01 Sep 2023

As you probably know, the 2023 stadium tour has been a tumultuous one for Rammstein, following the accusations of a young Northern Irish woman, Shelby Lynn.

Until now, we had chosen not to communicate on the case. We think that now, with all the legal proceedings over, it's the right time to do it.

The facts, according to Shelby Lynn

It all began when Shelby Lynn made a series of posts on social networks, claiming to have been drugged at the Rammstein concert in Vilnius on May 22, 2023. She was then one of a group of young women selected on social networks by another young Russian woman, Alena Makeeva, to attend the concert in an area set up between the stage and the front row, known as "row-zero". According to her, at a pre-concert party between Till and the girls, she had a few alcoholic drinks and agreed to meet Till alone during the concert, during the remix of Deutschland, in which the singer never takes part. Afterwards, she found herself in an abnormal state, as if a drug had been added to her drink. During the remix, Till asked for a sexual relationship in a small room under the stage, which she refused, provoking the anger of Till, who had obviously been told that everything was agreed. Shelby Lynn said she barely remembered the rest of the evening. She went to an afterparty, then ended up at the hotel where she discovered bruises on her body.

The next day, she contacted the Lithuanian police. After a hearing, she was given a drug test. The results were negative.

The media frenzy

Over the following weeks, the case was reported in the international media. Some distortions occurred, even leading Shelby Lynn to insist that she had not accused anyone of rape. Reactions abounded on social networks. There was support from other girls who say they have had similar experiences, but also support for Rammstein, Alena Makeva or Till Lindemann. Young women explained that they had been part of the "row-zero" and had never had a problem. Some media announced that they were carrying out their own investigations - which yielded little additional information.

Rammstein, and its drummer Christophe Schneider, reacted on several occasions with statements on social networks (first statement of the band on Twitter/X, second statement of the band on Instagram, Schneider's statement on Instagram).

The consequences

Several partners have announced the suspension or cancellation of their collaboration with Rammstein. Among the biggest impacts are the termination of contracts with Ease Agency, the company that has been managing Rammstein's marketing since 2019, and most importantly the suspension by Universal Music Deutschland of all promotional activity linked to the band.

The tour was also slightly disrupted. Some German concerts were accompanied by feminist protests. Pussy was removed from the setlist, the "row-zero" system was abolished, as were after-parties at concert venues. Till Lindemann reacted a few times with sentences at the end of the concert, and the rest of the band showed solidarity.

Rammstein's Berlin offices were damaged. However, it is not known whether the burglary suffered by Till at the beginning of August is linked to the affair.

The Legal aspects

Following Shelby Lynn's report to the Vilnius police, the Lithuanian authorities opened an investigation. A few weeks later, it was closed due to lack of evidence.

After a few weeks, the Berlin public prosecutor's office also opened an investigation. People who had nothing to do with the events filed a complaint against Till Lindemann and Alena Makeva, based on the media coverage of the case.

While the investigation was underway, Till called on the services of law firm Schertz Bergmann. Among other things, it succeeded in having defamatory articles and YouTube videos banned.

The end of lawsuits

On August 29, 2023, the Berlin public prosecutor's office announced, via a press release, that it was discontinuing its investigation. The available evidence provided no proof that Till Lindemann committed sexual acts against women against their will, administered substances altering their will, or took advantage of a power differential towards minor sexual partners.

Regarding Shelby Lynn, the Berlin public prosecutor's office has evaluated the documents provided by the Lithuanian authorities (the result of the drug test is no longer available). They do not reveal any sexual offences, involuntary drug absorption or non-consensual sexual relations. No conclusions can be drawn from the hematoma.

Proceedings against Alena Makeeva have also been discontinued, in the absence of any evidence of criminal misconduct.

What now?

There is therefore no longer any legal action in progress against Till Lindemann, Rammstein or their team. For us Rammstein fans, this is excellent news. The fact remains, however, that the row-zero system and the parties that go with it, brought to light by the case, were a reality. It's up to everyone to make up their own minds about them and about Till.

For the moment, Rammstein's partners have not reacted to the discontinuation of the proceedings. It is likely that Universal Music, for example, will resume its obligations to the band.

It remains to be seen whether the case will have a long-term impact on Rammstein.

One thing is certain: there will be a before and an after Shelby Lynn.

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