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OUGENWEIDE

Ougenweide

Prog Folk


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Ougenweide Ougenweide album cover
3.36 | 20 ratings | 3 reviews | 10% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1973

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Nieman Kan Mit Gerten (2:26)
2. Es Stunt Ein Frouwe Alleine (4:50)
3. Ouwe (2:29)
4. Der Fuchs (5:25)
5. Eilenau (1:28)
6. Ougenweide (6:08)
7. Swa Gouter Hande Wurzen Sint (3:19)
8. Der Sohn Der Näherin (3:10)
9. Sarod (2:45)
10. Statement Zur Lage Der Ganzen Musica (1:05)
11. Es Fur Ein Pawr Gen Holcz (1:36)

Total time 34:41

Line-up / Musicians

- Olaf Casalich / vocals (1-3,6-8), cymbal (1,3,11), drums (2,4,7), congas (2,6), maracas (6,11), timpani (6), tabla (8), triangle (8), narration (10)
- Renee Kollmorgen / vocals (3,4,6-8), percussion (2,4), triangle (3)
- Brigitte Blunck / lead (1,3,4,6,8) & backing vocals, percussion (2,4)
- Wolfgang Henko / electric (1,2,4,6-8), octave (6,9) & acoustic (3,5) guitars, vocals (8)
- Stefan Wulff / harmonium (3,6), bass (1,2,6-8,11), double bass (4), organ (2,9), percussion (4), guitar (9), narration (9)
- Frank Wulff / guitar (1,2), recorders (1,3,6,7,9), Indian flute (2), concert flute (6,8,11), Arab flute (11), mandolin (4), lute (5), bouzouki (6), sitar (8,9)
- Jürgen Isenbart / glockenspiel (1,3,8), xylophone (2,6-8), percussion (2,4), drums & bells (11)

With:
- Achim Reichel / fuzz bass, flute & timpani (11), producer
- Ulle / backing vocals

Releases information

LP Zebra ‎- 2949 009 (1973, Germany)
LP Polydor ‎- 2371 687 (1976, Germany)

CD Polydor ‎- 833182-2 ( ? , Germany)
CD Bear Family Records ‎- BCD 16775 AH (2006 , Germany) Together with 1974 album "All Die Weil Ich Mag" on one disc, new cover

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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OUGENWEIDE Ougenweide ratings distribution


3.36
(20 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(10%)
10%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
40%
Good, but non-essential (35%)
35%
Collectors/fans only (15%)
15%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

OUGENWEIDE Ougenweide reviews


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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Folk
4 stars This group started from Hamburg and has roots in the mid-60's in the City Preachers and the Fabs, but Ougenweide was really born in 69 with the break-up of the latter. Their folk rock music is a based on their discovery of Pentangle's Basket Of Light and Fairport's Liege & Lief crossed with ISB's tendency to use eastern instruments, but not the acid vocals. They chose to not only sing in German, but also to use older Middle High German, which gave them an authentic feel, especially in their Northern regions, where Platte Deutsch ruled (Low German dialects), writing their own texts, with the arrival of literature student Olaf Casalich. Even their name comes from a 12th century poet Von Reuenthal, meaning "feast for the eyes". The group is built around the Wulff brothers (bassist and multi-instrumentalist), the afore-mentioned Casalich (vocals and percussions), the guitarist Von Henko and other percussionist Isenbart, but also boasts two female singers, Blunck and Kollmorgen. Ougenweide, unlike other German Folk Prog groups like Emtidi, W&W, Holderlin and Broselmachine did not try to rock up their sound, even if they used some electric instruments.

The debut album (which has recently been released in a different recording session under the name Wol Mich Der Stunde compilation of 2004 with Steinbeck in the fold) was produced by icon Achim Reichel and boasts short songs that seem to come out of the traditional folk rock. A few of the tracks seem to be the equivalent of English folk (unless these were common to both cultures. Nieman Kan Mit Gerten, Der Fuchs (The Fox) and the instrumental Sarod certainly are very similar and were obviously strongly influenced by it (we are in 73 and FC is now an old band). While the bulk of the material was written by the group, but also a large part of their repertoire was made from trad medieval folk, one thing is certain: they sounded authentic and their virtuoso playing was very convincing (especially electric bassist Stefan Wulff, being a big part of their sound) and they quickly became a reference in their country. The album flows very smoothly until the second last track, which is a rather abnormal spoken intro for the demented closing track. Clearly the group resembling best Ougenweide was France's Malicorne.

Although historically speaking Ougenweide was not really groundbreaking, they were one of the more authentic when it came to medieval folk (along with Gryphon, Malicorne and their countrymen Parzival) and certainly never tried to become commercial. While this debut is more trad UK folk, it is not the group's most representative, but certainly an essential album, for anyone into this genre of music.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars The folk rock ensemble OUGENWEIDE was found in Hamburg in 1970 by Frank Wulff,Jürgen Isenbart and Brigitte Blunck.They were named after the eponymous song by Neidhart von Reuental,one of the most famous minnesingers in Germany.From the very first moment the band's aim was to recapture the medieval side of music in a contemporary way.Soon Olaf Casalich, Wolfgang von Henko, Frank Wulff's younger brother Stefan Wulff and Jürgen Isenbart jumped on board and the band went on to produce their eponymous debut,produced by Achim Reichel,on Zebra.

