The eccentric and poignant video, released on April 26, 2019, has left netizens brainstorming again to find the musicians’ true message in the clip. We also could not stay away, so we offer you the translation of the song and our interpretation of the symbols and plots embedded in the video.
Everyone on the radio!
It is a curious fact that it was the residents of Berlin who were the first to see the clip , where the plot unfolds from the video. The day before the premiere in the German capital, the video was broadcast on the wall of one of the houses at the intersection of Prenzlauer Allee and Torstraße.
The trick of the musicians was that the video was broadcast without sound, so in order to hear the new track, you had to bring a radio with you and tune in to the right wave.
“Wer ihn nicht nur sehen, sondern auch hören will, muss sich also ein Radio mitbringen” / “Whoever wants to not only see but also hear it (the new video) should bring a radio with them ,” the band’s official website says.
Meaning of the video «Radio» by Rammstein
The first thing that catches your eye is that the video is black and white . Knowing Rammstein, it’s hard to believe that this is just an artistic device. It is more likely that the color scheme is directly related to the era. And here the authors had two reasons to use the BW filter:
When we imagine documentary films, and even more so the chronicle of the 30s or 40s , then it is a monochrome picture that comes before our eyes. This is primarily due to the technical capabilities of cinema and television.
Despite the fact that even before the Second World War in America, Germany and the USSR they tried to make color films, it was most often colored, which means it took a lot of time and money – so black-and-white films still appeared many times more often. Therefore, when a modern director wants to bring archaism into the frame , he resorts to just such a technique.
The clip “Radio” broadcasts to the audience the history of the 30s, 40s, 60s of the XX century , so monochrome shooting in this case is an additional decoration for immersing yourself in a bygone era. However, the appearance of color at the end of the video may also indicate that in fact we are talking not only about historical events, but also about the current problems of the country .
Change of mood
The main part of the video – the struggle for receivers, the rally, the assault on the radio – takes place in monochrome. And only at the very end of the video does color appear. This change is directly related to emotions.clip characters. If at first they are aggressive: they are attacked, they are forced to resist, to act on the barricades, then in the end they achieve some kind of peace.
The Rammstein band turns out to be, like radio waves , intangible , which gives their freedom untouchability – this contrast is also reflected in the colors of the clip.
The role of women in history
If you watched the video at least twice, then at some point you probably caught yourself thinking that the main roles are distributed between women . They have fun, breastfeed the radio like a baby, smash windows to meet the receiver. You can come up with dozens of interpretations of why it is women who are so actively fighting for free radio, but it is better to unwind this ball from the stage on the barricades.
At the third minute of the video, a frame was captured where a girl with a bare chest and the slogan “Mein Radio gehört mir” / “My radio belongs to me” is waving a flag. If you take a screenshot of this moment and compare the resulting photo with the painting by E. Delacroix “Liberty Leading the People” , then you will be amazed at how similar they are. The general situation in the frame is reminiscent of the 30s or 40s , but the dress on the girl is clearly from another era . Her image echoes the famous symbol of the French Republic and the revolution – Marianne, a woman who personifies the phrase known to everyone: “Freedom. Equality. Brotherhood”
Communication between Marianne and the GDR
At the very beginning of the clip, the police officers are marching in the helmet of a German police officer, which was used back in the thirties. However, later in the video we see ordinary ordinary police officers dressed in more modern uniforms. From this, already at the beginning, we can conclude that both difficult situations from the past and the problems of the present will be touched upon in the clip .
It is obvious that most of the time the era of divided Germany appears in the clip . The environment of total control over information and the unquenchable thirst of Western democracy tells us that the action takes place in the GDR .
The slogan “Freedom. Equality. Brotherhood” in German realities is freedom to disseminate and receive information, equality of sexes, nations and religions, and of course, the destroyed brotherhood of the German people, which, by the way, celebrates the 30th anniversary of the German unification process this year.
Strength and weakness
Despite the fact that the girls are representatives of the so-called weaker sex, in the video they vehemently resist pressure. We see strong women crushing everything in their path, and here you can see a certain assessment of modern feminism, which has long gone beyond the struggle for the political rights of the weaker sex.
The authors of the video are to some extent ironic about “too self-sufficient” women who show aggression, trying to prove their strength to those who do not argue with this. By the way, sometimes it is the media that actively support their rapid, and sometimes hostile, movement.
Please note that they are opposed by men : they take away the radio, interfere with listening to it, try to stop the rally. Thus, we see the struggle of the weaker sex with the strong, which carries a wide variety of additional meanings.
This situation can be interpreted from a slightly different position: it is tragically similar to how ordinary citizens living in countries of a totalitarian regime are trying to defend their rights and not lose heart in the face of an enemy many times superior in strength and influence.
