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Annexus Quam - Osmose CD (album) cover

OSMOSE

Annexus Quam

 

Krautrock

3.78 | 61 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
4 stars While psychedelic space rock may have found its origins in the mid-60s British scene most notably by Pink Floyd as well as others at the famous UFO Club in London, there is no denying that it was the German Krautrock scene that really nurtured it and took it all to the farthest trips of the day with a huge underground scene diversifying into myriad musical arenas. One of the most interesting of the lot was the Düsseldorf (nearby Kamp-Lintfort actually) based ANNEXUS QUAM who released two albums in the early 70s straddling the line between psychedelic rock and free jazz. Their roots stem as far back as 1967 as a hippy band named Ambition In Music but in the process of constant gigging and touring the members were growing bored with the predictability of the pop music scene and became more adventurous and eventually acquired seven members that added guitar, bass, drums, clarinet, flute, sax and trombone to the sound.

The band was signed to the underground Ohr label and made their first appearance on the 1970 compilation "Ohrenschmaus - Neue Pop-Musik aus Deutschland" which featured the track "Kollodium" that never made it onto the first album but debuted their interesting mix of cosmic Third Ear Band freedom with trippy folk flute, jazzy bursts of saxophone and trombone blended in a psychedelic fuzzy haze. Their debut OSMOSE (osmosis) featured four tracks with the first two shorter in length and more oriented in a drum heavy psychedelic rock with jazzy touches and the two final ones that exceed ten minutes in length and venture out into the great unknown with some of the most cosmic Krautrock of 1970. They played on the Expo 70 tour in Osaka, Japan and have the honor of being the very first German rock band to perform in that country.

OSMOSE is one of those instantly recognizable albums for its colorfully lysergic album cover that finds various scenes melting into the next and displays the perfect visual for the accompanying sound effects within. This is a free flowing sort of music with no regard to conventional song structures and instead relies on a steady Indo-raga sort of percussive drive that varies from rock drumming on the first track to the heavily jazzed up second track but as the album continues becomes more hypnotic as it merely coasts along as the other instruments flutter by in seemingly random streams of consciousness. The psychedelia is turned up as far as possible with occasional fuzzed out guitar, psychedelic keyboards and twangy echoed effects that include ring modulation. While at times it takes on an Ash Ra Temple vibe it equally straddles the jazzy Kraut sector of Embryo or Lard Free albeit well before those bands got their feet wet.

ANNEXUS QUAM were hot in the heels of the earliest Krautrock experiences such as Amon Duul II, Can or Xhol Caravan but instantly conjured up a unique spaced out style that is an instrumental journey into the cosmos and beyond with only drugged out nonsensical moans providing the only vocals on board. This is really an extended jam session based in a predominantly acoustic environment in an Indo-raga meets free form jazz and rock experience. The album is quite chilled out and plods along at a slow speed as it takes elements from many musical arenas and rides a sonic wave to infinity. Not as structured as their contemporaries in the songwriting department but quite successful in taking the psychedelia to the maximum levels. OSMOSE is one of the earliest examples of the kosmische Krautrock scene that has a timeless feel as the zeitgeist of the early movement transcended the place and time where it emerged. One of my favorites of the trippy side of the Kraut scene but i'm equally fond of the second and final album "Beziehungen."

siLLy puPPy | 4/5 |

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