Beyond the 2005 sleeper that was Rosenrot, Rammstein returned to prominence with 2009’s single-driven masterwork, Liebe Ist FÃ¼r Alle Da. By this point, the industrial metal band notorious for elaborate live pyrotechnics had not performed in the United States for over a decade, which translated, unsurprisingly, to selling out a winter gig at Madison Square Garden in only a couple of hours. Now, 16 years onward, Rammstein has opted to compile a “best of” album, including a two-disc deluxe edition containing 17 star-studded remixes.
Longtime fans of Rammstein who aren’t audiophiles will likely pass on by the first disc. If you are the kind of person solely in it for singles, happened to see a live show, or have a friend that absolutely must hear “Mein Teil” right away because he only knows “Du Hast” from Guitar Hero 5, this anachronistic collection without B-sides is an ideal stocking/clog stuffer that weighs quite heavily on the days of 2001’s Mutter.
It all sounds fairly fantastic. “Links 2-3-4” booms with militaristic integrity and volume, “Mein Herz Brennt” brings back memories, and let’s not even get started on the NSFW hilarity of “Pussy”. The big surprise, however, is readily focused on the remixes, and deservedly so. (There’s also a new track called “Mein Land”, but you can find that anywhere.)
Practically every song here relies on the artists gently tweaking songs to achieve a deeper mood, ignite a broader audience. Faith No More turns early work “Du Reichst So Gut ’98” from a techno-rock dance mosh into some short, foreign anthem from a propagandist film reel. Fellow genre masthead Laibach livens up the intimate “Ohne Dich” with additional drum treatments and a low-level synth. English electronic group Pet Shop Boys stick to their roots on re-envisioning the cannibalism-inspired “Mein Teil” for a discotheque. Prog metal band Meshuggah convert “Benzin” into something darker, even heavier than Rammstein could have ever imagined.
Everything resonates crystal clear, and I suggest you pick it up for the holiday season. Surely, someone can appreciate its beauty.
Essential Tracks: “Mein Land”, “Rosenrot [Northern Lite Remix]”, “Benzin [Meshuggah Remix]”, and “Mutter [Sono Remix]”