potential was left unused. However, for those who like E Nomine, this album might still be a buying tip. Because of the many similarities in both band´s sound it might attract those fans more than the rest of the general audience.