Your latest MCD features an unrecognizable Madonna cover (which is the title track, by the way). Frankly, I was absolutely stunned to find her covered by GUG. Why Madonna? How is she related to your art?
Because we do many cover versions that speak to us. Many industrial and gothic bands have covered Madonna like Bigod 20 etc... so this should not be a big shock to you. We pick seminal tracks that we are interested in making Girls Under Glass signature songs like Gsry Numan's "Down in the ParK", Simple Minds "New Gold Dream" and John Carpenter's "Halloween". We are glad you find the Madonna cover unrecognizable as well as that means we are doing the proper job with this cover song.
You might find this question utterly profane. I won't doubt to ask it though, since I'm interested. Speaking about your previous releases, including your last full-lenght "Nightmares" via Van Richter. Could you give us a list of all GUG outputs so far and a short biographical info of your long activity as well?
Here is our output as GUG Chronology:
1986 Girls Under Glass were founded by Thomas Lücke (singer), Hauke Harms (electronics & keyboards) and Zaphor aka Volker Zacharias (guitars)
1987 first record was recorded: HUMUS For this record Dr. Fluch joined the band and played the bass guitar.
1989 Girls Under Glass supported bands such as Fields Of The Nephilim, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry and were just big stars in the german gothic-wave-scene. At this point of time the band was playing togther with two guest musicians (Marcel Zürcher, drummer of Abwärts, Schwansee, Shanghaid Guts) and Olaf O. (Bassplayer)
1989 FLOWERS (second album was recorded). Members: Thomas Lücke (vocals) Zaphor (guitars)Hauke Harms (keyboards), Axel Ermes (bassplayer). Axel joined the band and was integrated into the real band-line up. Axel and Zaphor played at this point of time parrallel in the german cult band CANCER BARRACK
1990 Axel and Zaphor left CANCER BARRACK and concentrated on the third GUG album. Main singer Thomas Lücke left the band and Zaphor take over the singers part. Rodney Orpheus of THE CASSANDRA COMPLEX produced the third GUG album called "Positive" and started a friendship with Zaphor. Zaphor joined in THE CASSANDRA COMPLEX studio and live-lineup and is still working together with Rodney these days. This year was really a year of changes and re-starts. PROJECT PITCHFORK were playing their first Gigs as support band for the Positive-tour.
1992 DARIUS the 4th album was recorded. This is the first record recorded with a real drummer (Marcus Giltes, ex PINK TURNS BLUE). As a new guitar player Girls Under Glass welcomed Raj Sen Gupta.
1993 CHRISTUS was recorded, also with Raj Sen Gupta plus Markus Giltjes. For the following tour Raj left the band and Girls Under Glass were working with Robert Wilcocks of SLEEPING DOGS WAKE & COBALT 60.
1995 CRYSTALS & STONES was recorded as a trio again (Zaphor, Axel, Hauke. The band recorded this record in their new own studio. Die Krupps did a remix of Die Zeit, which became another big club hit in Germany). For this record the band was touring with Robert Wilcocks again. Additional drums on tour were played by Tippi Agogo (musician from Vancouver and close friend to the Legendary Pink Dots and Skinny Puppy musicians-scene)
1997 FIREWALKER was recorded. The hardest record GUG did ever. Totally inspired by the american industrial metal & electro music scene such as NIN, KMFDM, Stabbing Westward, Gravity Kills etc. Girls asked ex KMFDM drummer Rudi Naomi to join the band for the tour. GUG toured together with Deathline Int´l, an german-american-electroact.
1999 The seminal anthology record "Nightmares" and the first ever U.S. release was made. The record includes the biggest hits of GUG's career as well as out of print and new unreleased tracks including a remake of the classic track "Halloween" by John Carpenter.
2001 The strongest GUG material ever which includes the Madonna cover version, Das Ich remix and Wolfsheim vocals track on "Grey in Grey".
How would you briefly characterize your current style? I fail to stick a particular tag, since your music is so multisided and accumulates a great variety of genres.
A combination of Gothic, Industrial, Syhthpop, Aggro, and darkwave
Which culture do you consider GUG to be a part of? Mainstream or Underground? By the way, have you got any serious contacts with other industrial European acts besides DAS ICH? What is your attitude to DEPECHE MODE?
The underground for sure since we are a cult band. We have many contacts as stated above including Testify, Wolfsheim, Die Krupps(Rip), KMFDM and too many more to name. DM are the godfathers of Synth Pop and after now three decades still the most influential band in that genre.
Could you share the lyrical concept of your creativity? Is there any place for ideology in GUG lyrics/appearance?
It is all based on our personal experiences and feelings at the time we create the material. We don't really share one idealogy other than the darkness we mostly cover.
What is your opinion on the current state of international Metal underground if you are aware of it? Any faves?
It still remains strong regardless of the other genres. We like Testify, Godflesh, Sielwolf and even the more commercial stuff like Rammstein.
What labels have you collaborated prior to Van Richter? I wonder how you find VR's activity? Do you believe they are able to provide sufficient promotion for GUG? How many more releases are you going to unleash via VR?
Strangeways was the main label we were with and a brief one record deal with Nuclear Blast. Van Richter has done more for us then all the other labels combined. The only unfortunate thing is that they are all the way over in the states. If you can just go to our webpage there at http://www.vanrichter.net/gug.html you can see all the work they have done for us. We are very pleased with the promotion and marketing of GUG. We hope that VR will release many more records for us in the future including Equilibrium.
How do your live shows look like? What country or region would prefer to visit at this point? What about Eastern Europe, have you ever visited these countries?
We play all our own instruments unlike many bands in the genre. So we have many live musicians when we play out. Our stage show is very powerful and compelling. Believe it or not we have never yet toured the states so of course since we are signed and distributed there this is our number one priority. We would like to play Eastern Europe as well someday
What are the non-musical occupations of GUG members? By the way, are you able to make a living on your music?
No we all have day jobs. Until recent Volker was the main man at a big German marketing company. Axel is a inventor genius that makes midi equipment which we use in GUG as well as he makes for other bands.
What are your creative plans for the next few years? Any major changes to be expected?
We have more records ready to release on VR including in the farther future Minddiver Again we hope to tour the states in support of the VR releases and hard work they have done for us.
Any last words or comments?
Support indie music...buy music before it goes away forever. All our releases are available at http://www.vanrichter.net/directorder.html Thank you for the interview.
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