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Einsturzende Neubauten
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  • Einstrzende Neubauten's first album, as one might imagine, is their most primitive and radical effort, the purest expression of their original aesthetic. This makes the album both historically significant and conceptually intriguing, of course, but what's most interesting about this album is that it still sounds surprising decades after its release. Often, albums that are considered extreme art statements upon their debut sound almost quaint a few years later, but while Kollaps perhaps sounds less extreme to ears that heard industrial music turned into disco pabulum by the likes of Nine Inch Nails than it did before, songs like the eight-minute title track and the rumbling live closer, "Negativ Nein," are still a fascinating blend of rhythm and random bashing, tonality and atonality, with anguished vocals by Blixa Bargeld that often seem to have little connection with anything else in the piece. The brief tracks, like the 80-second "Sehnsucht," are even more extreme explorations of pure noise. Starting as early as the next album, Einstrzende Neubauten would begin slowly introducing more mainstream musical concepts into their aesthetic, making Kollaps as undiluted a listening experience as there is in the entire catalog. ~ Stewart Mason
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