Vom Selben Stern: Neue Version Limited Edition
Ich + Ich, a duo comprised of singer Adel Tawil and producer Annette Humpe, established themselves as one of Germany's most promising new pop acts with their eponymous album debut in 2005. The album spawned a series of singles, including the Top Ten hits "Du Erinnerst Mich an Liebe" and "Dienen," and a bunch of sold-out concert dates. In addition, it was refreshing to see a guy-girl pop duo in which the guy is the one doing the singing while the girl is the one producing the music rather than the other way around. As impressive as Ich + Ich's debut album was, however, their second album, Vom Selben Stern, is even more impressive, fulfilling much of their debut's promise and firmly establishing the duo as one of Germany's top homegrown pop acts. The musical style of Ich + Ich mixes sharp electro-pop beats and effects with drums, guitar, and strings, plus straightforward verse-chorus-verse arrangements. It's a delicate pop/rock balance. Humpe never tries too hard to be cutting-edge in her beatmaking, yet her productions have a modern touch that makes them sound fully up to date and at times a little ahead of the curve. Moreover, while the songs are adult-oriented in their moods and themes -- songs about life and emotion, more melancholy than fun-spirited -- the youthful vigor of Tawil and the production wizardry of Humpe transcend the traditional boundaries of adult contemporary music. This is extremely well-crafted music with widespread appeal, and in an age where most pop acts are targeting an international audience, that Ich + Ich sing in German rather than English makes their music all the more appealing. Were they to sing in English, it's easy to imagine them breaking into the international pop market. Highlights are plentiful on Vom Selben Stern, above all the title track, which boasts a punchy dance-friendly beat, a transcendent chorus, and an endearing bit of harmonica late in the song. "So Soll Es Bleiben" is similarly anthemic, opening beautifully with spare guitar and electronics before building to dizzying heights of intensity. "Stark" and "Wenn Ich Tot Bin" are more downcast -- essentially counterpoint ballads to the triumphant couple of aforementioned highlights -- but no less enjoyable. ~ Jason Birchmeier, Rovi
Track samples provided courtesy of iTunes
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