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HOELDERLIN

Prog Folk • Germany


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Hoelderlin biography
Founded in Wuppertal, Germany in 1970 - Disbanded in 1980 - Reformed from 2005-2009

This, in my opinion, underrated German progressive rock band has its roots in '63 when the brothers Joachim and Christian Grumbkow founded the rock-band The BEATKIDS and played covers from The BEATLES, The ROLLING STONES and The SHADOWS. In november '70 the brothers GRUMBKOW presented the name HÖLDERLIN (derived from a German romantic poet) after they had played with a sery of musicians mainly folk-rock covers (especially TRAFFIC), all layered with long instrumental improvisations. Then HÖLDERLIN got an invitation from a record company, this after only three months of their existence! The debut-album "Hölderlin's Traum" was released in '72 with a nine-piece line up, including female vocals and instruments like the Mellotron, Grand piano, violin, cello, sitar, tablas and flute. Their sound is a progressive blend of rock, jazz and folk. It sold 5000 copies and the LP is still a collector's item. But then the troubles began with their producer Rolf-Ulrich Kaiser (TANGERINE DREAM, KLAUS SCHULZE and WALLENSTEIN). He tried to force the band into a more cosmic approach ('LSD' inspired complained the band) and was not amused with the "more political oriented lyrics" as he analyzed.

It took almost three years with many juridical conflicts to get rid off the contract but eventually HÖLDERLIN won their case. Under the new name HOELDERLIN (in German the pronunciation of "oe" is the same as the "ö" and much easier to write or type) the second eponymous LP was released in 75. The band called their music 'romantic rock', it sounded more jazzy and it contained echoes from KING CRIMSON and GENESIS. HOELDERLIN toured through Scandinavia, Holland, Germany and Switzerland, got good reviews and radio - and tv-airplay. In '76 HOELDERLIN released the album entitled "Clowns and Clouds". The music consists of more complex rock with many theatrical and surrealistic elements. In '77 Christian had a mental breakdown, he could no longer combine the too busy work with the band and his family life (the upbringing of two children). He left and Spanish guitar player Pablo Weeber joined HOELDERLIN. In '77 they released the album "Rare Birds", a year later followed by the 2-LP "Hoelderlin Live Traumstadt". Soon after the unstable personality of Pablo led to his dismiss. "Traumstadt" got very good reviews, it even reached the German charts. Further releases were "New Faces" ('79) and "Fata Morgana" ('81), including new drummer Eduard Schicke, know from the progrock trio SCHICKE, FUHRS, FRÖHLING. These albums have a more accessible melodic rock approach.

The double-album "Hoelderlin Live Traumstadt" is their finest work and showcases the band at their pinnacle. It's still considered as one of the milestones in the German rock history and has some similarities with other German progrock band GROBSCHNITT concerning the long solos, visual effects, costumes and humor. The music was recorded in the Wuppertaler Opernhaus in October '77, the 2-LP was released in '78. The band was hit by multiple changes in the line-up, on "Traumstadt" the musicians were Joachim Grumbkow (keyboards and vocals on "Streaming"), Pablo Weeber (all guitars), Michael Bruchmann (drums), Cristoph 'Nops' Noppeney (lead vocals and violin) and Hans Bäär (bass). All the nine melodic tracks have their own climate and features fluid accelerations, nice interludes, pleasant keyboards (string-ensemble, electric piano, organ and clavinet) and great interplay between electric guitar and violin. But the focus is on the solo work: fiery ("Sun Rays"), biting ("Soft Landing") and howling ("Die Stadt") on the electric guitar and exciting ("Streaming") and spectacular ("Die Stadt") on the violin. Many solos are supported by the wonderful and distinctive sound of the string-ensemble, a compelling combination! Recommended, especially to the fans of the violin play of Jean Luc PONTY and Eddie JOBSON.

