Aug 022006
 
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Although this is already the third interview with the well known German Endzeit act :Wumpscut: AKA Rudy Ratzinger, we do respect his work through all the years. Now back out of the cold Bavarian beer gardens, Mr. Ratzinger has concentrated a lot to bring out a new full length called “Cannibal Anthems” which is a surprising one. It is reminiscent of his successful hitters like “Bunkertor 7” or “Embryodead, that stuff that made him that famous. So here is a new interview directly transmitted out of theWump-HQ…

Chain D.L.K.: Another year with a new album named “Cannibal Anthem” released in springtime – I think this has become a routine…
:Wumpscut:: …A POSITIVE one – yes.

Chain D.L.K.: Thanks to the long years, you are able to stay on top in sales in the Electro/Industrial scene, but does the life as a musician lately bore you somehow?
:Wumpscut:: Not at all, this seems to be a matter of talent. Although, I don’t like this term.

Chain D.L.K.: Is there anything which penetrates your nerves about being a full-time musician such that you sometimes wish you would still have a normal day job?
:Wumpscut:: You mean about creating music? No, not at all. FUN anytime I sit down.

Chain D.L.K.: “How does Rudy come to this cannibalism theme?” I’m sure almost all current interviews have this question on board. So please tell it once again, now for us at the Chain D.L.K….
:Wumpscut:: This time, it is kind of a concept album: a girl that is NOT part of a cannibal society falls in love with the protagonist, and after all, she gets eaten without permission – and HE gets sentenced to death for his deed. A PERFECT piece for :W:…

Chain D.L.K.: Has this theme any relationship to the famous German cannibal of Rotenburg?
:Wumpscut:: No.

Chain D.L.K.: How do you personally review the happenings around this up-to-date event?
:Wumpscut:: I refuse his attempts to exploit his affair – apart from direct relations, of course.

Chain D.L.K.: Also surprising is the fact that almost all tracks feature again the German language, comparable somehow with “Evil Young Flesh/Boeses Junges Fleisch”. Why the decision to do all tracks in German?
:Wumpscut:: A close fan of mine came up with this idea – and so I followed his advice/wish.

Chain D.L.K.: And why isn’t there an English version for the North American edition out on Metropolis? Does this maybe cause a recognizable loss in the sales of “Cannibal Anthem”?
:Wumpscut:: I think it’s the opposite: US Electro fans regard Germany as the fatherland of their music, and therefore, all stuff in German has kind of a cult character.

Chain D.L.K.: Which language is featured in the title track “Cannibal Anthem”?
:Wumpscut:: The same artificial language as “Churist Churist” was.

Chain D.L.K.: And how did you come to the idea to include a “strange” instrument like this guitar riff?
:Wumpscut:: Just an experiment, guys – but a GOOD one, am I right? Sounds very Pink Floyd-like in my ears…

Chain D.L.K.: Knowing you personally, it seems there is usually a relationship involved when Rudy writes a love song, and I suspect this is true of the track “Die Liebe”. Am I right with this assumption?
:Wumpscut:: Yes.

Chain D.L.K.: What is the current state regarding the female beauties ;-)? Any chances to see the birth of a throne follower?
:Wumpscut:: Yes.

Chain D.L.K.: The reaction of the fans and mostly also musicians on “Cannibal Anthem” is quite good and almost all positive, as far as what I’ve read in online sources. I also have the impression that “Cannibal Anthem” has a darker, but surely not harder mood than the both predecessors. I also don’t believe in the term “chance” in your compositions – most things you do are well calculated. Does your chosen main theme have such a strong influence in your sounds and compositions, or how would you explain the globally good reactions?

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:Wumpscut:: This time, I produced thru speakers (and not with headphones like I did on “Bone Peeler” and “Evoke”) – and you can hear the difference: “Cannibal Anthem” sounds more like older :W: productions.

Chain D.L.K.: You present in your booklet your list of instruments which you did use to create “Cannibal Anthem”. Is it me or did I notice a stronger dedication to software-based synthesizers?
:Wumpscut:: ONLY software synths.

