A German New Wave
musician, born in 1956. Most of his albums deal with the future and are primarily based on science fiction.
His first album, Fehler im System / Error in the System (English)
, brought him into the spotlight with the song "Major Tom (Coming Home)
", which was based on "Space Oddity
" by David Bowie
. The song achieved #1 in Australia, Canada, Germany, and Switzerland. After that, Schilling faded from the spotlight
, though he continued to produce albums. Most of his songs were German only, but his early albums had both German and English versions of the same song - usually a direct translation.
His later albums introduce more techno/electronic elements, and he has released one relaxation album, ''Delight Factor Wellness'.
Peter Schilling's songs contains examples of the following tropes:
- Anti Christmas Song: His version of "Stille Nacht, Heilige Nacht".
- Apocalypse How: "The Noah Plan" has the Earth's orbit falling into the sun. The tides reverse, and the atmosphere is blown away. "Terra Titanic" also suggests a similar global disaster in a metaphorical sense, equating the Earth to the Titanic.
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Major Tom near the end of "Major Tom (Coming Home)".
- Breakup Song: "Chill Of The Night".
- Eagleland: "(Let's Play) U.S.A." is a nasty Type 2 with a cheery pop beat.
- Face Death with Dignity: A line from "Terra Titanic": "...while the captain adjusts his tuxedo a bit, with his glass raised up high as the ice water hits."
- Gratuitous German: Life's So Strong has an introduction in English and the chant "Life is so strong" is English, but halfway through the song, the rest of the lyrics abruptly become German.
- Greatest Hits Album: "The Different Story (World Of Lust And Crime)" for English audiences. Ironically, only "Major Tom (Coming Home)" was known to be a hit.
- Homeworld Evacuation: In "The Noah Plan", the Earth's orbit decays as it drifts towards the sun, and the people on Earth prepare for evacuation by "returning to the universe".
- Lyrical Cold Open: "Only Dreams" and its German counterpart "...Dann Trugt Der Schein".
- Sole Survivor: The protagonist of "Lone Survivor" who isolates himself during a nuclear war in a "fortress made of steel", expecting to be this when the war ends. Near the end of the song, the people around the world post-war understand and begin correcting their mistakes, but "nobody knows about the lone survivor, so there can be no escape".
- Title Track: "Error In The System", "Things To Come", and "The Different Story (World Of Lust And Crime)" for their respective albums in English; "Fehler Im System" and "120 Grad" for the German albums.
- We Come in Peace — Shoot to Kill: "Zone 804" is about visiting aliens that have come in peace to fix our world, but the world sees them as a threat and responds only with having missile silos open and standing by.