gullbuy music review

Malaria! vs. Chicks On Speed and Barbara Morgenstern


Kaltes Klares Wasser


Monika Enterprise


Malaria vs. Chicks On SpeedYears after Kaltes Klares Wasser poured into my life through Chicks On Speed's 'the un-releases' CD, it is still a thrill to hear how they transformed the Malaria! song into something entirely different; as special as the original was.

In the early 80s Malaria! had a dark new wave sound that fit in well with bands of the time like Flowers (on Pop Aural) or The Passions (on Fiction), though Malaria! had a darker side due as much to the deeper voice of the singer as to the viking proportions of the songs.

There was a Polish band Armia that released 'Triodante' in 1994. Armia had that same type of sound, as did the NYC band Ut. Unlike Armia, Ut also was comprised of women. The one thing Armia and Ut lack is an advocate like Barbara Morgenstern.

Barbara Morgenstern has put out many singles, remixes for other artists, and appearances on compilations. she also has driven the resurgence of interest in Malaria!, resulting in the reissue of Malaria! material, and a compilation of covers called 'Malaria! vs.' Barbara's cover of Kaltes Klares Wasser is much closer to the original in music and structure, though it is (like most of Barbara's intriguing work) less immediate and a bit calmer than the original.

I like both sides of this single for different reasons. For out and out 'I love this' appeal, I like the Chicks On Speed track. For clever interpretation of the original with elements intact I like the Barbara Morgenstern version. Plus, the Barbara Morgenstern version is not as over-exposed as the Chicks On Speed version.

Add to the in-your-face sleeve of this single and you have a hard to find item that fans of either of these artists would do well to find.

---Carl, July 30, 2002