April 25,

Club Bahnhof Ehrenfeld

January 2023, Leipzig. The city seems to have been bathed in shadow for months; the lack of sunshine is replaced at most by the flicker of trashy neon signs and the flash of penetrating car headlights. Gwen Dolyn and Steffen Israel walk in the freezing semi-darkness across muddy, barren open spaces, past archaic factory buildings and faded black and chrome graffiti. The two of them soak up the atmosphere - the dirty weather, the dull hustle and bustle, the dismissive looks from the late-night sales clerk, the persistent smell of dreariness - before hastily fleeing back to the comfort of home. More precisely: to producer Simon Freidhöfer's studio, which is lined with old carpets. In this setting, the self-consciousness of a band called TRÄNEN grows piece by piece and, after months of gallant secrecy, releases its first piece of music into the world on June 30, 2023 with "Sturesdummes Herz".

TRÄNEN have been playing hide and seek with the German indie scene since the beginning of the year. In January, a mysterious Instagram profile made the rounds - all that could be seen at the time was an animated "TRÄNEN" lettering, flickering, wavy, on a black background. No text underneath, just enigmatic emojis. Shortly afterwards, a series of analogue photos went online - instead of people, they showed synthesizers, guitar necks and a frosty, dystopian sunset. A few weeks later, finally, albeit blurred: Faces. In a constellation that no one would have expected. On the left: Gwen Dolyn, who has been stirring up the German-language progressive pop underground with a punk attitude since 2020 and, accompanied by her band Toyboys, has long since become the poster girl of "NNDW". On the other side: Steffen Israel, guitarist of the Chemnitz band Kraftklub.