Music Monday – Die Original Filmmusik Das Boot

Okay, a short Music Monday post today, as, well, it isn’t your usual type of album to be able to comment on, not in a, ‘This track is great because of the lyrics, this one hit the top of the charts,’ kind of way. No, this album is great in another way…

Das Boot

The film, Das Boot, is a firm favourite of mine. It has to be watched in its native language for the best experience, which means putting up with subtitles for us non-German speakers, but that doesn’t detract from it one little bit. The book too is a masterpiece, and reading it you realise that the author, Lothar-Gunther Buchheim, is drawing on his own experiences. As a war correspondent, he served on several subs during WWII, and he set out to write a book drawing from those times. Everything in there, more or less, actually happened, they just didn’t happen to the same crew on the same sub – it’s a fictionalised autobiographical story, if that makes sense!

The soundtrack captures the atmosphere superbly – the thrill of the hunt, the satisfaction of victory, the nervous tension of being hunted, the excitement of escape, the sheer joy of charging through the waves, and of course, the tragedy of that ending – all within the 38-minutes or so on the CD.

If you’re familiar with the movie, you’ll be able to picture each distinct passage and it really adds to the listening. For me, this is a great album to be playing a ship based wargame to. The ‘ping’ of sonar pops up every now and again but even without that you get the sense that the album is about the sea and the hunter-killers both on the surface and below.

The title track also re-occurs throughout the album in one form or another, with its base-tones always setting my hairs on end, it’s so atmospheric. Indeed, it actually went on to be released as a single, hitting number 1 in many countries and number 18 in the UK.

If you’re looking for wargame background music, especially Naval combat, then look no further. It’s great when music in the background represents what’s happening on the table. Maybe, your ships are charging forward towards the enemy and ‘U 96’ is playing, or, on the other hand, you’re making all haste in the opposite direction and the chase is on, all to the sound of ‘Heimkehr’ – it just enhances the whole experience.

It isn’t always the easiest of albums to get your hands on, especially the original 1981 release. I recently got my copy (1985 version) from Discogs after searching for it in shops and Amazon for years – you can now, at the time of writing, get it on Amazon.

Go and watch the film. Go and read the book. Both are superb but buy the album and you’ll relive them time and again through the music.

Die Original Filmmusik Das Boot – Klaus Doldinger

Released 1981

Track listing

  1. Anfang
  2. Das Boot
  3. Appell
  4. U 96
  5. Auslaufen
  6. Erinnerung
  7. Konvoi
  8. Angriff
  9. Heimkehr
  10. Das Boot (Single-version)
  11. Bedrohung
  12. Erinnerung
  13. Gibralter
  14. Warten
  15. Eingeschlossen
  16. Rettung
  17. Ruckzug
  18. Ende

9 thoughts on “Music Monday – Die Original Filmmusik Das Boot

  1. Well you’ve picked one this week that I have no knowledge of at all, so will have to try to rectify that, thanks for the heads up Justin

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s good, atmospheric music, Dave, so I’m sure you’d enjoy it😃

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I have a feeling I watched this as a series rather than a film! I didn’t remember the music, so it was interesting listening to it via your links! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, John, it was screened as a series as well. I think that’s how I first saw it too but it’s best watched all in one go IMHO.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This is a creative choice, mate! I haven’t seen Das Boot myself so the music is unfamiliar to me. I’ve heard great things about the movie and maybe one day I’ll give it a go 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Certainly worth a watch, but keep it in German to experience it at its best.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Most definitely! I don’t mind a bit of reading myself so I would definitely flip the subtitles on.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Blimey, this is a bit of an eclectic selection! I have seen the movie but it was years ago. I’ll have to seek it out and give it another watch, and this time pay more attention to the music 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The music really adds to the atmosphere but doesn’t take over so as to stand out from it – it’s a very good balance.


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