Sehnsucht is the second album by Rammstein. It was released on 25 August 1997, in Germany and on 13 January 1998, in the USA. Whilst being the second album of the band, Sehnsucht was their debut album in the USA, and was promoted as such.
|Album by Rammstein|
|Recorded:||Temple Studios, Malta,|
1996 - 1997
|Released:||25 August 1997|
13 January 1998 (US)
|Format:||CD, Cassette, Vinyl, Digital|
XIII Bis (France)
Pre-production for the album started around September 1996, which was followed by a second pre-production in Berlin, this time including a producer. The album recording started in mid-November 1996 in the Temple Studios in Malta, followed by additional recordings in the Wisselord Studio in Hilversum, Netherlands. The album has again been mixed by Ronald Prent at Chateau Du Pape in Hamburg. 13 songs are known to have been recorded, which includes the 11 songs on the album, plus Das Modell and Kokain, which were both released on the single for Das Modell. Additionally it is known that the band was still working on their old song Schwarzes Glas, but it's unknown if a studio version of it has been recorded in these sessions.
Around January/February '97, the band played five songs of the album to journalists in a studio in Berlin, Prenzlauer Berg. Two of the premiered songs were Du hast and Bestrafe mich.
The album was first scheduled to be released in April. But "due to small delays in the proudction process" it was re-scheduled for the end of May. From May it was re-scheduled again to August. In an interview Olli was asked about re-scheduling the album:
Wir hatten Probleme beim Mischen und so hat das noch um 2 Monate verschoben, und dadurch, daß man besser im Sommer keine Platten herausbringt haben wir uns entschlossen das Album erst Ende des Sommers im August zu veröffentlichen. Das waren nur noch Mischprobleme und die Covergestaltung die noch fehlten. Deshalb haben wir jetzt auch schon eine Single veröffentlicht, um ein bißchen die Zeit zu überbrücken.
We had problems with mixing and so that postponed for 2 months, and because it is better not to release records in the summer we decided to release the album at the end of the summer in August. There were only mixing problems and the cover design that were still missing. That's why we have already released a single to bridge the time a bit.
The band recorded a total of 13 new songs, and two alternate version of album songs. Except for one of those alternate versions, all songs have been released:
- Das Modell - released on the single Das Modell
- Kokain - released on the single Das Modell
- Alter Mann (Special Version) - released on the single Das Modell
- Engel (Till)
The promotional copy of the album came with a promotional folder, of which the following text is taken from:
Am Anfang war der Terror. Metal und Techno in verführerischer Mischung, dazu aus Deutschland.
|English Deepl translation|
In the beginning was the terror. Metal and techno in seductive mixture, in addition from Germany.
For the release in the USA, the label Slash Records gave promotional sheets out, which had the following info:
|Little is known of the six East German men who have ascended to international fame and notoriety under the moniker of Rammstein. There is speculation, for instance, as to whether the band takes its name from the site of an inordinate number of plane crashes in its homeland, or from its more literal translation: A battering ram made of stone. A "ramming stone." Rammstein.
As it happens, either would be appropriate. The relentless "Tanzmetall" (figure that one out for yourself, schatze) pulse of the band's sound and the unparalleled pyromania of its live show have accounted in equal measure to Rammstein's meteoric rise to fame in its native Germany. Formed in 1993 by an assemblage of factory-weary proletarians raised in East Berlin and the more remote Schwerin, Rammstein wasted no time in crafting a distinctive voice: The unerring utilitarian synchronicity of Richard Kruspe and Paul Landers' guitars locked with the bolt-tight rhythmic backbone of bassist Oliver Riedel and drummer Christoph Schneider, providing an unshakable foundation. The crowning touches that distinguished Rammstein from...well, anyone were the keyboards of Flake (pronounced flah-keh) and the booming basso profundo poetics of onetime Olympic swimmer Till Lindemann. "Our style came out of knowing exactly what we didn't want," explains Flake. "We didn't want to make American funk music, or punk. That's something we couldn't do at all. We realized we could only make the music we make."
