Der W does an easy job in naming his albums. Since the third album, he is simply numbering his major releases. Thus, V is the fifth studio release of the rock singer-songwriter, who has practically emancipated from his band career. I had a listen to his new release, which has been published on 27th May 2022.
Der W – About The Artist
Der W is the artist name of Stephan Weidner. The 1963-born bassist, singer and songwriter has become very popular as part of the Böhse Onkelz, one of Germany’s most popular hard rock bands of al times. After the split of the band in 2005, he initially became part of a stadium rock project, Nordend Antistars, and pursued a solo career thereafter. His first solo album Schneller, höher, Weidner, which also included his most successful single so far, Geschichtenhasser, received a golden record in Germany and climbed up to the second spot in the German charts (2008). None of the following albums, Autonomie!, III and IV, placed worse than 4th in the German album charts. IV, his latest album, is dated as of 2016 and thus after the Böhse Onkelz reunion already.
Der W – V – Track by Track
The twelve song album lasts 55 minutes.
1. Das Lied vom Blut
The opener could also easily open for some Böhse Onkelz albums. Nice, powerful hard rock with rhythmic, energetic riffs.
2. Der Berg bewegt sich nicht
Der Berg bewegt sich nicht (“The mountain does not move”) has been the second single release before the album publication. The lyrics in this song about being yourself and resilience almost feel like a punk song. Nice rocker.
Was macht Du, wenn Du wirklich nicht mehr kannst?
Ich mache weiter, weiter!
(“What are you doing if you really cannot continue?
I go on, go on”)
3. Für dich
The third song was the first teaser for this release. Even though the song has a nice melody, it does not catch me as much as the two songs before, for example. Für Dich (“For you”) could come with some more rock energy.
4. Alles wieder anders
If you like the punk rock side of Der W, Alles wieder anders might make it to the top of your album’s favorites. Nicely driven by the guitar, good chorus and a powerful, rhythmic drive.
Back to Onkelz country: this could have been a nice song for Weidner’s band project. Nice dark sound, almost with a psychedelic touch. I increased the volume while listening to this one and enjoyed to rock.
Du bist das Licht,
Du bist der Regenbogen
In meinem Traum
In dem die Sterne flogen
(“You are the light,
you are the rainbow
In my dream
In which the stars flew.”)
6. Meditation mit Kippe und Bier
The sixth song’s title translates to “Meditation with butt (of a cigarette) and beer”. One of the best songs of the album to me, which beautifully describes how Weidner is alone with emotional struggle. Straight and honest, just like fans love his songs.
7. Haus aus Spiegeln
Slow, emotional, melancholic – that’s the aura of Haus aus Spiegeln (“House of Mirrors”). A song about failed love, which is one of the most honest writes of the album. Really good listen.
8. Ein Strick, ihr Genick
The eighth song of V is quite a contrast to the emotional predecessor. Stephan Weidner frees full guitar power at the beginning. Unfortunately, the song starts very promising, but feels a bit of boring and dull over its full five minutes of runtime.
9. Kann weg!
The powerful punk rocker Kann weg! is one of my candidates for the best song of the album. Very catching chorus and the typical Der W “rockness”. Somehow, this song also illustrates, what I miss here and there in other songs of the album.
10. Guten Morgen Mitternacht
The tenth song somehow features a lot of typical Der W characteristics: a bit of punk and rock, straight melodies, a good drive. Somehow, the result feels to lack something special. Good one, but not on top.
11. Das letzte Boot über den Acheron
Greek myths and metal power – that’s about the the ingredients to the second last song of the album. A modestly fast headbanger driven by rhythmic guitar riffs. Nice one.
12. Briefe an mich selbst
The longest song of the album (“Letters to myself”) is as well the closing track of V. A dark, epic ballad, which stays in your mind even after the listen. A signature track, indeed.
Der W – V – Spotify
Here is V on Spotify:
Der W – V – My View
Stephan Weidner’s fifth one is not bad at all. But it also does not connect to his very best albums or to the best Onkelz releases. A very solid German rock release with hard rock, punk and metal elements, which is an enjoyable listen, but not a must-listen.
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