This is an extraordinary book: highly original, beautifully written and full of thought- and ear- opening insights. Schiller’s comparative close readings of carefully selected pop songs in various genres sheds valuable new light on the complex development of post-1945 German national identity formation. Her interpretations are at the same time rich, imaginative and lucidly convincing. This is an astonishing accomplishment!
Melanie Schiller's book, above all, offers a very innovative and relevant take on German popular music studies. Her point of view, in looking from the 'outside' at the 'insides' of this field, is inspiring and both theoretically and methodologically important. Schiller’s close readings of well-selected case studies, as well as her theoretical framework, especially as it concerns the melancholic mode, will be a great support for further analyses of German popular music and culture, nation-building, constructing/deconstructing collective identities, and sameness/otherness on the one hand, and in helping to understand the specificities of German popular music on the other. Soundtracking Germany is a very important work of German—and international and transnational—cultural, media and music research.