KyzrWölf. Maybe you know him better as Kaiser Von Loopy or Loopy or even Rob Lupie or one half of Hanzel und Gretyl. Whatever the case, while we are waiting for the next Hanzel und Gretyl album, he created this wonderful album called Reichstar. It’s super awesome for a multitude of reasons, and I’ll explain those below. If you don’t like reading, but you’ve read this far, know that it is very much worth listening to.
There are lots of reasons to like this album. I mean, first of all, it’s awesome that it came out of nowhere. We got a HuG remix album last year that was done by Loopy under the KyzrWölf name back in 2013. But I don’t think anyone had any reason to believe KyzrWolf was going to be something outside of the HuG camp. On top of that, it’s new sounding while also being familiar. Those samples of bombs dropping and zieg heils that you hear a lot in Hanzel und Gretyl songs are present and accounted for. And if that wasn’t enough, it’s technologically impressive because it was recorded with no real instruments. Yes, those guitars and basses are not real! I actually conversed with him via e-mail and we discussed. Good times.
So yeah, the last “real” Hanzel und Gretyl album to come out, Black Forest Metal, came out in 2014. It was reported that the next album was going to be released in 2015. Yeah. STILL waiting on that, guys. Hindsight is always 20/20, but maybe we should have wondered if KyzrWölf was going to be a thing other than the name Loopy used on the Fur Immer album. Anyway, there was very lead up to this album. Just the surprise of it all makes Reichstar a cool thing. I’d love to be able to do what he did. He appears to be handling all the duties himself; Metropolis Records isn’t distributing it or anything like that. If you want this album, you need to go to kyzrwolf.com and order it. That’s kind of cool in a way, but it definitely hinders its reach.
Speaking about the music itself…holy crap! It’s heavy, crazy, and weird. It brings back some of the things that I thought Black Forest Metal lacked, random sound samples mostly, which is refreshing to me. It’s hard to pigeonhole this music because it’s completely electronic, so can you really call it metal? One thing I didn’t even really notice until listening through the album literally dozens of times is that it’s almost entirely instrumental. Other than beautifully-random audio samples of Donald Trump and computer-generated voices, there are very little vocalizations going on.
This may sadden Loopy, but even though the guitars are programmed, I feel like it still sounds like him. He told me that he hoped it would actually make it sound different, but I think it’s cool to be able to have such a certain sound that it doesn’t matter if it was recorded with a real guitar or programmed. And yeah, all those basses and guitars on the album are synthesized using Native Instruments Maschine, a wonderful looking piece of hardware. It’s very impressive that it’s possible to make that happen with technology. I know it wasn’t easy to make everything sound convincing. Loopy is a crazy man though. That’s why he did it, if you asked me.
I LOVE this album. It’s got to be my favorite album so far this year. But it’s difficult for me to recommend it to just anyone. If my little review here didn’t tempt you, maybe try listening to “Party Like a Reichstar” for free here. If you like that, give the rest a try. You can buy it and other assorted goods at the official KyzrWölf store.