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Can - Out Of Reach CD (album) cover

OUT OF REACH

Can

Krautrock


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sqvp32@dsl.pi
4 stars If you've heard other stuff by Can then you may be surprised; this is funky, fluid, jazzy spaced out [&*!#]. There are some very groovy basslines and soulful vocals. Personally I prefer it to other Can stuff - while still experimental, it sounds more organic and less pretentious and self-conscious - don't know much about the line-up but it sounds like Can with a different rhythm section - same keyboard and guitar strange noodling but underpinned with more of a groove - very good!

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#23308)
Posted Monday, February 14, 2005 | Review Permalink
soundsweird
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Much like "Can", this album is almost completely lacking any of their earlier inspiration. Blame it on boredom, Czukay's exit, changing musical tastes, or perhaps the well just ran dry. Now, if this is the only Can album you've ever heard, you probably love it (the same goes for "Can" and "Rite Time"), because THAT would make it seem unique, fresh and powerful. The other (glowing) reviews here may be explained by that possibility....

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Send comments to soundsweird (BETA) | Report this review (#23309)
Posted Tuesday, April 19, 2005 | Review Permalink
periurbanix@a
1 stars This is CAN's nadir.

The copy I have on CD retains the original pressing mistakes that plagued the original vinyll release! I've never had the enthusiasm to see if more modern releases fix this problem. (What is the point of a CD that crackles?)

The music is perfunctory, a mish mash of clashing ideas that just don't work.

Where was Czukay? What were CAN without him? Well, if SAW DELIGHT wasn't conclusive, then OUT OF REACH was. Without Czukay, CAN were a middling new age funky ambient band with nothing much to attract prog rock fans.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#35308)
Posted Sunday, June 05, 2005 | Review Permalink
Neu!mann
PROG REVIEWER
1 stars I've always been a CAN partisan, but not enough to forgive this listless, uninspired 1978 effort: proof that even the greatest bands (and CAN was one of the best) have their off days.

The cracks that appeared with the revamped line-up on their earlier "Saw Delight" finally burst open here, but don't blame newcomers Rebop Kwaku Baah and Rosko Gee (both ex-Traffic). Their arrival didn't upset the balance of talent all that much, but neither shared the same telepathic rapport, developed over a decade of constant playing together, that had powered the essential Krautrock masterpieces of "Tago Mago", "Ege Bamyasi", and "Future Days".

The new chemistry may have worked well enough on "Saw Delight", but that funky dance rhythm toward which the band had been moving ever since their semi-hit single "I Want More" always had a limited shelf life, and apparently didn't carry over to this session. And the album suffered even more without the guiding hand of Holger Czukay, CAN's founding bass guitarist and resident wild card. Listen to his first few solo albums, released at about the same time, to see what's missing here.

Maybe this stumble was overdue. After a decade of intense, sometimes phenomenal creativity the group (what was left of it) was clearly running on fumes, sounding as if they had forgotten, or (worse yet) couldn't be bothered to listen to each other anymore. Even on the improvised instrumental tracks ("Serpentine" and "November"), typically CAN's strongest suit and raison d' ętre, the group sounds like they're simply going through the motions, eating up studio time in a rush to fill their contract obligations. And the other songs could almost be by anybody, not the sort of criticism normally leveled at a CAN composition.

In the end the title of the album proved to be more than a little prophetic, to the point where the band itself has long since disowned it. Spoon Records, the CAN parent company, is currently on a four-year schedule to re-master every album the band ever released, from their 1969 debut "Monster Movie" to the 1989 reunion "Rite Time", with the notable exception of this one. I've always had a soft spot of sympathy for it: the lost Little Match Girl of the greater CAN discography. But that doesn't change my opinion of it, sadly enough, or make it in any way a better album. Thankfully, the band would pick itself off the mat in time for another round (or two): see 1979's self-titled album, a.k.a. "Inner Space", and the 1989 "Rite Time" epilogue.

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Send comments to Neu!mann (BETA) | Report this review (#45847)
Posted Tuesday, September 06, 2005 | Review Permalink
Tom Ozric
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Funny how certain albums by certain bands are often dismissed, even by the band members themselves. I just wonder what I see in some of these albums - CAN's 'Out of Reach' being one of these obscure platters. Some time in the late 90's, I managed to obtain the later Can records almost in one go - and I love each and every one of them. Totally different from their pioneering 'Kraut' style, this later, more conventional approach may have almost crushed their revolutionary anarchic reputation, but I still find the music here original, diverse and still containing some powerful elements. Irmin Schmidt's Keyboards maintain a 'spacious' quality to them, Jaki Liebezeit continues thumping out his 'motoric' rhythms, doubled with colossal percussive work from Rebop Kwaku Baah (ex- TRAFFIC). Bassist Rosko Gee (also ex-Traffic) is a mighty fine player, and has a pleasant voice. Michael Karoli contributes his distinctive fumbly, abrasive guitar style with verve, the lengthy jam 'November' being a superb example. Two of the songs here are quite funky and groove-based, almost poppish in fact - 'Pauper's Daughter and I' and 'Give Me No Roses' - both penned by Rosko Gee (much to the chagrin of the original, 'democratic' minded members) with Schmidt gracing 'Pauper' with some dazzling synth textures, and 'Roses' bringing us a cool, laid-back mood. 'Serpentine', 'Seven Days Awake' and 'One More Day' are three dynamic instrumental pieces, featuring Flanged Basses and, at times, processed Drums, making for some quite intense listening. 'Like Inobe God' is a strange, percussive-heavy tune led by Rebop, which is decorated with a spacey vibe. Another very interesting German release. 4 stars !

