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Kraan - Live CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.10 | 66 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
4 stars Probably their best album and certainly the one showing their talents best, this double vinyl really gives the best possible selection of tracks from their first three albums plus three new tracks as well as an improvisation on another track. What might be revealing about this album is the absence of tracks from the Wintrupp album (which I thought was rather patchy), and the concentration on the debut and third albums. Again placated with disputable artwork, this comics cover is at least funny>

Of course as you might have guessed there are some lengths on such an album (but this was so typical of that era's recordings), most notably on lenghty soloing and indulgent duos even if showing that these guys probably knew their crafts so well that they slept with their instruments. This is so evident with bassist Hottler's Rickenbacker bass (check out the lenghty version of Nam Nam, which is much livelier than its studio version). Matterhorn is also double its original length, but so much less indulgent showing us the songwriting difference between the previous album's first and second vinyl side. The first disc ends with a superb rendition of the opening track of the Kraan recording career.

The second disc (the Cd reissue is a single CD so this would be track 5 ;-) is the title track of their last studio album at the time and is followed by an improvisation on its theme afterwards. A lenghty new track (well actually more of a jam) ends the third side on a rather subdued manner. It should be noted that all three "new tracks" presented here are not of incredible calibre, but stay on-par with the average. The double album closes on a version of the superb Kraan Arabia, standout from the debut album.

The musical position of Kraan in Germany was quite unique, with its almost Krautrock sound (ala Amon Duul II), but a clear jazz-rock influence, but not quite like other German bands such as Thristy Moon, Passport or Release Music Orchestra which were much more classic fusion, but this actually adds to their interest. They will go on for many years, but future albums will be increasingly average and more common (what I really mean is less-inspired, but I am not willing to admit it ;-), but this album is really worth it, but I would not suggest it as an introduction for the group.

Sean Trane | 4/5 |


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