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Rammstein – Making Of The Video "Sonne".
(From "Made In Germany" DVD, 2011).
English subtitles.
Age rating: 16+.


J.H. – Joern Heitmann (Director).
I. – Interviewer.
A. – Actor.
S.S. – Survey Squad.
M.A. – Make-up artist.
T.L. – Till Lindermann (Vocalism).
R.Z.K. – Richard Z. Kruspe (Solo-guitar).
P.H.L. – Paul Heiko Landers (Rhythm-guitar).
C.S. – Christoph Schneider (Drums).
C.F.L. – Christian Flake Lorenz (Keyboard).
O.R. – Oliver Riedel (Bass-guitar).

P.H.L.: Once on his home computer, Oliver the bassist, edited scenes together from a Snow White video. He quickly just turned on the music while the film was running. The music didn't at all sound right and we all liked that.

I: A lot of touring, above all in the USA, did this have any influence on the album?

T.L.: No.

C.F.L.: I hope not.

R.Z.K.: No, it was not an influence.

C.S.: One can say that this was our most difficult album. It is often said that the third album is the most difficult. We had to write completely new songs. There was nothing left over from the band's initial years. We were busy for almost two years with it. We had to travel to many places in order to acquire inspiration. For example to Heiligendamm on the Baltic Sea and to Miraval in Southern France.

C.F.L.: Making the new album was a lot of fun. We really had the time to do what we wanted to do. No one told us how we have do this. We could think something out and play. We went to this funny house in Heiligendamm, the Weimar House, where the sea beautifully washes onto the shore.

O.R.: The atmosphere there was really lovely, a kind of fall atmosphere. Perhaps one now knows a bit what to expect from the album. There are two quiet ballads which perhaps represent this a bit.

C.F.L.: At the end we realized that we didn't have any sinister songs. Everything was nice and beautiful. There is anything wrong with this but many people expect something a bit darker from us. We had to return to Berlin and there it was really miserable. In a cellar and then we also had sinister songs.

R.Z.K.: (In dressing room) Good day.

T.L.: (In dressing room) Good luck (laugh).

M.A.: (In dressing room) Could you please sit here?

R.Z.K.: (In dressing room) Okay.

R.Z.K.: The first album was of course somehow... the beginning, being together, the first encounter we had with one another. This first energy which we had was very rebellious and incredibly... aggressive. This is the type of energy we had when we were first together. The second album was somehow more of a pop album, more thought through, more constructed and more deliberate. And the third album is somehow a mixture out of the two (laugh).

O.R.: In terms of structure there are also a few things with respect to electronics, also the fine finishing, and how it is mixed makes it into what it's now.

C.S.: I'm not the type who says, okay now we're hot. That last happened three or so years ago and now we always have to quickly make another record and tour to stay hot. You can see that a lot in the music business but we realized that you don't have to do this. You can also remain relaxed and be confident about the fact that you are doing quality work. People don't forget that.

C.F.L.: This time we in principle tried to think ahead and wanted to make songs which we would still like in two years.

J.H.: (On shooting stage) (He said to Till) Please give me the sixteen pictures. That means that you also actually have to fit your whole body's movement to this rhythm, it normally works automatically, but everything tends to go very slowly, so that the effect comes across decently.

P.H.L.: (On shooting stage) Is the camera ready?

S.S.: (On shooting stage) Playback. Camera.

(Shooting video "Sonne" with Till on screen).

J.H.: I want everything to be perfect. For me this has a lot to do with details. This is always the case. When I see films with really great sets and costumes, we're making a big fuss here for a music video, but when one really thinks about big productions, Hollywood films, then I see... huge battles. Battles with 3000 men who are all in costumes. You can't see if any particular person really has the right gloves on, and whether he has really tied his shoes. But you can be certain that they all have the perfect sword, the perfect costume and the perfect make-up, even if you don't see it in the turmoil of the battle. You would see if one of them were not perfectly attired. The look in its entirety is what has to harmonize above everything else. This begins with the moment we begin to think about the idea and extends to the time when we do the touch-up work. When we put the label on the videocassette. Up until this moment you have to give one hundred percent, and then, if you do it this way, you can still be happy two years later when you see the video.

P.H.L.: The problem for the video was that we had to be made smaller because Snow White is about 1.90 m and since we are supposed to be dwarves...

T.L.: Paul has to be made a little bit bigger (Paul & Till is laughs).

P.H.L.: So that my height reaches 70 cm. The size of a dwarf (Paul & Till is laughs).

C.F.L.: "Mutter" is of course perfectly made to be an album title (laugh). We actually wanted to name it "Herzeleid" since all of the songs have to do with heartache. One song is called "Mein Herz brennt", My Heart Is Burning. Mutter is also born without a heart, it's in the text. Then we thought we'd name the album "Herzeleid". Then we realized that there is already a "Herzeleid" album, and unfortunately it is also by us.