: : : Erik Neuteboom, The NETHERLANDS : : :
Fan & official Prog Archives collaborator


See also: WiKi

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Clouds & ClownsClouds & Clowns
Edge J26181 2011
$8.74
$10.25 (used)
HoelderlinHoelderlin
Edge J26181 2007
$6.70
$7.41 (used)
Rare BirdsRare Birds
Emi International 2007
$11.43
$6.52 (used)
Hoelderlins Traum [Vinyl]Hoelderlins Traum [Vinyl]
ohr/pilz 2008
$12.95
$14.30 (used)
New FacesNew Faces
Emi 2007
$21.99
$7.99 (used)
Traumstadt: LiveTraumstadt: Live
EMI International 2006
$18.07 (used)
Hoelderlin: Fata Morgana [Vinyl]Hoelderlin: Fata Morgana [Vinyl]
Spiegelei
$25.00 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Hölderlin, Hoelderlin - Hoelderlin [New CD] USD $10.67 Buy It Now 2 days
HOELDERLIN "RARE BIRDS" CD NEW+ USD $17.33 Buy It Now 2 days
EX- !! Hoelderlin/Live : Traumstadt/1978 Spiegelei Double LP Set USD $19.49 Buy It Now 2 days
Holderlin "Holderlins Traum" CD Ohr ZYX OHR70016-2, 1999 (Hoelderlin, Hölderlin) USD $15.00 Buy It Now 3 days
Hoelderlin - Clouds & Clowns (CD Used Very Good) USD $9.57 Buy It Now 3 days
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Hoelderlin - Live Traumstadt Vinyl LP German Club 1st Press 1978 Speigelei Prog USD $25.99 Buy It Now 6 days
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HOELDERLIN Hölderlins Traum JAPAN CD KICP-2730 1994 OBI USD $43.77 Buy It Now 18 days
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HOELDERLIN: '75 Spiegelei Germany Prog Jazz Rock Vinyl LP NM- Wax USD $40.00 Buy It Now 26 days
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HOELDERLIN-CLOUDS & CLOWNS CD NEW USD $16.95 Buy It Now 29 days

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HOELDERLIN discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

HOELDERLIN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.09 | 148 ratings
Hölderlins Traum
1972
4.03 | 78 ratings
Hoelderlin
1975
3.54 | 55 ratings
Clowns & Clouds
1976
3.54 | 42 ratings
Rare Birds
1977
3.39 | 26 ratings
New Faces
1979
3.20 | 16 ratings
Fata Morgana
1981
3.13 | 11 ratings
8
2007

HOELDERLIN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.80 | 27 ratings
Hoelderlin Live - Traumstadt
1978

HOELDERLIN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

HOELDERLIN Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

HOELDERLIN Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
The Shouter
1979

HOELDERLIN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Hoelderlin by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1975
4.03 | 78 ratings

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Hoelderlin
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars This review has been a long time coming. Having been a fan of this German band's debut for many years it's about time I talked about the self titled followup. Interesting enough this was released in 1975 some 3 years after the debut even though it was ready to go a couple of years earlier, legal issues caused the delay. The female singer from the debut has left and the band has changed from being mainly a Folk band to making an album that really splits the Folk and Symphonic sub-genres down the middle. More mellotron on this self titled album as well. Tough for me to pick one over the other to be honest. I like the cover art on both as well.

"Schwebebahn" is the opening instrumental that they would open many a concert with. Solemn piano to start with drum rolls but soon the viola is soloing over top. So good! Mellotron after a minute as the tempo picks up, guitar too! A calm before 2 minutes but it picks again with percussion and bass then it builds. The drums are active with percussion as the viola comes in over top again along with the mellotron. It ends like it began. What an opener with tons of mellotron in that Symphonic style.

"I love My Dog" is a folky piece with some guest alto sax. Acoustic guitar, flute and more to start as relaxed male vocals join in. A song about man's best friend. I love dogs! It picks up after a minute with drums, flute and acoustic guitar leading. Vocals and that folky sound are back after 2 minutes. Contrasts continue. Great sound 3 1/2 minutes in with those soaring vocals. A sax solo after 4 minutes continues to the end.

"Honeypot" is another folky tune with almost spoken vocals as he tells us the story. This is cool. Acoustic guitar and flute to start as those vocals join in. Some passion before 2 1/2 minutes with the instrumental work as the vocals step aside. The violin starts to light it up and the mellotron joins in as well. I like the intensity after 4 1/2 minutes. It calms back down around 6 1/2 minutes with violin, piano and more. Vocals are back before 8 minutes and there's humour in those words.

"Nurnberg" has a real GENESIS vibe to it even the vocals somewhat. Piano, a beat and acoustic guitar help out on this folky piece.

