More than a tribute album to the late great Gabriel Delgado - but a compelling journey through 40-years of the band’s history.
For music lovers across the globe the German electronic duo DAF is one thing in
particular: the result of a symbiotic and simultaneously disruptive connection between longtime band members Robert Görl and Gabriel Delgado. These exceptional artists’ big screen worthy squabbles couldn’t hold back the explosive combo over the long haul.
Only Gabi Delgado’s death in March 2020 – just when Görl and Delgado had set out to record a new album – would put a painful end to this felicitous collaboration.
“We were just about to go back into the studio together. Everything had been arranged, but then Gabi’s sudden death put a kibosh on that,” Görl recalls, adding that he also had artist and producer Sylvie Marks’ energetic support to thank for the album being released despite that as she went into the studio with him to record the album.
For Robert Görl this album with the telling name Nur noch Einer (Down to One) is more than a tribute to his late bandmate. Opinions differ on whether Görl and Delgado were ever friends, but: “Gabi and I loved each other, even if it was perhaps a love-hate relationship,” says Görl, who delves into the depths of the time they shared together on Nur noch Einer, also as a way of bidding farewell to Delgado.
Given that in the 40 year history of DAF the division of labor was strictly defined, with Delgado overseeing the lyrics and Görl the music, the current album is musically 110 percent DAF – uncompromising, edgy, driving and compelling. That is in part due to the fact that a large portion of the sequences included on the album are from the 80s. In his search for DAF’s musical and original soul, composer and producer Görl rummaged through old recordings and found tapes from the 80s that included as yet unreleased sequences. “I immediately drove over to Gabi’s and we were hooked because there were a few real dandies in there. It was worth keeping those tapes protected for so long. They were even packed airtight, just waiting to be reborn.” These sequences are the foundation of Nur noch Einer – and are so typically DAF. The path to making the new album was laid out clearly in front of the markedly different bandmates, except for the lyrics, which Gabi wanted to improvise in the studio as he had always done – or would
"Following Gabi’s death it took me a very long time to gain clarity about how it should continue,” says Görl. Replacing Delgado with another singer was never an option. “And then I thought: ‘barely anyone knows Gabi as well as I do.’ So I wrote and recorded the lyrics myself. Sometimes it was like he was with me in those moments; I effectively sensed him. Yet it was never my intention to copy him. No one would have bought that anyway. Nonetheless, some of the lyrics turned out like Gabi would have done them, but always with a heavy dose of me to them.”
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