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Can - Delay 1968 CD (album) cover

DELAY 1968




3.62 | 156 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
4 stars This is one of CAN's better albums, in their top three in my opinion along with "Monster Movie" and "Tago Mago". While "Monster Movie" is officially their first album "Delay 1968" was really their first album recorded in 1968, but not released untiil 1981. Incredible really. Since this is where it all started i'll give a bit of background on the band. "In 1968 five young men moved into the Schloss Norvenich in Cologne, lent to them by a benevolent art dealer and proceeded to soundproof the place with egg boxes and army surplus matresses. Keyboardist Irmin Schmidt and Holger Czukay both came from the academic world of New Music-both had been a pupil of Karlheinz Stockhaussen. Drummer Jaki Liebezeit had been part of a Free Jazz scene but now yearned to forego musical "freedom" in favour of repetition, monotony and grooves. Michael Karoli was younger than the rest of the group, a handsome young guitarist as close to the conventional rock createure as CAN possessed...finally there was Malcom Mooney, an African-American sculpture evading the draft, whom they met in Paris and at once conscripted into the CAN". Schmidt had made a trip to America where he encountered the sounds of Zappa and THE VELVET UNDERGROUND and soon those academic traditions were brushed away. Because of the tragic events in Germany in 1968 the band decided that they would be all equal with no one greater than another. No stars, no solos, no egos.This is stripped down in every way, with that fantastic beat they are known for with Mooney's drugged out vocals.

"Butterfly" might be my favourite song on here.The guitar is so aggressive and raw, and the beat is hypnotic with drugged out vocals. Organ arrives after 2 minutes.The beat becomes even more addictive 3 minutes in.The drumming becomes more prominant after 4 minutes.The song calms down and then builds back up with some good bass. "Pnoom" makes me laugh with the short little horn outbursts.The song ends with the sound of the microphone stand being knocked down to the floor. "Nineteen Century Man" is an R&B flavoured tune that is almost impossible to sit still through. Very catchy. Some DOORS-like organ 2 1/2 minutes in. Good song. "Thief" is different from the rest, even the vocals are reserved. Kind of a melancholic climate to this one. Some solemn sounding sax as well on this moving song. One of the top three tracks for me.

"Man Named Joe" features some crazy sounding vocals and sax. The song loses steam on purpose 3 minutes in. "Uphill" has this heavy, relentless beat throughout, as the vocals and guitar do what they please. "Little Star Of Bethleham" is the other top three song on this record for me. This one is a psychedelic beauty. The vocals on the intro sound like Chong as he tells us the story about froggy and toady carrying off the tangerine seeds one by one. Someone is completely fried ! This song has such a great trippy groove to it. Very relaxing tune as he almost raps out the lyrics.

If your a CAN fan you need to get this one, you will not be disappointed. Easily 4 stars. This is also one of the earliest Krautrock records.

Mellotron Storm | 4/5 |


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