When a band reaches a certain level of popularity some of the members often start to believe that they are the ones who could make it as a solo artist and they get some people together and create a side project. They then go on to release a mediocre CD that sells reasonably well due to the following they enjoy through their main band, the album gets so-so reviews and they don't release another album much to the relief of everyone, including the record company. You see it's not only your reputation you're playing with but everyone else's from the mother band as well, if Richard Kruspe screws this up then Rammstein get tarnished a bit as well.
Yes Richard Kruspe, guitarist with Rammstein has released 'Emigrate' on which he not only plays guitar but also fills in the singer slot as well, plus he sings it all in English so no pressure then. Rammstein's record label have no concerns with this however. Richard has done the unexpected and released an album strong enough to stand on its own two feet and fight it out with the best of them. When I say unexpected I mean that I don't expect a solo album by an established artist to be any good regardless of who it is.
First track off the blocks is title song 'Emigrate' and you are immediately in the comfort zone; this could just as easily have been a Rammstein song it is so familiar, followed by 'Wake up' which is a little less Rammstein, Rammstein-lite if you will. I was beginning to think I was in for an album of songs that would be a variation of Rammstein sound-a-likes, like a band playing in the style of for instance.
Luckily this isn't the case, after the first two tracks the album veers off into different territory and Emigrate takes on a style of its own, songs that easily stand up in their own right, varied and interesting while retaining the heaviness we've come to expect of Richards guitar style, this is helped in no small way by the album being produced by Jacob Hellner, the man behind Rammsteins production.
Songs like 'Babe' for instance a brooding power ballad, more power than ballad but well put together, 'let me break' has a great sing-a-long chorus that will go down a bomb live. Then there are songs like 'Resolution' that have the Rammstein guitar riff crushing everything in its path but woven into a song that merely incorporates it rather than being defined by it. I could go on as there isn't a bad song on the album and how many times do you get to say that?
Look just go out and buy it if you like powerful marching Teutonic riffs and choruses that while sounding a little American will have you swinging your pants. Fabby album.