Chain D.L.K.: Do you finally come to the conclusion that software-based synths could offer a bigger amount of new and interesting sounds?
:Wumpscut:: Creating a song will always be the same, regardless of how it is produced…

Chain D.L.K.: Which kind of production do you prefer now, the hardware or the software-based?
:Wumpscut:: ONLY software – TOO many advantages.

Chain D.L.K.: Considering the fact that you don’t do live performances, how important are the release parties for your new CD for you?
:Wumpscut:: VERY important – and not playing live is the reason why you get new :W: studio works every year.

Chain D.L.K.: I am wondering about your plans to visit a few of these events, especially the one far away from your area in Hamburg. How is it with your aversion for doing journeys out of LA (Landshut)?
:Wumpscut:: Well, the fans changed my mind: the release parties are a perfect occasion for getting in touch.

Chain D.L.K.: You seem to have reactivated other bands on your own Betonkopf Media label like Yendri or Recently Deceased, which both are up to release an album soon. Why did you stop to work with different acts like Infact some years before?
:Wumpscut:: Infact doesn’t create music anymore (as far as I know), and putting out 3 albums aside from :W: was just natural: all of them were finished and MUCH better than the average scene stuff.

Chain D.L.K.: What about the reactions of the “greedy-for-a-sensation” press “friends” of the Bild and related newspapers — since you had your issues with them, you are watched carefully I think. Any new funny happenings you would like to throw in here?
:Wumpscut:: NO new happenings – maybe fewer sensations in here, huh?

Chain D.L.K.: Your alter ego Claus Larsen lately started a comeback with his two projects. How do you see and review his return to the scene?
:Wumpscut:: Will have a listen very soon, of course…

Chain D.L.K.: Anything you would like to share with him?
:Wumpscut:: We did an interview with the German Orkus – and maybe we will do a collaboration in the future.

Chain D.L.K.: Rudy Ratzinger’s current “Top Ten” does not normally feature any scene-related music. So please give us an insight into your current favorites in your home entertainment…
:Wumpscut:: 01 Natacha Atlas: Forever
02 Isoleé: Logiciel
03 Yendri: The Only Thing That’s Left
04 Felix Laband: Dirty Nightgown
05 Visit Venus: Space Nazis Must Die (Rae & Christian Remix)
06 St. Germain: Montego Bay Spleen
07 Yendri: Shinas
08 Cerebral Apoplexy: Just Like Waves (:Tactoor: Remix)
09 Anthony Rother: 65 Millionen Jahre
10 Generation Aldi: Bratislover
11 Snoop Dogg: Ups & Downs

Chain D.L.K.: A fine mix in between different styles. Many thanks, Rudy.

Visit :Wumpscut: on the web at:
http://www.wumpscut.com

[interviewed by Marc Tater] [proofreading by Brandon L. Clark]

Jun 232005
 
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In our scene :Wumpscut: is a name that everyone knows very well. Whether you like the music or not, whether you understand it or are uncomfortable with it, that’s an entirely different story, but one simply can’t avoid the :W: name and logo and what it represents. Rudy Ratzinger’ s musical influence in the scene is second to none. According to Rudy, :Wumpscut: is a synthetic word with no meaning. So much so that band after band tries to mimic his inimitable style, but actually there is only one :Wumpscut: –actually, only one Rudy. Starting off his career in 1991 as a club DJ in Bavaria (Germany) Ratzinger cited the influence of such bands as Leather Strip as his reason for making the transfer from DJing to making music. :Wumpscut: was first conceived in 1991, with his earliest works appearing in cassette-only form in 1991 (Defcon) and 1992 (Small Chambermusicians). Since Rudy’s debut effort, Music for a Slaughtering Tribe, in December 1993 Rudy has released numerous influential albums and apperared on many compilations which placed :Wumpscut: at the forefront of the scene. In 1995 Rudy founded his own label, BETON KOPF MEDIA to have full control over :Wumpscut:. Following the 2004 album Bonepeeler, 2005 brings Evoke, an album that represents a new chapter in the life of Rudy Ratzinger, a chapter you haven’t yet experienced. Get ready to have some feelings evoked within you.

