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Necronomicon - Tips Zum Selbstmord CD (album) cover





3.67 | 58 ratings

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3 stars More of a novelty item than anything else this one off from German cult band NECRONOMICON which in it`s original form features a cover that folds out into a crucifix, commands ludicrous sums of money in collector`s circles who go absolutely Ga Ga over it, even in it`s many boot-legged editions. The intricate freaked out cover artwork by the band`s drummer is even worthy of it`s own separate review! In English the title translates roughly to, how to commit suicide, although this is meant in a figurative way, dealing with the dark topic of how man has managed to screw up just about everything on the planet from the environment to stockpiling nuclear weaponry. This Black Sabbath meets Floh de Cologne rave up is something even the hippies will run away from and can even make some present day death metal bands look like a bunch of pansies with it`s straightforward black & white apocalyptic musings.

On first listen, especially for non-German speaking listeners, Tips Zum Selbsmord may come off as an acid trip gone horribly bad right from the hum drum vocals which explode into a non-stop unmitigated conflagaration. Sung entirely in the German language with interludes of occultish polyphonic monk-like incantations accompanied by scathing Tony Iommi-like guitar licks interfaced by portentous gothic church-like organ chording along with some folk elements if they can be detected amidst this sonic inferno, the likes of which hadn`t been heard since the 1945 bombing of Dresden, the album certainly hits the mark. Taking their name from a ficticious horror story which was featured in a number of H.P. Lovecraft`s novels in the 1920`s the band started out in 1970 playing Pink Floyd, Uriah Heep and Black Sabbath covers and felt that lyrics in the German language for their original compositions would better reflect their cynical messages of death, destruction and ultimate doom.

Unlike other bands who`s music announces the impending apocalypse at the hand of mankind there`s a certain atmosphere of sadness, meloncholy and despair here rather than outrage ( there`s even an acoustic interlude ) which sort of wins the listener over to their cause who dares to give it a second spin. However, for those who speak or understand the German language their plight of the world themes tend to get overblown, dated and wear thin by the time one arrives at the grand finale Requiem vom Ende. Lyrically they can be distantly compared to Slovenian avant garde industrial band Laibach as well as some material on the first Grobshnitt album.

Financed by a friend and recorded in a small studio using rudimentary recording techniques and featuring lots of effects a la Guru Guru UFO, the album holds up musically well against other kosmische bands such as early Amon Duul II, Xhol Caravan or Ash Ra Tempel. Obviously these guys didn`t care about musical virtuosity but more about using heavy music as a vehicle of their vigilance and awareness toward a world in decay. If Black Sabbath`s messages were about the coming of armaggedon then as far as these guys were concerned here all is lost and the work comes off as a soliloqy mourning the end of the world before it has even happened.

Although the original independent vinyl release of which only 500 copies were pressed, it is scarce and rarely offered for sale although it has been periodically released in various forms including a faithfully reproduced 2005 vinyl reissue, again limited to 500 units, but these even sold out like hotcakes. The Garden Of Delights CD release is the most readily available which comes with a booklet and reproductions of the psyched out artwork ( for some reason the technology no longer exists to reproduce the fold out crucifix ) and four bonus tracks.

Although definitely not agreable to everyone`s musical palette, anyone with even a passing interest in Krautrock will not want to pass over this rock liturgy which without a doubt has special status in the annals of the Krautrock movement of the early seventies.

Vibrationbaby | 3/5 |


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