Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Cosmic Circus Music - Sternenmaskerade CD (album) cover


Cosmic Circus Music



3.99 | 16 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Prog Reviewer
3 stars The band had a silly name, and their only surviving recorded effort is a bootleg-quality dupe, at best. But this ultra-rare collector's item is close to essential listening, and one of the best undiscovered Krautrock freakouts from the early 1970s.

It was originally available only as a mail-order cassette tape, advertised in a single 1972 issue of Sounds Magazine (the German edition). Who knows how few people accepted the offer; what the rest of us missed was an unbroken 45-minutes of thrilling psychedelic guitar rock, resembling a lost Ash Ra Tempel rehearsal recorded live in an empty warehouse.

How such a strong ensemble never found an audience is anyone's guess. Not many power trios have this much voltage to spare, and the guest flautist / sax player (Tim Belbe of XHOL CARAVAN) adds a touch of HAWKWIND Space Ritual to an already far-out piece of music. But calling it a freakout is actually a little misleading. There's a focus and determination here beyond the usual anarchy of Krautrock, with just enough method to keep the madness in check.

Not once do the musicians lose their grip on the material. After a slow, yearning one-chord introduction the pace gradually builds to immense proportions, as if all four players were succumbing to a brain-melting virus that increased the intensity of their performance even as it sapped their will to resist. Cymbals and percussion enter at around the ten-minute mark, and the tempo picks up after another ten minutes, with the addition of a second chord lifting the sound above the stratosphere. From there the track ebbs and flows toward its final, five-minute coda, ending an epic journey on a note of melancholy grace.

All without a dull moment too, at least for aficionados of cosmic guitar workouts. The rough production actually enhances the immediacy of the experience, especially when played loud enough to scramble your synapses. Which of course ought to be the goal of any good Space Rock jam.

Mine is probably a third (or more) generation copy, but at least the music is still available, after a fashion. Rumors on the web say the entire session (a full 80-minutes: this was apparently only the second half!) will be given a long-overdue CD release on the Garden of Delights label sometime this year (2013). When or if that happens (and I'm pleased to report it already has a catalogue number), the album will hopefully earn all the belated praise it never had a chance to enjoy four decades ago.

Three conservative but very enthusiastic stars for the aging analog cassette, with a fourth supernova reserved for the anticipated digital re-issue.

Neu!mann | 3/5 |


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Share this COSMIC CIRCUS MUSIC review

Social review comments () BETA

Review related links

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives