6/10. Still a better war album than Let England Shake
Note To 1001 Albums Users: This album is currently not available on any streaming services but will be included in the generator anyway as it's in the book. If you do find it on any streaming service, please let me know! Tank Battles: The Songs of Hanns Eisler is a solo album by German singer Dagmar Krause released by Island Records in 1988. It is a collection of 26 songs by German composer Hanns Eisler sung by Krause in English. She also sang the songs in the original German which were released by Island at the same time on a companion album, Panzerschlacht: Die Lieder von Hanns Eisler. In a review of Tank Battles at AllMusic, John Dougan called it "[a] worthy follow up" to Krause's previous album, Supply and Demand. He said her vocals here are "stunning" and the instrumental backing is "impeccable". Writing in The Wire, Philip Clark called Tank Battles a "laudable attempt" by Krause to present a modern interpretation of songs by Eisler-Brecht. He said producer Greg Cohen's "sensitive arrangements" of the album's material "winningly evokes 1920s Berlin".
6/10. Still a better war album than Let England Shake
That was… unexpected. Beautiful voice and reading a bit about the artist who she covered, I can see the beauty in it, but it feels like a cold war level of importance which doesn’t resonate so much with me.
More like a performance art piece. Sort of reminiscent of Brecht. Addendum - it turns out that the music on this album were all written by Hanns Eisler, who worked with Bertolt Brecht, so it was a reasonable reaction. It got better when I stopped actively listening to it and it was more background to me reading.
Finally, we get a glimpse of Lily Von Schtupp's ill-conceived career after she left the backwater town of Rock Ridge. 3/10 2 stars
This is a truly bizarre one. It's probably the first album so far on my generated list to have no presence on Spotify. It's not even unavailable, it's just missing entirely by the looks of it. I found the full album on YouTube, or at least most of the album I think? The disk it was recorded from had bad popping noises throughout and it ended abruptly, though the video seemed to be about the length of the album. Gonna be weird having a permanent missing song from my curated list, but I'm sure there will be more. This made for a good background album I suppose. Didn't particularly enjoy any of it, but it wasn't bad as such, just not for me. It's certainly got a dramatic and theatrical aspect to it. Who is this for? In fact, I'm fascinated about why it's on the list; I'd be interested in reading the entry this has in the 1001 albums book. That's not from a place of distaste, I'm honestly curious about what landed it in the 1001. There's not much information about it on Wikipedia. I can't shake the feeling that I've heard Lied Von Der Belebenden Wirkung Des Geldes somewhere. Absolutely no clue where though... Favourite: Lied Von Der Belebenden Wirkung Des Geldes Favourite:
This is uh... pretty offbeat. Has the feel of show tunes but it's surely also a bit too inaccessible for that. Maybe some kind of independent theatre production that runs on off nights. But I... don't hate it? On paper I fucking hate it, but I kinda don't. It's a complete and utter wank, sniffs its own farts and tells itself it's very intellectually stimulating. 2/5.
Interesting album, a commentary of war and political standings. Almost felt like a slam poetry session, with more production value. While a good art piece, I wouldn’t necessarily call it good music, or something I’d enjoy listening to often
From what I could dig out on YouTube, this is very Brecht/Weill, sounds like Lotte Leyna. I'm not much of a fan of this style, and my kids *DESPISE* it! Guaranteed to drive them to the edge of sanity. The English lyrics are quite clunky and remind me of polemic from a Socialist Worker article. As the great Molly Ivins said about Pat Buchanan's speech at the 1992 Republican convention, "probably sounded better in the original German"
This was soooo weird and not in a good way honestly. The voice sounded like Meryl Streep down two octaves and doing push ups. Just a weird album altogether.
This sucks, is in German, and is not on Spotify.
