Album review: Stahlmann’s ‘Bastard’–dark, industrial music at its best


By Chyrisse Tabone, Rock At Night Tampa Correspondent

Album review: Stahlmann’s Bastard—July 7, 2017 (USA)  AFM Records

Back in the 1990s I definitely was into the goth/industrial dance scene. In fact, the scene in Tampa was so “famous” that SNL (with Chris Kattan and Molly Shannon) created a few skits poking fun at it.  The Castle was the place to be and is still alive and well in 2017.

Well, I was thrilled to have discovered Stahlmann, a German industrial/electro dance/metal band which reawakened my love for the genre.  Often compared to Rammstein (another fav’) they often perform wearing silver face make-up and spooky silver skeletal masks.  I believe the comparison is likely due to Mart Soer’s deep, whispering, hoarse voice. Stahlmann released the first single from Bastard “Bastard/Nichts Spricht Wahre Liebe Frei” along with two videos which can give you a taste of the album—dark, gloomy, goth-like industrial music full of keyboard/synth riffs, driving drum beats, and rhythmic metal guitars that make you want to don dark eye liner, black clothes, and head out to the nearest Goth club. I have played the CD a bunch of times around the house and each time I like it more and more. The engineering of the CD is perfectly balanced with vocals, bass, guitars, and percussion.  I have visions of stark industrial buildings with smoke stacks, grinding clock gears, an East Berlin Stasi prison I visited a few years ago, and scenes from Metropolis. Dark, growling, yet grooving…


Since I do not understand German I am basing my opinion on the actual music—the sound and how it makes me feel.  Some of the stand-out songs are “Leitwof” which has a driving beat, symphonic riffs, and the distinctive determined, dark, hoarse voice of Soer. “Judas” has Moog-like synths and more of a hard, metal sound which changes pace within the song for great dramatic effect. In fact, I noticed this with a lot of the songs, it’s almost like a bass drop. “Bastard” is definitely dance metal full of synths, electric guitar, and a bad ass chorus.  The song “Nichts Spricht Wahre Liebe Frei” starts with a classical music or “Proggy” sound with full string accompaniment and may be deemed a “romantic” ballad (as romantic as industrial can get, that is).  “Alptraum” is another “romantic” song with a slow, catchy, almost pretty melody.  “Wachter” has a very dark sound full of heavy metal riffs and would be great in the soundtrack for a modern vampire film. Another one of my favorite tunes is “Supernova” with its very cool, full-sounding synth riff and sexy beat.

Overall, Bastard is one of my new favs’ this year and is a must hear for every fan of industrial, Goth, and symphonic metal. Honestly, this album is going to stay in my play list for some time.

Band Members:

Mart Soer-Vocals; AblaZ-bass; Frank Herzig-guitar; Max Thiele-drums

Track List:

  1. Leitwolf
  2. Judas
  3. Bastard
  4. Nichts Spricht Wahre Liebe Frei
  5. Wächter
  6. Von Glut Zu Asche
  7. Alptraum
  8. Dein Gott
  9. Schwarz Und Weiss
  10. Supernova




Chyrisse Tabone, Ph.D.
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