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Amon Düül II - Phallus Dei CD (album) cover

PHALLUS DEI

Amon Düül II

 

Krautrock

4.03 | 306 ratings

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octopus-4
Special Collaborator
RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team
4 stars The split of the Amon Duul community had a relevant effect: the end of the improvised, poorly recorded and poorly played live sessions of which the awful Amon Duul albums were made.

From the ashes of Amon Duul we see the birth of a psychedelic band, and probably of Krautrock itself. There's still a lot of improvisation, but what we can hear on this album is music. Psychedelic, sometimes weird, as the album title is. In Latin it means "God's Penis".

"Kanaan" is an instrumental that's enough to understand what the album is about: non- spacey psychedelia reminescent of Syd Barrett and more acoustic than electronic, in the sense that the organ is not invasive and the guitar is the more "acid" instrument in the ensemble.

"Den Guten, Schönen, Wahren" (The Good Nice Wares) is a real song. Nothing to do with the old Amon Duul. Here the guitar sounds very acid as well as the vocals, some high- pitched. It's a very good track.

"Luzifers Ghilom" (The Chiloum of Lucifer) is opened by bongos which give it a "hippy" mood. This track sounds a bit indian, but just a bit. It's an acid track with a nice bass interlude and upbeat tempo. Psychedelic rock in 1969.

" Henriette Krötenschwanz" is a short song that closes the A side. Some "Renate" sings in German with a soprano pitch. Are we sure that they didn't influence Christian Vander and Magma in some way?

The B side is occupied by the side long title track. Very Floydian, in the sense of the most psychedelic and chaotic parts of Ummagumma plus some sounds reminiscents of Syd Barrett. Four minutes of this stuff and the bass guitar introduces a part very similar to the central section of Interstellar Overdrive. The long unstructured (and awful) improvisations of the old Amon Duul are here transformed into real psychedelic music. The musicians play their instrument that are correctly tuned and the suite has a sort of structure and don't appear to be so improvising. It takes 12 minutes to find a sort of melody (same chords of Deep Purple's Child in Time, just as curiosity). Then violins play a short folky part with a little classical flavour just to be replaced by strong and fast percussions and background voices. A few of this stuff and the acid rock is back. The two violins seem to be driving the game, even when the track is not instrumental only. This until the end.

This is quite a double-face album: The A side has interesting moments and is averagely good, but the B side is a very good long psychedelic suite. 3.5 stars really, but it's seminal and probably the first album ever that can be called Krautrock so I roud it up to 4

octopus-4 | 4/5 |

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