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Studio album by
ReleasedJune 12, 1982 (1982-06-12)
StudioBlue Rock Studios (New York City, New York)
ProducerMike Thorne
Nina Hagen chronology
Singles from NunSexMonkRock
  1. "Smack Jack"
    Released: 1982

NunSexMonkRock is the debut studio album by German singer Nina Hagen. It was released on June 12, 1982 by CBS Records. It marked Hagen's first release since her departure from the Nina Hagen Band and was also her first album with all songs in English language. Hagen recorded the album in New York City with Mike Thorne and collaborated with musicians Paul Roessler, Ferdi Karmelk, and Karl Rucker when writing the songs for the album. The lyrics deal with various themes including motherhood, religion, drug abuse, and UFOs. Musically, NunSexMonkRock is an experimental rock with influences of post-punk and new wave music.

Upon its release, NunSexMonkRock received mixed reviews from music critics. While some praised Hagen's theatrical vocals, others criticized its experimental production. Rolling Stone called it the "most unlistenable" album ever made. Commercially, the album achieved a moderate success. In the United States, it peaked at number 184 on the Billboard 200. In Germany, it reached number twenty-seven, and also peaked inside the top forty in other countries, such as New Zealand and Norway. "Smack Jack" was the only single released from the album. It managed to be successful in Norway where it peaked at number seven.


In 1979, after working on the movie Cha Cha with Herman Brood and Lene Lovich, Hagen met the Dutch guitarist Ferdinand "Ferdi" Karmelk, with whom she later had a daughter Cosma Shiva. Together they started working on new music after Hagen's departure from the Nina Hagen Band.

After her European tour was cancelled in 1980, Hagen moved to the United States and signed with Bennett Glotzer, the former manager of Frank Zappa. She began working on songs in English since most of her previous material was in German and after six months she returned to Germany with her new tour. Shortly after discovering she was pregnant, Hagen broke up with Karmelk and moved back to Los Angeles. In 1982, Hagen signed a new recording deal with CBS Records.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[1]
Robert ChristgauC+[2]
Europopmusic.eu3/5 stars[3]

Upon its release, NunSexMonkRock received mixed reviews from music critics. Bil Carpenter at AllMusic gave it four and a half star out of five, calling it an "eccentric rock material" and praising Hagen's vocal diversity.[1] Robert Christgau commented that "she does have a new-wave sense of humor - instead of taking on Maria Callas with her umpteen-octave range she does impressions of Linda Blair and Mercedes McCambridge."[2]

Track listing[edit]

2."Smack Jack"
  • Ferdinand Karmelk
  • Hagen
  • Roessler
4."Dread Love"
  • Hagen
  • Karmelk
5."Future Is Now"
  • Hagen
6."Born in Xixax"
  • Hagen
7."Iki Maska"
  • Hagen
8."Dr. Art"
  • Hagen
  • Karl Rucker
9."Cosma Shiva"
  • Hagen
  • Hagen
  • Rucker
Total length:40:06


  • Mike Thorne – production
  • Michael Ewasko – engineer
  • Don Wershba – additional overdubs
  • Harvey Goldberg – mixing, additional overdubs
  • Jack Skinner – mastering
  • Nicolaj Ilieff – design
  • Juliana Grigorova – photography


Chart (1982) Peak
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[4] 27
New Zealand Albums (RMNZ)[5] 38
Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)[6] 18
US Billboard 200[7] 184


  1. ^ a b Carpenter, Bil. "Nunsexmonkrock/Nina Hagen Band - Nina Hagen". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved April 5, 2016.
  2. ^ a b Christgau, Robert (1992). "Robert Christgau: Album: Nina Hagen: Nunsexmonkrock". Retrieved April 5, 2016.
  3. ^ "Nina Hagen- Europopmusic". Retrieved July 2, 2016.
  4. ^ "Longplay-Chartverfolgung at Musicline" (in German). Phononet GmbH. Retrieved April 5, 2016.
  5. ^ " – Nina Hagen – NunSexMonkRock". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 5, 2016.
  6. ^ " – Nina Hagen – NunSexMonkRock". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 5, 2016.
  7. ^ "Nina Hagen Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved April 5, 2016.

External links[edit]