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Oktober - Die Pariser Commune CD (album) cover

DIE PARISER COMMUNE

Oktober

 

Krautrock

3.81 | 13 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Oktober were a seven piece German band who put on these theatrical shows that were very political. This their second album continues in the same vein as the debut as we get this Symphonic/Krautrock style of music although this is much more symphonic than the debut. The vocalist has a lot of character to say the least. This was a double concept album with four side long suites with plenty of twists and turns including lots of samples and spoken words as well. All singing and speaking is in German and the subject matter is "The Paris Commune" which is about an event that took place in Paris in 1871 where it is believed the first ever government was formed by the working class people. This is a ride folks.

We get started with "Unser Blut-Ihre Geschichte" where we can hear a loud crowd shouting and celebrating before the organ takes over. This is replaced by drums and guitar that builds. Check out the chunky bass and background synths. Man this sounds amazing. The guitar then solos over top 2 1/2 minutes in before it all settles right down as spoken words come in with atmosphere. It all kicks back in at 5 minutes including piano this time. Vocals follow. It settles again with background synths as the vocals continue. Great sound before 8 minutes as it picks up speed then becomes more powerful. I like the way themes are repeated. Impressive instrumental sections follow then I like the calm 14 minutes in as the synths blow like the wind as the drums pound. Ripping guitar after 15 minutes with ground shaking bass as the drums continue to be upfront. A dark calm before 18 minutes with deep sounds and sinister guitar. Spoken words only follow then back to the instrumental work followed by vocals as again themes are repeated. What a track !

"Die tage Der Kommune" sounds like the start of the first track as the crowd roars along with other sounds. The music kicks in before a minute. Love the prominant guitar 2 1/2 minutes in. It becomes very symphonic, almost GENESIS-like and the vocals become double tracked like they did at times on their debut album. Themes are repeated on this suite as well. The vocals become fragile with picked guitar 13 minutes in until spoken words take over 16 minutes in with piano. The music kicks back in with some power before 17 minutes, vocals follow. A calm with flute after 22 minutes, vocals and piano then take over as it stays mellow. Not for long though but the mood continues to change.

The second record begins with "Zwischenlied" where we can hear a man speaking along with street noise before the guitar and vocals take over. Piano starts to come and go in this beautiful section. Things change as a dark atmosphere comes in and the vocals are suddenly spoken. Back to the strummed guitar with vocals. Very folky so far on this track. A change after 11 1/2 minutes as the music stops and we can hear soldiers marching and the crowd buzzing. A more uptempo sound follows as the music returns with vocals shortly after this. The music almost marches along here. I'm thinking GENESIS with the synths and intricate sounds after 16 1/2 minutes. A calm with gentle vocals follows. It becomes more dynamic and the vocals more powerful after 18 minutes almost to the end.

"Unser Blut-Unsere Geschichte" opens with samples once again then multi-vocals take over including female ones this time. Heavenly guitar melodies take over with keyboards. Vocals join in before 2 minutes. It all stops before 5 minutes as an anthem takes over with horns and drums. Then the boys are back with a familiar instrumental theme. So good, then a calm with vocals follow before it picks up again. A calm with synths 10 minutes in. The last 1 1/2 minutes is like listening in on many people talking about the event to the end.

No doubt a 4 star recording for me but I do prefer the debut. Of course a concept album is difficult to appreciate when you don't understand the spoken words or singing. What an innovative band though, especially when you consider that their debut was released in 1976 and this one a year later.

Mellotron Storm | 4/5 |

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