Herbst In Peking, named after Boris Vian’s novel, was formed by Rex Joswig in East Berlin in 1987. The anti-authoritarian stance and fierce criticism of the GDR regime of this punk band led to an official ban in 1989. While Rex Joswig ran his Grenzpunkt Null radio show from East Berlin after the GDR had collapsed, his band steadily assimilated influences from Dub, Industrial and Electronic Music. HIP’s line-up has changed over the years with Joswig as a constant member and their collaboration with Moloko Plus productive to this day.
Kismet Radio, Herbst In Peking’s latest album, was released on Moloko Plus in January 2020. The 50-minute CD, packaged in a handsome gatefold sleeve and accompanied by an 8-page booklet, has for a motto Paul Celan’s line “There are still songs to be sung, on the other side of mankind”. But this album, a mixed bag of musical styles and influences, not only draws inspiration from Paul Celan. It is rather, as the CD booklet explains, “a space in the air occupied by Herbst In Peking under the influence of Paul Celan, Diamanda Galas, Arvo Pärt, Killing Joke, Frank Bischof, Bauhaus, Mattafix, Rio Reiser, Mark E. Smith, Kosima…” Rex Joswig and friends on the air, on the other side of mankind… Tune in or be left behind on the wrong side.