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Send comments to Tom Ozric (BETA) | Report this review (#156606)
Posted Tuesday, December 25, 2007 | Review Permalink
Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Metal Team
2 stars This album also exists in an issue where it is paired with the preceding album 'Can', which, to make things entirely confusing, has also been released under the name 'Inner Space'. Well, the issue with its companion Inner Space might be your safest bet here as this album is a bit of a scanty carbon copy of that great 'Inner Spavce' album. Yes I know every one else has a different opinion on that one :)

Serpentine, November and Seven Days Awake are emblematic for this albums problem. They are ok instrumentals but don't add anything to the superior stuff on Inner Space. And certainly nothing at all if you consider the whole Can oeuvre. Pauper's Daughter is more interesting, at least it features a vocal line that is quite different from what they had done before. Almost a soul croon.

If you can find the album release where it is paired to Inner Space in a second hand store, you shouldn't hesitate. At least if you like the more polished funk and electronic Can sound from the end of the 70ties.

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Send comments to Bonnek (BETA) | Report this review (#248122)
Posted Wednesday, November 04, 2009 | Review Permalink
JJLehto
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Krautrock. I had no idea what it was and frankly, thought it was one of those made up genre's that didn't really exist, and that krautrock was really just German prog rock bands. Apparently it is psychedelic prog rock with very jazzy influences, long minimalist sections and improv. Wait, how is this not like some prog rock? OK, no more genre clerical rants from me. This is my first foray into krautrock, but maybe not since this album is apparently quite different from most of Can's work. OI!

OK, this is a pretty cool album. It has a very mellow to it. Lots of keyboard, jazzyness (mainly in the drumming) mild guitar, funky bass riffs and psychedelic sections. There is even some space rock! The guitar solos on this album are awesome. They are soulful and emotional. They are quite melodic, and range from sustains to hendrixesque trippy noodling and screaming. Some distortion thrown in there to boot.Throw on top some very soothing vocals. They are somewhat infrequent, often soft and always nice.

I mentioned the guitar solos which are maybe my favorite part of the album, but the bass riffs are truly great. Very funky. The drumming is also quite good, and ranges from simple beat keeping, to wild and jazzy. The drumming overall has a very jazz feel, (what's not to like about that?) and is again, very cool. Favorite drumming on the album is in the song "One More Day" which is a very space rock song. Then the keyboard, probably the main instrument on the album. It is quite prominent and is sometimes a nice background, sometimes high pitched and space rocky.

Overall, the songs do have a bit of an improv feel to it. Perhaps it is not as experimental and free flowing as their older work, but this is certainly not a constructed album, at least not entirely. I think it has quite a free feeling, in fact upon very first listen I thought the songs sounded a bit, everywhere and lacked cohesion. I quickly realized this is not a bad thing!

I will say, this album does have quite a pop feel to it as well. I have heard it compared to disco, and I dont know about that, (besides I was born in 1988!) but while the jam feel is present, there is some structure and organization. Given that, along with its mellow and funky feel, this album may be pretty accessible to the mainstream!

As a newcomer to Can, and krautrock in general, I can look at this album with the pre-conceived notions of Can and krautrock. A funky, spacey, mellow and somewhat psychedelic jam session album. Maybe their is too much pop or structure and not enough experimentalism but this is a good album. Especially great to relax to. "November" and "One More Day" are the best tracks on the album, but there is no real weak song.

THREE AND A HALF STARS (Bump 3)

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Send comments to JJLehto (BETA) | Report this review (#292370)
Posted Thursday, July 29, 2010 | Review Permalink
tarkus1980
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars So pointless that the band members themselves have disowned it, this one doesn't even have Czukay in a token role, which helps explain why many fans don't acknowledge this as a proper Can album. I will admit that it has some advantages over Delight: it's less monotonous, and I actually honestly enjoy some of the tracks on here, which I wouldn't have said about this album's predecessor. The lows, however, are offensively bad, and the lessening of monotony comes at the price of the band seemingly not having any idea what direction it wants to go, so the album gets the same rating as before.

The highpoint is undoubtedly the moody seven-minute instrumental "November," which uses a lot of tasteful piano to complement some great emotional guitar solos, and which also features (to my ears) something that wasn't found on the last album: a decent blend of the percussion attacks of Jaki and Reebop, where they're clearly distinct but clearly working together. It's nowhere near as good as the better instrumental work from the band's prime, but it's a marked improvement over everything from Saw, and that counts for something.

Other decent tracks include "Seven Days Awake," an instrumental which adds little to Can's legacy but is at least kind enough to be depressing, and the totally incongruous "Give Me No Roses," a bouncy Gee-sung pop number that has a neat little chorus. Unfortunately, that's only three tracks out of seven. The opening "Serpentine" reminds me too much of the kind of noodling that took up Delight (at least it's only four minutes, though), "Pauper's Daughter and I" is an incredibly obnoxious pop song that makes the mistake of lasting a whole six minutes, and the closing "One More Day" is a completely pointless two-minute "astral" instrumental. And, of course, there's "Like INOBE GOD," a piece of "ethnic" muzak with terrible Reebop vocals, the kind of thing I'd expect to hear from a cross between late-period Can and Murph and the Magic Tones (see the movie The Blues Brothers if you don't get what I'm talking about) while dining in a Holiday Inn. This is just AWFUL.

If you're a Can fanatic, hunt down the best tracks from this online. Otherwise, just pretend this never existed; you and the band will get on quite well if you do that.

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Send comments to tarkus1980 (BETA) | Report this review (#388119)
Posted Friday, January 28, 2011 | Review Permalink

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