Chain D.L.K.: You declare that :Wumpscut: is not a fascist or racist project. The use of some words like “nigger” in your lyrics has offended people.
:Wumpscut:: This is not my speech, it is just a sample I took …

Chain D.L.K.: Are you aware of the effect of the usage of some words intentionally?
:Wumpscut:: Yes

Chain D.L.K.: Der Blutharsch, who did a remix for you, are specifically a very controversial band, and their imagery is really disturbing for some audiences.
:Wumpscut:: I understand that, but I regard DBH only as a very well-crafted project.

Chain D.L.K.: A curiosity–or some would say an obsession–with the Holocaust, with Germany’s Nazi past, newsreels, death and the global apocalypse dominate your albums, Rudy.
:Wumpscut:: …Just a few times it did.

Chain D.L.K.: We are eager to hear your history. Your music tends to be interpreted in many different ways and most people don’t really seem to understand where you are coming from.
:Wumpscut:: I come from a small village near Munich (and be sure, I am no Nazi at all).

Chain D.L.K.: You were one of the first ones to toss aside the standard 4-4 EBM formula.
:Wumpscut:: …Really?

Chain D.L.K.: Your music always has a sense of nostalgia, something that a lot of people are longing for in an age of digital electronic music.
:Wumpscut:: I never thought about that.

Chain D.L.K.: Do you think electro-industrial music losing its soul–becoming too one-dimensional–that everything out there sounds the same?:Wumpscut:: Most of the released stuff out of this sector simply is BAD.

Chain D.L.K.: Where do you think industrial music as a genre is heading?
:Wumpscut:: I don’t know, but be sure, :W: always will do its very special interpretations. I don’t follow a “trend”.

Chain D.L.K.: Your albums have always been concept-oriented. What is the concept of the new album Evoke?
:Wumpscut:: Evoke has no concept in its pure form–if you speak of the music. It’s different when you think about the graphics, of course.

Chain D.L.K.: Where have you taken :Wumpscut: this time?
:Wumpscut:: …Just LISTEN!

Chain D.L.K.: I think that Evoke again presents new sides of :Wumpscut: we weren’t familiar with before.
:Wumpscut:: Exactly my speech all along.

Chain D.L.K.: This time I sense cleaner production, a fixation on love and an almost neo-> Classical feeling. Am I wrong or does :Wumpscut: sound more melodic and loving?
:Wumpscut:: Melody always was, is and will be a very important part of the :W: universe….

Chain D.L.K.: Where is the morbid, slaughtering :Wumpscut: we all know?
:Wumpscut:: It still is there, but this time, it seems to be more hidden.

Chain D.L.K.: How do you compare Evoke to your debut effort, Music for a Slaughtering Tribe?
:Wumpscut:: …Not at all.

Chain D.L.K.: What has changed for you since then? What has changed in the musicmaking process?
:Wumpscut:: The same procedure as it ever was–apart from the fact that I like to progress and not to mark time….

Chain D.L.K.: Are you approaching writing a new album the same way you used to do in the early ’90s?
:Wumpscut:: I don’t know–:W: always was surprising…

Chain D.L.K.: How long was the process of recording the new album?
:Wumpscut:: …2 to 3 months.

Chain D.L.K.: And what new challenges arose compared to previous releases?
:Wumpscut:: Each tone is a challenge in which you discover unknown territory….

Chain D.L.K.: The pictures, the images on your album covers have always been interesting; you like playing with symbols. People are basically ignorant about the use of your shocking imagery and the use of symbolism in your work, and misinterpret them.
:Wumpscut:: …Be SURE about that.

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Chain D.L.K.: How do you pick the photos or images the design for your covers?
:Wumpscut:: Just the same way I create music: just a question of what moods you are in.

Chain D.L.K.: Does it have to be loaded with disturbing connotations?
:Wumpscut:: No.

Chain D.L.K.: What does the 3-dimentional alien creature on the cover stand for? Does it reflect the spirit of the album for you?
:Wumpscut:: Only for the title track: I don’t want to create 11 songs just about ONE monster, you know….

Chain D.L.K.: Remixes have been taking a big part in your music releases catalog. You like to pull newcomers into the spotlight. Also, since Bone Peeler you came out with the DJ Dwarf remix series and any of your releases now comes in a limited box set including remixes that are not on the “regular” version. What are you looking for these things to give you?
:Wumpscut:: The fans demand special versions, seldom products etc. And the traditional boxset forces this very well.

