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| you admire the lions
you despise all sheep
but following lions
makes nothing but sheep
- Jerome Reuter (instruments and vocals, songwriting and arrangements)
- Patrick Damiani (instruments, arrangements and sound design, since 2008)
- Patrick Y. Kleinbauer (Live-bass)
ROME was founded in Luxembourg, in late 2005 as the main output for the songs of Jerome Reuter and joined by Patrick Damiani in early 2008. ROME signed to Sweden's notorious industrial label Cold Meat Industry in 2006.
"One of the peculiarities of Rome is its polyglot nature. Not only in the titles, it falls into the lyrics and, over all, into the samples. German, Italian, French, Spanish... Europe is represented plethoric, even though English is chosen as the universal language."
-- isis, heathenharvest.com, 12/06
¼ 2006: Nera
TrackListing: 1. Der Zeitsturm 2. A Burden of Flowers 3. Reversion 4. A la Faveur de la Nuit 5. Das Unbedingte 6. Rape Blossoms 7. Beasts of Prey 8. The Blade Unmasked 9. Hope Dies Painless 10. Nera 11. Birds of Prey 12. Les Hirondelles.
"Cold Meat Industry has waited till the end of the year to offer us one of the best releases of 2006. Jerome Reuter's solo project, Rome, with its first long player. This young artist from Luxembourg has long been in the music world. Starting in punk bands, he moved on to rock with great baselines (references he does not speak about but are easily found in the Internet). However, working with other people may limit creativity and that is what happened to Jerome. When he decided to form Rome, a word that comes from a shortening of his own name, his knew one main thing: he would work alone. Rome is the future of the neo-folk world. It does not fall into the same four chords played with the guitar in a 'wanting to live up to Death in June' sound. And it moves enough into post-industrialism to be called experimental and to be misunderstood. This fresh combination of sounds: great guitar work, martial percussion, pop melodies and dark crooning, capture the listener and transport them into a different world. On occasions, the guitar sounds are so full of beauty and longing they almost hurt to listen to. It opens the more guitar-oriented songs a possibility of jumping into the indie world -and that, perhaps, offends some more traditional dark folk followers. On the other hand, there are many compositions that are constructed only over ritual and repetitive percussion, moving the songs deeper into desperation and darkness. Some of the songs even move closer to dark wave than to neofolk though the combination of guitars and synthesisers. I am not saying this has not been done before; it has simply not been done with such delicacy and mastery in a long time. "
-- isis, heathenharvest.com, 12/06
2007: Confessions d'Un Voleur d'Ames
TrackListing: 1. Ni Dieu ni Maître 2. The Consolation of Man 3. Le Carillon 4. Der Wolfsmantel 5. Querkraft 6. The Torture Detachment 7. Le Voile de lOubli 8. The Joys of Stealth 9. This Twisted Crown 10. Novemberblut 11. Wilde Lager 12. LAdieu aux Anciens
"... Mr. Reuter has perfected his capacity of dragging his opaque and coarse voice over his compositions, overflowing with ominous words and brooding images. When hope seems to be completely sucked into oblivion, there is the need, the growth, and the creation of melody. A suave chorus, a powerful line, sung, in a hopelessly lyrical way. (...) The melody carrying has been transported somewhat to the long aching notes of synthesizers, violin and other instruments, but it is still the guitar work that constructs the core of most of the songs. One only needs to listen to the naked notes of The Torture Detachment, the folk touch of The Consolation of Man, the burning notes of The Joys of Stealth, the clear and stumbling notes that hang in Wilde Lager. Of course, as mentioned in 'Nera', we can't overlook the lyrics. A perfect mixture of bitter sarcasm already over-ripen, longing and melancholy - the overcome combines a crude sensibility with a tearing sense of impossibility and stagnancy. Some of the statements have the form of conversations or brief stories, and they are all intimate and clear. Rome even manages to pull of an almost impossible rhyme in The Torture of Detachment with "I'm still wondering whether are actions are ever completely pure. How could I be sure?". Novermberblut deserves a special mention with one of the first straightforward statement of Rome's work. "Now everything just seems about to break. 'Cause people don't need proof when they have faith. [...]", as does the simple beauty of "Things can never emerge from words" that L'Adieu aux Anciens leaves us. (...) At any moment - whether it be laying in bed on a rainy day or walking down a full noisy street full of wrath at the every-day wars we choose not to fight-, if one closes their eyes for just a second and turns up the volume of the 'Confessions d'un voleur d'ames, the world will become a delightfully poetically grayer place, where idleness, frustration and cynicism make a smile creep on your face."