Word of Rammstein's "Horror Romanticist" blend of theatre and muzik spread like wildfire. Literally: Lindemann would sing entire songs engulfed in flame from head to toe. This obsession with fire meshed perfectly with the band's driving operatic melodies and dramatically intoned tales of lost love and longing, tragedy and deviance, dominance and submission. "The main thing is love in all its shapes and variations," countered Till Lindemann. Adds Flake, "They are completely normal, romantic lyrics." This was naturally taken to be with a grain of salt, coming from a man who set himself on fire nightly and the colleague who would break fluorescent lighting tubes over his bare chest. However, a passage from any number of Rammstein lyrics would bear out Lindemann's claim. Take, for instance, this rough translation of a snippet from the title track of Rammstein's 1995 debut, Herzeleid (or "Heartache"): "Protect one another from heartache/For short is the time you will have together/For although it may be many years/It will someday seem to have passed like minutes..." (Forgive the somewhat rusty translation).
On some level, it all struck a primal and resounding chord with the German populace. Herzeleid built relentlessly on the groundswell created by the band's live reputation, ultimately providing bonafide entry into the European mainstream. Scaling the heights of the German charts (and remaining there until the release of the second Rammstein LP some two years later), the album inadvertently introduced the band to the world outside the Germany/Switzerland/Austria region: When it came time to make a Rammstein video, the band innocently sent copies of Herzeleid to its favorite filmmakers. One responded: David Lynch. While Lynch replied that he was too busy working on Lost Highway to direct a Rammstein video, he had become so enamored with the record that he eventually included two songs from Herzeleid in the film and soundtrack: "Rammstein" and "Heirate Mich" (or "Marry Me").
Herzeleid's increasing success and visibility did not come without a measure of controversy, specifically accusations of Nazism and fascism leveled at Rammstein by the German media. The origin of these allegations is unclear. Some said Herzeleid's cover art—the six members of Rammstein shirtless, buff and shiny against a backdrop of giant yellow flowers—suggested the band members as progenitors of a new master race. "That's complete rubbish," says Flake. "It's just a photo." Stranger still, others decried a similarity between Lindemann's rolling r's and Adolf Hitler's diction (!). Whatever. The fact remains that the band has never penned a political lyric and continues to laugh off such conjecture. "If we were Spanish," says Landers, "Then we wouldn't have to deal with this hassle. If some of the journalists want to stick us in the Nazi corner, we can't help it. It's the same they did with Kraftwerk twenty years ago..."
As Rammstein's second album, Sehnsucht (or "Longing"), was released, the band was headlining throughout Europe to crowds of 10,000 to 30,000. Sehnsucht entered the German charts at #1 immediately upon its August release, and came very close to doing to the same in Austria and Switzerland. Within weeks, entries on other countries' charts had Sehnsucht rubbing elbows with Prodigy, Radiohead and the Rolling Stones on Billboard's cumulative Eurochart.
By the time you read this, Sehnsucht will have gone double-platinum in Germany, platinum in Switzerland, gold in Austria, and will be ascending the top 100 of Finland, Sweden and Hungary. Rammstein will have also completed a debut U.S. mini-tour, introducing a scaled down version of its pyro-psycho pastiche to a routing suspiciously similar to the Sex Pistols' first American jaunt: Tulsa OK, Texas...concluding not in San Francisco, but in Los Angeles, where the band blew away a capacity crowd of KMFDM and Lords Of Acid fans (Literally and figuratively; there were quite a few explosions lighting up the Hollywood Palladium that night). What's more, this landmark performance had Rammstein merchandise flying out the door—no mean feat for the opening act on a three-band bill— and U.S. rock luminaries including members of the Foo Fighters and Afghan Whigs re-routing their travel itineraries to catch the band's L.A. debut.
All this and Rammstein has yet to release a record in the U.S. Sehnsucht will be issued Stateside by February 1998 on Slash Records. Whether or not the drum 'n' bass interludes of the title track, the haunting whistling and eerie children's choir of the German #1 single "Engel" ("Angel"), or the riff-driven techno-metal of "Du Hast" ("You Hate"—also a top 10 hit in Germany) will resonate with an American audience is anyone's guess. One thing, however, is certain: Rammstein will not compromise. Fire codes will be subverted, lyrics will remain in German, videos will continue to push the envelope. Otherwise, it just wouldn't be Rammstein.
"We can't help the way we are," says Lindemann.
