Electro rock with German lyrics – Intelligent, danceable and hard, interspersed with moments of tenderness
Anatomy: Metallspürhunde have a backbone of electro-metal encased in flesh of pummelling industrial, and EBM courses through the band's arteries. Their heart holds a love of 80s new wave and synth-pop that shines through in their music. The electronics breathe out a mix of expansive melodies and deep, gut-thumping bass, tempered by clever effects and topped off with distorted guitar riffs and pumping beats: a mongrel that is playful and trusting one moment, gnashing ferociously the next.
The vocals lean towards a monotonous, dry barking. The lyrics tell tales of disgrace, digging into the smouldering embers of the fire to uncover the seducer and the seduced. The words achieve depth and strength through inventive use of metaphor – the poetry of battle. Being sung in German gives them that extra hard edge.
Evolution: The story of Metallspürhunde goes back to the 80s, when Michel Frasse (vocals, music, lyrics) started to explore the possibilities of electronic music with his Atari ST. He was later joined by like-minded souls, and they withdrew to a cellar to build their own studio. Over the years, they spent endless hours shut away at night, engrossed in sonic experimentation.
With the 1999 release of their début "Metallspürhunde" (the name, meaning "metalhounds" in German, refers to the dogs used to seek out mines in the Vietnam war), the band opened themselves up to public appraisal for the first time. The results were overwhelmingly positive, prompting an assault on the German and Swiss clubs and a further releases.
Epilogue: After various line-up changes, the band has now settled into a fixed unit that gels perfectly, comprising Michel Frasse, Marion Altwegg (keyboards, lyrics) and Sebastian Hausmann (guitars).