I first heard Leitmotiv on a compilation of coldwave and goth from Sound Grotesca – the label run by Albert Limones (Nosferatu). Leitmotiv was a French coldwave group that comprised Fred Esquelisse, Martin Galmiche, Luc Tabellion and Siegfried Zeller. Bassist Zeller has a very German-sounding name, so perhaps it’s not so strange that they have a couple of songs in German.

I reckon this is what people like Tout Debord listen to these days – a darker and less murky sound than Joy Division but still very much in the same vein. The group only released two 45s and one 12″ during their time together and these have since become highly collectible, since their were pressed privately on the group’s own label Section 37.

“Helle Stimme Ruhe” came out in 1983 and was given a Spanish release the following year, thanks to Ediciones Milagrosas. Back in the Myspace days a compilation of all their recordings (including compilation tracks) came out on cd via Brouillard Définitif. It’s amazing how “Societies On the Skids” opens like a certain Pixies song that came out two years later.

1981​-​1988 contains 10 tracks and was released in 2007. Although it says it’s been remastered you can hear the vinyl crackle on most tracks, so I guess not.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Sign up to our weekly digest!