Other Sellers on Amazon
+ £1.26 UK delivery
Das Capital - The Songwriting Genius of Luke Haines
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
A man whose reputation rests on a pathological lack of sentiment and loathing of hollow nostalgia, Luke Haines is not obviously suited to grand career retrospectives. Still, Das Capital is just that: the nastiest songs from his four Auteurs albums, two solo efforts and one release as Baader Meinhof. Of course, he's too perverse for a mere greatest hits compilation. The songs here are re-recorded, with bombastic orchestral arrangements placed behind Haines's voice, which is more sneering and vituperative than ever.
As an exercise in self-aggrandisement, both literal and ironic, Das Capital works brilliantly: Haines even contributes fulsome reviews of his back catalogue in the sleevenotes. Three new songs (notably "The Mitford Sisters") also suggest there's plenty of bad blood left in him yet. But the greatness of The Auteurs, and the reason why they were always superior to Haines's "pop" project Black Box Recorder, is that his songs are best suited to spindly, arthritic accompaniments: guitar, bass, drums, a distant creak of cello. Ultimately, Das Capital is a grandiose satire, an opulent folly, and an album whose primary use is to remind us of the excellence found on the original records by this most callous observer of English idiocies. --John Mulvey
Top Customer Reviews
This latest collection, sadly, is unlikely to change this state of affairs with its re-recorded versions of old favourites interspersed with three new songs. There is also a not so secret ‘hidden track’ lurking at the beginning of the CD, comprising an introductory suite of even more old favourites from the Haines back catalogue. The up-dated settings coat the songs in candy-sweet strings (or “luxuriant orchestral delirium”) to provide a contrast to the acid rancour of the lyrics. Musically it wouldn’t be out of place on Radio 2 but lyrically it’s post-watershed (in an indefinably disturbing, rather than sweary Parental Advisory, way): perhaps queasy listening describes it best.
The new songs first, then: ‘Satan Wants Me’ is a lightning history of the various manifestations of the horned one in modern pop culture, from clownish disciples like Aleister Crowley to the Keanu Reeves/Al Pacino cult turkey The Devil’s Advocate.Read more ›
'Das Capitol' is composed pricipally of re-worked, or better yet re-discovered, songs from Haines' extensive back-catalogue, but they are far from pale shaddows of their former selves but grandoise, orchestral masterpieces. They are not just a more than welcome excuse to bring the songs to public attention, but actually map the change in culture that has taken place over the past decade, with the fashion tendinng towards bigger and better ideas with smaller accessories.
So this is more than an innovative greatest hits. The orchestra adds a fullness and lush quality to Haines' previous sparcity, and changes the emphasis of his message. This is necessary as Haines' albums all have a self-contained theme: class, fame, terrorism, nostalgia, and the various offings chosen for exhibition have to be melded into a cohesive whole to sit alongside one another comfortably.
The three new songs reveal that, unlike many other bands I grew up admiring, Haines has not lost his touch. This may be because Haines' interests change over time, so his lyrics are never stagnant. Nor are his vocals treated as a mere aspect to the musical mix, there solely from necessity. He has stuff to say, and it is worth hearing. 'The Mitford Sisters' is particulary good - did he know Diana would die so soon after its release? Prophetic.
Of course, as Haines says, this project was also conceived with the design of pointing out to people what is under their noses, and if it does that for even a handful of people, it will have been a worthwhile exercise. Buy this album - Luke Haines is not touted as the best lyricist in Britain for nothing. He is right - he is a genius.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
So the title is ever so egotistical but if you ever managed to listen to Baader Meinhof; Lukes Haines rock trip through the world of terrorism, or any other album you will have an... Read morePublished on 27 Aug. 2003 by Chris Hoare
well, i've been a fan since the first auteurs album. luke haines is one of the most underrated and unknown rock composers of the century. Read morePublished on 27 July 2003 by JOE PINO