The band UMBRA ET IMAGO was founded by its leader Mozart in the fall of 1991. On purpose, a new counter-statement to the young and rising gothic culture was meant to be made. Yet, its name ( unsubstancial shadow) is issued and put on stage. Because of the brand new concept, the band was never easy to deal with. Refering to the Austrian psychiatrist Dr. Sigmund Freud as far as “ Sexuality is the axis of our being”, the cornerstone of the underdog-band was found. Spontaneity and experimentality were celebrated with boundless energy. The line-up consisted of Michael Gillian, Nail, Thosten B. and Mozart. In 1992 the band started live performances, which where fueled by their visual effects from the first time on. The artist Dirk Lakomy, supporting the band in its early days, illustrated the band’s phantasy with his pictures and artwork.
Guest musicians were in charge for the acoustic variety in the former electronic band. The band’s eccentricity was legendary, occasionally feared, but in all cases charismatic and unique.
The media, responding in an unexpected hard way, often polarized and criticized the band and rarely understood its message.
Bottom line: The band became cult.
Umbra et Imago established their own branch in goth-music.
S/M-phantasies were used as their trade mark in the former asexual Indie scene, making its way to a much larger audience.
The S/M-theme was chosen purposely, because it would reflect the most intellectual expression of sexuality in their minds.
The first album “ Träume, Sex und Tod” was released in 1992, followed by “ Infantile Spiele” one year later, which became their break-through.
“Gothic Erotic” turned into a Club hit. In very short time, the band achieved a large fan community, which prooves an unusual loyalty in the meanwhile 3rd generation.
In 1995 a sudden incision was made. The band’s line-up changed. Michael Gillian, Thorsten B. and later on Nail left the band, being replaced by Lutz Demmler and Alex Perin.
This line-up change also lead to a musical turning-point.
With the album “ Gedanken eines Vampirs” the band began to manifest a new sound, dominated by guitar. Live shows started involving models as a fundamental of their legendary show concept, which belongs to Umbra et Imago as sun does to summer.
The basic live-idea of the band was, never to perform as an opener or in support of anyone else, which turned out to be the right decision after some hard struggles at the beginning.
After many tours, the bands’ concerts were almost constantly sold out!
Since the fall of the Berlin wall and Germany’s reunion, the eastern part of the republic was played regularly. The band struggled for success.
Their albums and singles followed and topped one another. ( Mystica Sexualis – Machina Mundi – The hard years – Mea Culpa – Dunkle Energie)
Limited live videos were produced, becoming important and valuable documents for many fans, because of their authentic character, which is one of its own.
The DVD and audio CD “ Die Welt brennt” was one of the bands’ dreams becoming true, including special footage about the band’s ideology and their strong live shows.
After a few more line-up changes, the band grew musically from a spontaneous, emotional and pathetic act, to a hard-boiled and excellent crew, skilled in nailing things where they belong.
The lyrics ( as the author Mozart comments himself) come from many different influences such as literature, biographic elements and off course observation of today’s life.
They fall from odd subtle humor into a spotting, evil mirror of our society and its irony.
Regardless of clichés, his statements would not make only friends.
So sexuality remains as an ingredient of topics, but does not define the over all content.
After working with the band for many years, guitarist Freddy Stürze left the crew in 2003, which was a heavy impact on the other band members, but as well a new awakening.
The band performed in many European countries and also with unexpected success on the American continent.
During the years, Lutz evolved to produce Umbra et Imago, after succeeding with many other well-known albums in the gothic scene.
With the release of the new album “ Memento Mori” in February 2004, the band is up to put fresh accents on their work.
The album will appear in a 2-in-1 format ( both DVD and Audio CD), presented in Dolby Surround sound, mixed at the ” Twilight Sound Studio” in Karlsruhe/ Germany, which was especially equipped for this purpose.
Still, the band keeps track with its consequent and uncompromised freedom, knowing that other artist refer to them and their creativity in order to form a new generation of artists in the future.
For this reason Mozart’s motto is: “ Only the sub-culture creates culture, the way it’s always been and will be…”
Our last words are saved up for Lutz: “ Lasst uns reinhauen!”