Wish the whole thing was available somewhere but loved what I could find
Quite extraordinary songs by Hanns Eisler who collaborated with Brecht but is less well known than Brecht’s other collaborator Weill. Socialist, sardonic, witty and poignant, the songs retain their power to shock and stir. And Dagmar Krause is a stunning interpreter of the songs - that gravel voice, born to perform in the Weimar Republic cabaret but gifted to the modern age. The whole album needs to find its way to streaming services - it deserves a wider audience.
Randomly picked this up on vinyl as it intrigued me. Very eclectic.
i found this a fascinating listen. it's clearly something i would have not ever listened to, or even found out about. i could barely even find a copy of this album to listen to, but thanks to youtube, i was able to find it. i found myself really intrigued by the music. obviously a little challenging but reminds me a lot of other similarly european torch-music-esque stuff, like edith piaf. what i found most fascinating was taking the time to read about the composer of all the songs, hanns eisler, who was exiled from nazi germany to come to the united states, where he was once again facing persecution from HUAC. this music really put this into context for me. seems like a very fascinating person and wrote very interesting music. will i go out of my way to listen to this one again? probably not. am i happy to have listened to something that exposed me to something i ordinarily would not have with an interesting backstory? absolutely
This was a bit of a sharp - ahem - left turn for a Monday morning. I found it hard going in places, but it was interesting to listen to songs where the lyric is the key. The voice does what it needs to do, and that is not always easy. This feels like no-frills music that nobody makes any more. I am not sure I would play this often, but more like this, please.
The friction in resorting to Youtube to listen to Tank Battles: the Songs of Hanns Eisler is not as delicious as hoped, and accidentally switching halfway between English and German versions banjaxed me, but this record has impressed me: it’s an icy, slightly boozy flash of 20th century modernism that forces home the brutal clatter, aggressiveness and sardonicism of many of the movements and manifestos, a fit to the century's dizzying rush of social change, technological progress and broadcast horror. Appropriate testament to Eisler, who appears to have had a heartbreaking life of exile piled on betrayal piled on exile. I see that Dagmar Krause's voice is divisive - are the opinions split between "she's pretty great" to "she's a genius"? Her enunciations punch, tickle, keen and beguile, even when I have no idea what she's singing about. This is music as cinema - it demands attention, so I may never return to it - this busy life we have! But I am grateful for being brought to this record. Time for a coffee Brecht.
As basically everyone has written, it’s a pain to have to listen on YouTube, but you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do. I had zero expectations but I ended up kind of loving this!? If nothing else, this is so historically significant with the Eisler / Brecht combo and includes some great compositions and politically interesting lyrics. With that said, I do have a degree in German literature, so I may have a slightly higher tolerance for this, but give it a chance! Also, Bankenlied is an absolute BANGER.
Very Berlin 1920. I can't figure out if I want to listen with a score, so I can really follow what is happening, or if I should just listen for the shape of the line. I also don't really know enough about Germany to fully understand the deeper meaning.
This was a bit of a journey to search out for it, and was able to find it on YouTube. But this was a rewarding listen. Very weird and out there music at a time brimming with political turmoil and change in Germany. I really enjoyed this, and if it was easier to find these, I'd probably listen to the German version as well.
Sing-songy, almost like it's a musical. Kinda fun to listen to for a random Thursday. 3.5
An 80s jazz/cabaret send-up of some poems from Germany during the world wars. I tried to read around and find some more context to make sure I wasn't given tepid approval to some sympathizers, and I couldn't ever find the confirmation I was looking for. It seems like a lot of ruminations on how much war sucks, which yes, but at the end of the day the vocals didn't do much for me at all. Best track: I couldn't really keep up with the tracks since the version I found was all in a single low-quality Youtube video, but there was one about 2/3 of the way through that had some tremendous horn work. That one
This is certainly a different one! Definitely interesting—caught my ear and kept surprising me. That’s one of the great things about this project of course: it keeps presenting me with so much music that I would never otherwise hear. Bravo, 1001 Albums!
uhhhh vewy dwamatic
I'd only encountered Brecht, and only in translation, for context. Krause's vocal performance is from there plenty interesting and plenty clipped. An hour is long enough to start considering whether and how translation serves this work and what to do with the blunt conceits. A few better handholds stretch out, the music's nice, the record does arc, the German buttresses.
