Review: Cold In Berlin ‘The Body Is The Wound’ EP

Cold In Berlin, what is that name indicative of? What images spring to mind? For me, it’s David Bowie’s classic trilogy (his best work bar none) that was recorded in the German city of the same name, some icy cold death rock possibly. Based on these clues alone then and even before I had listened to a note of music, I knew this was something I had to cover.

Cold In Berlin 'The Body Is The Wound' EP Artwork
Cold In Berlin ‘The Body Is The Wound’ EP Artwork

Forming in 2009 as Death Cigarettes, they put out a self-titled album before changing their name to Cold In Berlin. The band who are a quartet, hail from dear old Blighty, London to be exact. To date they have put out several albums, 2010’s Give Me Walls, 2012’s …And Yet, 2015’s The Comfort Of Loss & Dust and 2019’s Rituals Of Surrender. They have also released a slew of EPs of which The Body Is The Wound is the latest and which finally sees the long-awaited follow-up to the aforementioned Rituals Of Surrender. The EP can also be considered as something of a stopgap before the brand new spanking full-length hits later in the year.

Consisting of four tracks, it opens with Dream One, a fabulous mix of Siouxsie Sioux style vocals and hard rock whose sense of bombast and melodrama reminds one of classic Led Zeppelin, especially with the use of classical style orchestration. A gothic Kashmir? Whatever comparisons you draw, this is an undeniably powerful track that loudly states, ‘we are back!’. Fantastic.

The longest track at 5:18, Found Out continues the Banshees vibe, in fact, I would say if that band were to reunite and make a new album, it may sound similar to what is presented here. I’d like to think that Sioux and Company would listen to Found Out and be inspired enough to bury the hatchet and actually produce something new.

a fabulous mix of Siouxsie Sioux style vocals and hard rock whose sense of bombast and melodrama reminds one of classic Led Zeppelin…

There is a strong driving propulsive feel and the whole time I was listening, I couldn’t help but nod along to its death rock/alt rock inspired loveliness. It’s a muscular piece with tons of attitude ala Germany’s Maggot Heart and features a crisp production courtesy of the one and only Wayne Adams. As good as anything on Tinderbox (my favourite Banshees record) and a personal favourite. 

Spotlight is a little droney in places, even psychedelic and reminded me of Black Math Horseman’s amazing 2022 self-titled EP. I will venture to use a crass colloquialism by saying it’s heavy as fuck with some truly crushing riffs. Moments even recall PJ Harvey, were she ever to front a doom metal band that is, what a dream turn of events that would be!

When Did You See Her Last is another beast of a number with an epic vibe of which ‘80s era Candlemass would have been immensely proud. However, what elevates the track even further are the spectacularly offbeat vocals that remind one of Lydia Lunch at her most chaotic and dangerous, the orchestration helping to enhance its menacing unpredictability. A hell of a way to conclude proceedings.

It looks like my gut instinct and sixth sense were correct when it came to deciding to cover this EP. It’s right up my street with a set of influences that were always guaranteed to pique my interest. It’s also great that they come from my homeland seeing as this will afford me more of an opportunity to see them live. My first experience with Cold In Berlin, it hopefully won’t be my last. I look forward to potentially covering their upcoming fifth full-length album whenever that lands. Fingers crossed.

Label: New Heavy Sounds
Band Links: Official | Facebook | Bandcamp | Spotify | Instagram

Scribed by: Reza Mills