STYLE: Vocal-led Folk Music with plenty of nice harmonies and polyphonic parts,bordering often with a rock attitude.The tracks are rather light,despite the heavy use of traditional instruments like congas,xylophones,harmonium or percussions.Acoustic guitars are everywhere either creating the rhythm or producing some fine melodies.From a progressive point of view,the album has not much to offer,the compositions are quite straight,however the instrumental parts have something to believe in,like intensity and a bit of complexity.The female vocals are in the vein of other German folk bands,that is very ethereal and melodic.

INFLUENCES/SOUNDS LIKE: Any other German Medieval/Folk-Rock band with PARZIVAL being the most appropriate comparison.Parts of the vocal-led passages remind me of EDEN or even CANO.

PLUS: Artistically OUGENWEIDE are a great band.Skillful players,very professional approach to folkore musicianship and pleasant compositions throughout.Vocals are a very strong point,clear,dynamic and ethereal at the same time.

MINUS: The biggest dissapointment is the absolute absence of any rock instrumentation: no electric guitars,drums or vintage keys make this album somewhat cold for a traditional prog listener.Very much vocal-based,the albums lacks in extended instrumental journeys to add the album an adventuruous perspective.A mass of instruments is displayed but the overall sound is very light without getting any rich even at a few moments.

WILL APPEAL TO: ...basically fans of pure Folk Music than to the average prog listener.

CONCLUSION/RATING: I have said it before and I'll say it now again.The addition of (prog) rock instruments to a folk sound can make an album from unimpressive to excellent (see EDEN or PERERIN's debut).Thus,I tend to like more a Folk Rock band (without prog elements)than a prog folk one (without rock elements).However,''Ougenweide'' is not an album to simply pass by.If you like pleasant folk melodies and some nice vocal harmonies,this can be quite good for a couple of spins...but it's very far from what I expect when speaking of a challenging and adventurous listening...2 stars.

Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
4 stars In the midst of the massive explosion of Krautrock which overtook Germany in the late 1960s and early 70s, OUGENWEIDE stands out from the burgeoning creative outburst of musicality in the fact that instead of looking to the future for insight, this Hamburg based band looked back, way back that is all the way to the Middle Ages for inspiration. This was unthinkable for a German band which took its name from the Middle German word for the modern German word Augenweide which in English translates as "Feast For The Eyes." Well, i wish i could've seen them back then but all i can say is hearing this nearly 50 years after its initial release in 1973, this self-titled debut album is certainly a feast for the ears.

Formed in 1970 and more accurately named after a Medieval song from the German minnesinger Neidhart von Reunental, this band incorporated a healthy dose of what was going on in England with bands such as Fairport Convention, The Pentangle and even Jethro Tull but infused a bit of medieval German folklore into the mix with the result of crafting some of the most instantly addictive folk music delivered with a touch of rock gusto. While the band would stick around for 15 years and produce several albums, this eponymous debut is perhaps the most authentically Medieval in its approach and included a whopping seven members that played a staggering number of instruments including the standard fair of guitar, bass and drums along with congas, maracas, timpani, harmonium, recorders, Indian flute, Arab flute, mandolin, bouzouki, sitar, glockenspiel, xylophone and more!

The album was produced by A.R & Machines tripper Achim Reichel who also contributed fuzzy bass, flue and timpani. This short album of only 33 plus minutes is quite electrifying as it runs the gamut of authentic Medieval sounding classical music as heard on the beginning "Nieman Kan Mit Gerten" to the rock powerhouse closer "Es Fur Ein Pawr Gen Holz." The sacred masculine and divine feminine are on equal footing on this one with not only vocal tradeoffs but with a keen sense of sensuality mixed with more energetic lively performances. The band was notorious for crafting music around old poems and songs and although primarily interested in the world of Medieval music, didn't limit the sounds to pure retro folk as say Gryphon did on its first release. OUGENWEIDE deftly mixed the old with the new and at its most energetic oft sounded like the German version of Comus only with a healthy dose of Ian Anderson inspired flute runs.

The band stood out like a sore thumb but offered a much more pleasant experience and immediately catapulted itself into the limelight of German society with a reflective experience that the nation had rarely if ever revisited in a modern context. While the band's success would really take off on subsequent albums, it was on this debut that the basic blueprints for the band's entire career had already been set in stone. Imagine if you will the primeval direct energy of Comus' "First Utterance" cross-pollinating with Fairport Convention's unconventional folk diversity of "Unhalfbricking" and you're on the right track however OUGENWEIDE kept true to its Germanic origins and crafted a truly German sounding album that mined the folk music of the past and placed it in the similar context that the aforementioned bands had successful achieved with English folk.

This is a beautifully crafted album with all the musicians as sharp as a chef's knife with an ever exhilarating assortment of tones and timbres erupting from the multitude of instruments that decorate the sonicscape so artfully. Each track stands on its own and the melodies are so angelically beautiful that it's impossible not to fall in love with this on just a single listen. The modern crossover pop hooks are in full effect but the progressive aspects are always present in the subtle juxtaposition of the arrangements. OUGENWEIDE hasn't been a band that has gotten as much attention as its English counterparts but was clearly in the same league as the best of what England had to offer. Perhaps the language barrier has lingered due to the fact folk music fans focus more on the lyrics but even if you can't understand a single word, the music itself conveys a time and place that is timeless in nature.

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