Proving to be one of Germany's most enduring metal bands, despite having some of the most varied and unconventional recordings of any, Atro
was called a death metal innovator in 1990 with the release of their debut Hallucinations
under the membership of Michael Schwarz
(drums), Richard Scharff
(guitar), Oliver Klassen
(bass), Alex Krull
(vocals) and Mathias Roderer
(guitar). Their dark and technical style was further expressed on the follow-up of Todessehnsucht
(re-titled as Longing For Death
against their wishes when released in 1992), an album that was missing Scharff
and further pushed their popularity. But it was the next release, B.L.U.T.
in 1994 with Markus Knapp
taking over the bass that saw their unconventional habits show through by being loosely based on a vampire theme and sounding less like their past work. The album proved to alienate and just plain confuse many fans and critics alike. It was only the start of their experimentation for the succeeding years saw them fiddling around in all sorts of styles. Die Liebe
(1995) saw Christiah Lukhaup
assume the bass spot, while the band also collaborated with German New Wave duo Das Ich
, where-as Calling The Rain
(1995) featured Alex Krull
's sister Yasmin
as guest on vocals, while Thorsten Bauer
joined on guitars and Markus Knapp
return on some tracks for bass.
The guest members were gone for Willenskraft (1996), while Werk 80 (1997) consisted entirely of '80's covers. The 2CD set Non Plus Extra (1999) saw Martin Schmidt take over drums. Gemini (2000) found them assuming a German techno beat to sound much like Rammstein and indeed, their sound connection with that band did not go missed for it had been observed in previous works. The album was a hodgepodge of influences by featuring a cover of Simon And Garfunkel's The Sound Of Silence, not to mention a duet with Liv Kristine of Theater Of Tragedy (who was also a guest on Werk 80). Gemini proved to be their most popular so far; Atlantis (2004) followed it.