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3 stars Recorded at the time that Cluster was collaborating with Brian Eno and Michael Rother, this album seemed a lot better then than it does now. I guess that I've heard so many albums of various types of electronic music since then that a nondescript work like this tends to sound dull and uninteresting. In addition, I think that this was the first Cluster album I bought (it had just come out), so it seemed a little "fresher" for a few years. The music is simple and repetitious, and the recording is less than crisp. Of course, the same can be said about most of Cluster's albums, but some of the others make up for those weaknesses with unusual sounds and a quirky playfulness. This one's just a notch below their best work.
Report this review (#47952)
Posted Friday, September 23, 2005 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
3 stars What a change form their first two albums. Gone are those wind swept soundscapes that I loved so much, replaced with more of a TANGERINE DREAM like sound but more experimental. In the liner notes Moebius and Roedelius talk about how they would send each other tapes of what they had created, and then the other would react to what the other had done and improvise over it. The tapes were mixed at Conny Plank's studio.

"Sowiesoso" has a pulsating rhythm as synth-like sounds come and go. It does become very TD-like later. "Halwa" has these darker guitar-like sounds with synths and percussion. I must say that you never know what they are using to create a lot of these sounds, so i'm just describing what I hear as usual. "Dem Wanderer" is kind of dark with synths, bass and twittering sounds.

"Umleitung" is lighter with piano. We get a beat 2 minutes in and check out the crazy vocals that woop it up during this song. "Zum Wohl" is another good one with the piano, synths and twittering sounds. "Es War Einmal" has these sax-like sounds with piano as synths pulse. I like it. "In Ewigkeit" is the song I really don't like. All week when this tune would come on i'd look at the track number and see it at song 7. It's the longest one too so that's disappointing. Sounds like alto-sax and then these high pitched noises come in. I just don't like it is the bottom line I guess.

I do think this is very close to a 4 star album but I can't pull the trigger with a good conscience. 3.5 stars.

Report this review (#236906)
Posted Thursday, September 3, 2009 | Review Permalink
3 stars More placid and calm than previous Cluster releases, Sowiesoso feels a bit like a middle ground between the experimental hypnotic drone pulses of earlier Cluster and the somewhat more immediately accessible work of Autobahn-era Kraftwerk. One of those electronic Krautrock albums which very easily fades into being background music, it's a pleasant enough experience but not what I'd call an enduring highlight of the scene, or of Cluster's particular discography. (Perhaps they were spreading their efforts out too much with the concurrent work on Cluster & Eno, though they'd pull things together in time for the excellent After the Heat). Three and a half stars, I guess.
Report this review (#991979)
Posted Friday, July 5, 2013 | Review Permalink

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