Sunday 26 December 2021

Spacecraft – "Paradoxe" (Self-Released) 1978

It looks Kraut,sounds Kraut,feels Kraut,but it's French.....ish......naturally there's a English guy involved.In fact an English Gentleman from no lesser electro-rock outfit than Bill Nelson's Red Noise,namely the eye-wateringly famous, John Livengood...yes THAT John Livengood..This has gotta be good then....LivenGOOD at least?
Yeah, I've never heard of him either,but google has.
The Paradoxe is that this is one of those records who would be quietly inserted into the post-2001 Krautrock sections in your local CD emporium,keeping it hushed that they were mostly Frogs ,but in the vinyl days they would have been lost in the dreaded vacuum of the miscellaneous category. Its not German but it's Kraut era Space rock-a-like,aka la Musique Kosmiche. It's a mixture of influences,worn boldly on their wizards' sleeves,including such obscurities as Early Tangerine Dream from their Alpha Centuri era, the BBC Radiophonic workshop,and Early Electronics.
As for 1978,the market would have been rather limited for shifting units of this kind of hippie nonsense.But thanks to the small-mindedness of the 1970's buying public,these treasures are left to fester like musical dinosaur footprints in the muddy waters of re-issue detecting.
French Prog and all it's tendrils,are often lazily dismissed as German,or just European.....of course the Brits don't consider themselves at all as European,and refer to mainland Europe as "The Continent".This is also applied strenuously to music; "Ahhh, That's European",they'd announce,meaning "Continental"....and also ,most probably..."Rubbish".
As a young lad,I too harbored this assumption that anything 'Continental'was ,by definition, automatically Rubbish....I mean look at Eurotrash nonsense with rhymes and ear piercing double tracked vocals. This attitude changed,when I realised that DAF were in fact, German.A fact given away because they sang in German,rather that English with cheesy foreign accent style so beloved by all Eurovision acts....and they (DAF) were,shockingly,.....Good?! Then Sounds started writing about CAN,which opened a whole new world for me...overlooking the terrible sartorial styles in evidence, favored by the main protagonists .Something the whole musical world outside of the Anglo-Saxon world has still to figure out.Even DAF looked like a couple of sweaty S+M rubberclad rentboys .There was Kraftwerk I suppose,very smart looking gents,if a tad silly on the we are Robots front....and normally anyone French turned out to be Belgian.Generally The Benelux mob could qualify as UK overseas territory musically,so they qualify as exempt.
Then once discovered,every Kraut/French prog record is consumed and hailed has the best thing since sliced Roggenmischbrot.
That is until you've heard them a few too many times,and ten years later realise that 90% of it is in fact shite after all.Even CAN i find rather dull theses days....or is that....titter,smirk,laff.....Amon Dull?
Alas, Spacecraft I have heard but twice, so I don't think this is shite yet.....come back in ten years and it certainly will be so.


A1 Lumière De Lune 3:51
A2 Cosmic Wheel 10:55
A3 Chromatique One's 5:18
B1 Harabizant 9:35
B2 Ananda 2:35
B3 Surface 7:20

Friday 24 December 2021

Seesselberg – "Synthetik 1" (Seesselberg Self-released)

 Oh Christ!.....this is on the Nurse With Wound List...Groan! It's one of those self-released German Electronic avant-garde albums,but this time without structure.This has more in common with the Early electronics of the fifties and sixties than Tangerine Dream or any of the tuneful Kosmiche Kraut musiks of the 1970's. Yeah that's right it gets on your tits....but don't show it or your 'I'm weird I am' cred will lose half a star. 
We're always being judged these days,whether its as a Host on Air B'n'B,or a struggling craftsman on Etsy, (like moi!),or, be it by your Weird mates, who obsess over the ultimate in binaural trainspotting, The fucking Nurse With Wound List. If you don't dig this then you're out of the klub.
This could have easily been the soundtrack to "The Andromeda Strain 2" when Sylvester Stallone, as Rambo, napalms the shit out of that mother fucking virus from outer space, annihilating at the same time half of China and Russia...the new, but old, communism. Goddam Atheists!
This album is of that ilk where the creatures higher up the evolutionary ladder,humans, try to sound like a couple of chimps let lose on a bunch of synthesizers,and is recorded,packaged and sold back to the higher apes who think they are intellectually superior to most everyone.....even chimps. Humans are rather arrogant creatures,who think that they have been chosen by an even higher being to receive eternal life!? The lower apes would never waste their time on such a concept.The answer to life is have a good time....allll the time (Viv Savage, Spinal Tap). So does this mean that the highest form of music is actually Hair Metal, and not random oscillator manipulation that considers itself from a loftier perch on the art chart than Motley Crue? Surely not?
Chimps show little or no interest in either medium.
Does that make me a chimp, or did anyone spot my thinly disguised overtures to Nurse With Wounds fans? Please let me join your Klub!
Did that sound suitably desperate?


