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Kaputter Hamster


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Kaputter Hamster Kaputter Hamster album cover
2.52 | 20 ratings | 5 reviews | 10% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1974

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Eggwhite Session! (4:25)
2. Behind The Universe (13:22 )
3. Shooting At The Stars (4:02)
4. Interlude For A Dreamer (7:16)
5. Mental Convenience (5:47)
6. Quarters For The Night (6:12)

Total Time: 41:04

Line-up / Musicians

- Peter N. Buchfeld / vocals, guitar, percussion
- Frank Linde / vocals, guitars, percussion
- Holger Heldt / bass, acoustic guitar
- Arne Linde / drums, percussion
- Wilfried Krickhahn / vocals, guitar, percussion

Releases information

LP Amber Soundroom (1974)
There are only 200 copies of the original, making it exceptionally sought-after. There have also been a number of bootleg copies on the market in an attempt to cash in on the high market value of this record. Fortunately it has been repressed by Amber Soundroom for an official release. The CD contains 3 bonus tracks.

Thanks to Certif1ed for the addition
and to Certif1ed for the last updates
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KAPUTTER HAMSTER Kaputter Hamster ratings distribution

(20 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(10%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(10%)
Good, but non-essential (35%)
Collectors/fans only (45%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

KAPUTTER HAMSTER Kaputter Hamster reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Certif1ed
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Kaputter Hamster's debut and only album is much sought after by collectors for its scarcity value - and most of the reviews one reads of this album (where one can find them!) are fairly vague and lead you to believe that it's a lost classic of Krautrock.

It is among the purest of "stream-of-consciousness" music you are likely to hear in all of rockdom - but also among the most raw music, as one might expect from Krautrock. By raw, I mean that the technical abilities of all players are no more than average garage band level, the performance rough and under-rehearsed, and the production is virtually non-existent - all of which makes this album all the more extraordinary.

The ideas flow thick and fast, mainly along the lines of great grooves and ambient rather than virtuosic improvisation. At first, one might think that it's very generic music - and one would probably be right. But there's something else here - that intangible magical something that only the very best Krautrock has. Although definitely not easy listening, for someone that listens to a lot of prog, this is an easy and enjoyable ride from start to finish, and the feeling one gets at the end is of satisfaction.

Excusing the almost complete lack of any production is easy, when you settle into the groove that the Kaputter ones take you on - a perfectly formed and naturally easy-flowing dream-like sequence where few ideas are repeated, and inspirations are not obvious - maybe a smattering of the Groundhogs, as there's certainly some MacPhee in the riffs and sensitive noodling. Yes, the guitarist noodles away - but it's with purpose, and with deep appreciation of the colours he's trying to apply to the music. even if it does go pear-shaped a few times, he always recovers.

When you consider that this was made by the band in their private studio, probably armed with little more than a Revox or two, you wonder why they left it at the debut album and didn't go on to greater things Even though the music is less wild than ADII, it still comes across as early Floyd on amphetamines in places, and carries a personal, of not completely unique stamp.

The drum/percussion solo in "Behind The Universe" is a particular stand out feature - one wonders if all the band members were in fact percussionists first and guitarists second. I could probably listen to an entire album of this!

Vocal intonation issues do not spoil "Shooting At The Stars", a laid-back little piece, with sumptuous drumming and warm walky bass lines. A number of mix issues and hastily covered slips by the guitarist simply add to the overall charm.

Things go from progressively better to slightly better on side 2, and "Interlude For A Dreamer" introduces itself with a couple of surprising time changes before the guitar atmospherics wind themselves around the rhythm section and bass lines. This is stripped down to pure bass and minimal percussion, as the bass explores new ideas.

The percussion intensifies, and the bass continues meandering in a somewhat simple fashion - but never forgetting the root ideas, which gives a great continuity that really helps the piece flow.

The tempo is picked up and the guitars rejoin, and quickly we forget all about the little ambient section - then there's a modulation, a vocal joins, the music slows down, speeds up, goes through more inventive ideas than it's possible to shake a stick at - man! This is Krautrock!

"Mental Convenience" is based on Pink Floyd's "Saucerful of Secrets" to start, and this is used as an inter-verse musical interlude throughout, until we reach the bridge, where KP build tension almost inexpertly and with out of tune guitars. No matter, a vocal joins the "Saucerful." theme, and KP use the material intelligently, developing it to the very best of their capable abilities with a high degree of success.

"Quarters For The Night" rounds this album off well enough with the odd fluff and mix issue - but it's not the grand finale I'd like, even though it's passable for this style.

The centrepiece here without a doubt is the 13 minute "Behind The Universe", but to be brutally honest, this album would never make it among the prog greats in anyone's collection.