No se encuentra el disco en Spotify
Un album de guerre. C'est très emotif, il y a une certaine ambiance a cet album que j'ai bien aimé. La langue de la chanteuse et sa voix se prête bien à cet album. C'est bon mais la réécoute est inexistante. 3.10
Interesting. This is different enough that it's hard to judge. It's good enough for 3 stars with just one listen. Some music requires a little effort to fully appreciate, and this might be such a case. But I don't enjoy it enough to put in the work (which might just lead me to the conclusion that, yes, this really is just 3 stars).
All I can say is this was a very unique listen, very much sounded like a musical soundtrack. Was done well but it wasn't really a relaxing listen, but it seemed really powerful and this album was so different to anything I've listened to in this project. I wasn't able to find all the songs on this album but found enough to be able to get the vibe of the album.
It was interesting to read about Hanns Eisler and his life. Musically, I'm not such a fan of the avant/cabaret style and Dagmar Kraus singing style is an acquired taste. One of the songs ("Balad of Bourgoise Welfare") ended with applause, so I went back to YouTube to watch the performance and it was very good: Kruase had an intense glare, the piano player was really into it as was the clarinet player, who looked about twelve. For that, and Hanns, I give her an extra point.
I wonder if I found the right right album to listen to? I don’t mean this and an insult but what I listened to doesn’t sound like something that would be on the 1001. I listened to the two files I found on YouTube since the playing time was close but they had a number of songs in French so they don’t seem to fit. In any event, I found it amusing to think about what the typical American would have said about the French songs around the time “Freedom Fries” were introduced to the American lexicon.
interesting sound, overall enjoyed the intensity.
Really liked it, bizarre, different but interesting
Kind of a derpy old world charm mixed with sharp messages. It's an appealing cocktail.
Weird but I managed to get through it.
A modern interpretation of songs written in post-WW1 Berlin. The arrangements may not be for everyone, but most of the tunes capture the feeling of hopelessness that pervaded Germany not just when these songs were written, but in the midst of the Cold War.
I see what is going on here, but there is just a little too much to actually feel fresh.
It was interesting, at least, but not something I'm ever really going to return to. It gave me just enough of a "hmm" for 3 stars.
An interesting art piece, if not exactly my kind of music. I’ve been learning German for a while so I appreciated the language practice, definitely kept me engaged when the instrumentals got much too show-tune. Even though this kind of music is well outside my wheelhouse I did find myself taking more interest than expected, not something I would throw on for easy listening but glad I had the chance to take it in.
This album got a special disclaimer on the list for its inaccessibility but I found it on youtube in its entirety. While it was interesting to hear a native german artist tackling the remnants of WW2 that still remained in the late 80s, I found this whole album painfully boring. Her voice is good but the sparse instrumentation and switching between english and german made it impossible for me to really fully engage with any of it.
Extremely unpleasant. 3/10
Just some woman singing in english then german.
It's the Anglo-German classic war music revival album, that I never knew I needed to hear. Because I didn't need to hear it.
This honestly seemed like a parody of something though it clearly was not. The cabaret style singing and broad accent, the old school up the proletariat lyrics of some of the material, the perfunctory instrumental accompaniment. Wierd selection for this list.
Kinda hard to review something I can’t hear. I’m gunna go out on a limb and say based on the summary, I wouldn’t have liked this.
It's very theatrical, and with some context and actors, I could probably really appreciate this. However, I don't have the imagination to 'listen' to this all and be impressed that's it's something I should be listening to on a frequent basis.
Cabaret songs should be listened to in your langauge. It doesn't make sense the other way. I have enough English and German cabaret songs for the rest of my life.