Chain D.L.K.: Do you like other producers playing with your music, giving out their own vision of your songs?
:Wumpscut:: …It’s a question of time.

Chain D.L.K.: You once said you don’t think about what you are creating. How do you construct an album, how is your work done in the studio and how do you assemble the pieces in this puzzle to create a new album? Isn’t there any advance thought?
:Wumpscut:: Not at all: I just sit down and leave my cerebrum behind in a drawer.

Chain D.L.K.: You have always had a no-touring policy, even in Germany. Is there no need to satisfy the hungry fans?
:Wumpscut:: Yes, there would be …

Chain D.L.K.: Why haven’t you ever taken :Wumpscut: on stage?
:Wumpscut:: I cannot come up to my self-set level.

Chain D.L.K.: Do you prefer :Wumpscut: to be only a studio project?
:Wumpscut:: Yes.

Chain D.L.K.: There’s a whole lot of merchandise for :Wumpscut: and Beton Kopf Media, your label. Aren’t you afraid of becoming too commercialized?
:Wumpscut:: Not at all: If someone does not like it, he’s not forced to take it.

Chain D.L.K.: Have you ever thought of going into film production?
:Wumpscut:: Yes.

Chain D.L.K.: Besides hearing your dreams and visions, people would see them. Would it be too horrific to watch?
:Wumpscut:: Ye-hes!

Chain D.L.K.: Why don’t we see any :Wumpscut: videos?
:Wumpscut:: The same as with playing live: my head is full of very high quality images and be sure you cannot materialize them.

Chain D.L.K.: Would you please introduce us to Clara who wrote and sings on “Obssession”?
:Wumpscut:: She’s my girlfriend for several years, meanwhile–and I like her language very much, so it just was a question of time to try.

Chain D.L.K.: …And Jane who sings on “Hold” and “Maiden,” and on one of my personal favorites on the album, “Don’t Go”?
:Wumpscut:: I initially met her during summer 2004, her voice seemed very promising, and here we are.

Chain D.L.K.: What does the work with two singers who are very much in the front this time bring in?
:Wumpscut:: I can reach a wider range when it comes to creating vocals and/or melodies.

Chain D.L.K.: How was working with them?
:Wumpscut:: Fine!

Chain D.L.K.: What language are you using on “Churist, Churist”
:Wumpscut:: Churist Churist is written/performed in an artificial language. The title already was created, and while I was collecting text ideas, I found out that this track should provide something we never had with :W: so far. The funny circumstance is that the Russian Recently Deceased have created a very fine remix version (and became the first winner of the contest on w.com)–and Churist Churist indeed sounds like Russian language although it is NOT, be sure. Another interesting aspect: Clara pronounces very differently, so their version is completely exotic (and very lovely).

Chain D.L.K.: …And “Obsession”?
:Wumpscut:: Catalan–a part of Spain.

Chain D.L.K.: Do these texts have any special meaning?
:Wumpscut:: claras@gmx.info

Chain D.L.K.: How do you manage to re-invent yourself every time?
:Wumpscut:: No idea….

Chain D.L.K.: You once said that the better you feel, the more you get interested in the concept of the end, the Apocalypse. Are you a person of many opposites?
:Wumpscut:: Yes, but only sometimes.

Chain D.L.K.: Is there anything you feel you still need to accomplish with your art that you done so far?
:Wumpscut:: I don’t think about things like that.

Chain D.L.K.: Should we expect a new album from you next year, too?
:Wumpscut:: Who knows, who knows….
Thanks a lot for the interview,
Rudy/:W:

Visit :Wumpscut: on the web at:
www.wumpscut.com

[interviewed by Jez Porat] [proofreading by Benjamin Pike]

May 272003
 
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After a year or two of silence, the ball of love and tenderness that is :Wumpscut: is back to chaos reign! For those who’ve been living under a rock for the longest time, his sound is akin to old school Leatherstrip (circa “Fit For Flogging”) gone through a filter of pure and untter evil and nihilism. And it has easily one of the largest cult followings. Anyhow, discussing his new re-release,”Preferential Legacy/Music for A German Tribe” and the upcoming “Bone Peeler” is the one and only Rudy Ratzinger, who will tell us about the methods behind the madness…

Chain D.L.K.: I remember we interviewed you some time ago, that was the issue that got me into ChainD.L.K. in the first place. Without: W: on the cover I may not even be at this magazine! So how have you been in the meantime?
:Wumpscut:: Fine!