P.H.L.: In contrast to the previous album more nature can again be heard and we tried not to use so many sequences, that is not so many synthesizers - for the layman. We tried to sound a bit more raw again, whereby little could prevent Till from singing a bit better than he did on the previous album.

T.L.: But the strophes are still strained, deep and fine and good, as they should be, as one expects.

(Shooting of scene "At table with Snow White").

S.S.: (On shooting stage) Camera! Speed! Eat and look at me.

C.S.: We also have to say that it was very difficult to develop a video idea for this song. Our thoughts went in many different directions, and originally the song was written for a boxer, but, for certain reasons, this idea never became a reality, but the text was of course really intended for that

T.L.: I had the vision that someone walks in wearing one of those robes and a hood, the audience is yelling. He than enters the hall through this tunnel and approaches the ring with the riff. Just as he enters the ring he lifts his arms exclaiming "Here comes the Sun", the sun is here and will not set. He essentially is prepared to level everything in his way.

C.S.: So it was very difficult to project a different story for the song, but I think that this one with Snow White will work.

C.F.L.: Actually it's a really nice story with the dwarves and Snow White, but what we turn it into - we're just up to no good...

P.H.L.: For the "Sun" song we had 40, no, I'm exaggerating, 38 video ideas and one was better than the other, really unbelievably good ideas.

O.R.: So we saw a Snow White film and thought that it fits really beautifully, that Snow White is somehow the sun for the dwarves and how the dwarves, how we, worship Snow White, serve Snow White, and that this is our fulfillment, but also our pain and suffering.

J.H.: The first thing which one naturally does when one thinks about a Snow White concept is to open the Grimm's fairytales and to reread and immerse oneself in the tale. There is a scene when Snow White is dead and a dwarf spends years watching over her. She doesn't decay. They carry her to the highest of their seven peaks and guard her. Then a prince comes by and wants to take Snow White with him because he has fallen in love with her on the spot, but the dwarf says that he will not give her up, not even for all the gold in the world. The prince says, then just give her to me, I have to have her. And the dwarf says he can't do this, because she is his sunshine.

(Shooting of scene "In bathroom").

J.H.: (On shooting stage) Kneel down properly. Do you see that?

C.F.L.: (On shooting stage) ...a little bit indignant?

J.H.: (On shooting stage) ...rather shocked.
...and mourn.

C.F.L.: We've grown emotionally dependent on Snow White and she dies from an overdose of the gold we've won. We mourn her, are part-way relieved, and then she wakes up again, and the whole trouble starts all over again. This time it's much worse.

T.L.: She's pretty mean. She's not the nice Snow White from the fairytale. We now twist the story a bit.

P.H.L.: (In dressing room) (He said to actor) Snow White, what's your name?

A.: (In dressing room) Robert.

P.H.L.: (In dressing room) (He said to actor) Robert, you see? Now this question is cleared up.

P.H.L.: When the band learned that someone's ass would have to be spanked everyone unanimously and oddly decided that it should be mine (laugh), I also can't explain why this is the case...

J.H.: (On shooting stage) When something breaks, it breaks. These are the things that you can actually stand on. When you come around you then have to run with it. It is supposed to look heavy.

T.L.: (On shooting stage) As I said - and I have already asked him - the most important thing is that the poles are fixed in place. So when there is a slope things don't roll off.

J.H.: (On shooting stage) We will clarify that again and test it - how to really run with it.

(The group is raising coffin with Snow White).

C.S.: (On shooting stage) On the count of three: One, two, three.

O.R.: (On shooting stage) No, down, down! It's so heavy!

(The group is pulling down coffin).

(The group is carrying coffin with Snow White on screen).

C.S.: The whole thing was put together in the studio and is like a real fairytale set from early DEFA days, one could say (laugh).

J.H.: The old German fairytale films, the old DEFA and UFA productions, they had to get by using really simple tricks. Anyway I favor these simple end-camera shots, which means that many objects and structures have to be built in small and in large and that we have to work with precision so that we don't make any mistakes. Everything has to be built and measured precisely down to the centimetre, so that the proportions are correct.

P.H.L.: (On shooting stage) Here Snow White was filmed. As you can see, everything is smaller, look, and one almost hits the beam if one wants to.
And now we are in the large house which is exactly the same. There is the table, and it is bigger, and now in principle one thinks that we are small. It's as easy as this.

O.R.: As you can see, we don't have white beards and pointed caps on. We're dwarves in the sense that we are smaller than Snow White, but we are serious dwarves.

J.H.: A problem which I faced from the beginning was that showing Rammstein as dwarves doesn't exactly fit together with the Rammstein image and what they stand for. That is why I wanted to juxtapose Rammstein as small people only later in the video to the star. This would be their first appearance in their smaller size, and I don't show them as dwarves but as hard-working little men.

