There are some constants in my life over the last couple of years. My parents, my sister, my friends, evening long discussions about the transfer policy of my favorite football club and my love for Northern German punk rock. Next to Turbostaat, Captain Planet are one of those bands that cannot disappoint me. Ein Ende is the name of their latest record. I was traveling the US recently, when I got an email from their label Zeitstrafe (one of the best German punk labels) asking me if I’d be interested to review the album. It is safe to say that I did not hesitate. I was super excited.
Ten songs, ripped through in just under half an hour. It has become a standard in punk rock that albums don’t need to last longer than that mark. Sometimes it is all that one can bare. Sometimes records are too heavy to listen to longer, sometimes they are too boring. In this case though, it is just enough time to make you smile, laugh, love, sad and cry all at the same time. Captain Planet have always had that quality to make you feel at home right from the off. Opener St. Peter takes ten seconds to unleash the punk rock beast and I can already see arms aloft around me and smiling faces at live shows. I am back in their world. The energy Captain Planet always had is incredible. You won’t find a ballad on this record and why would you? This is a straight forward record, delivered with urgency, energy, purpose and intent. The drums trundle forward. The bass rolls along. The guitars lash the songs forward and share great riffs and licks between them. All while Jan Arne von Twistern scream-croons over it all. His voice has the quality to add this Northern sense of Fernweh, of Nothern melancholy to Captain Planet’s music.
Lyrically Ein Ende is the steady development of the bands’s last record Treibeis. Captain Planet have matured even further here. It is not a record about drinking and rebellion. It is a record about the challenges of adult life. A record about failure (Tulpenfarm) and conclusions. About difficult decisions. About running away and standing up. Lyrically it is definitely a serious record. But also one with so many relatable issues and pictures, with such a driving intensity that by the end of it, you are confident you could take on the world. As long as Captain Planet are here, we will overcome everything life throws at us. As long as there are songs like Irgendwas or Kreisel we will be alright.
Header Image by Christian Bendel