Germany’s Bohren & der Club of Gore are a black metal fan’s lounge jazz act. Or, for those driven by the more extreme side of noir-ish ambient material, these cats lay it out with musical instruments (and a Mellotron), painfully slow and muted tempos, and a relentlessly gloomy atmosphere worthy of the first Black Sabbath album. – All Music Guide
Although their collective past suggests more of a metal/hardcore direction, musically Germany’s B&DCoG have nothing to do with any of those genres (although it might be argued that their music is no less intense than that of any rock band). Band members describe their sound as “doom ridden jazz music”, something that would fit perfectly alongside music by Angelo Badalamenti and Barry Adamson on a soundtrack to a movie by David Lynch.
The band was formed in the early 90s (initially known only as Bohren) and inspired by their love of extreme metal, they eventually expanded their name to add the word Gore to it (in a reference to a dutch instrumental rock band of that name). As Bohren, the band produced “Luder, Samba And Tavermen” demo tape in 1993, but their first release under their current name was a self-titled 7″ EP which came out in 1994 on Burt Reynolds Mustache Records. A proper full-length called “Gore Motel” came out the same year and it was a somewhat different affair from their later albums, as the record was focused on ambience rather than jazz-noir which the band become associated with in later years.
Their 1995 full-length “Midnight Radio” came out on Epistrophy label and the sound of the record was described by Aquarius Recordings website as “Heavy, heavy bass notes, glacially deployed, crushingly beautiful slow-motion guitar and dark, liquid pools of piano, with a narcotized drummer who must be passing in and out of consciousness to occasionally brush his snare and hi-hat”.
The band took a 5-year break (and during that time their guitarist Reiner Henseleit left the band and saxophonist Christoph Closer joined) and produced 2000 “Sunset Mission”. All Music Guide website pointed out that the music on the record is reminiscent of work of soundtrack composers Trevor Jones and Angelo Badalamenti and the music itself is “slow, dark, and lush jazz, perfect for a booth at the back of a narcoleptic lounge, with a cigarette slowly burning down past the filter, watching secret lies being passed between one-night lovers.”
The following years saw the band releasing records on a prolific schedule, as 2002 “Black Earth”, 2005 “Geisterfaust” and 2008 “Dolores” came out on Wonder/Ipecac and Pias Recordings, respectively (not to mention the reissues of their old albums).
In their review of “Black Earth” album All Music Guide pointed out that “The song titles say it all: “Midnight Black Earth,” “Crimson Ways,” “Maximum Black,” “Vigilante Crusade,” “Grave Wisdom,” “The Art of Coffins”, but the music on the album is ” infectiously delicious, darkly sensual, and the only tonic for a lonely brooding night.”
Their current (as of 2009) album “Dolores” came out on PIAS Recordings label in 2008 and was described by Music Remedy website as “a clear step towards pop” by the bands standards. MR pointed out that “there is “dolor” (pain) in “Dolores”, but Dolores also stands for the hot-blooded, sharp-tongued bar mistresses in B-Westerns south of the border.” and the cover of the album echoes Edvard Munch’s “The Scream”, as well as anatomical copperplate engravings and “The Silence of the Lambs”.”
Christopher Closer (Hallo Burste, Wechsel Garland Trio)
Morten Gass (7 Inch Boots)
Reiner Henseleit (Chronical Diarrhoea)
Thorsten Benning (Chronical Diarrhoea)
Untitled EP 7″ (Burt Reynold Mustache, 1994)
Gore Motel CD / 2xLP (Epistrophy, 1994 / 2005)
Midnight Radio 2XCD (Epistrophy, 1995)
Schwarzer Sabbat Fur Dean Martin 7″ (Epistrophy, 1995)
Sunset Mission CD (Wonder, 2000 / 2004 )
Black Earth CD / 2xLP (Wonder, 2002 / 2008 / Ipecac, 2004)
Geisterfaust CD (Wonder, 2005)
Dolores CD / 2xLP (PIAS Germany, 2008 / PIAS Recordings, 2008)
“Luder, Samba & Tavermen” on Plot (X-Mist, 1994)
“Sade Beat” on Kraut 2000 – In Search Of A New Planet (Polymedia Marketing Group, 1997)
“Prowler” on TT 33 (Text Und Ton Magazine, 200o)
“Midnight Walker” on Sensual Bedtime 2 (Luxury Lounge + Zoomshot Media Entertainment, 2001)
“Painless Steel” on Subsonic Basscapes 1 (Area Code 221, 2001)
“Crimson Ways” on Spex CD #24 (Spex Magazine, 2002)
“Constant Fear” on A Snapshot From The 2004 Domino Ten-Day (Wire Magazine, 2004)
“Prowler” on In Bed With Nova, Premiere Nuit (Nova, 2005)
“Unkerich” on CD Side 49 (D-Side Magazine, 2008)
“Maximum Black” on The Big Freeze Vol.2 (Platipus, 2008)
“Unkerich” on Untitled (Spex Magazine, 2008)
Midnight Black Earth