"Deathwatchbeetle" is the side long closer clocking in at 17 1/2 minutes. Interesting that Conny Plank helps out with the synths and vocals here. Yes it gets a little experimental during those sections Plank helps out on not surprisingly, giving us a taste of that Krautrock spirit. It's catchy with piano, drums and more before settling in as bass and synths help out. A calm with piano only then the viola joins in. Vocals before 2 1/2 minutes as it picks up again. It settles again as the tempo continues to shift. Some organ after 7 minutes and more depth of sound before 8 1/2 minutes. Great section that goes on and on. Vocals return 11 minutes in as it settles back again. Some dramatic sounds(Plank) 13 minutes in. It starts to settle down before 14 minutes then vocals return and a Symphonic sound takes over. Mellotron! How uplifting is this before 15 minutes. Oh my! Some theatrical vocal expression(Plank) and sounds late as it winds down. Suddenly at 16 minutes it kicks in again with vocals for a big finish.

I haven't hear any of their music beyond this but I highly recommend the first two albums.

 Hoelderlin by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1975
4.03 | 78 ratings

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Hoelderlin
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by Kingsnake

5 stars One of the best albums I have heard in years, The music is so colourful. On one hand the band can play really mellotron heavy prog with big parts on viola with heavy drumming and bass, and on the other hand the band plays beautiful acoustic parts (guitar, piano).

For a german band the vocals are really great. Because George Noppeney is british (my guess) the vocals by him are without accent. Not that I care, I love german accent just as much, but most of the time that's is the complaint by listeners of Eloy, Jane, Kraan etc.

Back to the music. There's not only a lot viola in the music, but flute aswell and there's even guests on sax and clarinet. You could say this band is more an eclectic progband with all the different kind of songs and arrangments.

The production is really top. Conny Planck has managed to create a sound that stays fresh even after 43 years. My favorite songs are the more pastoral-sounding Honeypot and I Love My Dog. The lyrics are really sweet and heartwarming and the music is almost Canterbury-style romantic.

This albums is highly recommended to people who love Caravan, Supersister, Kraan and Cressida.

 Rare Birds by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.54 | 42 ratings

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Rare Birds
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by Kingsnake

4 stars This is exactly the kind of seventies progrock I want to hear.

I only recently discovered this band. They craft perfect eclectic progressive rock with psychedelic and canterbury- stylistics. The band is labeled as progfolk, and although there's some folk-influences, it's mostly progfusionrock.

What sets this band apart from so many other progbands is the viola. Caravan is the only other band with viola (Geoff Richardson). A viola is somewhere between the violin and cello. So somewhere between uplifting and depressing: the perfect balance.

Because th band has three vocalists, it all adds to the colour of the sound. Apart from the singing (wich is really great) there's lots of instrumental play. If one would say Hoederlin was a canterbury-band I would have believed it. The only other bands from Germany from this era that come close to this high standard is Kraan.

I also love all the Hoelderlin artwork, and this one is again very tasteful!

 New Faces by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1979
3.39 | 26 ratings

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New Faces
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

3 stars Seventies German band Hoelderlin have an interesting history. The initial line-up was responsible for one of the seminal prog/acid-folk works `Hölderlins Traum' in 1972, and a reworked version delivered three superb English language symphonic works and a live album in the three short years covering 1975-78, but it as was at that point that several founding members departed the group. Keyboardist Joachim von Grumbkow and bassist Hans Bäär recruited several new musicians and took the Hoelderlin name in a more streamlined commercial rock direction here with elements of jazz and funk, and taken on its own merits, 1979's `New Faces' is quite a nice crossover mix of accessible rock that has plenty of touches of a Camel-like sound in parts, and it still finds time for a few instrumental pieces.

The addictive `Somebody's Callin' is a chugging groovy opener full of propulsive momentum due to both Hans Bäär's relentless and unceasing thick murmuring bass and the constant powerful driving beat from new drummer Eduard Schicke of the sublime symphonic group Schicke Führs & Fröhling. Tommy L'Ohr offers a reliable vocal, but more importantly his and Rüdiger Elze's guitars smoulder and wail through the entire track, delivering protracted soloing in the final minutes. The supremely likable `I Want You' is a peppy and unashamedly cheerful AOR rocker with nice ringing twin guitar melodies, and damned if the sun-kissed chorus wasn't blessed on high by the gods of pop! `Cold Winds' is a tasteful low-key shimmering electric piano ballad with a humble vocal from Christoph Noppeney off Hoelderlin's `Rare Birds', and despite a slightly pained lead vocal from Tommy, `Gentle Push' instantly calls to mind mid-Seventies onwards Camel with its silken rising guitar soloing, plus the warm repeating group vocal refrain is very pleasing.