Or as Landers so succinctly puts it: "Rammstein is Rammstein." </poem>
On 15 April 2023, Rammstein released a short teaser to their social media channels, showing the album's various front covers along to the intro of Bück dich. A day later, another teaser was posted, with footage of the band rehearsing Engel on 18 April 1997. The caption of that video announced the "Sehnsucht Anniversary Edition". On 17 April 2023, a third teaser followed, including footage from Live aus Berlin and the announcement, that the pre-order of the anniversary edition would start the next day, 19 April. The Anniversary Edition of Sehnsucht was made available for pre-order around 10 AM CEST.
The Anniversary Edition is scheduled for release on June 9th, 2023.
Besides being remastered, the album features an exclusive new mix of Spiel mit mir, titled "2023 Mix", and a 40 page booklet with previously unreleased photos of Gottfried Helnwein. The album is available in the following formats:
- LP black
- LP white (exclusive to RammsteinShop and EMP)
Two promotional CDrs surfaced on Discogs. Their origin and exact content is unknown.
The CDr for Sehnsucht was made to promote the 2001 reissue of Sehnsucht. It is dated 3 January 2001 and marked as "For Promotional Use Only - Not For Resale".
The CDr for Sehnsucht (Instrumentals) includes instrumental tracks of all songs and was made to promote the 2001 reissue of Sehnsucht. It is dated 23 February 2001 and marked as "For Internal Use Only - Not For Resale". Additionally, a handwritten note *UNMASTERED* is present.
|CD / Digital|
USA / Japan 1997
France XIII Bis Digipak
Australia 1998 / 2001
Australia 2001 bonus CD
Over the years the album was released in many different versions all over the world. This table is showing you the main different versions of the album:
|1997-08-25||Germany||Motor Music||CD||Jewel case||Print on jewel case||All|
|1997-08-25||Germany||Motor Music||CD||Jewel case||Print on jewel case
Black paper in front to censor the artwork
|1997||Germany||Motor Music||CD||Jewel case||Tour edition with t-shirt and sticker
Print on jewel case
|1997||France||XIII Bis||CD||Jewel case||Print on jewel case||All|
|1997||France||XIII Bis||CD||Digipak||Numbered glossy digipak||Till|
|1997||Türkiye||Motor Music||Cassette||Jewel case||Schneider|
|1997||Mexico||Motor Music||CD||Jewel case||12. Engel (English Version)
13. Du hast (English Version)
|1997||Mexico||Motor Music||CD||Jewel case||"Milenium Fase II" o-card||12. Engel (English Version)
13. Du hast (English Version)
|1998-01-13||United States||Slash||CD||Jewel case||Has credits for Stripped as track 12 in the booklet||12. Engel (English Version) (hidden)
13. Du hast (English Version) (hidden)
|1998-01-13||United States||Slash||CD||Jewel case||12. Engel (English Version)
13. Du hast (English Version)
|1998-01-13||United States||Slash||Cassette||Jewel case||Schneider|
|1998-01-13||United States||Slash||Cassette||Jewel case||12. Engel (English Version) (hidden)
13. Du hast (English Version) (hidden)
|1998-01-13||United States||Slash||Cassette||Jewel case||12. Engel (English Version)
13. Du hast (English Version)
|1998-07-01||Japan||Polydor||CD||Jewel case||12. Engel (English Version) - 04:25
13. Du hast (English Version) - 03:54
|1998||Germany||Motor Music||CD||Jewel case||Print on jewel case||12. Du riechst so gut '98 - 04:24||Flake|
|1998||France||XIII Bis||CD||Digipak||Numbered||12. Rammstein (Eskimos & Egypt Radio Edit) - 03:40
13. Du riechst so gut '98 - 04:24
14. Du hast (Remix by Clawfinger) - 05:24
|1998||United States||Slash||CD||Jewel case||12. Stripped (hidden) - 04:26||Schneider|
|1998||United States||Slash||Cassette||Jewel case||12. Stripped (hidden)||Schneider|
|1998||Australia||PolyGram||CD||Jewel case||Print on jewel case||12. Stripped - 04:44||Olli|
|2001-01-03||United Kingdom||Universal Music
|2001-02-23||United Kingdom||Universal Music
|CD||Plastic sleeve||Instrumentals CDr|
|2001||Australia||PolyGram||CD||Jewel case||Sticker on jewel case||12. Stripped - 04:44
CD 2: Asche zu Asche single
|2001||Germany||Universal Music||CD||Jewel case||Print on jewel case
Partially English lyrics in the booklet
|2015-12-04||Europe||Universal Music||Vinyl||Gatefold||As part of the XXI box set||Remastered||Flake|
|2017-12-08||Europe||Universal Music||Vinyl||Gatefold||Standalone release||Remastered||Flake|
|Unknown||South Korea||Slash||Cassette||Jewel case||Golden "Sehnsucht" print on the cover||Till|
- Sehnsucht was the debut album of the band in the US. Herzeleid was released 10 months later.