Nevertheless, if you have an open ear for music, and prize spirit as highly as ability, then Kaputter Hamster's offering is a good investment. provided you go for the Re- Release! Personally, I don't think that the original is worth the $600+ price tag for the music alone.

It's good, possibly nearly great music that is highly enjoyable for what it is, but it's not life-changingly brilliant.

In summary; A good addition to your collection - mainly for occasional private listening or demoing for friends who have heard about the album and want to know what it sounds like before parting with serious cash.

If you're into Krautrock, this is easily better than some Guru Guru I've heard, and on a par with Erlkoenig. I've only rated it slightly lower because of the execution issues.

3.5 stars.

Review by Sean Trane
2 stars 2.5 stars really!!

Sole album from an almost amateur group, and by 74, when they released it, it already sounded dated: when the album is not dishing out a fairly basic rock (the opening track), it is out for extended jam session on one riff, even if beautiful (the 13-min+ Behind The Universe), making you think of a hippie trip. In some of the better moments, they can sound like the gorgeous Sweet Smoke, but this is not a dominant characteristic.

But the rest of the album is a bit messy (production-wise too) and sloppy (the guitar break way too loud in the middle of Shooting At The Stars), but nothing catastrophic either. Graced with an intriguing B&W artwork, KH (what a dumb name) does not hold enough matter or depth for the discerning proghead to enjoy and get regular spins. Amateur stuff, even if this is not a flaw in itself, either. Naiveté has its charms, but its limits too. And KH's limits are quickly reached.

Review by Tom Ozric
3 stars Kaputter Hamster are a virtually unknown psychedelic band from Germany who disappeared about as quickly as their limited run of LP's did. Thanks to 'Amber Soundroom', we can enjoy beautiful LP re-issues without the excruciating price-tag. And what a cop-out it would be to fork out 500 Euros (or more) for this, garage sounding jam-session ?? Still, it's a cool album, where the rhythm-guitaring absolutely *shines* and the Drummer and Bass-Player form an energised, even if a bit simplistic, rhythm section. The sporadic vocals that appear throughout are quite weak, though. Think of this album as being some of the most melodic Krautrock you're likely to hear. When I listen to this album, I often think of Guru Guru, but it fails to reach the inspiration of that band and remains fairly 'safe'. The centrepiece of the album is the lengthy 'Behind The Universe' (13.22) with lots of blowing wind noises, an acoustically dominated first half in 5/4 with various percussion and light vocal humming, and then a typically psych second half with gorgeous rhythm guitaring and the band playing their hearts out. 'Shooting At The Stars' features awesome guitars - and the notorious over-mixed guitar solo where I feared for my stylus, but it's very innocent sounding and enjoyable. 'Interlude For A Dreamer' displays the band's penchant for creating an exciting, ever-shifting tune that holds together tightly and showed that the guys were intent on not being left behind in a cloud of dope-smoke, which seems to be where they ended up....but anyway, the album is pretty good and the cover-art suits the music perfectly. 3.5 stars.
Review by Rivertree
2 stars Today nobody knows where this band name came from without fail - it is said they had some sessions in a private flat where a caged hamster was aboard which must have run crazy after a while. There's not much to say about them from a historical point of view. Peter Buchfeld, Frank Linde, Holger Heldt and Arne Linde got together at their hometown Flensburg, situated in North Germany. They started in 1971 to play at school festivals, youth center and local parties. And when the end was near because of studies and army they decided to record an album to accomplish the band's ultimate legacy.

Supported by Wilfried Krickhahn they produced six songs for PA Records with a limited edition of 200 exemplars only. German label Ohrwaschl digitally re-released this rarity in 1993. The music can be defined as rather rock 'n' roll based, but surely blended with jamming moments here and there, which isolates them from simple mainstream. With other words prog-related music with good will. Highlight without a doubt is the extended Behind The Universe which shows them in a playful mood. If all the songs were made in that way I would recommend this album without thinking.

The song starts trippy psych folk alike, based on acoustic guitars and bongos. Halfway through they change to a grooving behaviour with a jamming background. Of course a (limited) drum solo is also included here. It's an outstanding track. Except Eggwhite Session!, which has a rather eclectic start, the other songs are not challenging and don't meat my taste really. Compared to other German experimental bands at that time this album has not much prog substance and trickiness, an interesting find though for comprehensive rarity collectors of the German music history - 2.5 stars.

Latest members reviews

2 stars Yep, it indeed appears as some youngsters are having fun, just jamming in the garage. Enjoyable stuff, but hardly essential. I imagine that had I been present I would have had a nice time there, but to release such material appears to be rather ambitious and perhaps a bit immature. Not reall ... (read more)

Report this review (#852900) | Posted by BORA | Wednesday, November 7, 2012 | Review Permanlink

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