Sebastian Melmoth

Sebastian Melmoth describe themselves as ‘Existential Mysanthropop’. Their brand of darkly poetic art-rock works brilliantly live, verging on performance art with a driving beat. Their recordings are more hypnotic, with mesmerising tales of the wrong. Their releases include 7” vinyl in hand-made covers with limited edition artwork, and now the album In Ruins. We checked them out at a recent gig, and the band’s official album launch night is on Saturday 22nd March at The Stag’s Head in East London. Sebastian Melmoth are Andreas Baader, Ulrike Meinhof, and Jan-Carl Raspe.


Sebastian Melmoth Live @ Rhythm Factory, London

Sebastian Melmoth’s new album In Ruins, is a moody, seductive, slice of art rock that features tracks ranging from the sample-laden, sax-laced, space themed The Engineering of Consent, to the quieter more haunting Miet Mitzvah. Their genre-voyaging work blends drones, drums, chants, slogans and skewed dance skitterishness, into a coherent and accessible, if sometimes creepy, album. The orchestral-style Presley Honey DTT Residential Mix segues into horror film territory. While Prosopagnosia is a claustrophobic tale of obsessiveness “I think about you all the time” - the RLF Mix turns it into a warped haunted house track.

The band are compelling live and we caught up with them at the Rhythm Factory in London’s Whitechapel. Ulrike’s dramatic drumming, mostly with beaters, provides a powerful backbone to the dirty bass, distorted guitar and dramatic performance.

Sebastian Melmoth’s gear includes everything from masks to maracas, and Andreas talked us through it.

Andreas Baader (guitar/vox)

I normally play a Squier Jaguar through a Marshall Valvestate 2000. My pedal chain consists of an Electro-Harmonix Little Big Muff; Boss Overdrive/Distortion OS-2; Hardwire Delay/Looper DL-8; Vox Wah-Wah; and a Boss Digital Delay DD-6. Occasionally, if I’m feeling adventurous I get out some synths: a Korg Kaossilator and a Yamaha Portasound PSS-570 (these can be heard on our recordings).

Ulrike Meinhof (drumz)

Typically uses beaters and plays a Gold Premier Resonator. It’s got lovely art deco detailing, an extra rim inside the bass drum for extra kick and was favourited by Keith Moon. The cymbal stands are vintage 1970s Premier stands and her kick pedal is a Tama Rolling Glide Iron Cobra.

However, she used the house kit at the gig.

Jan-Carl Raspe (bass)

Jan-Carl Raspe’s bass is a scarlet Westone Thunder Bass 1A - in his words: “A heap of shit.”
His pedal is a RedSub Bass Overdrive BOD-2 (a cheap little monster which makes his sound even more fucked up).

Here’s one of the tracks off the album.