Kraütrock

Agitation Free

Formed in 1967 as Agitation, this Berlin group was integral to the scene that also birthed Tangerine Dream. But unlike Tangerine Dream, they had to wait until 1972 to release their debut album (Malesch). Recording of the LP followed a tour of Egypt, Lebanon, Cyprus and Greece and the striking cover shows five long-hairs lounging amid(...)

Ashra/Ash Ra Tempel

Classically trained guitarist Manuel Göttsching started his career under the name Ash Ra Tempel in 1970. The most shamelessly psychedelic of the Kraütrock bands, their line-up fluctuated until, by the time of their New Age Of Earth album in 1977, there was only Göttsching and a huge bank of machines. If The Grateful Dead were(...)

Brainticket

As enthusiasts are aware, Kraütrock encompasses wildly disparate musical tendencies. But if you tend to the freak-out side and want the opposite of the amorphous ambience/mellifluous melodies tendency, Anglo-Belgian-German seven-piece Brainticket's debut LP, Cottonwoodhill, could be just the thing. One of the most bad-trip records ever made, its rock band instrumentation was augmented by flute, tablas and(...)

Can

Formed in Cologne in July 1968, Can surfed the first wave of German innovators, with their debut album Monster Movie referencing Pink Floyd and Hendrix in the context of a radically simplified rhythmic structure largely dictated by drummer Jaki Liebezeit's astonishing precision. Their wildly disparate backgrounds held the key: jazz, classical, pop and experimental music percolated in their daily 12-hour long(...)

Cluster/Kluster

With German youth crying out for their own brand of heroes, it was unsurprising that Philips signed Cluster in early 1971. Having birthed the Ash Ra Tempel/Tangerine Dream scene in Berlin and supported Jimi Hendrix along the way, the duo of Dieter Moebius and Hans-Joachim Roedelius were already legends. In their first incarnation as Kluster, this seminal kraütrock outfit broke all kinds(...)

Faust

In the early seventies, Germany's progressive music scene became known in Europe and the US as 'Krautrock', a faintly pejorative tag coined by the British press after Virgin and United Artists began to licence and sign German acts. The genre was established as a profitable trend, but rapidly became associated with acts sadly lacking the(...)

Kraütrock

For those who were there in 1971, the shock of seeing Faust's eponymous debut LP remains starkly etched in the mind's eye. You could see right through it! Not only was the vinyl transparent, but it came packaged in a plastic representation of an X-Ray print of a hand. The next brain warp came when the(...)

Neu!

Formed in 1971 in Dusseldorf, this archetypal Kraütrock band was actually a duo comprising guitar wiz Michael Rother and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Klaus Dinger, both previously with Kraftwerk. Dinger's mechanical, cut time drumming and Rother's two-note bass runs adorned with cleverly manipulated and dreamy guitar riffs and fills were the hallmarks of the "motorik" sound that would become the band's(...)

Tangerine Dream

There were two turning points for West Berlin art student-turned-rock guitarist Edgar Froese. The first was working with - and writing music for - Salvador Dali. The second was a support slot on Jimi Hendrix's 1967 tour of Germany. These events inspired a desire to create new music, and synthesizers gave him the tools. The result(...)