Acoustic bass, jazz guitar, ukulele and sax – the range of instruments used for Dr. Umwuchts Tanzpalast is already quite wide. The more, I struggle to describe their music. On the one hand, they do disco-pop, on the other hand, the instruments and arrangements almost feel jazzy, but the sound is very easy and fun. Whatever – when I received the promo for the album, I just felt I had to share it with you. Release date of Im Zentrum der Wirklichkeit (“In the Center of Truth”) is 13th March 2022.
Dr. Umwuchts Tanzpalast – About The Artists
Six people – eight opinions. That’s how the band from Bamberg, Germany, is describing themselves in the first section of the press kit to their second album release. The band released their first album Freizeit als Beruf (“Free Time as Profession”) in 2018. Thereby, the sextet received quite some good reputation. The band’s history, including a couple of lineup changes, dates back to 2010. The current band coniststs of singer and lead guitarist Thomas Kießlich, Christian Balling (percussion, synth), Nikolaus Durst (bass), David Grumm (drums), Andreas Klenk (guitars and ukulele) and Raimund Schlenk (sax).
Dr. Umwuchts Tanzpalast – Im Zentrum der Wirklichkeit – Track by Track
The twelve track album lasts 42 minutes.
1. Laufen Lernen
Welcome to the sound of Dr. Umwuchts Tanzpalast. The lyrics of Laufen Lernen feel like punk. The melody? Very catching, staying in your mind from the first moment. I love the sax main theme. The song is just easily catching me. Fun track, which also has some good topics on the lyrics side.
2. Alles Außer Kontrolle
Kießlich’s vocals without the melodic background might sound a bit of old-fashioned. But then there is the driving sax, the groove of the bass, the drums, which make you move… The blend of this track (“Everything apart from control”) is just special, fun. These guys just make me smile while listening.
After the first two songs have a very similar, a bit of swing-alike party sound, Boheme feels more punk, more rocking. The vocals adopt to that very nicely. The lyrics have a nice balance of social criitcs and irony:
Ja ich habe ein Problem
Ich gehör’ nicht zur Boheme
Ja, ja, ja, ich muss mich benehmen
Denn ich gehör’ nicht zur Boheme
(“Yeah, I have a problem
I don’t belong to the Bohemia
Yes, Yes, Yes, ich have to behave well
Because I don’t belong to the Bohemia”)
4. Erzähl Mir Nichts (feat. Malonda)
For the fourth song, Dr. Umwuchts Tanzpalast work with German musician and musical actress Malondra. The song starts like a 1930’s dance house track, but the band very soon raises the speed of the song. Very cool, rushing track, which is working with many different sounds – there are even violin samples in here.
5. Angst Der Anderen
In this short 2:11 minute song, the organ-alike keyboard is taking over the melodic control. The song itself, however, rather feels like an indie-rock one. Cool listen, indeed.
6. Zu Kurz
Even though the song is named Zu Kurz, “Too Short”, it is one of the longest of the album. Already the first verses lead the direction of the track: Das Leben ist zu kurz um sich um Blödmanner zu scheren – “Life is too short to care about dumbbells”. The song is cheeky, funny with very accentuated pop melody lines. A cool illustration of the wide range of sounds these guys are able to create.
7. Die Wahrheit (feat. Rainer von Vielen)
Die Wahrheit has been the title track of a four track EP. Rainer von Vielen, who is supporting the band in here, is a quite famous musician from Southern German. Ich sag Euch was ihr hören wollt – “I tell you what you want to hear”. The song about politics, social behavior – but also about about that the people somehow enjoy lies to them. Definitely one of the signature tracks of the Im Zentrum der Wirklichkeit.
8. Ein Gutes Pferd
The title of the eighth track translates to “A Good Horse”. The song reference the German proverb Ein gutes Pferd springt nur so hoch wie es muss – “A good horse is just jumping as high as necessary. A comparably dark sound, which is again nicely driven rhythmically and melodically by the band.
9. Von Der Seite
Dr Umwuchts Tanzpalast are comparably quiet and decent in this song. Von der Seite gives time for a short breath, also due to a rather long instrumental part.
10. Hallo Hallo!
Hallo Hallo! is one of the most funny tracks of the album. The band is describing the thoughts and feelings of a person struggling to connect to a video conference or similar event. German music just needed these 1:54 minutes. Hilarious.
11. Irgendwas Ist Immer
This 2:32 minute rocker is about first world problems. Nice guitar riffs. Could be a party song at the band’s concerts.
Could you call that a ballad? Rather romantic sounds at the end of the album – unfortunately, I cannot really translate the nice word play they do in the song’s title.
Dr. Umwuchts Tanzpalast – Im Zentrum der Wirklichkeit – Spotify
Here is the album on Spotify:
Dr. Umwuchts Tanzpalast – Im Zentrum der Wirklichkeit – My View
Thanks, Dr. Umwuchts Tanzpalast! This album was really fun. The sextett demonstrates great storytelling as well as instrumental mastery. It is hard not to smile and not to enjoy the songs. I definitely liked this album.
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