This semester I had to take German for my music theory major, and Germany has always been a country I’ve known to have good music, but I hadn’t taken the time to hunt any down. But taking German finally pushed me into full drive, and I’m glad it did. One of many, many amazing artists I found was Peter Fox. He is a member of the German reggae/dancehall band Seeed, but his solo album is what caught me. Fox started working on his solo project “Stadtaffe” in 2007, and the album was released in Germany in September 2008. Stadtaffe was co-produced with Monk and DJ Illvibe, and peaked #1 on the charts in Germany and Austria.
The flow of his lyrics are catchy and the beats are great, but one thing I really liked about the album was its use of string orchestra, and in fact the Deutsches Filmorchester Babelsberg from Postdam is featured on much of the album. The opening track, and one of my personal favourites, Alles Neu is driven all the way through by an ostinato by the string orchestra, and they are very present in the second track, Schwarz zu Blau. The video for Alles Neu is fun, featuring a symphony of monkey men, and features the Cold Steel Drumline. It’s pretty epic:
Several of the songs, like Schwarz zu Blau, are about the city of Berlin, it’s seedy underground and political problems, and the hard style is beautifully juxtapose with the down-tempo and lyrical track, Ich Steine, du Steine – a sad song about a relationship that is no good for either party but the man realizes he can’t live without her. This track also has gorgeous, lyrical string accompaniment. The album is also filled with sex, shameless boasting and a general hardcore bad-ass attitude – what more fun could you ask for? A DVD of his tour for the album, Live in Berlin, was released in December 2009 which I can’t wait to get. Check out more Peter Fox!