Laibach: The Sound of Music (Mute) | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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The Sound of Music


Dec 21, 2018 Laibach Bookmark and Share

How do you solve a problem like Maria? Easy if you’re Slovenia’s most unique, challenging and politically charged musical ensemble in its entire history. The collective known as Laibach have been creating mostly avant-garde, left field music for the best part of four decades having put out their first release back in 1983.

However, not many come close on the audacious scale as their take on Rodgers and Hammerstein’s score from The Sound of Music. Unintentionally conceived after the band were invited to North Korea in 2015, which coincidentally marked the 50th anniversary of the film. Laibach performed a number of songs from the film during the show in Pyongyang, and from that the idea to recreate The Sound of Music in their own inimitable style was born.

Of course this isn’t the first time Laibach have reworked “the classics” as it were. Their breakthrough single in the UK was a cover of Opus’ 1984 smash hit “Live Is Life,” while the band’s takes on “Sympathy For the Devil” and “Jesus Christ Superstar” are also the stuff of legends.

So it shouldn’t come as any surprise to learn they’ve pulled this off impeccably. The title track and “Climb Ev’ry Mountain” revised into semi-orchestral mantras with an industrial undercurrent, while “Maria / Korea” becomes an homage to that groundbreaking trip three years ago. There’s a couple of additions to the soundtrack in the shape of Korean folk standards “Arirang” and “The Sound of Gayageum” along with an address from the North Korean minister for Cultural Relations tagged onto the end. (

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