But fear not, prog-freaks, side two's `High In Shanghai' delivers the first of two instrumentals, with this undemanding yet interesting six-minute one having a dreamy ambient intro, twitchy electronics and electrifying twin electric guitar themes with more dramatic bursts making it really not too far removed from what Camel would do on both `I Can See Your House From Here' and `Nude'. `The Shouter' is a soft pop piece with a gentle acoustic guitar melody that faintly calls to mind moments of Peter Gabriel's `Solisbury Hill', and `Footsteps' is a cute and harmless romantic popper with sweetly accented singing, chiming guitars and Camel-like breezy synth trills that is very easy to fall for, with a quietly ambitious and exotic middle instrumental passage. Closer `Weekend' also reminds of that same band again and manages to cram a lot into not even three minutes with its upbeat and victorious nimble guitar heroics and wisping keyboards.

Yes, there's a slightly dorky quality here and there, some of the vocals are a little unlovable and for many prog-snobs this is going to be far too straight-forward, but it's a hugely charming and undemanding disc, and one definitely recommended for fans of Camel's `Breathless' through to `Nude' period. Sigh...if only all commercial/lite-prog/AOR albums where as successful and enjoyable as this one is!

Three and a half stars (but personally it's a four!)

 Hoelderlin by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1975
4.03 | 78 ratings

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Hoelderlin
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

4 stars German band Hoelderlin (initially known as Hölderlin) released perhaps one of the defining Mellotron albums of the vintage prog era with their 1972 debut `Hölderlin's Traum'. A mix of acid- folk and almost raga-rock flavours with dreamy female vocals, it holds a special status all it's own. But despite the acclaim that album receives, a slightly altered version of that early band went on to release several worthy albums under the name Hoelderlin, and no more is that instantly evident than the self-titled album. `Hoelderlin' from 1975 saw the band heading in more of a symphonic and romantic prog direction with an exquisite selection of instruments, frequently driven by violin and piano. The whimsical humour of Fruupp and regal splendour of Genesis sometimes come to mind when hearing this work, and despite featuring charmingly German accented English vocals, it's the lengthy instrumental passages that hold the most magic.

There's an unnerving King Crimson-like quality to album opener `Schwebabahn'. A doomy and eerie instrumental driven by searing violin, slinking bass and manic relentless percussion, the piece reaches hair-pulling intensity once the bristling Mellotron arrives, and there's even a little touch of classical drama too. The amusingly titled "I Love My Dog" follows, and, sure enough, it's an ode to man's best friend, a sprightly and foot-tapping warm acoustic folk ballad. Only those with hearts made of stone will fail to crack a smile upon hearing this jaunty number, Christoph Noppeney's heartfelt vocal, electric piano, murmuring bass, flute giving it an instant Jethro Tull-like feel. A few moments of well-placed electric distortion and a lively saxophone in the second half bring just a strange touch of unease. `Honeypot' is a dazzling mini epic that shines with symphonic sophistication and lush pastoral atmospheres. Delicate and pretty one second with moments of sweeping darker drama the next, it's dominated by Joachim Grumbkow's piano that alternates between breezy, jazzy passages and confronting and unsettling moments, with the whole piece about to spiral out of control by the end.

Joachim takes the lead vocal for the shorter interlude `Nurnberg', a sweet and brief acoustic guitar/piano ballad that opens the second side. With a stirring melody and fragile prettiness, the band shows perfect restraint for this little wonder. Then we reach the showcase of an already perfect album, the 18 minute symphonic epic `Deathwatchbeetle'. With lengthy and frequent tasteful instrumental stretches full of dashing moods and thrilling emotions, this extended closer is storytelling fantasy prog at it's very best, whimsical and exhilarating with light and darker moments all perfectly balanced. Intimidating piano stabs, rattling military drumming, droning horns, organ pomp, spacy synth implosions, reflective Mellotron fanfare pomp, swooning violin swoons and nimble-fingered guitar runs, with Peter Kaseberg's bass almost singing in delight throughout. Symphonic prog simply doesn't come any more grand than this.

