MUSIC

How it all sounds

Toten Herzen’s music spans the four years between 1973 and 1977. In that time they released four studio albums and one live album.

None of their songs are currently available in digital format, but a new album is planned for 2014. A box set reissue on vinyl may be released later this year. The tracks below use contemporary vocal performances over remastered backing tracks. Note, the vocals you can hear are not by Dee Vincent. The actual singer is credited in the song’s title.

Toten Herzen were never allowed much time in the studio by their manager Micky Redwall and this was often the cause of some friction, particularly between Redwall and Susan Bekker. A typical album might take four to six weeks from songwriting and practice to the final master tapes. And all of it recorded at night!

 

NEVER FORGET feat. RomyHarmony

A more cinematic sound in this collaboration that takes an old guitar solo from 1974. Toten Herzen have never gone beyond the core instrumentation of the group: guitars, bass and drums. In four albums they always refused to use pianos, keyboards or any type of orchestration. But the policy may change.

Music Toten Herzen / RomyHarmony – Lyrics RomyHarmony

 

TIME HAS COME feat. RomyHarmony

Time Has Come is one of five tracks using the vocals of RomyHarmony from Finland. The original backing track, (Running From You) re-engineered in this version, was from a 1975 session during the recording of Nocturn. The band were using more progressive arrangements which caused friction amongst Dee Vincent and Micky Redwall. As such Vincent refused to sing on this track and it was never released.

Music Toten Herzen / RomyHarmony – Lyrics RomyHarmony

 

GIVE ME YOUR HEART ft. Kara Queen

Give Me Your Heart utitlises another out take from the Black Rose album, this time with contemporary vocals by Dutch singer Kara Queen. The first remix of this track, by Martin Lundqvist in Berlin, was slated by the band and deleted. (The episode is described in the book We Are Toten Herzen and makes grim reading!) This new version has Kara Queen’s vocals over a heavier sound and longer lead solo.

Music Toten Herzen / Kara Queen – Lyrics Damian Powell

 

STRONGER feat. RomyHarmony

Stronger is a RomyHarmony acapella over an out take from the 1976 album Black Rose and is shorter in length than the usual Toten songs. Black Rose was the band’s best selling album, but also the one that caused most internal discussions about the direction the band were heading. Redwall wanted a more commercial sound to appeal to the US market, Bekker wanted a return to the more intricate compositions of Nocturn.

Music Toten Herzen / RomyHarmony – Lyrics RomyHarmony

 

HUMAN feat. RomyHarmony

Human again uses RomyHarmony’s vocals. There are two backing tracks in this mix. To begin you can hear Dee Vincent’s original recording on rhythm guitar from 1974 without any new engineering applied to it and is exactly how it sounded when it was performed in practices for the We Are Toten Herzen album. The rest of the track was lost following Bekker’s illness in Germany. The guitar solo and lead overdubs were re-recorded in 2013 and give some insight into Bekker’s improving technique.

Music Toten Herzen / RomyHarmony – Lyrics RomyHarmony

 

BOMBS (LIVE) feat. RomyHarmony

Bombs is the collaborative version of an old instrumental song called Night and Day with a RomyHarmony acapella. Toten Herzen would warm up with this track, but never performed it live. It is given new life with the inclusion of vocals for the first time and the live effects have been added to give some idea of what the band sounded like onstage when Flying V lead, Explorer rhythm and Thunderbird bass came together.

Music Toten Herzen / RomyHarmony – Lyrics RomyHarmony

visit RomyHarmony at Soundcloud

visit Kara Queen at Soundcloud

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