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Neu! - Neu! CD (album) cover





4.08 | 325 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
4 stars Space Krautrock at its finest.

A listener's first excursion into the murky dense world of Neu! can be a love hate relationship. The tracks range in emotion from dynamic, vibrant exhilaration ('Hallogallo') to brooding impenetrable intensity ('I'm Gluck'). This early pioneering album is as important to Krautrock as it is to independent alternative modern music.

At times the rhythms are positively hypnotic such as the spacey 'Negativland', and the album does have its fair share of disturbia reminiscent of God Speed You! Black Emperor. 'Sonderangebot' has some unsettling gong splashes and distant cries and is one to avoid in pitch darkness.

The motorik beat of Michael Rother's guitar is a force in itself on the 10 minute hypnosis of 'Hallogallo'. This is my introduction to Neu! And I was delighted it did not over indulge in experimental avant-garde ramblings. 'Weissensee' is as close to Pink Floyd's musicality as one can get and its slow crawling psychedelic tones drone beautifully with measured guitar wah-wah swells.

'Lieber Honig' has a vocal performance in the form of Klaus Dinger's mournful intonations about the pain of feeling isolated; at least that is how it sounds in a language as foreign as Kobaian. The minimalism is unnerving in places but Neu! never overdo things by releasing a loud blast to induce a cheap heart failure as some bands do so. Actually, in the most curious way, the song is rather relaxing.

'Im Glück' is memorable for its ambient textures especially the soundbytes of a rowboat paddling on the river slowly. One may be reminded of a scene in a horror movie where the paddlers are being watched from afar by rednecks ready to strike terror; cue the banjo.

One may hear the makings of alternative indie such as Sigur Ros, Radiohead, GSYBE or Stereolab. This debut was light years ahead of its time and would have stunned listeners and of course it carved an indelible mark in the foundation of Krautrock.

AtomicCrimsonRush | 4/5 |


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