- The French jewel case version of the album has French translations of all song titles in the tracklist and French lyrics translations for Engel and Du hast on the inside of the inlay.
- All French versions of the album incorrectly write Spielt mit mir in the tracklist.
- Polish cassettes of the album included a short Polish introduction to the album, spoken by Till.
Hallo! Cześć jesteśmy Rammstein, pozdrawiamy całą Polskę i życzymy wielu miłych wrażeń w słuchaniu naszej nowej płyty pod tytułem "Sehnsucht".
Hello! Hi, we are Rammstein. We're greeting all the Polish and we wish you a lot of nice experiences while listening to our new album called "Sehnsucht".
- There are at least two versions of the cassette tape. One containing the spoken intro and another one where it is not present, but the silence before the first song is as long as if it was there.
- The stock photos for the artwork were shot at a beach in Miami, USA and Saint Martin, French West Indies.
- The booklet shows single pictures of each band member. The photos were taken by Gottfried Helnwein in his castle in 1996. Each band member's face is painted white with various devices attached to it. The instruments used are surgical tools from the original collection of famous German surgeon Ferdinand Sauerbruch (1874-1951), who was head of the surgical department at the Berlin hospital Charité from 1928 to 1949. While the surgical tools are antique, Paul Landers seems to have a lung retractor in his mouth, Richard Kruspe appears to have trachea retractors in front of his eyes, Christoph Schneider seems to have some kind of spreader attached to his mouth, and the masks that Till Lindemann and Flake Lorenz are wearing could possibly have been used for anaesthesia or for breathing in the pressure chamber Sauerbruch developed.
- The trachea retractor "glasses" worn by Till were also used on the album cover of "Blackout" by the Scorpions.
- Gottfried Helnwein is selling art prints of the artwork's photographs through his online store.
The certified units are based on the minimum need of sales to receive the award.
Music & Lyrics by RAMMSTEIN
except [Sehnsucht] & [Stripped]
Music by RAMMSTEIN/Orgasm Death Gimmick
Lyrics by RAMMSTEIN
Produced by Jacob Hellner with RAMMSTEIN
Mixed by Ronald Prent
Programming by RAMMSTEIN
Additional Programming by Marc Stagg
Female Voice by Bobo
Written by Martin Gore and Published by EMI
Blackwood Music Inc. (BMI)/EMI Music Puglishing
Ltd. (PRS)/Grabbing Hands Music (PRS)
Mastered by Bjorn Engelmann at The Cutting Room, Stockholm
Taken from the compilation "For The Masses". 1998
Portrait Photography by Gottfried Hellnwein
Landscape by Premium Stock Photography
Sleeve Design by Dirk Rudolph
All Songs published by BMG/Ufa
Management: Emanuel Fialik
Contact & Merchandising:
Postfach 540 101
RAMMSTEIN im Internet:
Motor im Internet:
RAMMSTEIN would like to thank the following companies for their support:
Music Man, ESP, Mesa-Boogie and Shure
- Metal Hammer 12/96, p. 19
- Zillo 9/97, p. 21
- Break Out 8/97, p. 14
- Metal Hammer 3/97, p. 30
- Metal Hammer 4/97
- Metal Hammer 5/97
- Sonic Seducer 1997, p. 9
- Sehnsucht CDr on Discogs
- Sehnsucht (Instrumentals) CDr on Discogs
- Mucke und Mehr 1998
- IFPI Swiss certifications
- IFPI Austria certifications
- Music Canada certifications
- BVMI certifications
- RIAA certifications
- BPI certifications