Born in East Germany, Nina Hagen had already gained a reputation as a flamboyant rock singer by the time she emigrated to the West in 1976, where she formed a band, signed to CBS Germany, and released their debut album, Nina Hagen Band, in 1978. Includes the songs 'Unbeschreiblich', 'Tv-glotzer ( White Punks On Dope)', 'Auf'm Friedhof' and more.
Hagen formed the Nina Hagen Band in West Berlin's Kreuzberg district. In 1978 they released their self-titled debut album, which included the single "TV-Glotzer" (a cover of "White Punks on Dope" by The Tubes, though with entirely different German lyrics), and Auf'm Bahnhof Zoo, about West Berlin's then-notorious Berlin Zoologischer Garten station. The album also included a version of "Rangehn" (approximately, "Go On"), a song she had previously recorded in East Germany, but with different music.
This eccentric rock material, all in English, shows the diversity of her vocal instrument.
NUNSEXMONKROCK, hit the American shores and I was completely blown away by all of it. Even though I had many punk/New Wave albums in my collection, this was really, really different. It wasn't just punk, New Wave or pre-Goth. Even now after some 20 years, this album still sounds SO UNUSUAL and creative. When she wrote it, many of NSMR's songs had heavy political/social overtones and messages for its era. That Hagen then hailed from Communist East Germany informed her talent for satire that's heard all over this album. Anti-World which opens this cauldron of noise deals with religion vs. science. Smack Jack addresses heroin addiction which plagued both East and West Berlin through much of the 70s and 80s. On the songs Cosmo Shiva, UFO and Future Is Now, Nina sings of personal spiritual transformation. Born in Xixax decries the nuclear age.
This is one great album by the German rock diva, perhaps her best. It is more accessible than the debut, offers greater variety and some truly gripping songs. African Reggae is a powerful tour de force and by the way, a dancefloor classic, Wir Leben Immer Noch (Lene Lovich's Lucky Number) is a perfect pop song, and Wenn ich ein Junge war with its somewhat risque lyrics just about bursts with exuberance. Fall In Love mit Mir is another catchy number, but every track has its own charm. The great melodies and intelligent lyrics with enthusiastic playing by her band ensure the classic status of this album. In my opinion, this is her Opus Magnum. It demonstrates what can be achieved by integrating reggae rhythms into a rock format, while the rock songs remain top of the league. Her vocal gymnastics are less in evident than on the debut album, but her voice is still brilliantly utilised. An excellent, timeless classic!
This 1995 release is a tough little CD much like what NinaHagen sounded like in the early 80's. The PUNK sound is back and herwork is all the better for it. Those of us who remember NUNSEXMONKROCK and the self titled NINA HAGEN BAND will appreciate her going back to that rough and tough sound we loved so much! As soon as you stick FREUD EUCH in your CD player Nina will literally blow you away with the first track "(Another junkie), Einfach Nina", with references to those undesirable and contemptible things in life like the neonazi and the yuppie.
Nina Hagen is a unique vocalist, ranging from a coloratura soprano to a guttural alto and phrasing in surprising, dramatically changing ways, so that her performances are musical roller coasters, full of sudden shifts in mood and volume. Singing alternately in German and English, Hagen is backed by rock tracks leaning toward punk on some songs, and by producer Giorgio Moroder's signature Euro-disco synth-dance sounds on others on this 14-track, 74-minute compilation. Want to hear a German-language version of the Tubes' "White Punks on Dope"? How about a performance of "My Way" (also in German) that rivals Sid Vicious' for outrageousness? Ultimately, Nina Hagen may be a period novelty act of the early '80s, a mixture of Toni Basil, Falco, and a hyena. But she gets your attention.
Her 24th album is called “Personal Jesus” including the Derpeche Mode cover as title track. One of the amazing things about Nina Hagen is, you never know what she will do next. From punk to gospel, classic and folk to indian music, Nina Hagen does it all. And she does it with all her heart and soul. Nina got baptised a few years ago, so it was about time to release a religious album about Jesus and God. And here it is called “Personal Jesus”. 13 songs about her love to God and how he loves her back captured on this long player. The musical style on this album varies between soul, jazz, country and gospel. Nina Hagen sings with an awesome jazzy voice that is very strong and powerful. You can tell that she is totally standing behind what she is singing. You can hear and feel the passion she puts into it and the power she gets from that. The album layout is black and white with nice portraits of Nina Hagen as well as the lyrics. This is a wonderful and deeply emotional album, you should definitely give it a try, even if you usually don’t like her.
The easiest approach would be saying you can't think of anything you like about this album, you won't get bored. It's not entirely true; with a very short attention span you might judge this as incredibly crappy pop. It takes a few listens from a completely unprepared listener to understand this goes way beyond pop.