Glasperlenspiel – “Licht & Schatten” (2018)
“Licht und Schatten”? is the 4th studio album of German electro-pop duo Glasperlenspiel. In the new album called Licht & Schatten, Glasperlenspiel has enriched their immediately recognizable signature mix of pop and electro music with various fresh elements and merged them into a cross-genre crossover. Danceable electro-beats meet catchy pop melodies, hard club vibes with atmospheric R’n’B and hip-hop influences. “Licht & Schatten” is intelligently produced urban pop with lots of exciting corners and edges.
I was surprised, but all lyrics of this album are mostly written in German and come with one exception from the two Glasperlenspiel members Daniel Grunenberg and Carolin Niemczyk, who wrote the play with changing co-authors.
As like in their previous albums, in “Licht & Schatten” Glasperlenspiel deals with the themes of friendship, heartbreak, and separation. Musicians tried to express the “darker”, “more progressive” shadow side, which is supposed to spread a kind of “club atmosphere” and for my mind, they managed to do it.
“We love to try our style,” says Daniel Grunenberg about the striking glass-pearl sound that the band has expanded by a few surprising facets. Just like on their brand-new single: With “Royals & Kings (feat. Summer Cem)”, the duo releases a hymn about the essentials of life: Glasperlenspiel do not need pompous locks, big sedans, and glittering bling-bling, but rather celebrate the beauty of simple things. “Basically you do not need much to be happy,” explains singer Carolin Niemczyk. “Material possessions do not always make you happier. For me, the greatest happiness in life is having someone by my side who I love.”
That’s why it was obvious for the two musicians, who are a couple privately, to add to the album a love song “Du bist”. Despite it is a love song, it is extremely catchy and danceable. The groovy “Diese Zeit” celebrates the moment and the eternity. Spherical R’n’B characterizes the song “Kleine Wunder”. The listener quickly realizes: “Glasperlenspiel ” sets no boundaries for your urban pop. It feels like trying out to combine new genres again and again.
“Licht & Schatten” turns out to be an album that subtly conveys true emotions. Glasperlenspiel adapt on the work in general to the lyrical level of Julia Engelmann. What’s particularly noticeable about the album is the catchiness that runs through the songs. Although some songs may sound too similar for the ordinary listener, I can’t agree with it. When you are listening to the album, it seems like you deeply delve into love emotions and the songs are really sodden by true feelings.