It's hard to fully review this album given that it's not available on any streaming service, save for a chunk of tracks that people were kind enough to upload on YouTube. What I did hear sounded like the soundtrack to a theater performance, it felt like I was only getting half of the story and needed something visual to add more context. That said, the music was fine, just a bit lacking in terms of artistic impact. Maybe in a different medium it would've been a better package. Who knows?
2.8 - Similar to "Doctor Atomic", an opera I equally disliked about Oppenheimer's race to build the bomb, this record fully explores the WW2 experience with the same sense of foreboding and dread. The songs are composed and performed proficiently, and Krause sings in a commanding alto. It all seems historically accurate and appropriate in tone. But, I hate the cabaret style, as well as the truly depressing subject matter.
Tank Battles: The Songs of Hanns Eisler is a solo album by German singer Dagmar Krause. The album contains 26 tracks composed by German composer Hanns Eisler and sung by Dagmar Krause in both English and German (different album versions). The original compositions stand the test of time by being just as impressive on this album when they first were produced early to mid 20th century. Krause's vocal work is stunning and she beautifully provided the lyrics to accompany the famous compositions. This was an interesting album to listen to. The avant-garde, jazzy album contains some impeccable music even if it's hard to understand at times with the German accent. Dagmar Krause added a dash of her own special sauce to Hanns Eisler's works, so it continues to live on in the modern music landscape.
I want to give this a one but since we share a surname I think Dagmar and I must be related. You have to stick by your family, even if they make a horrible, horrible mistake. Also, joking aside, there are parts of this that aren't that bad. Whenever she's actually singing in German and there's actually music playing behind her, I feel like there's some quality here. It's when she sings uncomfortably in English and/or the "music" turns into "arthouse circus" that I get sad.
Was not steaming on Spotify, but I listened to what I could find on YouTube. I did not really understand this and did not enjoy this. Perhaps if I listened to the original German version I would like it more?
Nice instrumental parts but don't dig the vocals or agenda
I'm just going to write this one off as a figment of my imagination. And I'm done tripping. For now.
the best I can say is I got through it
The CIA should use this to torture prisoners. It's like they put the sound of fingernails scratching down the chalkboard to music. I did not like it. Is it bad music? No, it is just for a very certain audience. Not me. 2/5
So weird it made me feel a bit ill
Interesting but not for me :)
Not available on Spotify so had to find it elsewhere. Initially I wasn't that impressed but by leaving it to play in the background it somewhat grew on me. Gave off an Avant Garde industrial vibe for mid 20th century cabaret. Probably wouldn't listen to the whole thing again but it will stick in the memory at least.
Just not something I'll ever listen to again hopefully.
Mmm yeah definitely not my thing. So overly theatrical, I didn't even bother listening to the whole thing. Sorry.
Would much rather have any of three other albums in place of this on the list: Henry Cow's "In Praise of Learning," Art Bears' "The World As It Is Today," or Slapp Happy's "Sort Of" - all of which feature Dagmar Krause on vocals. I mean, go ahead and listen to "Tank Battles," as it is your solemn duty on this 1001 journey - but if you want to hear something that you might actually enjoy, or at least find more interesting, listen to these other records (all available on Spotify to boot). And, while we're talking about German female vocalists, do yourself a favor and listen to Renate Knaup from Amon Duul II.
Not my cup of tea
Jeez this is a hard listen. A bit like Brecht. Enough said.
This is such an 80s endeavour. Interesting, but not entirely listenable. Feels like it might have influenced Bjork in places.
Well it's certainly interesting. Definitely out of my comfort zone. Her voice is really powerful. The instrumentation feels a bit empty and flat but works for accentuating her vocals.
Vraiment pas mon genre. Très long, très répétitif, toujours le même style qui fait très "musical" mais seulement avec des instrumentations classique. Beaucoup de chansons sont tellements peu étoffées qu'on dirait presqu'un démo qui a été abandoné. J'ai de la difficulté à voir l'intérêt de cet album. 3/10
Not for me.
