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News Death In June : Rose Clouds of Holocaust "banni" en Allemagne - déclarations de Douglas P.
Posté par Chris le 14/2/2006 10:21:21 (730 lectures)

Cliquez pour lire l'intégralité des 3 déclarations faites par Douglas à ce sujet.

Citation :

This was the reply sent several months ago in response to a variety of accusations from certain parties that eventually resulted in the Death In June album 'Rose Clouds Of Holocaust' being placed at the end of 2005 (10 years after its release) on Germany's 'Index' of forbidden fruit that must not be consumed by impressionable Deutsche Jugend! Perhaps some of you will find it of interest? I think my response is quite reasonable but obviously those who know better did not!
Douglas P.

"I have been told by my music distributer Tesco Organisation, Germany that I must provide a statement clarifying my work with my group Death In June to a German government agency responsible for censorship in Germany.

In the 24 years of Death In June’s existence I have never explained my work. I feel that would make my art ordinary and stillborn and panders to elements within society that seek to control freedom of expression and thought, abstract or otherwise. All art, whether it be in the form of music, literature, painting etc. worth a grain of salt should be open to interpretation. In turn, this also makes it open to misinterpretation; sometimes good, sometimes bad. It is in the nature of art that ‘challenges’ or ‘confronts’ the consumer, or potential consumer, to be misunderstood.

But here are some facts:

Death In June was named after I thought I heard a colleague say those words during our first recording session in 1981. It was an accident of mishearing. I have said this in countless interviews over the years since. It is merely post-rationalization to assume it refers to any one particular event, historic or otherwise. A common interpretation was that it referred to the assassination of Arch Duke Ferdinand in Sarajevo in June 1914. It didn’t, and doesn’t refer to anything else than ‘Death In June!’

Before becoming a musician I was a student of 20th century history, as is clearly stated in the whole interview with Zillo magazine in 1992. Apparently a small quote is taken out of context from this interview referring to my interest in Ernst Roehm. I cannot see how one cannot be interested in events and personalities that led directly, or indirectly, to the biggest tragedy of the 20th century – World War II. The fact that I am homosexual as was Ernst Roehm was another point of interest that led to a song ‘Brown Book’ written in 1986, before German unification, which uses the Horst Wessel Lied to create the atmosphere to a narration juxtaposing the homophobia of a Nazi stormtrooper to the suicidal fatalism of his sexual partner; a Jewish grandmother. The song evokes Germany, 1936. The title comes from the name of the book the Communist authorities of former East Germany kept listing ex-members of the N.S.D.A.P. and S.S. etc. and their positions held in government and other work places in West Germany. A thought provoking song with many contradictory themes which is typical of Death In June.

This leads to the song ‘Rose Clouds Of Holocaust’ issued in 1995. This work was inspired by Mid-Winter and Mid-Summer visits to Iceland where the days during these times of year can be either almost totally dark or either almost totally light. Never completely one thing, nor the other. I experienced a spiritual epiphany during these visits in 1989/1990. The word “holocaust” is Greek for ‘burnt offerings’ (normally of a religious kind) and Iceland is full of extinct volcanoes as well as active ones. Its volcanic landscape is the holocaust in question symbolizing death and rebirth. It has nothing to do with the persecution and extermination of Jews, Homosexuals, Gypsies etc. by Germany during the years of the IIIrd Reich.

I am a musician and I do not involve myself in politics and I refuse to be forced into becoming involved in politics. When the German Goth group Das Ich suddenly attempted to politicize a Christmas Festival in Hamburg, Germany in 1992, Death In June, along with another English group and Projekt Pitchfork from Germany, decided to drop out and not to become involved in what was after all local politics. We wrote, signed and distributed a joint statement explaining our decision, abhorring all forms of violence directed at anyone regardless of race, religion or sexuality (apparently there had been some trouble in Hamburg?) and relocated our performances to a club in Bochum. This became a 3 night residency where anyone with tickets to the Festival who still wanted to celebrate Christmas could do so with Death In June etc. All 3 nights were sold out. The Dark Xmas Festival was not and fell to bits with the highest political arguments between the remaining Goth groups being as to who should headline! It has been a source of resentment from the Goth ‘rock stars’ of Das Ich ever since. The music business is filled with jealousy and envy and I attempt to keep my distance from it.

Death In June has always been fascinated by symbols and their effects. There is even an album entitled ‘But, What Ends When The Symbols Shatter?’ The ‘Totenkopf 6’ is a simple one conveying Death In June (the 6th month!) but since 1984 a fist holding a whip and 6 has also been extensively used to symbolize Death In June. In English we have an expression “to hold the whiphand” which means to take control. In 1997 Death In June issued an album called ‘Take Care And Control’. Everything is connected, everything is symbolic and everything that on a surface level is mutually contradictory is important in the world of Death In June.

