Nena (album)

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This article is about the band's debut album. For the band's international album released as Nena in some countries, see 99 Luftballons (album).
Nena
Studio album by Nena
Released 14 January 1983 (1983-01-14)
Recorded 1982
Studio Spliff Studio, West Berlin
Genre NDW, pop rock, new wave
Length 41:23
Language German
Label CBS
Producer Reinhold Heil, Manfred Praeker
Nena chronology
Nena
(1983)
?
(1984)
Singles from Nena
  1. "Nur geträumt"
    Released: 1982
  2. "99 Luftballons"
    Released: 1983
  3. "Leuchtturm"
    Released: 1983
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[1]

Nena is the first album by German pop rock band Nena and the second studio album of its singer, Gabriele "Nena" Kerner. Released in 1983, it's been part of the music genre called Neue Deutsche Welle (meaning "New German Wave") movement in the German music.

The album was a great success in West Germany and the second single "99 Luftballons" successfully reached #1 in the music charts worldwide including Australia, Austria, Canada, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.[2] The single is largely considered a "one-hit wonder" by many, including VH1.[3] It was produced by Manfred Praeker and Reinhold Heil of the German band Spliff.[4]

The album has been initially released as a vinyl LP, cassette and CD.[5]

The first single from the album, "Nur geträumt", was released a year earlier, in 1982. "99 Luftballons" was the 2nd single, released in 1983. The 3rd and final single was "Leuchtturm", released in 1983, a few months after "99 Luftballons".

Prominent tracks[edit]

The three singles released from the Nena album have enjoyed particular prominence in Nena's career. Although "99 Luftballons" is by far the most well known globally, the other two ("Nur geträumt" and "Leuchtturm") have for more than 30 years been ever-present features of the live concerts of firstly the band and then Nena in her subsequent solo career.[6]

"Nur geträumt"[edit]

"Nur geträumt" was the record which catapulted Nena to fame in Germany after the band performed it on the TV programme "Musikladen" in August 1982. Written by Nena and her boyfriend Rolf Brendel, the band's drummer, it is about a couple longing to spend time together.[7] It reached #2 in the German charts, where it was blocked from reaching #1 for 7 weeks by F. R. David's "Words".[8]

If the track was the one which launched Nena's career in Germany, where its release preceded "99 Luftballons", it had the opposite effect in the Anglophone world where an English version ("Just a Dream") failed as a follow-up, only scraping into the low reaches of the UK charts (#70).[9]

In 2002, when Nena rekindled her solo career by releasing the triple platinum album Nena feat. Nena comprising re-worked versions of her 1980s greatest hits, "Nur geträumt" was among them. The album spawned three top 10 hits in Germany but not the new version of "Nur geträumt", which only made #79. Ironically, given the huge success of the album, by 2010 Nena had reverted to performing the original versions of most of the album's songs, including "Nur geträumt".[10]

"Leuchtturm"[edit]

"Leuchturm" is a love song, its lyrics, written by Nena herself, describing how she and her "Kapitän" (captain) set off alone in a "U-Boot" (submarine) to see the world from a "Leuchtturm" (lighthouse). They enjoy themselves so much that by the time the submarine surfaces, the lighthouse is no longer in view.[11] Released as the follow-up to "99 Luftballons", it reached #2 in the German charts in 1983.[12]

In 2001, a reggae-style version of "Leuchtturm" for Nena's solo album Chokmah proved to be the precursor of the following year's Nena feat. Nena album, which was made up of updates of her 1980s greatest hits. Another version of "Leuchtturm" appeared on this 2002 album, this makeover both more fundamental and more enduring. The tempo of the song quickened and the lyrics were overhauled. With all mentions of captains and "U-Boots" removed, the song's message became a more generic affirmation of loyalty ("I'll go with you wherever you want… I won't ever leave you").[13] The drift from the song's original meaning is best illustrated by the fact that the song's title "Leuchtturm" doesn't even appear in the new lyrics and the revised theme of unquestioning devotion led to it being adopted as a football chant by fans of Borussia Dortmund.[14]

The changes worked: "Leuchtturm (2002)", as it was officially titled, returned to the Top 10 of the German charts 19 years after its first appearance, this time peaking at #7.[12] Furthermore, despite the huge success of the Nena feat. Nena album, "Leuchtturm" is the only re-work from the album which Nena hasn't discarded in favour of the original version, the 2002 version being the one she has continued to perform live ever since.

