For German language learners, Alligatoah may well be an appealing musician. It’s difficult to label the solo artist more specifically with a single title. He raps and he sings. He’s hip hop and he’s indie. He’s very poppy. Fans of Kraftklub might want to take notice and give Alligatoah a listen. And this month, we’ll all give him a chance. Let’s practice German with the music of Alligatoah and get to know this unique artist better!
About Lukas Strobel
Alligatoah was born on September 28, 1989, as Lukas Strobel in Lower Saxony in the north of Germany. As a student, Strobel pursued an interest in filmmaking. But by his late teens, Strobel had created Alligatoah. He had imagined the name for himself “for no special reason.” He later created two additional alter egos: Kaliba 69 and DJ Deagle.
Strobel has recalled how his childhood was largely dominated by growing up in the village of Neuenwalde, near the seaport city of Bremerhaven. The village was largely rural, offering Strobel a childhood around farms and plenty to explore outdoors. But it was his first computer and, though it, access to the internet that opened his eyes to another world and other opportunities.
The Music of Alligatoah
Alligatoah the musician comes across as larger than life. His delivery, regardless of whether he is singing or rapping, is often insistent. He simply can not get the words out of his head fast enough. The result is often cartoony and like a caricature. As a balance to his dramatics, his instrumentation can often take a minimalist direction. Don’t misunderstand me: the music is dynamic and full of swelling melodies. But the instrumentation is secondary to Strobel’s vocal delivery.
If nothing else, his sound is fairly consistent from album to album and mixtape to mixtape. In 2006, Alligatoah released his debut studio album ATTNTAAT as well as his first mixtape, Schlaftabletten, Rotwein Teil I. Three further mixtapes followed, Schlaftabletten, Rotwein Teil II, III, and IV. Since then he’s released four studio albums: 2008’s In Gottes Namen, 2013’s Triebwerke, 2015’s Musik ist keine Lösung, and 2018’s Schlaftabletten, Rotwein V.
Alligatoah is clearly most comfortable when performing, in the truest sense of the word. Just check out his music videos. The videos are often major productions with Alligatoah offering an over the top theatrical performance that’s humorous. A modern take on the school of Primus, perhaps? No one can accuse Alligatoah of not having something to say.
Looking for another Ohrwurm to help you learn German? Check out previously featured musicians and bands!
Photo is by Norman Z, courtesy Another Dimension. This post contains affiliate links.