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Amon Düül II - Carnival In Babylon CD (album) cover

CARNIVAL IN BABYLON

Amon Düül II

 

Krautrock

3.54 | 172 ratings

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Modrigue
Prog Reviewer
3 stars Last early Amon Düül II album to acquire

After the psychedelic experimentations of the first three opuses, "Carnival In Babylon" marks a small rupture in the krautrockers' career. Less complex and adventurous than before, the compositions are now shorter and more accessible, but remains pleasant and quite original for the average musical listener. However a question comes to mind: Spirit of AMON DÜÜL II, are you (still) here?

Since the first note, you can perceive the change. Is this a GONG track? "C.I.D. In Uruk" is a pleasant folk song, with a slight mystical feel, however a bit repetitive. Then comes the soft rock "All The Years Round", more nervous and featuring Renate Knaup's particular singing. The heavy finale is very nice. On the contrary, "Shimmering Sand" tries to reuse the collage recipe from "Tanz der Lemminge", but lacks musical direction and is rather forgettable. The last minutes are pleasant though.

The pop rock piece "Kronwinkl 12" is not very interesting either. The weakest passage of the disc. Here you can have a preview of what AMON DÜÜL II will become in the mid-seventies... Nonetheless, the original spirit of the band can be heard in "Tables Are Turned", a cool psychedelic jam with a little middle-eastern and Indian atmosphere. The ender "Hawknose Harlekin" is also an improvisation, more space rock-oriented, featuring strange keyboards and floating guitars.

"Carnival In Babylon" is undoubtedly the weakest album of the debut period of AMON DÜÜL II, from 1969 to 1973 (the best one). Although uneven, containing a few wobbly songs and far less adventurous music than the first three opuses, the overall result remains enjoyable and quite unconventional. The attaching personality of the musicians is still present... for now. In conclusion, this record is not essential, but nonetheless pleasant, possesses its own charm and should not be skipped in the Germans' discography.

After then listen, we may wonder if the accessible music formula is adapted to this unique band or if they have just lost a piece of their creativity? Don't leave now, these questions will be answered the same year, in the next album...

Modrigue | 3/5 |

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