I have a habit of moving the Shrine from one service/platform to another every few years, when something better comes along. So…a few years ago I moved the site to a self-hosted WordPress blog, which has been awesome, except for something I’d never really had to worry about before: spammers and malicious bots. WordPress blogs attract spammers like crazy. It’s gotten got really bad, and over time I’ve ended up having to install spam filters, hack blockers, IP bans, captchas, and extra passwords just to keep them out. And all that still doesn’t stop them completely. Here’s a snippet about it from my personal blog in 2013 at the height of a spam attack:
The spam levels had been steadily rising over the past few months, from 10,000 in July to double that in October. Then in November it exploded at nearly 40,000! Once I began banning China and some other IP ranges in Brazil, it dropped dramatically in December as you can see below.
I think I know why spambots are so attracted to that site. I have a couple of pages on there which contain my old guestbooks from ages past, and those contain email addresses. Old ones, but still…a spambot sniffs out email addresses like Toronto mayor Rob Ford sniffs out dime bags.
That Rob Ford thing really dates it, right? Anyway, I finally got fed up with dealing with all that crap. Now the site is hosted on WordPress.com, which eliminates the need for constant battles against spambots trying to gain control of the site. However, I’m now having to use a free site theme which isn’t nearly as nice or customizable as the one I had when hosting it myself. I could get a paid account and do whatever I want with the design, but that’s $99/year and I’m already paying that for my personal website, so…this will have to do. And since the Shrine has been more or less in “archive mode” for the past few years, this should work fine.
I did have to give up the Jukebox since WordPress doesn’t let you host your own music files on the free tier, but all the other stuff is still here. There’s also an “About” page which tells a few of my personal Nina stories, for anyone who might be interested and/or bored.
NINA HAGEN’S ‘NUNSEXMONKROCK’: THE GREATEST (AND WEIRDEST) UNSUNG MASTERPIECE OF THE POSTPUNK ERA
Nina Hagen’s 1982 Nunsexmonkrock album is one of the single most ground-breaking and far-out things ever recorded and it deserves to be considered a great—perhaps the very greatest—unsung masterpiece of the postpunk era.
There I’ve said it.
I’ll take it even further: To my mind, it’s on the same level as PiL’s Metal Box, Captain Beefheart’s Trout Mask Replica or Brian Eno and David Byrne’s My Life in the Bush of Ghosts. Or The Dreaming by Kate Bush. Make no mistake about it, artistically it is a monumentally important recording.
To this day I have never heard anything quite like this album…and is weird, but in the best possible way. It’s how most of us American fans discovered Nina, and it left quite an impression! There will never be another album like it. Check out the rest of the article, it’s a pretty good read.
Looks like Nina’s new all-German album “Volksbeat” is just around the corner! Pre-order it from Amazon.de using this link, if you would be so kind. 🙂
In a short interview with Max Nöje, Nina talks a little about the new release.
It’s been a few years since I moved the Shrine off my own web hosting service onto TypePad. Using TypePad was OK, but it was never very pretty to look at and their design options are pretty limited. So the other day I got a wild hair and decided to move the site back to my own hosting space in a format I have almost full control over (WordPress). This at least lets me tweak things I couldn’t before, yet still keep the “blog” format without having to use an HTML program. So I can still be lazy about it but keep it looking decent. 🙂
All comments posted by readers have been brought over to the new format, which is nice. And, as always, you’re free to comment on anything posted here, no account necessary. Also, feel free to put in a fake email address if you like. I don’t spam people, but I can’t say the same for spambots which may attempt to scoop up email addresses from here. There’s not much I can do about that, unfortunately…
There haven’t been many updates here lately, but Nina’s homepage will always have the most recent info about what she’s up to. There are also some great fansites out there which are much more current and interesting than this one…the Shrine will continue to be more of a media archive than the full-blown fansite it once was. This has been my hobby for nearly 15 years and I’m happy to keep it around a bit longer!
