I am not going to pretend for a moment that I know anything of medieval folk music or the band Schandmaul. I discovered this group and their album, Wahre Helden through an out of the blue recommendation from Amazon.
Trying to find an English spoken opinion on Wahre Helden seemed near enough impossible due to the obscure nature of the group. From what I have read, Schandmaul are extremely popular in the German music scene but have never made it as far as the UK in terms of sales and charting. I honestly did not know what to expect but little things like this is exactly what I love about music.
Over the years I have heard many bands use elements of folk music from traditional melodies to assorted instruments but I have personally never listened to a band that went all out folk and I rather enjoyed the experience. Wahre Helden has a lot of up beat melody, usually featured on violin, mandolin, flute and even on a hurdy gurdy. On top of these lovely sounding instruments is some nice use of electric and acoustic with a bit of bass guitar and drums keeping the beat. It is a great combination of instruments and was genuinely refreshing to hear.
The production of the album is quite nice. The music has a very down to Earth sound, one which sounds a little live in the studio. I can’t imagine a modern sterile sound would do this kind of music justice so I’m glad that they went with this approach. The variety of instruments have been mixed with some thought put into it. Not once do any of the instruments shove another out of the way for the spotlight. Each instrument and musician gets there own space in the mix and it sounds better for it.
I would love to meet someone who could tell me a little more about this kind of music, bring me up to speed so I can appreciate a band of Schandmaul’s talents a little more. For what it’s worth, I kind of want a couple of diseases, a suit of armour, a sharp axe, five wives and a roasted hog on the fireplace after this. A bit much? I think so too!
Where to buy :
Track Listing :
- Der Spielmann
- Denk An Mich
- Willst Du
- Wahre Helden
- Immer Dieselbe Leier
- Ein Stück Regenbogen