01. Mea Culpa
02. Mein Engel
03. Flucht ins Glück
04. Eisherz
05. Traumlos
06. Dein Licht
07. Die Eine
08. Vollmond
09. Feuer
10. Mein Leben
11. Der Garten (feat. Aylin Aslim)
12. Komm!
13. Finsternis
14. Wann 



Holly -Vocals

Holly D. - Acoustic guitar

Oli - E guitar

M. Stolz - Violin

Benni Cellini- Cello

Michael Ende -Bass

Specki T.D. - Drums

Guest musicians:

Along with Aylin Aslim, Jesus On Extasy pianist Leandra is another guest musician playing 
piano parts on "Dein Licht".


LETZTE  INSTANZ: "Schuldig"   letzte instanz   

A large proportion of the album was produced  at  Principal Studios (H-Blockx, Die Toten 
Hosen, In Extremo). 

review  by dalia "gryphon_spirit" di giacomo ___          


The copying and/or reproduction for any purpose whatsoever of the content of the present review, in whole or in part,  is strictly forbidden without giving credits.


Some fire and water in us.


Zeige mir die alten wege
schließ die augen zu
bin in deine hand gegeben
führe mich
vorbei an alten cherubim
zu dem einen apfelbaum
dort ziehen wir unsre kleider aus
und du legst dich in meinen arm

orda kalsaydık keşke
hayatlarımız nerde
bakınca gözlerine
ben ordayim işte
wo sind wir solang geblieben
wo führt uns der weg noch hin
die hoffnung bleibt in deinen augen
wir werden unseren garten wiedersehen



Remarkable in Letzte Instanz is the everlasting, touching gothic feeling and the accurate soundscape (and indeed we deal with a septet-band: three Bavarians, three Saxons and a Berlin-born Istanbul resident). The sensible lyrics, almost exclusively in German, the excellent sound of violin and cello, the work of often acoustic -oriented guitars surrounded by a wider instrumentation and Holly's  agreeable vocals drive us in a kind of new romanticism, placed somewhere near Schandmaul, but also in the wake of Unheilig and Subway To Sally, with far influences that reach even Oomph!  Although the new album "Schuldig" (Guilty) is definitively more Rock oriented, less aggressive if compared with the previous works, and sometimes a bit too easy- going and cheesy, as in Flucht ins Glück and Finsternis, represents again part of  the "German romantic hardness", and is full of  meaningful details, along with much care in the production. 



A quite mysterious intro (Mea Culpa) and 13 full tracks make this album a nice one to create atmosphere, to think of various aspects of life (from religion till every day problems, identity and also death, i think), to be a companion in depressive moments  which can reach out and offer a light of solace. Strength and a certain uptempo are also contemplated, as in Eisenherz (Iron heart), a true rock'n rolling earworm, anyway constantly veiled by the typical German romanticism and sadness that lets somehow remind of old Oomph!. But even better is Vollmond with a synthetic intro and hard proceeding with intriguing guitars, propelling drums, and mentions of riffs that set the song near to gothic metal. Vollmond is soaked with  symbolic dualism between night  and day. And actually symbolism and dualism are a trademark of "Schuldig". 

In Mein Engel another dualism is presented, the one of a personality that gets opposite characteristics:

Warst ein Engel, bist ein Engel, wechselst die Fronten nur

du warst ein Engel, bist ein Engel...

Unfortunately, as music, in spite of modern touch and some near-metal instrumentation and pressing  pace, Mein Engel sounds a bit empty, weak and boring, so it's not exactly the right opener. But almost the whole  rest of the album is worth of much attention.

Interesting to be noticed is the symbolic presence of fire in the song called Feuer (Fire), indeed, which is a concept that, lyrically puts Letzte Instanz even near to Rammstein. Musically, Feuer goes to raw Rock guitars till experimental alternative with influences from Industrial. Particular is its outro in faster anguishing pace. 


As mentioned before, Finsternis (Darkness) is totally catchy and easy hymnic, nonetheless fine, consequently a big earworm in which lyrics and music perfectly match in pace, as usually in Letzte Instanz. 


Beautiful is  Dein Licht (Your Light) with its mourning piano and funereal lyrics. The song i like the most after Traumlos (Dreamless)

Der Garten (The Garden) is enriched by a very melodious and multilayered intense harmonic music, and features the female vocals of the Turkish  singer Aylin Aislim who sings both in German and Turkish and duets too with the male voice. Among  very nostalgic old paths, cherubs and apple trees, this song lets us dream of a lost  uncorrupted time of  Eden and freedom, which can be "seen" as "personal" love song as well as  hymn for a mankind, free from coercive concepts.  


Very melodic, sad, immediately  hitting, yet at the same time very resolute is Mein Leben (My Life) where the concept of living own life in a very own place is the leading motif. 


Komm! (Come!) is ,in my opinion, that  useless danceable, just a bit  gloomy and rhythmic gothic rock; anyway this song too shows  far reminiscences to Rammstein in some parts of the composition. 


All in all, "Schuldig" is much more than nice Gothic-Folk Rock, because it conveys, in a subtle way, very deep concepts and feelings, bound to a varied musicality that anyway belongs "in toto" to the German Romantic cauldron.  




And now, my fav song: for me, the best song in "Schuldig", the song with THE great temperament, dark look and  balladesque feeling is Traumlos (Dreamless). Wonderful memorable melody, touching lyrics, lead-  violin embedded in an almost light symphonic carpet so that the song gets a  gothic, classic, yet urban aura. A sepulchral beauty.

Warst mir so nah, wie die sonne dem morgen
so wunderbar, doch hab ich dich durch mich verloren
als ich dich sah, war ich es, der in seiner angst ertrank





Wann (When) is also very melodic, a song where the acoustic guitar can give a noticeable sign in the middle of other instrumentation. Its outro with placid waves on the shore and the final is modern dualism disillusion/loneliness and hope/cooperation. And here another symbolism: Water.

Wir können das Meer nicht besiegen,
nicht gegen die Wellen bestehen,
doch wir können versuchen,
nicht unterzugehen...


Yes, we cannot defeat the sea, but we can try to remain to keep afloat, with some fire and water in us.



Rating: 8,3/10 



dalia di giacomo         23.03.2009

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