Words About Music
52 Hertz “Somnolence”
Let me tell you something, folks. The emo revival is not exclusive to the United States. It has spread to Europe! 52 Hertz, named after the so-called “loneliest whale in the world,” is a German emo trio that seems inspired by the more post-hardcore leaning emo bands like Snowing, William Bonney, and even a little bit of Sunny Day Real Estate. “Somnolence” is their debut EP; 5 tracks that would fit in right with the “twinkle daddies” of America. I first discovered these guys when they opened up for The World is a Beautiful Place & I am No Longer Afraid to Die and Empire! Empire! (I Was a Lonely Estate) this past April. I was impressed and kept my ear out for any studio material. About a week ago they came through with “Somnolence,” and I’m very excited.
Having lived in Germany for almost 2 years, I’ve noticed that nearly every German music festival includes hardcore punk music, nu-metal, butt rock, and a popular rapper or two. It’s slightly pathetic, but you can blame GEMA for the lack of good music within German borders. Anyway, it’s a pleasant change of pace to hear a German band that deviates from that and instead takes inspiration from the league of Bandcamp emo groups that live fast and die young. 52 Hertz has it all: gang vocal choruses, tearfully emotional lyrics, breakdowns, and dynamic drumming. They also have a punk edge of being one of the very few (I imagine) bands in Germany that dares to venture into emo territory. Musically, Germany is known for krautrock, Rammstein, and not much else. Let’s hope we can add this to the list.
While most emo bands these days usually stick to EPs and split-singles, often breaking up before they can record a full-length album, I’d love to hear 52 Hertz do a full album. They only have seven recorded songs total, most of which I heard live when I saw them (and will probably hear when I see them again next month) so it would be really cool for them to settle down and a record a full album. This EP is great, but five songs is not enough for me. Call me greedy, but I’d hate to see the most interesting German band since The Notwist break up before a full album can be recorded.
SCORE – 8.5
FAVORITE TRACKS – All of them pretty much