A1 Ouvertüre - "Jeder Ist Heutzutage Glücklich" - If Someone Survives, We Will Have A Return - Match. (Konditionsmusik - 1972) 3:41
A2 Eintrachtkreis-Paranoia (Die 200jahrfeier Findet Nicht Statt - Kondominatsmusik - 1973) 1:02
A3 Verhütungsfreudenwalzer (Kontinenzmusik Für Eine Akademie 1973) 1:27
A4 Speedy Achmed (Verhaltensanweisung 1973) 3:46
A5 Studentenzucker - "Tue Gern, Was Du Tun Mußt!" (Konfektionsmusik 1973) 0:36
A6 "Die Menschen Sind Glücklich, Sie Kriegen, Was Sie Begehren, Und Begehren Nichts, Was Sie Nicht Kriegen Können - Laubsägebastler, Briefmarkensammler Und Brieftaubenzüchter Bilden Das Rückgrat Der Menschheit" (Kondolenzmusik 1973) 10:42
B1 Phönix - 1972 (Filmmusik Zum Film "Phönix" von W.-J. Seesselberg) 10:14
B2 "Was Dir Heute Freude Macht, Das Verschieb Nicht Über Nacht!" (Kondensmusik Aus Einem Konzert Im Gallery-House London - 1973) 4:16
B3 Auszug Aus Einem Konzert In Der Düsseldorfer Kunsthalle 1971

Wednesday 22 December 2021

Wolfgang Riechmann – "Wunderbar" (Sky Records – sky 017) 1978

After encountering Harald Grosskopf's rather good "Synthesist" album,I noticed there was another German in full makeup with expertly groomed lacquered blue hair....also in the "Euro-Rock" section of Revolver Records.....This is not the image one had came to expect from Germans in pop. Terrible, long fly-away hair, afghan coats and unkempt handlebar mustaches were just a few of the minor indiscretions against fashion that I had noticed,particularly among members of CAN .This chap, Reichmann could have been in Duran Duran.
Expecting some disco Kosmiche mash-up, I wasn't put off by the BBC Testcard music of the opening and title track.....strictly not Wunderbar at all.
However,as I had just spent the best part of four quid for it I persevered, and ultimately found it riechly rewarding.Full of analogue wunders and sweeping seascapes to satisfy any disillusioned punk rockers into the realms of relaxation .
Dunno about the Blue Lipstick though....each to his own i guess?
There's always gotta be a downside to every story,and Wolfies' is no exception,as he got fatally stabbed by a  random nutjob shortly after this record was released. Destiny dictated that he would never make a follow-up,and due to his medical condition.....he was dead....he never did start that difficult second solo album;so there's no opportunity for my Third Riechmann LP joke...shame....Unless they have synth's in heaven,or in hell for that matter. 
Both places being purely fictional, I doubt it,but at least a lot of early twentieth century Germans got out of certain eternal torture and melted away into oblivion.


1.Wunderbar 5:40
2.Abendlicht 4:21
3.Weltweit 7:00
4.Silberland 7:41
5.Himmelblau 8:38
6.Traumzeit 1:11

