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Von Spatzen und Tauben, Dächern und Händen

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Album Review

When Kettcar released their debut album Du und Wieviel Von Deinen Freunden on their own label Grand Hotel in 2002, the album wasn't an immediate success — but it steadily became one, and as a result, the band received so much attention that the release of their follow-up album in 2005 was announced on TV's Tagesthemen (a serious news program!) as an "important release." So, expectations were high for Von Spatzen und Tauben, Dächern und Händen (the title is a play on a German proverb), and Kettcar faced them by following the sound of their first album with few alterations. This time around, there are a few more acoustic-based songs, a few more slow songs, but altogether, the album continues in the same vein as before. Which means that, if you liked Kettcar the first time around, you won't be disappointed, and if you didn't get their appeal before, the sophomore effort is unlikely to convert you. To be sure, Kettcar's music is mainstream indie rock/pop, melodic in its core, with strummed guitars and introspective lyrics. After a while, the sameness of the band's sound becomes tedious, since there are few surprises, and everything feels precisely controlled — still, the band manages to instill its sound with warmth and an overall feeling of sweet melancholy. The album's best songs can be found in its first half — the first single, "48 Stunden" ("48 hours"), a quiet little song about a relationship which ends because she accepts a job offer in a different city, is as strong as "Die Ausfahrt Zum Haus Deiner Eltern" ("The Exit to Your Parent's House"), which captures a feeling of uncertainty and indecision. Most of the songs are little short stories, and the lyrics are the band's strong suit, even though on some occasions, the pathos overwhelms the good intentions a bit. Von Spatzen und Tauben, Dächern und Händen may not be as important a release as some might lead you to be believe, but it certainly stands as an intelligent, immediately listenable effort by a band that just needs to loosen their sound a little bit to become truly remarkable.


Formed: 2001 in Hamburg, Germany

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Yet another moody, Brit-pop-influenced indie rock outfit to emerge from Hamburg, Germany, Kettcar formed in 2001 with former Rantanplan members Marcus Wiebusch and Reimar Bustorff. Driven by a desire to get away from the raucous punk and ska music that dominated their earlier careers, the two musicians joined up with Erik Langer, Frank Tirado-Rosales, and Lars Wiebusch (Marcus' brother) and recorded an album's worth of material. Kettcar were unable to find a label, however, so they teamed up with...
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Von Spatzen und Tauben, Dächern und Händen, Kettcar
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