Check it out! You can hear/buy the MP3 (or the whole album) on Amazon as well as Amazon.de and many other places.
They also do an interesting cover of "Tour de France" on the same album.
“Gott kam mir mit ausgestreckten Armen entgegen” – zeit.de (Apr 8)
Link / English / View PDF
Translation to English via Google:
“God met me with open arms”
Nina Hagen on loss experience in her childhood and youth
TIME magazine: Mrs. Hagen, when you were a child , your mother, Eva-Maria Hagen tried to kill herself.
Nina Hagen: Yes, that was a big shock abandonment. Then you suddenly see that they are not the center of life is. My mother wanted me to live alone. She must have forgotten how much she loved me. I always wanted to protect her. I had such dreams in which my mom on the road running around naked, because I wanted to say you love so much that I think it sucks that they should put on something.
Short interview on 16vor.de.
Die Mutter des Punk und der Gottvater – 16vor.de (Aug 30)
Translation into English via Google:
The mother of punk and the godfather
The performance of Nina Hagen on Saturday in the Imperial Baths split the audience. Most of the nearly 600 audience celebrated the exalted, eccentric artist, and some did, however, more or less loudly made known their displeasure with the program. It is noted that Nina Hagen is not unusual. She put only her new album “Personal Jesus before.” Apparently some visitors did not want her to interpret traditional music and country music, gospel and blues classics.
After almost half of the concert says a gentleman in the audience to his neighbor: “I don’t know one singe song.” This is remarkable in that the listener’s oeuvre Nina Hagen’s little to be familiar with not only seems, but with pop- Music in general. Because at that time, the singer, who also Lackleggins take 55 can not, including “Personal Jesus” by Depeche Mode, “Riders on the Storm” by “The Doors” and her own plays “Checkmate” and “What it is “sung. The visitor knows, but apparently only “I glotz TV” (O-Ton). “TV Glotzer”, as Nina Hagen’s probably the most popular number is correct, is applied on the set list, but two (!) Flanked by parentheses. Played the title that night but not.
Focus.de has a short interview with Nina about her new album.
“Ich beame Liebe” – focus.de (Jul 10)
Link / English / View PDF
English translation via Google:
“I Beam Love”
Thursday, 07.29.2010, 10:36 AM • from FOCUS-Online-author Katja Schwemmer
Gospel Diva instead Punk icon? On their new album “Personal Jesus” presents Nina Hagen in classic sacred garment. In the interview reveals the flashy singer, why she now lives chaste.
This woman is always good for surprises: “I can not sing a gospel, I’ma white chick,” was Nina Hagen once in their hit “Hold Me”. 20 years later published the now 55 years old “Mother of Punk”, more than ever, religious inspiration, a whole album full of gospel songs. On “Personal Jesus” she interprets classic respectful of Elvis Presley and Depeche Mode and boarded the album charts at # prompt 16 – their highest placing since 1979.
FOCUS Online: wife, Hagen now mutate from punk to gospel diva?
Nina Hagen: Yes. For, firstly I’m no diva. And secondly, I’m in my 17th Age by a near-death experience to become a professing Christian – just wanted to hear none! I have also already the Lord’s Prayer set to music in a sword dance version. At the “Rock in Rio” I’ve sailed on a large metal cross on the stage and sang “Spirit In The Sky” by Norman Greenbaum. On my old plates you will find many gospel songs. Add to “Hold Me” in 1989 we shot my first gospel video at the grave of Jim Morrison at Paris’ Pere Lachaise cemetery.
YouTube user MassageMyAura has created a playlist of videos showing some songs from "Personal Jesus" as recorded by other artists. Pretty interesting stuff!
If you live in the U.S. and you don't want to set up an account on Amazon.de for ordering, you can get the album from Amazon.com as well. It's a little pricey as an import (currently $30), but that's almost what it costs to order it from Germany once you do the currency conversion. And since orders over $25 qualify for free shipping on Amazon, you're saving a few extra bucks!
Please help me out by using this link when ordering from Amazon.com. Thanks! :)