VHF for everyone
In the scene with the barricades, we see the poster “UKW für Alle” / “Short Waves for All” . International shortwave broadcasting appeared in Germany in the 1930s. And later it became a powerful propaganda weapon for both the United States and the USSR . In 1950, in the Eastern bloc, including the GDR, they began to distribute their programs RFE / RL – the familiar Radio Liberty. The response to American influence was the emergence in 1959 of the pro-communist Radio Berlin International, the modern-day Deutsche Welle.
Perhaps, with these small details, the authors of the video tried to draw attention to the problems of propaganda and censorship in the media : in the past and present.
Berlin, freedom, European Union
The song is called “Radio”, in the video there is a war for radios, Rammstein sing in one of the Radio Berlin studios – the whole idea of the work revolves around the radio, but not as a way of transmitting information, but as a symbol of the openness of the world .
By the way, in the Rammstein video they play in the building of Messe Berlin – a large exhibition complex located not far from the radio tower.
It is difficult for freedom as an abstract and individual concept to be given a concrete form, but the creators of the video enclose it in the shell of a radio receiver. Their choice can be explained by the fact that it was the radio that became the flagship of freedom of information and the failure of control over it in the middle of the last century.
The most “non-free”
The location is not just chosen. Berlin is the point of intersection of two waves of propaganda of the last century . And if the radio is a symbol of freedom and independence, then the divided Berlin of the era of the GDR and the FRG is the highest example of censorship and hunting for political witches.
Prophecy or warning
The clip ends with Rammstein’s solemn exit from the Radio Berlin building – this moment coincides with the appearance of color in the video. The musicians walk along a long road, and its sides are lined with flags that resemble some kind of mixture of the blue banner of the European Union with its stars and the red communist banner .
Perhaps such a hybrid is a reaction of musicians to the information policy pursued by the European Union in 2019: support for pro-American attitudes, copyright law, which many Germans called “new censorship”, as well as other pressing problems in Germany. Who knows, maybe that’s how the Rammstein band decided to prevent the mistakes of the past from being repeated.
The meaning of the song «Radio» by Rammstein
In order to understand the song and even reveal some of the hidden meanings, it is best to turn to the video, Rammstein quite often concludes the semantic basis not only in the text of his works, but also in the picture. So, at the very beginning of the video, we see marching German soldiers, while paying attention to their uniforms. Some helmets clearly point to the 50-60s of the last century as the time of the clip, but on other guardians of the law you can see a more modern form, which clearly indicates the connection of times.
During the choruses, every time we see the band members performing their song in some room, they are all dressed in the fashion style of the 60s of the 20th century. It is impossible to say what kind of room it is from the very beginning, it will become clear only at the end of the video, but for now we can only enjoy a pleasant picture. The Ramstein group knows how and loves to shoot not just plot and semantic clips, but also very aesthetic, pleasing to the eye.
In the second verse we see the main character – the radio. It is of great importance for women, because apart from the police there are no other men in the video. It can be noted that in this way the problem of the relationship between the sexes, which has been particularly acute in recent times, is revealed. This, of course, is about militant feminists who perceive men literally as an armed and enemy force.
Women are simply crazy about the radio, they literally lose their common sense next to it: everyone wants to have it, only everyone has different feelings for this miracle of technology. Someone nurses the radio like a newborn child, someone puts it at the head of the table, while others are ready to give themselves to him in the literal sense, they want to possess him like a man. In these scenes, you can find the second idea of the clip. Radio is a symbol of the free expression of thought in the 20th century. Male police officers seek to eliminate this device, prevent them from being sold, take it right out of their hands. This is how representatives of law enforcement agencies behave in countries where censorship exists. In light of recent events, namely the amendment of copyright law, these scenes take on a different meaning. They are perceived not only as a digression into history, telling about life in the GDR, but as a parody of the current state of affairs.
Finally, we see a naked woman become the leader of a protest movement. The women following her carry slogans and demands to allow them to use the radio and make it publicly available, for them this is the only way to know the truth, as they themselves think. After all, it was on the radio at that time that one could learn world news from various mouths and, perhaps, form one’s own opinion. Now the Internet has become the main representative of the broadcaster of truth, but ask yourself – does the Internet always tell the truth?
In the last scene, the performers finally emerge from the mysterious building, and we see that all this time they have been radioing into the ears of the women, but when one of the protesters runs towards them to hug them, Rammstein vanishes into thin air. It turns out that the truth was not even on the radio? Then where is she? This question remains up in the air.
The meaning of the song Radio fits literally in one phrase – you can only trust yourself.
Write in the comments what meaning of the Rammstein Radio song you see.