With a flashy stage show and intentionally provoking lyrics, Rammstein is famous the world over with their hard rock and metal music. The leather-wearing, fire-spitting performances are nearly as notable as their lyrics, which are often dark and violent. Despite that, Rammstein thrill fans with hard-hitting guitar riffs and equally hard-hitting rhythms. So this month, let’s learn German with the heavy metal music of Rammstein!
Get to Know the Band
Rammstein is Christoph Schneider on drums, Richard Z. Kruspe and Paul Landers on guitars, singer Till Lindemann (also known for his side project Lindemann), Oliver Riedel on bass, and Flake Lorenz on keyboards. The band’s lineup is unchanged since its founding in 1994 in Berlin, Germany. It was then, in ’94, that the group’s demo won an amateur bands contest. (Technically, Lorenz was not yet part of the group but did eventually join.) The band soon after signed a record deal with Motor Music. The rest, as they say, is history.
The Music of Rammstein
The demo that won Rammstein the amateur band contest included an early version of the song “Herzeleid.” The track would go on to be the title track of their debut full-length in 1995.
Herzeleid was the start of a long career that is still continuing. The album reached number six in the German charts and included tracks like “Du riechst so gut.” While a platinum-selling debut breaking into the top ten isn’t bad by any stretch, it was only the beginning for the band.
Rammstein followed up their debut up in 1997 with Sehnsucht. The album includes perhaps the band’s best known track (at least internationally), “Du hast.” In addition to its repetivie, captivating rhythm, the track is a bit of play on words with “du hast” (“you have”) being indistinguishable at times from “du hasst” (“you hate”). The album went to the top of the charts in Germany and Austria. And so has every Rammstein album since: 2001’s Mutter, 2004’s Reise, Reise, 2005’s Rosenrot, 2009’s Liebe ist für alle da, and 2019’s untitled release.
Three live albums have also topped the charts. The band’s singles have performed well over the years. Who can forget the social commentary of “Amerika” or “Keine Lust,” whose music video features the band in fat suits? But it wasn’t until “Pussy,” the first single off Liebe ist für alle da, that the band hit number one on the singles charts. No doubt, the track’s controversial and rather graphic music video helped to generate hype.
In 2019, after a decade since their last studio album, Rammstein returned with an untitled new album. The album’s first single, “Deutschland,” earned the band their second number-one single in their home country. And the band returned in typical form, turning their critical eye to the latest conflicts and problems of the day. Rammstein has never been bashful.
If you’re not already familiar with one of Germany’s most famous bands, now is the time to do so! Lindemann’s specific, clear delivery is ideal for learning German while the catchy metal will get you headbanging along. Get ready to roll your R’s and learn German with the music of Rammstein!
Looking for another Ohrwurm to help you learn German? Check out previously featured musicians and bands!
Photo by Jes Larsen, courtesy Universal Music Germany. This post contains affiliate links.