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Ashra Correlations album cover
2.97 | 65 ratings | 7 reviews | 9% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1979

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Ice Train (7:40)
2. Club Cannibal (5:24)
3. Oasis (3:46)
4. Bamboo Sands (5:40)
5. Morgana Da Capo (5:29)
6. Pas De Trois (8:58)
7. Phantasus (5:11)

Total Time: 42:08

Line-up / Musicians

- Manuel Göttsching / electronic guitar, synthesizer, sequencer
- Lutz Ulbrich / guitar, string synthesizer, piano, Mellotron
- Harald Grosskopf / drums, percussion, synthesizer, sounds

Releases information

Artwork: Hipgnosis

LP Virgin ‎- 2933 766 (1979, France)

CD Virgin ‎- CDV 2117 (1990, Europe)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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ASHRA Correlations ratings distribution

(65 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(9%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(23%)
Good, but non-essential (52%)
Collectors/fans only (12%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

ASHRA Correlations reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by loserboy
3 stars Manuel Gottsching's second incarnation with a heavier emphasis on electronics than that of AASH RA TEMPEL. Overall more processed sounding than ASH RA TEMPEL and more melodic while still maintaining his patented hypnotic trance-like atmospheres. Combined with the percussive talents of Harold Grosskopf, the keyboard touch of Lutz Ulbrich Gottsching's guitar riffs will keep you knee deep into this album. I love some of the space grooves they get into on this album and think this is an excellent and highly original yet accessible instrumental album.
Review by Modrigue
3 stars 3.5 stars

ASHRA changes its style and its line-up with this one. After the ambient electronics of "New Age of Earth" and the spacey guitars of "Blackouts", here comes the space disco-rock! Not as cosmic as Manuel's former albums, but quite energic and refreshing. No long epic tracks, the album consists in enjoyable short and mid-length dynamic and trippy songs.

"Ice Train" opens the show and sets immediately the ambiance. Its pulsing rythm and powerful guitar will take you directly to the heights. More disco-oriented, "Club Cannibal" has some hypnotic passages. Then, the spirit of "New Age of Earth" comes back with "Oasis", a soft but sometimes a bit lazy song. The next track, "Bamboo Sands" sounds like a mixture of Giorgio Moroder and Mike Oldfied. Groovy, and enchanting too.

In contrast, "Morgana Da Copa" is the spaciest passage of the record. Very relaxing, the tune makes you travel to stange worlds. Manuel's guitar playing is very inspired. Although the longest song of the disc, "Pas De Trois" is quite disappointing and repetitive. Just skip it. The floydian mood of "Phantasus" concludes well the album and could have last longer...

Dynamic, uneven and various, fun and trippy, the third release from ASHRA marks a rupture with the former acts. Not everybody will enjoy the newly adopted style, but if you're not afraid of disco beats, give it a try.

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Three friends

After a hat-trick of solo albums, one in his own name and two under the band moniker Ashra, Manuel Gottsching decided to put a small band together to record the third Ashra album. He brought in multi-keyboards player and guitarist Lutz Ulbrich plus drummer/percussionist Harald Grosskopf; the latter had previously played with Gottsching on the last album recorded by Ash Ra Tempel.

On "Correlations", Gottsching pursues a more commercial sound, while remaining heavily indulged in an improvised style. There is a real band feel to the album, the authentic drum and percussion sounds immediately providing a rock, in preference to electronic, basis on which the track are constructed.

The opening "Ice train" is very much of the style of bands such as SBB, with lead guitar being driven along by heavy drums. "Club cannibal" sees Ulbrich introduce his mellotron to the sound. The funky rhythm supports a varied keyboards and guitar workout, but I find the piece overall to be rather directionless. "Oasis" is a softer lead guitar solo with a basic theme which never really develops.

As the title suggests, "Bamboo sands" has tropical overtones, the bouncy beat and light sounds making for a commercially appealing piece of funk rock. "Morgana da capo" sees the return on the mellotron, which lays a lush orchestrated foundation for further guitar improvisation. At around 9 minutes, "Pas de trois" is the longest track on the album (there is no feature track this time as such), but it offers more of the same, being an extended lead guitar workout. The album closes with "Phantasus", a more moody piece with a heavy drum rhythm.

Perhaps it is the expectations raised after two fine albums which leads me to feel more than a little disappointed with this album. This seems to be little more than three friends getting together and indulging themselves for an hour. There is no questioning the proficiency of the performances, and the music is certainly pleasant and inoffensive. There is for me though no character to the results. "Correlations" is anonymous, it drifts along effortlessly while failing to capture the imagination of the listener. Don't get me wrong though, many will enjoy this album, especially those who lean towards improvisation and fusion for their pleasure.