Chain D.L.K.: So, about the new CD and the collection set, “Preferecial Legacy” and “Music For A German Tribe”… Are these ones on the latter CD b-sides, or ones that were made along the way to what would be on disc? Or even alternate versions of songs already released?
:Wumpscut:: No, both old releases were put on as original versions. I don’t see the necessity for the fans to pay 100s of EUR for a piece of vinyl and a piece of silver while you only get self-burnt copies at lower prices at very bad quality and completely out of reach (well, on Ebay it is). When I did BlutKind, I got 3 (THREE) complaints because if features some of the limited tracks from very old days, for PLGT I got not even 1 (ONE) – The: W: tribe is hungry out there. Moreover, I’m adding 2 new tracks (“All Cried Out”, the first: W: cover version ever and “Overkill”, a typical: W: killer) and many other pearls I found in my blood-crusted studio.

Chain D.L.K.: You also have a CD of all new material underway, reportedly called “Bone Scraper” or something like that.
:Wumpscut:: Bone Peeler.

Chain D.L.K.: What is the direction of this new CD?
:Wumpscut:: No idea – It is not done yet, and I don’t think about what I am creating…

Chain D.L.K.: Recently there was a story about a German student who murdered people, all the while being into: W: heavily (of course idiots don’t look at the Satanist aspect, they go through their CD collection! LOL). Did this bring more notoriety to the band over there, or did it just come and go?
:Wumpscut:: Well, I am sure: W: got some attention in July 2001 when it happened, but meanwhile, this part is history…New goals, new aims…

Chain D.L.K.: Do people give you dirty looks over it in public or do they realize you had no part in it?
:Wumpscut:: No, not at all – Also, 1) they don’t know my face/look enough and 2) the Ruda couple just killed ONE person, not a whole folk, you know…

Chain D.L.K.: Tell us how you found out about newcomers Dismantled. Anymore newcomers you’re pulling into the spotlight?
:Wumpscut:: I like the WOB remix Dismantled did very much, but I haven’t heard any new material at all – What a shame…No newcomers at the moment…

Chain D.L.K.: What are the plans for the next single?
:Wumpscut:: No idea – too early to ask. A WILD one, maybe?

Chain D.L.K.: I’ve always read you have a no touring policy… I’m curious as to why, and if you are warming up to the idea as time goes along. We’d gladly welcome you over here in America!
:Wumpscut:: I’m sure about that, but rest assured not even Germany sees: W: live. No fun for me, so it simply will not happen. My self-set level is much too high to reach…

Chain D.L.K.: Is there a particular theme to the new CD of new work?
:Wumpscut:: Bones will get peeled – very thoroughly!

Chain D.L.K.: Could the current situation in Iraq play any part?
:Wumpscut:: No.

Chain D.L.K.: I’ve heard people bitch before about: W: ’s use of merchandising, yet I’ve always backed up that you use the money to keep the label up and going. Am I correct?
:Wumpscut:: No, : W: merchandising is just a small thing aside and has nothing to do when it comes about running the label Beton Kopf Media.

Chain D.L.K.: Ok, imagine you are planning a wedding for two loyal over the top: :Wumpscut:: troopers. What would it look like?
:Wumpscut:: Very bloody – probably. Kiss the bride bloody – she earned it and wants it like that.

Chain D.L.K.: And what would you toss instead of rice?
:Wumpscut:: Tiny pieces of self-cut flesh taken from tenderest virgins.

Chain D.L.K.: Any videos or such planned in the future?
:Wumpscut:: No.

Chain D.L.K.: Any words of advice or cryptic foretellings for us before we go?
:Wumpscut:: In Fear Of Everything We See In Fear Of Death And MiseryWe Call The Court We Cast The Runes And Pray To God For Our Fortunes: OVERKILL:

Visit :Wumpscut: on the web at:
www.wumpscut.de

[interviewed by Shaun Hamilton] [proofreading by Marc Urselli]