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Tabula Rasa
Einsturzende Neubauten
Tabula Rasa
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Alternative Rock, Special Interest, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (8) - Disc #1

Despite its title--Latin for "clean slate" but, more likely, a play off the concept of beginning again--Einstürzende Neubauten's seventh full-length is a culmination of everything that has come before for this extraordinar...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Einsturzende Neubauten
Title: Tabula Rasa
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Mute U.S.
Original Release Date: 2/16/1993
Release Date: 2/16/1993
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Alternative Rock, Special Interest, Pop, Rock
Styles: Ambient, Goth & Industrial, Experimental Music, Progressive, Progressive Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 724596145821, 4005902150019, 4005902150026, 4005902150040

Despite its title--Latin for "clean slate" but, more likely, a play off the concept of beginning again--Einstürzende Neubauten's seventh full-length is a culmination of everything that has come before for this extraordinary band. Sure, they were known for making hellish noise in their early days, employing rocks, circular saws, and drills in their performances, but they were musicians, too, crafting elegant songs by the late 1980s that still possess an affecting power. Tabula Rasa, released in 1993, contains all these elements and ups the ante considerably. For one thing, it's a much more varied listen than its predecessor, the grimly powerful Haus der Lüge. The exuberantly melodic ("Zebulon") bumps up against the darkly experimental ("12305[te Nacht]") and the outright rockin' ("Die Interimsliebenden"). But the most startling track must be the ethereal "Blume," a sexually charged lullaby that's fraught with the thick layers of symbolism we've come to expect from lyricist Blixa Bargeld. Sung--in English!--by Anita Lane, whose voice registers somewhere near the Cranes' Alison Shaw, it sounds like nothing we've ever heard before from Neubauten. The disc closes with the 15-minute "Headcleaner," a mesmerizing, bombastic, symphonic cacophony that interpolates the Beatles' "All You Need Is Love." It all ends quietly, but your ears may never be the same again. --Steve Landau

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CD Reviews

DAC Crowell | 08/29/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Yep. That's the sound you're buying this CD for. Nothing as bracing as having Blixa Bargeld screeching this at you over something that sounds like the Berlin Philharmonic being savaged by rabid tigers in a cement pit. The problem, though, is that while that track fits the wonderfully ear-wrenching legacy of Einstuggy, as do a couple of others, there's also a couple of _songs_ on here. I mean...pop songs. Poppy. Not what you'd expect from EN. And this, to me, is a little annoying, as _I_ buy Einsturzende Neubauten discs for their ability to peel paint off of walls and incinerate your neighbors. And I don't think EN was totally into that direction either, as I saw the tour for this release, and the poppy material never made it to the stage. But by ghod, "Headcleaner" alone makes up for this. The group hasn't been this abrasive or harrowing since perhaps "Zeichnungen des Patienten O.T." Just keep in mind that there are tracks you will likely want to skip in the course of getting to this climactic aural cataclysm. Break out that pneumatic drill, boys!!!"
Noise made pleasure
D. M. MATALLIN | Valencia, Spain | 06/23/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Tabula Rasa was the first album I ever had from this band. It is simply amazing: obviously it is not that much if you have listened to the rest of the cds, but I think that every Neubauten album is unique in their hyper-personal style. The process of controlling the noise and agressiveness continues here, but is that a bad thing? I suppose it depends on opinions. For me, Tabula Rasa is not the best Neubauten album, but it's closer to it: in fact, I think that the best way to taste what Einstürzende Neubauten implies in the history of music is to follow their evolution throughout all their cds, from the spontaneous agressiveness of 'Collapse' to the delightful game with silence and noise of 'Silence is Sexy', their last album up to date. Tabula Rasa begins with one of the best Neubauten songs, 'Die Interimsliebenden', a long mid-tempo song which could serve (if that's possibel) to sum up the music of this band: minimalistic rhythms, noise in battle with melody, and on top of that a voice full of nuances. 'Zebulon' introduces at first a very skeletical song, with a voice that recites more than sings, just to prepare us for the explosion of noise at the end of it. 'Blume' is sung by a female voice, very sweet and melifluous, introduced at the beginning of each stanza by bargeld's recitation of different species of flowers. A very beautiful song. The comes '12305te nacht', a more typical Neubauten song, which has really no bad connotations, since it's one of the best of them all. Noisy, similar to the first one but shorter and less megalomaniac. 'Sie' is a very disturbing song, combining Bargeld's voice with a talking voice. 'Wüste' lacks beat but is mysterious enough not to bore us. And finally 'Headcleaner' is the typical extra-long neubauten song full of varied passages to make us enjoy every single minute of it: it is by far the most agressive song in the album, which I imagine the fans of the old works will prefer. Tabula Rasa is a new masterful album by a band which, i think, deserves at last to stop being undervalued. (at least in my country, where they are completely ignored. The same as Skinny Puppy,...)"
Statement stark
D. M. MATALLIN | 03/22/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is a strong album - very strong - if not stark. Tunes like
12305te Nacht - this is my 12305th Night - that's how long Blixa's been alive - where his life was that night. A song frozen in time - a little piece. (pun intended)
Die Interimslieben, the transitory-ness of time - in one blink of an eye - all of these things happen - you think time is one thing - when really it is not at all - it is so fast - or it is just one thing - or is it slow?
Me likey these two songs best right now. The whole album is really quite good - it's more than that really - so much and alot more. Probably one could listen to this album in cycles - your favorites will perhaps cycle has you cycle your listening. Tabula Rasa is such a big album - there is so much packed into this little CD. I like to listen to Interimslieben, Sie, 12305te Nacht. Then I will listen to Blume, Zebulon, Headcleaner. Then Sie, Wueste, Headcleaner, Sie. You think of the possibilities. Of course you could listen to the whole album right through a lot of times. It would all be different which ever way you will listen to it. If you want to buy this album you ought to. Go on, go get it.N"