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Ashra Belle Alliance album cover
3.20 | 47 ratings | 7 reviews | 11% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1980

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Wudu (2:29)
2. Screamer (4:26)
3. Boomerang (3:29)
4. Aerogen (3:54)
5. Sansalito (4:24)
6. Kazoo (5:42)
7. Code Blue (15:03)
8. Mistral (3:41)

Total Time: 43:08

Line-up / Musicians

- Manuel Göttsching / electric & electronic (1) guitars, synthesizer, sequencer, bass (5)
- Lutz Ulbrich / 6-, 12-string & slide guitars, keyboards, bass (6), voice
- Harald Grosskopf / drums, percussion, synthesizer, voice (6)

Releases information

Artwork: Detlef Maugsch

LP Virgin ‎- 2933 766 (1979, France)

CD Virgin ‎- CDV 2163 (1990, Europe)

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

(47 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(11%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(38%)
Good, but non-essential (23%)
Collectors/fans only (21%)
Poor. Only for completionists (6%)

ASHRA Belle Alliance reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Just like the preceding album, Belle Aliance is an inconsistent release where Göttsching tries out influences from diverse sources such as funk, rock, reggae, world music and others. His electic guitar playing remains recognizably bluesy but has lost the urgency and spaciness of yore.

There still are a couple of interesting tracks in the first half, Wudu works quite well with its relaxed bouncy pace, Voodoo voices and moody guitar work, Screamer is a bit of fun where Göttsching sounds heavier then usual, and Aerogen is a fine APP-inspired instrumental. The remainder of the short pieces show Göttsching in a either go-happy moods or new age fluffiness. Code Blue is an ambient piece like he's done so many before. Not bad for new age relaxation music but a dull listen.

If I would made an Ashra compilation I'd only take Wudu from this album, the remainder of the album lacks freshness, inspiration and heart. Göttschings's weakest release for me.

Review by ZowieZiggy
2 stars This album has nothing to do with the fantastic electronic prog music that was available on the first two albums form "ASHRA".

The opening track ("Wudu") is a great "press next" tune (?) with no other comment. I will describe the next one "Screamer" as a good new wave song. An incredible beat and a totally "Devo" sound. If you have listened once to their great "Uncontrollable Urge" you could grab the similarity.

Dear Manuel is even integrating some reggae in his music ("Boomerang")! While I did like reggae in the seventies, I am quite surprised to hear such a poor stuff on an "Ashra" album. This is the second "press next" tune out of three. You can do the same a little later with "Kazoo" though?

The wild and upbeat "Aerogen" does feature superb guitar work and it is the best track available here. Still, this has NOTHING to do with prog electronic. At least according to my standards. Anyway, along the whole album, this is the main theme: a total break with the early days.

To be fully honest, a track as "Sausalito" does provide a great feeling: the magical guitar sound is working perfectly after half time (but the intro is quite longish and not very appealing).

This album has very few great moments. "Mistral" is one of them. But it is the closing number and it sounds as a great "Santana" tune: great guitar (but this is only normal), great beat, superb melody. It is a wonderful "Santana" song" indeed. But is this what we expect from "Ashra"???

The longish and repetitive "Code Blue" doesn't add anything tangible to the whole. Two stars, no more.

Review by Modrigue
3 stars "Belle Alliance" is the continuation of the style adopted on the former ASHRA album, "Correlations": accessible space disco-rock, the Manuel Göttsching way. However, the music is more various, as it shows influences from other musical genres.

"Wudu" and "Screamer" are efficient openers, with a energic beats and guitars. Then comes "Boomerang" with its reggae ryhtm and joyful tone. Undoubtly inventive but a bit odd as its ambiance contrasts with the former tracks. Back to electronics with "Aerogen", my favorite composition of the record. Fast space-disco/rock with a very good guitar solo from Göttsching.

The second half is less dynamic. "Sausalito" has an average melody and is the least interesting track of the record. "Kazoo" contains is a slow ambient tune with some oriental incursions, but unfornately not many variations. With 15 minutes duration, "Code Blue" is the only long track of the album. This very slow atmospheric composition sounds by moments similar to Terry Riley. Enjoyable, but much too long and certainly does not justify its length. The record finishes with "Mistral", a delicate aerial tune with spanish influenced guitar play.

Although a bit unequal and heterogeneous, occasionally resulting in strange transitions, the overall impression is positive. I slightly prefer "Correlations" over this one. However, as its little brother, "Belle Alliance" is quite pleasant and original.

Latest members reviews

5 stars As where Correlations - though seemingly admired by many - absolutely displeased me, this album instantly became one of my best loved ones. Side one may be more rock oriented, it certainly has a great sense of humour "Screamer", some very sunny spells "Boomerang" but most of all... Side 2!!! ... (read more)

Report this review (#277121) | Posted by Lieven Van Paemel | Friday, April 9, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This is probably the best Ashra album after 'New Age of Earth.' It shares a few elements with that record - notably on the second side with its 15-minute 'Code Blue' - but it is also a more varied album, much more so than 'Blackouts,' as good as that one is on its own terms. The first side, whic ... (read more)

Report this review (#168267) | Posted by Sergius_Golowin | Monday, April 21, 2008 | Review Permanlink

4 stars As where Correlations - though seemingly admired by many - absolutely displeased me, this album instantly became one of my best loved ones. Side one may be more rock oriented, it certainly has a great sense of humour "Screamer", some very sunny spells "Boomerang" but most of all... Side 2 has ... (read more)

Report this review (#112215) | Posted by Lieven | Thursday, February 15, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Belle Alliance is one of the best krautrock albums I have ever heard. One Half is more focused on guitar work and the other one is more electronic All songs are very good in special KAZZO a very meditative and melancolic piece of rock ambient ... (read more)

Report this review (#61908) | Posted by | Tuesday, December 27, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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