Etant Donnés and Michael Gira’s 1999 noise onslaught Offenbarung Und Untergang to be reissued on Munster Records

Etant Donnés and Michael Gira's 1999 noise onslaught Offenbarung Und Untergang to be reissued on Munster Records

The Legend of Georg Trakl: An Industrial Fairy Tale

Once upon a time in the faraway land of Austria, there lived a cocaine addict named Georg Trakl. Being the early years of the 20th century, emo hadn’t been invented yet, and goth was more than a half century off, so the young Trakl could only soothe his inner torment through his macabre writing (and lots of blow). His vivid imagery took on an especially nightmarish tone when he became stationed as a pharmacist during World War I, when our hero encountered many patients he couldn’t help. Deadening his anxieties with easy access to pharmaceuticals, the horrors of war still proved too much, and Trakl committed suicide by injecting himself with a lethal dose of cocaine within a year.

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Not only is Trakl’s tale a perfect transgressive storm (drug addiction, an intense visual writing style, and a possibly incestuous relationship with his sister, oh my!), but it’s ALSO possibly the best fodder EVER for an industrial concept record.

Enter: Offenbarung und Untergang — a 1999 collaboration between Étant Donnés, Swans-frontman Michael Gira, EBM artist Saba Komossa, and Mark Cunningham of the obscure art rock outfit Mars — which was anchored by the tragic narrative.

In case you’re not up to speed on the players: The Étant Donnés brothers are a hub of noise and industrial artists, having worked with a bevy of musicians like Alan Vega (Suicide), Genesis P-Orridge (Throbbing Gristle, Psychic TV), and Lydia Lunch (all-around badass). Gira, meanwhile, narrates and sings from the prose work, while Cunningham’s trumpet peeks out amongst the dense murk of noise.

Check out the reissue January 26 on Munster Records, and (re)aquaint yourself with the opening “chapter” of the album’s six brutal elegies to an artist who died far too young. Trakl would have been “proud.”

Offenbarung und Untergang tracklisting:

01. Offenbarung und Untergang 1
02. Offenbarung und Untergang 2
03. Offenbarung und Untergang 3
04. Offenbarung und Untergang 4
05. Offenbarung und Untergang 5
06. Offenbarung und Untergang 6

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