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Can - Future Days  CD (album) cover

FUTURE DAYS

Can

 

Krautrock

4.00 | 366 ratings

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zravkapt
Special Collaborator
Post/Math Rock Team
4 stars The last album with Damo Suzuki, although compared to the previous three(including Soundtracks) you don't notice him as much here. The band, or at least Holger Czukay, doesn't think much of this album. Future Days fits in that category of great albums where their makers disown them(Atom Heart Mother, Lizard). But silly me thinks this is their best album. Can(supposedly pronounced 'khan') had a sound all their own. They may sound vaguely similar to some other Krautrock bands, but these guys were in a league of their own. This album in particular doesn't really sound like any of the other ones. For example, the 20-minute "Bel Air" is the closest Can ever came to sounding like Symphonic Prog. "Moonshake" almost sounds like a leftover from Ege Bamyasi. It's not bad but it sticks out like a sore thumb here and it is clearly the worst song. But even Can's worst songs from '71-'73 sound better than many bands best songs.

Up until Babaluma and before they signed to Virgin, Can recorded all their music on 2- track. Most recordings in the early 1970s were done on 16-track. The songs Elvis recorded in the 1950s for example were recorded on 2-track. Only Czukay could make 2-track recordings from the early '70s sound *less* dated than the majority of music of the time. The band would record hours of jamming and improvisations and Czukay would edit the living hell out of them into 2-20 minute songs. Usually he would overlap different recordings on top of each other to create a sound much fuller than you would expect from 2-track recordings. The band would then attempt to recreate those songs in concert. What you have here is some of the finest examples of Czukay's magic at work.

The title track is very minimalistic and very low key. A strange way to start one of their albums. In many ways this is a mellower album than what they had done previously. "Spray" has most of the energy on the album. This jazzy and spacey track is almost instrumental with Damo coming in at the end. "Bel Air" deserves 5 stars by itself. It's more melodic and atmospheric than almost anything else the band did. There is a part around 18:30 where the music seems to have faded out and then comes slowly back. This part is much more dramatic on the original CD version(and vinyl I'm assuming). The remastered version has this part a bit louder and it loses the effect. Overall this music is not easy to describe. Jazzy drumming mixed with simple basslines; busy but not really rocking guitars mixed with repetitive keyboard parts. Some strange effects coming mainly from the keyboards. The vocals of Suzuki are usually half spoken/half sung. Unlike the previous two albums, there is nothing here that is really avant/noisy/strange like "Augmn"(Tago Mago) or the last half of "Soup"(Bamyasi). A good place to start with these guys but the first song might throw you off. 4.5 but I'll round it down to 4 because everything here is not as good as "Bel Air".

zravkapt | 4/5 |

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