A too large collection of protest songs, half in German. As long as I tuned out I could tolerate them, but on closer listen I didn't like them very much. Stand-out: The Ballad of the Sackslingers
Just completely baffling. Not sure exactly why it's on this list at all; it's not really all that groundbreaking or well performed. I can't speak a second language, let along sing one, but her strong German accent was so distracting that I had a hard time even understanding what she was singing. I really don't want to give it 1 star as it's not nearly as bad as some albums on this list (I'm 1,053 in so far...there's more than 1,001 FYI), but I've given much better albums 2 stars, so I have no choice. 1.5/5
Wtf is this?!
Tedious drone, just awful
Found a (likely incomplete) playlist on YouTube. Given what I heard, I don't think I need to hear the rest. I think I get what she was going for, but it's not my thing.
It sounds like it should be the soundtrack to an accordion-oriented play. It isn't particularly challenging sonically (single voice over an orchestral arrangement), it just isn't something that is particularly fun or enjoyable to listen to. Quite tiring.
This seems good on paper but just wasn’t for me. Gave up and moved on
I guess I could try translating the lyrics, but I dont think it would make it better 1
Gorgeous voice but not for me personally.
It's no secret that this album is fucking impossible to find anywhere. It's not even simply unavailable like other albums ("Ys" by Joanna Newsom or Neil Young's entire catalogue), there's literally no proof of this album's existence on any streaming service. How does that even happen? Sure as hell wouldn't happen if this were actually good. I sure listened to something. Found a weird Youtube playlist that was missing 14 of the 26 songs. Eh, I guess it was enough to form an opinion. Strange German circus music about war being bad. Truly a thinking man's album. There's some picks on this list that can only be explained by my theory that Robert Dimery consults a Magic 8-Ball. This is one of them. I can't even wrap my head around how this would be on anyone's "most essential albums of all time" list. 1/5 for shitty music and 1/5 for ruining my Spotify playlist where I put the best song from every album on this list. I cast the Curse of Ra upon thee, Dagmar Krause. 𓀀 𓀁 𓀂 𓀃 𓀄 𓀅 𓀆 𓀇 𓀈 𓀉
Shit was weird and not in a good way.
Mercifully, it wasn't long. Because I really didn't like this. Fake opera is what I would call it and I don't like real opera. I didn't need to hear this and I hope I never hear this again.
Yeah....Nah! Life's too short to listen to that.
Unavailable on Spotify Went to YouTube Couldn’t get past the first song
A sort of German folk opera about war, sung mostly in English. The tension between the English words and the Germanic music and vocal accent somehow grates and sounds unpleasant. This may have been a deliberate artistic decision to create an uncomfortable listening experience to reflect the horrors of the subject matter. However, it makes the record so unpleasant that it is difficult to imagine anyone ever listening to it. Rating: 1.5/5 Playlist track: The Song Of The Whitewash Date listened: 25/09/23
This is the worst thing I've ever heard. I would rather take 1001 fiery shits back to back than relive those 12 seconds of my life that I had this album playing through the speakers.
This was pretty much opera. Not my thing.
This is weird as fuck. Its not on anything, as in you can't stream it from apple music or Spotify, there's even a disclaimer saying so, I found I think all of it on YouTube. It's mostly in German but its like soilder marching tunes and then slightly off lounge jazz then some women deep throating the mice its all a bit much for 6am
Very odd. I feared an oom-pah band breaking out at any moment. It's unlistenable.
so weird and not my thing. liked the sax and other wide variety of instrument but that's about it. 1 star. Listened to "(reissue)" version on Youtube, split across 3 uploaded videos. ~1h 20m (extra 10 songs). I'm a glutton for punishment to extend this.
Not “didn’t listen,” couldn’t.
As musical I would listen for enjoyment...straight 1/5 and absolutely terrible. As a historic artifact that offers an interesting view into the mindset of a Soviet republic I found it fascinating.
spotify link says "album missing"
isn’t in spotify
Escutei algumas músicas no youtube, mas não foi possível entender a ideia do cabaret alemão.