Album: Confessions & Doubts + TanzZwang
Genre: Alternative / Pop
Release Date: 28th September 2018
Label: RCA Deutschland (Sony Music)
The compelling vocals of the German singer / songwriter crawls inside your ear and wanders deeper into your heart. Actually PETER HEPPNER wanted to pursue a career as a painter or writer but the road of life led him to a career as a professional musician. Having sung already as a child in a choir at church and at school this development was surely not abstruse. And with designing several album covers his affinity for painting was not completely neglected. From 1987 to 2007 he gained a growing prominence with the Synth Pop duo WOLFSHEIM. The band disbanded then. In 2005 he started his solo project and released two albums, ‘Solo’ (2008) and ‘My heart of stone’ (2012), which both entered successfully the charts in the German speaking countries. Furthermore he collaborated successfully with several musicians like SCHILLER, PAUL VAN DYK, GOETHES ERBEN, JOACHIM WITT, NENA, MARIANNE ROSENBERG to mention just a few. The lyrics of the songs are in English as well as in German language. Due to health issues the release of this album had to be postponed. More delightful then is the fact that in the meantime PETER created in collaboration with DIRK RIEGNER more songs than would actually fit on one album. As it would be a pity to sort some songs out for good or for a potential fourth album he decided to release then two albums - the main one as a classical PETER HEPPNER album and the second one with the remixes by musicians he collaborated with during his career. For his live performances PETER HEPPNER is accompanied by Dirk Riegner (piano/ keyboard), Carsten Klatte (guitar, harmonica) and Achim Färber (drums).
Confessions & Doubts
Opener of this album is a song about an unrequited love underlined with a decent Pop melody. 20 years after the release of the successful hit single of JOACHIM WITT and PETER HEPPNER, ‘Die Flut’ (The flood), the exceptional musicians created once again a song together, ‘Was bleibt?’ (What remains?), but while the first one was to be found on JOACHIM WITT’s album the latter now is one track of this album. The song is about looking back with a bit of melancholy but still looking forward to the things to come. The different vocal qualities of both singers give this song a special charm highlighted with a catchy tune that also transports both emotions. The third song is quite danceable and I’m a bit reminded of some WOLFSHEIM songs though this song has much more of a good Pop song with more easiness. The following song is in German language about an almost love affair with the question what was missing to make it happen. Song number five is a sad ballad stating that during our whole life the good things don’t last but end sadly.
The next one has a nice surprise in the bag as this danceable song has some Reggae rhythm involved which gives the song some lightness despite the accusingly attitude towards the partner. Another duet follows with KIM SANDERS where the piano leitmotiv reminds me of title tracks of some crime thrillers building up a certain tension. If you are not at least tapping your feet to the following song I would be more than surprised though the lyrics are about that despite the rough events in the narrator’s life they can’t bring him down for his inner strength. The second to last song of this album is a solid Synth- Pop track you can dance to, bearing the hallmarks of DIRK RIEGNER’s talent to compose great Synth Pop dance tracks. The last song of this album will surely leave you contemplative telling through the eyes of a deported person the experiences and feelings and though it is called ‘Theresienstadt’ you know that it also happens nowadays when there are people who decide who is more worth than the other.
The first song comes along in two different great remixes. The lyrics are about forgetting all the worries of the daily life by being carried away by dancing to the music. Another great dance track follows which clearly bears the hallmarks of APOPTYGMA BERZERK. The following song has definitely Trance influences. The next song lyrically describes how it feels strange to live in a country for the one who is born and always lived there as well as well as for someone who lives now in this country because he/ she had to leave the mother country. Despite the grave topic the song comes along as solid and powerful dance track. The sixth song doesn’t really fit to the leitmotiv, ‘Tanzzwang’ (forced to dance), as it is a poem by Hermann Hesse set to music in a solemn tempo. The following song starts with some Arabian sounding singing which reminds me of some early THE PRODIGY tracks. Another great dance tracks follows. The next song is a remix by SCHILLER with his typical Trance influence with the bell ring and reverbs. A pulsating sound underlines the vocal of PETER in the next song. The last song changes the tempi between the verse and the refrain and is positive statement that even if life is tough and exhausting with lots of backlashes one should stand tall. The sound reminds me strongly of some songs of the excellent project from Berlin MODERAT which unfortunately disbanded some years ago.
In summary I have to state that the long wait for the new album is now rewarded with these two excellent albums. As he is known for PETER HEPPNER writes more in- depth lyrics in both languages in the true singer-/ songwriter style packed in catchy melodies with the potential of being earworms. The albums are available as limited fan box set, you can also buy them separately. They are also available on vinyl, on mp3 as full album or as single songs or you can stream them.
Confessions & Doubts
02. Was bleibt? (feat. JOACHIM WITT)
03. Nothing ends
04. Viele schöne Stunden
05. Good things break
06. Gib mir doch’n Grund
07. You don’t love me (feat. KIM SANDERS)
08. Herz (Metropolis)
10. Theresienstadt: Hinter der Mauer
01. …und ich tanz’ (LATSCHES mix)
02. …und ich tanz’ (PASCAL REINHARDT remix)
03. All is shadow (APOPTYGMA BERZERK remix)
04. Best things in life (SALT & WAVES mix)
05. Fremd in diesem Land (VIZE remix)
06. Hermann Hesse: Im Nebel (DIRK RIEGNER mix)
07. I will hurt you (TEMPLE mix)
08. Just one word (PIXTOM mix)
09. Once again (SCHILLER remix)
10. Sedate yourself (YANN LAUREN remix)
11. Standing tall (SAND & PFEFFER remix)
Peter Heppner - Vocals, lyrics
Dirk Riegner - Piano / keyboards, composition, production
Carsten Klatte - Guitar, harmonica
Achim Färber - Drums
Total: 10 / 10