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Kraan - Kraan CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.02 | 117 ratings

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5 stars Like most people I wasn't born with a taste for Kraut-rock. Even if you have the correct disposition to get into this often weird and rough kind of music, it remains a taste you need to acquire over years of listening. This catchy and engaging debut from Kraan could be a great place to start for that.

Listed under jazz-rock/fusion, the tag could as easily have been Canterbury or Kraut. Certainly this debut has the raw and unpolished feel of Kraut, with lots of jazz-rock la Soft Machine and similar quirky vocals. In fact those vocals might be the hardest part to get into. In true Kraut fashion they are blunt, rough and rather non-melodious, at least when compared to symphonic Prog. But the vocals never dominate here, taking a spot in the background of the sound and gradually growing on the listener.

The songs are both grinding and melodic, offering plenty of catchy melodies to hang on to and with a firm grip on both rock and jazz. The first two tracks are classics, with chugging electric guitar strumming and excellent riffs, rough saxes, insane vocals and lots of sound effects. Kraan could easily please fans of early Hawkwind as well as Gong or even Caravan. Provided you can handle the non-melodic 'punk' vocals.

A personal favorite is the Middle Eastern tinged Kraan Arabia. The lengthy Head is the wildest and most experimental piece and it's quite similar to Can on their debut album with Malcolm Mooney. The quiet Sarah Auf Der Gansewies ends the album gracefully. The latest CD issue has a couple of interesting alternate takes of the main songs.

The Kraan debut is a rather late discovery for me but it has quickly risen to the top of my playlist. I'm eagerly awaiting the postman for the remaining missing links in my Kraan discography before I'll be able to claim this as the best Kraan album. Till further notice, this sure warrants a place in the top 7% of my ratings. A solid album and a mandatory listen in the Kraut field.

Bonnek | 5/5 |


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