Track listing[edit]

Side A contains tracks 1 to 6 and Side B contains tracks 7 to 12.

Vinyl LP, cassette and CD[5]
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Kino" (At the Movies) Rolf Brendel 2:42
2. "Indianer" (Indians) Carlo Karges 3:16
3. "Vollmond" (Full Moon) Karges 3:04
4. "Nur geträumt" (Just a Dream) Jörn-Uwe Fahrenkrog-Petersen, Nena Kerner, Brendel 3:41
5. "Tanz auf dem Vulkan" (Dance on the Volcano, aka Living on the Edge) Karges, Jürgen Dehmel, Kerner 3:18
6. "99 Luftballons" (99 Balloons, aka 99 Red Balloons) Karges, Fahrenkrog 3:53
7. "Zaubertrick" (Magic Trick) Fahrenkrog, Brendel 4:15
8. "Einmal ist keinmal" (Once is Not at All) Manfred Praeker 2:45
9. "Leuchtturm" (Lighthouse) Fahrenkrog, Kerner 3:16
10. "Ich bleib' im Bett" (I Stay in Bed) Karges 2:42
11. "Noch einmal" (Once Again) Karges 3:56
12. "Satellitenstadt" (Satellite Town) Karges, Dehmel 4:31

Personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from Allmusic[4] and Discogs.[5]

Nena[edit]

Technical personnel[edit]

  • Udo Arndt – mixer
  • Manfred "Manne" Praeker – production
  • Reinhold Heil – production
  • Imre Sereg – recorder
  • Jim Rakete – cover design

Charts[edit]

Chart (1983) Peak
position
Austrian Albums Chart[15] 1
Dutch Albums Chart[16] 2
German Albums Chart[17] 1
UK Albums Chart[18] 31

Certifications[edit]

Country (Provider) Certification
Germany (BVMI)[19] Platinum

Release history[edit]

Region Year Label Format Catalog
West Germany 1983 CBS Schallplatten GmbH CD CBS 25264
LP
Netherlands
Italy
West Germany CD CDCBS 32788
cassette CBS 40-25264
cassette CL 33030-8
LP CBSCL 32098-6 (Club edition)
Spain S 25 264
Japan Epic 23-3P-488
Yugoslavia Suzy ULP 1436
Japan 1984 Epic/Sony CD 35.8P-38
Yugoslavia CBS Schallplatten GmbH LP CBS 25264
Suzy
West Germany 1989 CBS Schallplatten GmbH CD 465388 2 (repress)
Germany 1998 Columbia 491268 9
491268 2 (reissue)
Brazil   721.052
Sony Music Entertainment Brazil 2-465388

References[edit]

  1. ^ Severa, Alan. "Review of Nena by Nena". Allmusic. Retrieved 28 June 2013. 
  2. ^ "Chart positions for "99 Luftballons" by Nena". AustrianCharts.at. 26 June 2013. 
  3. ^ "100 Greatest one-hit wonders". AfroKayo.web.fc2.com. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  4. ^ a b "Credits for Nena by Nena". Allmusic. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  5. ^ a b c "Nena by Nena". Discogs. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  6. ^ "Nena concerts and setlists". Nena.de. Retrieved 23 November 2014. 
  7. ^ ""Nur geträumt" lyrics and credits". Nena.de. Retrieved 23 November 2014. 
  8. ^ "German charts – "Nur geträumt"". Officialcharts.de. GfK Entertainment. Retrieved 23 November 2014. 
  9. ^ "Official UK charts - Nena". Officialcharts.com. Official charts company. Retrieved 23 November 2014. 
  10. ^ See 2010 DVD "Made in Germany Live"
  11. ^ ""Leuchtturm" lyrics and credits". Nena.de. Retrieved 23 November 2014. 
  12. ^ a b "Official German charts". Officialcharts.de. GfK Entertainment. Retrieved 23 November 2014. 
  13. ^ ""Leuchtturm (2002)" lyrics and credits". Nena.de. Retrieved 23 November 2014. 
  14. ^ "Fan chants". nl.fanchants.de. Retrieved 23 November 2014. 
  15. ^ "Nena - Nena". AustrianCharts.at (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  16. ^ "Nena by Nena". MegaCharts (in Dutch). Hung Medien, DutchCharts.nl. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  17. ^ "Chart positions for Nena by Nena". Media Control (in German). Charts.de / media-control.de. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  18. ^ "Nena chart positions". UK Albums Chart. The Official Charts Company. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  19. ^ Press "Suchen":

External links[edit]