Tuesday 21 December 2021

Harald Grosskopf – "Synthesist" (Sky Records – Sky 043) 1980


Much in demand drummer of Wallenstein, Harald Grosskopf.......without using google translate,I'd like that to translate that as Fat Head?......indeed, Harald Fathead drummed for nearly everyone who did't matter during the Krautrock era ,and for some who used to matter,and,inexplicably, for similar ex-drumming 'synthesists' such as Klaus Schulz.
As with most 'drummer boys, they are all haunted by this need to prove themselves as overlooked musical genius's.Not having one of their songs accepted onto the band's playlist is a major cause of departing Drummers everywhere.They really are just guys who hang around with musicians...with the odd,or very odd exception.
The only other drummer who got painted silver story i know of, was when Tony, Geezer,and Ozzy, painted a drunkenly comatose Bill Ward,drummer of Black Sabbath, Silver;An alcohol and cocaine fueled stunt that ended in hospitalisation for the poor lad.Narrowly escaping death it seems. Boys will be boys as they say?
As for Harald, he had no such excuse for painting himself silver. I can't think of any Krautrock hell-raisers who would have done it to him,especially not in Wallenstein,so i can only guess that the silly sod did it to himself"!?
Were there any Krautrocking wild men? Would be interested if any of you lot know of any......and i don't mean any German's who deliberately failed their maths exams,like Krazy Klaus, or crossed a road without looking and listening.
Notorious German sensibleness is a hard thing to pin down.I guess its to do with all that American financed post war reconstruction, that led to the economic miracle.Whereas the British had to make do with living in bombed out shiteholes like Birmingham on rations,after the country was bankrupted by saving the planet from tyranny and having to pay back the massive loans to the USA....our allies?...who then preceded to give the repayments back to Germany!..but at least the British empire was destroyed,and that was the US's main objective.After all,a famous american order to their Air farce was NOT to bomb any Ford motor company property,as they were churning out trucks for the Third Reich at the time. Plenty American companies made it harder to defeat the Nazi's by continuing to do business with them.The best one was IBM's early mechanical office tools that helped them kill more Jews. (I assume thet Sandy Hook guy will take objection to this in the comments?)
So after being fucked over and left to fester in squalor by the Americans naturally the disaffected youth of Britain would go slightly over the top when it came to revelry.The result of a real repression that was only matched by The German Democratic Republic, who Germanically remained sensible due to being followed everywhere they congregated by the Stasi...i suppose that experience gave the world Rammstein,whether that's should be celebrated is another matter entirely.It did after all inspire the Columbine massacre......a very clever under handed form of revenge on an old enemy I suggest?
When Kraut rock was first becoming fashionable, I spied Harald's silver fizzog in the "Euro-Rock" section of Revolver Records,in the even more exotic,but grey, surroundings of Leicester Marketplace.
The distant cries of "Tater's 10p a pahnd"(pound/lb's)...come 'n' feel these tater's darlin,Onleh 8p a pahnd for you love!"...piercing through the thick odorous haze of rotting banana's made this album a must purchase,then back home on the bus.
It turned out to be better than that CAN album I got the week before (Soon Over Babaluma ,£3.99), full of all the thick Berlin school analogue sumptuousness of bubbling sequencers,melting mellotrons,and sweeping string synthesizers any young person could wish for,but with a commercial edge;and its still good today kids.
Never heard of him again,so I long suspected that he had again painted himself silver and this time succumbed to the call of the Boatman...or the Baumann ?


1.So Weit, So Gut 5:24
2.B. Aldrian 4:51
3.Emphasis 4:55
4.Synthesist 7:34
5.1847 - Earth 6:43
6.Trauma 6:37
7.Transcendental Overdrive 5:03
8.Tai Ki 4:09

Saturday 18 December 2021

Rolf Trostel – "Inselmusik" (Rolf Trostel Records– RP 1098) 1981

Like most German musicians in the 1968 to1982 era, Rolf looks like he has someone else's hair. He would also like us to know which synthesisers he's using;boldly printed on the rear of the cover below the Track listing.He's got a PPG wave,which may or may not be the same PPG Wave that Midge Ure used to play the 'Bell Sequence on the Band Aid "Feed The World single.One of the many crimes against art and culture perpetrated by this short scottish monster..
However, having said that, if the charity single for the starving had been made by Rolf Trostel the Ethiopians would have probably gave all the money back and organised a concert for us poor bastards in the west to save us from life threatening rubbish like Kajagoogoo and their equivalentia.(just made that word up by the way).
I'm told that Rolf was, and probably still is, a Peter Baumann solo fan,and that this self-released LP sounds exactly like the least hippie looking one from Tangerine Dream.
On this evidence I may check out some Baumann....or maybe not.
Therefore, this qualifies as Berlin School,so if you dig this school type,you may wanna check out Rolf and his one man army keeping Baumann Berlin School alive.....well,as in  alive forty years ago.Good for chill-out rooms at some 'orrible dance auditorium in Ibiza, or  a moratorium actually in Berlin itself.
This album could feature in the intermission of my fantasy gig at a renovated Hitler's Bunker in an alternative reality.Supporting Joy Division and PiL mark one,...wait a minute, wasn't that the line-up for the Futurama Festival, September 1979 in Leeds UK?...obviously minus Rolf Trostel of course.We were so spoilt back then.
Nowadays you'd have to fight off Coldplay and Radiohead,desperate to get the opening night in the Bunker on there swollen CV's....only to find that The Arctic Monkeys had beaten them to the punch. These certainly are shit times brother!