The 2 words “Rose clouds…” are beautifully juxtaposed to each other and with “…of holocaust” added the contradictory imagery is complete. The joy of sadness recognized and a life filled with lies abandoned. In ‘Lifebooks’ “The swirling sound of swastikas like rotor blades of thought…” brings this conversation piece between 2 close friends to an end. The Sanskrit word for sun-wheel brings perfect closure to a night filled with bad dreams. Dawn has arrived. And, surely if the word “swastika” in itself is justification for a German government investigation into any work of art then I hope the more famous Iggy Pop and David Bowie’s ‘China Girl” (“visions of swastikas in my head…”) and Primal Scream’s ‘Swastikas Eyes’ plus many others deserve equal investigation.

In June, 2004 I was invited to perform in Tel Aviv, the capital of Israel. Death In June did so to an enthusiastic audience of over 500 and there are even pictures of me on stage waving a ‘Totenkopf 6’ flag alongside an Israeli one. I did numerous interviews with both Israeli magazines and radio stations. Death In June LPs/CDs are freely available in Israel. T-shirts are even licensed for manufacture there.

I find it ironic that I am so welcomed in Israel yet I am suspiciously viewed by the German authorities for censorship. But, I suppose that fits well with the contradictory nature of Death In June.

I am also unsettled by the fact that in Germany, a modern Western democracy and civilization government censorship of the arts should even be entertained. That, along with the organizations or individuals that have brought me to your attention, smell more of Germany’s past than any of Death In June’s recordings. My father was a career officer in the British Royal Air Force, fought as a pilot against Hitler’s Luftwaffe during World War II and was shot down twice but survived. His first wife was not so lucky and was killed in the London blitz. I have a step-sister as a result of that death. His 3 brothers, my uncles, were all front-line soldiers and the youngest was one of the first troops in the British Royal Artillery to enter Bergen-Belsen KZ and drove bulldozers shoveling the dead inmates into mass graves. All of them thought the only good German was a dead German.

Coming from such an anti-German family background I have always considered myself part of a generation that was responsible for the reconciliation between our 2 countries. I feel that reconciliation has been achieved. We live in 2005 not 1945.

I trust that any review of my work is based upon official releases all obtainable from but, not necessarily distributed by Tesco Organisation, Germany. I cannot be held responsible for unofficial releases which have nothing to do with Death In June but falsely claim to be.

Douglas P. (Death In June)"


Citation :
I have been told that the appeal against the decision to put the Death In June album 'Rose Clouds Of Holocaust' on the German 'Index' of banned music, literature etc. has recently been filed with the appropriate German law court by the manufacturer and distributer of this work, Tesco Organisation, Germany.

As part of the appeal I was asked to elaborate on my previous statement which has already appeared on this and other internet groups/newslists. As an artist whose work is publically available world-wide and whose work is now becoming censored by a German government agency, thus effecting that availability, I feel that this new additional statement is now also made public:

"Dear Sir,
As I have said in my previous statement I believe that any form of art worth it's salt is open to interpretation, reinterpretation and
misinterpretation and should not necessarily be explained in any way, shape or form by the artist himself. Even if it could be!
But, there are limits to being misinterpreted especially when the interpretors become accusers, stone throwers and are from a government agency!!

"Holocaust" as a word is used often in the English language to describe
something catatrophic and of a final nature. It is derived from the original Greek meaning "burnt offerings". As I have also previously stated the title of the song 'Rose Clouds Of Holocaust' was inspired by 2 trips to the volcanic island of Iceland in mid-Winter and mid-Summer 1989/1990 where I experienced a spiritual epiphany/revelation.
In conversation with a close colleague of mine in the healing thermal waters of The Blue Lagoon situated near the town of Keflavik near the capital Rejkavik we spoke of Life and its disappointments. I realised as we swam in the naturally heated waters surrounded by a howling blizzard with temperatures 17 degrees below zero, that much of my adult Life had been led by lies about a particular relationship I had been in since 1980. It was a relationship that would also inspire the songs '13 Years Of Carrion' and 'Accidental Protege' which are also on the 'Rose Clouds Of Holocaust' album which is the work by my group in question. The steam rising from the heated waters of the Lagoon in the middle of this freezing cold landscape, coupled with the strange rose/purple colour of the sky gave the whole scenario a 'holocaustic' atmosphere. Most of the island in this area is afteral just moss-covered lava fields. 'Rose Clouds Of Holocaust' ably describes that scenario. At least in English!

