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FAUST

Faust

 

Krautrock

3.80 | 148 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Faust is arguably. arguably?. evidently and unabashedly!!. the most extravagant and multicolored band in the krautrock movement - as the band's biography liner notes for the ProgArchives clearly state, their music is not for the faint-hearted, and so any sympathetic reviewer could reasonably hesitate at giving a 5 (or even 4) star rating to any of their albums. But after the initial hesitation, the fact is that all of us, lovers of Faust music, cannot but admit publicly that their best recordings are essential (while remaining not totally recommendable) in any good prog collection. This is, precisely, the case of their amazing debut album, which serves, most of all, as a manifesto of distorted hard rock, uncompromising psychedelia, radical pastiche, Dadaist humor and electronic avant-garde in a very cohesive progressive amalgam. The fact is that this musical offering preserves its inner myriad of sonic contrasts in a unitary whole. While not having the finesse of Can's musicians nor portraying the raw energy of ART or Guru Guru, the truth is that Sosna, Irmler, Wüsthoff, Peron & Diermaier together make up a very tight ensemble. Each one of the three pieces in the album's repertoire comprises an open field for diversity - two of them are 8+ minute long and the other, 16+. 'Why Don't You Eat Carrots?' starts with brutal slide guitar layers upon which samplers of The Rolling Stones' 'satisfaction' and The Beatles' 'All You Need is Love' appear; then, a semi- chamber grand piano section is accompanied by the sound of an angry man giving orders in an almost Nazi way - go figure! The two main motifs that follow combine the dexterity of jazz-rock and the peculiar joy of circus fanfare, both of them seasoned by Zappaesque vocalizations and more slide guitar effects. I don't know how they managed to do it, but they did: this is an opus of musical aggression that bears no sign nor clear evidence of sheer aggressiveness. 'Meadow Meal' has two distinct parts: the first one is pure late 60s-early 70s psychedelia; the second one consists of eerie dual organ layers surrounded by the sound of rain. 'Miss Fortune' is the suite that fills the B- side of the vinyl edition, and it pretty much reiterates the band's penchant for complex psychedelic rock and unpredictable nonsense as exhibited in the previous two tracks. A specific note regarding this track: the acoustic guitar based coda bears a buoclic beuaty in its simplicity, but it is preveneted from becoming "romantic" by the presence of a double voiced soliloquy. If you're a listener whose aesthetic feel is in tune with Faust's demanding musical ideology, then this is a record that you will surely enjoy and may even find essential (as I personally do). This is also - together with the sophomore "So Far"' - the recommended hit-or-miss try for the listener regarding the music of Faust: either if you ultimately enjoy it or you do not, it is clear to me that your "Faust" (or "So Far") experience will necessarily define your future interest (or lack of) in exploring the band's catalogue further.
Cesar Inca | 5/5 |

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