-- isis, heathenharvest.com, 5/07
2008: Masse Mensch Material
TrackListing: 01 Sonnengötter 02 Der Brandtaucher 03 Das Feuerordal 04 Der Tote Spielmann 05 Wir Götter Der Stadt 06 Die Nelke 07 Der Erscheinungen Flucht 08 Die Brandstifter 09 Kriegsgötter 10 Wir Moorsoldaten 11 Neue Erinnerung 12 Nachklang
"New wine from the orchards of Rome. After two successful albums, 'Nera' and 'Confessions dun Voleur dAmes', ROME blesses us with its 12-track-knock-out 'Masse Mensch Material' which holds more than one musical surprise! ROMEs particular brand of post-industrial folk, combined with new-wave song-writing and neo-classical arrangements, takes on a new and poppy twist. But these outstanding songs have way too much depth to be dismissed as mere pop music. This third album is of a more subtle darkness and probably ROMEs best work to date. A work of art of extreme sincerity, 'Masse Mensch Material' revolves around the themes of love, faith and endurance. ROME has created a fascinating world of contradictions which each song lays out with clarity and with all the cruelty and kindness intact. Within a very short period of time and at a terrifying pace, workaholic mastermind Jerome Reuter has carved his own path and created and established a dominion of his own, with its own codes and values. Through its bitter sweet melodies of exquisite sadness and rebellion, its haunting lyrics, mesmerizing vocals and recordings of unmatched production and sound, ROME has become the new face of dark romanticism. Jeromes voice echoes pride and death of a time and place long forgotten. A voice which becomes the axis that breaks ones consciousness into some kind of tender submission. Let yourself be buried in the shade of this masterpiece, in the beauty of desperation!"
-- press release
½ 2009: Fowers from Exile
TrackListing: 1. A Culture Of Fragments 2. A Legacy Of Unrest 3.Flight In Formation 4.Flowers From Exile 5.Odessa 6. Swords To Rust - Hearts To Dust 7. The Accidents Of Gesture 8. The Hollow Self 9. The Secret Sons Of Europe 10.To A Generation Of Destroyers 11.To Die Among Strangers 12. We Who Fell In Love With The Sea
"Similar to the early albums of legendary songwriter Leonard Cohen, stories from the (inner) exile are told with fatalistic gestures and dark timbre of the longing for a lost homeland, of loneliness and eternal travels, but also of unexpected friends and the homeland in one s own heart. Songs such as The Secret Sons of Europe and To Die Among Strangers form a song cycle full of metaphors for estrangement. Highly detailed arrangements use the sound of flamenco guitar as well as mysterious samples, pulsating beats, and sad melodies. In ROME s songs, there lives a stoic sense of the melodramatic. As well as Cohen, one must look to icons such as Tom Waits and the late Johnny Cash in order to describe the lyrics and voice of Jerome Reuter. 'Flowers From Exile' is just as much an emotional as a critical work the personally stamped album of a modern singer-songwriter that tells of journeys both within and without. Reuter s moving vocals and Patrick Damiani s complex musical arrangements leave the musical roots of folk far behind, sending flowers from exile to all listeners who are prepared to recognize themselves in the restless spirits this 12-part song cycle conjures.. "
-- press release
2010: Nos Chants Perdus
TrackListing: 01 L'Homme Revolte 02 Les Deracines 03 Le Chatiment du Traitre 04 L'Assassin 05 Le Vertige du Vide 06 Les Exigences de la Foi 07 La Commune 08 Sous la Dague 09 Les Isles Noires 10 Un Adieu à la Folie 11 La Rose et la Hache 12 Chanson de Gestes
"After their EP LAssassin, ROME develop their sound further on the minimalistic, simple singer-songwriter album Nos Chants Perdus, slowly leaving the apocalyptic realms behind. Catchy melodies impress themselves on the memory. The sonorous voice bears the weltschmerz as well as the yearning for freedom and peace. Apart from the French song titles the lyrics are primarily performed in English, while the music is constructed primarily with acoustic instruments: piano, guitar, touches of strings, accordion. They have largely relinquished electronic elements, which marks Nos Chants Perdus out as a further stride in the work of the band. "
-- press release"The new ROME material will cause them the loss of some NeoFolk or Martial Industrial fans... fans which willfully continue to listen to what they like in which respect going astray from the classical line is charged as a commercial mistake or a compromise so great it cannot be accepted! (...) 'Nos Chants Perdus' seems to be an amount of naphthalened songs forgotten in the recesses of an old nightstand; maybe the name of the album is self-suggesting it, I don't know for sure. The musical aura is now an intimate one full of emotion and gloominess, atypical to any stylized shape which swings between interbellum waltzes and romantic chords heard at night on the banks of the Seine river. It is clear to me that it is the calmest, quietest, most atypical and powerless album since the dawn of mankind... for some, the album will surely be monotonous, vapid, forceless or apathetic (due to the lack of those martial shades) or maybe dull like a swan song released rapidly with the sole purpose of being "ticked"... maybe for others it will be the bridge needed to discover Brel, Cohen or Cave. "
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