As in almost all of my writings the remainder of the text have many
reference points;

"Festivals End As Festivals Must" - an old newspaper heading commemorating the 10th anniversary of the death by suicide of one of my favourite gay authors Yukio Mishima.

"From the Hooded Crows of Rome" - I used to live in Rome in the early 1990s and these were the first birds I would see upon arrival at the airport

"To The Falcons Of Zagreb" - a city I have often visited and from my hotel window I have a good view of the family of falcons that live in and fly and hunt between the twin towers of the city's Cathedral

"Mother Victim Of Jesus lie down in Sydney's dust" - a line on a tombstone I noticed while taking a walk in Rookwood Cemetary in Australia, the largest cemetary in the World.

I do not write in a straight forward fashion. I pull a word from here or a
line from there that I may have written today of several years ago. I only know it looks 'correct' when I place them together on paper. What it means after that,...????? I can only say where some were inspired from.

The same applies to the song 'Lifebooks' which was based around a
conversation I had with a very close colleague in a pub near Leicester
Square, London about Magick and the Occult and how a mutual friend of ours, who subsequently died, was destroying himself with these dark arts. The colleague I had the conversation with also co-writes some of the text.

"The Swirling Sound Of Swastikas
Like Rotor-blades Of Thought
Threshing The wheat
Out from The Chaff -
All this is a Dream,..."

demonstrates a perfect use of alliteration ( "S,S,S....Th, Th, Th,...") as it symbolically refers to the fans in the pub ceiling turning as we spoke that long afternoon about the pros and cons of dabbling with the Occult. But, naturally I could have said;

'The fans in the pub ceiling turned around like propellor blades
as we spoke of the advantages and disadvantages
of dealing with the Occult'

For me I know what sounds better poetry in English!

But, evidently others in Germany really know what these words mean! I am in awe at their expertise and talent. However, I am confused why this album which has sold 10s of thousands and has been freely available via different distributers Worldwide for 10 years without any problems, including in Israel where I recently performed, has only now become the subject of the scrutiny of censorship? For that I have no answers.

In a nutshell, I do not deny the existence of The Holocaust. The Holocaust is and was a completely different experience to 'Rose Clouds Of Holocaust' as I'm sure any inmate of an extermination camp would testify. The people who claim the 2 are one and the same should be ashamed of their disgusting conceit.

Yours Sincerely,
Douglas P.

Citation :
With the recent addition of the Death In June album "Rose Clouds Of Holocaust" to the German government's so-called Index of censored/banned 'forbidden fruit' comes a much greater threat.

I have been told that Joachim Kohl and Klaus Hilger of Tesco Organisation Germany, the manufacturer and distributor of this title, have initiated legal action against this decision. Although at present this act of censorship only involves Death In June and one album by my group this, as anyone involved in this musical genre should be aware, could prove to be only the very tip of the iceberg. If this ban succeeds and continues what other works and what other groups from the
Neo-Folk/Post Industrial/whatever you wish to label it 'scene' will be next;

Der Blutharsch, :Of The Wand And The Moon:, Orplid, Blood Axis, Westwind, forseti, Sol Invictus, Dies Natalis, HERR, Werkraum, Sonne Hagel, Darkwood, Ostara, Fire+Ice,..........?

The list could go on and on and possibly will if some few people have their way in restricting freedom of expression in Europa. This is not an isolated banning of a show in one city caused by a threatening telephone call, or a group of violent street people hanging around a club or a politician desperate for some votes. This ban is a national one courtesy of a European national government agency who have been maliciously influenced.

These are indeed "Strange Days for YOU, Me and Germany!"

I am not directly involved in the actual day to day legal proceedings in
Germany but Joachim Kohl and Klaus Hilger have been effectively called to task and are serving on the front line - for all concerned!

Although I am offering moral support and support in terms of legal statements my financial support is also required and at this first, extremely vital stage of appeal the costs could run as high as 10,000 EUROS. Eventual costs could be higher.

It is with not only this in mind but, also a Greater Calling for a Demonstration of Solidarity that I call to those out there who have proven capabilities and experience that a Fighting Fund Festival should be arranged and feature groups from this genre/artfield that are willing to waive their fees so ticket sales, after costs, would be donated to this cause. The Festival should naturally take place in Germany and I will come out of my recent retirement from live work to also perform for this cause.

Will the Sons Of Europe answer this call to arms - even if their only
weapons could be an acoustic guitar and some drum sticks?

Or, after all these years will "Festivals End - As Festivals Must"?

Heilige Kampf!
Douglas P.

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