T.L.: (On shooting stage) Who doesn't already have a pick?

P.H.L: (On shooting stage) I don't have a pick.

T.L.: (On shooting stage) Here you go Paul.

J.H.: (On shooting stage) You know that you have to expect something really bad now...

T.L.: (On shooting stage) Schneider will have to tell us – or do we figure that out by ourselves?

J.H.: (On shooting stage) You have already seen that from the outside, one look is enough.

P.H.L.: (On shooting stage) Can he turn around?

J.H.: (On shooting stage) Yes, he can do that. He doesn't need to talk.

P.H.L. & T.L.: (On shooting stage) But he can show us - otherwise it's not logical.

S.S.: (On shooting stage) Camera. Speed and please.
Come in faster. Perfect - the whole lot - perfect! Thank you, that was it.

P.H.L.: For the professional musician, there are several stages, the first is writing music, arranging music, rehearsing, making videos, record the albums, mix the albums, thinking out a show, going on tour. Those are the eight things and in general there are always a few things which he is better in and a few things which he is worse in. This changes from year to year.

T.L.: For me the best part is recording my voice, It's really nice to do when the atmosphere is good. France was fantastic, from the balcony you can see vineyards. because that is the direct creative process.

R.Z.K: Songwriting for me is simply absolutely the most important process, and also the most fulfilling. Because it is about a medium. That is where the real work lies because I'm so deep into the music. The best thing is when a song is finished, when you say, okay that is the song, that is how it should be and now it is finished. That's a totally wonderful experience.

C.S.: I really enjoy recording the material - as the band's drummer. The time before is of course also a lot of fun, the rehearsals, where one comes up with the songs, where they originate and mature.

O.R.: I see it as a whole process, but despite this I prefer to tour, I mean to reproduce as opposed to produce.

C.F.L.: Luckily it automatically alternate. Exactly when you're sick of touring you go into the studio. When the studio really gets on your nerves you can go on tour again. In this respect change is a part of the natural course of things.

J.H.: (On shooting stage) (He said to Oli) Camera. And action. And jump. Thanks.
And turn around. And Oli get up. And turn around again. Very good.

R.Z.K: You are a part of a machinery and the music really lets you know where it wants to go, which direction it wants to take. Specially with respect to things having to do with sound it is the case that when you have a song, the song lets you know, music, for example, lets you know, if the song should be stately, aggressive or rhythmic - whatever. It always tells you, and when you recognize that, when you are sensitized to this and recognize this, you can't do anything wrong. We got this wrong in the beginning. We thought we should try to press into a certain direction. You can't do that. You can only follow.

O.R.: Because we have been making music together for a while, we already know how the whole process works, and we relate to each other differently. Each person has their own particular area of specialization. One doesn't need to fight for a particular position. Because of this it's all a bit easier.

C.F.L.: Perhaps in time we'll learn that not everyone has to concern themselves with everything - it will still be good. Now if we look for a photo or something, then all 6 of us do sit together and say, no, there is a pimple on the ear, we can't use that. Then it is indeed okay and the discussion takes forever. Because of things like this it is difficult to work together.

R.Z.K: The problem, or rather the good thing with Rammstein has always been that we decided everything together. All six of us have always a tremendous amount of time, but of course this takes that we have reached a point. Now we have realized where we need to divide up the tasks - talents in the band there are certain strengths, and we have to learn to accept this.

P.H.L.: Which simply have to be supported… It has to be fun. That you have to do something. When you get the feeling in this business, which can easily happen but without having fun. Then you do what you like to do. In some hotels there are revolving doors. You can compare it with a revolving door. You enter one and push, it stops. Which rotate by themselves, and when you want to get yourself into.

R.Z.K: This is not the type of situation to express himself, I am a person who wants I have the strong need to say who needs to communicate. Of course takes place through music, I want to tell you something and this It's very simple, since music is my medium. Because that's how it is.

T.L.: This will remain my driving force, a type of perfection I think that slowly we have attained in how we work together in the way we deal with one another, which is very important. And with the producer it has been a very productive relationship. Our relationship has grown much deeper; was actually a lot of fun. This time the beginning like it was before. It wasn't an odyssey as I said in terms of time, It was an odyssey, was much more relaxed than before. But collectively working together to the point in the next 20 years... (laugh)

C.F.L.: I think that somehow we'll get Fortunately I can knock on wood - yet reached the limit of my creativity. that's not wood - that I haven't It's rather the opposite, to share everything, that one isn't able and so many ideas. because there are so many people before one is very old.

(Photosession on screen).

J.H.: (On shooting stage) The limit certainly can't be reached. You are finished (laughs).

R.Z.K: (On shooting stage) Thank you, you are finished. All's well that ends well.


Text by Shman.


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