Review by ZowieZiggy
2 stars What happened to MG ???

This might be the reaction of several people that liked his music and were rather disoriented with this "Correlations" album. Gone are the beautiful and melodic soundscapes.

If you think that the worse has been reached with the opening track ("Ice Train"), you are completely wrong: the next track "Club Cannibal" is there to do so. These electro-disco beats are totally awful and unbearable to my ears. But this was the mood in the late seventies (I can testify this, unfortunately).

I guess that it is not necessary to tell you which key you need to press ?

The first moments of relief are being reached with "Oasis". Indeed, quite a peaceful part: symphonic jazz at its best, this track develops a fine melody and should be able to reconcile MG fans.

The best is yet to come with a beautiful introduction for "Bamboo Sands". Alas, it only lasts for some sixty seconds! After this, the music gets back to these infernal electro beats again. Ouch! Why do you do this to us Manuel???

For our sake, there is still "Morgana De Capo" to come: the music played is more in line with my expectations while confronted to an Ashra album: splendid guitar at last! Even if the beat also flirt with the sound of the disco era, the whole is charming even if a bit too cold to my taste.

The exaggeratedly repetitive "Pas De Trois" finds its name in the fact that there are three musicians playing in comparison with a "Pas De Deux" in the ballet world. To be honest, if it should have lasted only for three minutes instead of eight, I wouldn't have complained. I guess that you get the picture?

The album closes on a decent "Phantasus". This track is quite Floydean and rather "The Wall" oriented. Bizarrely, I quite like it. But to be honest, after so many weak moments, the few good parts from these "Correlations" sound great.

This album is not a good one as far as I am concerned. A couple of good tracks amongst poor music. Two stars.

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars After a decade with multiple outstanding releases, Gttschings' Ashra album Correlations feels like a disjointed mix of leftovers. It doesn't entirely pursue the ambient synth-dominated direction of the two preceding Ashra albums, but offers shorter compositions that vary from cool and funky to downright dull or patchy.

Ice Train is a nice start, almost like a Gttsching take on Alan Parsons Project (the opening instrumental from I Robot in particular). It sounds less dated but it would have worked better at only half of its length. Also Club Cannibal could have fitted on an APP album; it pairs a swinging disco beat to eerie guitars and mellotron/synth parts. Space-disco! Nice one.

Oasis is a gentle piece with clean melancholic guitars and a soft bubbling bass synth. Not very different from earlier Ashra work. The similarity with the 80s post-wave band Durutti Column is striking, its a band sure worth checking out for Gtsching fans.

With Bamboo Sands the album takes a turn for the worse. Gttsching tries to spin his sound around tropical beach party music. Not his brightest idea probably. Also Morgana De Capo suffers from lame drum parts. The lengthier Pas De Trois continues the Latin vibes of Bamboo Sands but can't hide the lack of fresh ideas on Gttsching's part, each note he plays sounds too familiar. Phantasus again looks at APP for inspiration and it's clich and meek.

Despite a good start and an attempt to bring in new influences, Correlations is an inconsistent album from an artist that would have been better off taking a well-deserved artistic break.

Review by Dobermensch
3 stars Sporting a cover by the famous art house Floyd designers 'Hipgnosis', this one holds a massive Freudian problem with me... Putting to one side the subliminal disturbances in my mind due to this strangely repulsive sleeve, it's actually a colourful, mostly upbeat electronic album, similar to 'Force Majeure' era Tangerine Dream. Although with less deviation from it's central aim.

All Göttsching's guitars sound heavily treated, which is a good thing. At points, he sounds like that bloke Vini Reilly from 'Durutti Column'. Without guitars this album would be a real bore.

Harald Grösskopf's drums occasionally border on disco beat and are pretty straight throughout. 'Correlations' has, however, that certain something or other that easily stands up to repeated listens.

For God's sake though, don't play it in front of any new girlfriend! She will not be enamoured. It doesn't sound cool at all in 2011. Luckily for me, I've always had a soft spot for this outer branch of Berlin Electronics synthetic sound.

A nice cheery, vocal free album that's good to listen to while cycling or running, but does sound VERY 1979 and cheesy in this day and age.

I've never reviewed such a dead cert three star album before. Perfectly acceptable to my ears, although others may disagree vehemently.

Latest members reviews

5 stars First i apologise in advance for my english, i know it´s not that good, but i´ll do my best! When i first read the user's reviews for Correlations i hesitated to get it, but i managed to arm myself with courage and a firm sense of adventuring and i ordered it. After a few spins i found that i had ... (read more)

Report this review (#193177) | Posted by MonolithicAngel | Sunday, December 14, 2008 | Review Permanlink

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