Now available as part of a series of lovely CD reissues that cover their first several albums, be on the lookout for the remastered disc of this one that adds a dirtier sounding yet no less impressive live performance of `Deathwatchbeetle' from 1974. Hugely captivating, displaying supreme taste and talented musical skill throughout, `Hoelderlin' is an essential title for symphonic prog lovers. Also, if you're a fan of the first album, don't ignore this one and their next few, or you'll be missing out on some essential Seventies prog albums!

Four and a half stars.

 Hoelderlin by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1975
4.03 | 78 ratings

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Hoelderlin
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Hoelderlin is a much vaunted German prog-folk act that took their music seriously enough to take it into resolute symphonic environments. The finest talent on display here IMHO is the incredible Michael Bruchmann, a percussion stylist who could give the legendary Mike Giles a run for his money, riffling terrific rhythmic barrages at breakneck speed and Teutonic precision. Just following his work is joy enough to hunt down this album. Two sets of brothers man the team, the Käseberg lads (Peter on bass and Joachim on guitar) and the Grumpkow boys Joachim on keys and Joachim on acoustic and electric guitars. Another cool feature is the splendid viola work by lead vocalist Christoph Noppeney.

The masterful instrumental "Schwebebahn" starts out with highly infectious mellotron swaths sliced by inspired viola surges recalling vivid King Crimson influences, especially the thrilling percussion onslaught that defines the Bruford/Muir cooperative. This workout would fit very nicely on either Larks Tongues in Aspic, Starless & Bible Black and Red.

"I Love my Dog" tips the scales in a completely opposite direction, a pure, lightweight folk song about a pet canine, a heady mix of Jethro Tull (the flute), The Strawbs (the vocals) and Cat Stevens (the sound). The instrumental breaks are all very spacy and intense, creating a wonderful sense of contrast, revealing a delirious desire to go beyond the norm and progress. Zeus B. Held's fabulous sax solo illustrates this yearning with conviction, and another future famed producer in Conny Plank supervises the pristine sound.

The divine "Honeypot" keeps the mood pastoral, a pleasant vale lush with green fields of sustenance, sparkling piano, a slow building whirlwind tornado propelled by the ultra-busy rhythm section, the prominent mellotron squalls and the ebb and flow of contrasting sonic weather patterns. Guest Norbert Jacobson intervenes on a brief clarinet cameo. This is perhaps my favorite piece here, a crafty composition full of wonder and amazement.

"Nürnberg" is sweet and delicate, short and hummable, highlighted by both Grumpkows on their respective instruments. As cute as this pice is, it only serves to introduce the epic tour de force that closes out the album, the sweltering 17+ minute "Death Watch Beetle", a perfect osmosis of what Hoelderlin does best, all the ingredients falling into place, conjuring up detailed images of intense serenity and storytelling of the highest order. The viola gets a long and thorough workout, ably assisted by the seductive acoustic guitars. The delicate piano work is concert hall quality, a truly impressive performance, as both vocalist share the microphone, though it must be stated that the accent is quite light and will not detract from the music being presented. Need I repeat the sensational work by drummer Bruchmann? Okay, I will, then!

The cover is one of my all-time favorites, honestly one of the reasons that compelled me to hunt this one down in the first place.

4 Volkswagen

 Clowns & Clouds by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.54 | 55 ratings

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Clowns & Clouds
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Hoelderlin's second album was followed by the departure of Peter Kaeseberg, a fact that did not prevent the band from a large promoting tour, introducing new bassist Hans Baar.The more than 70 live dates of Hoelderling included gigs in Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, Denmark and Sweden besides Germany, while they regularly appeared in various TV broadcasts.Entering 1976 they revisited Conny Planck's studio with Karlheinz Borchert sitting on the production chair.Büdi Siebert appears again on sax and flutes in this ''Clowns & clouds'' album, released once more on Spiegelei.

This was another collaborative work stylistically speaking, combining the complex and fiery side of Kraut Rock with the delicacy of British Symphonic Rock in five long compositions, although the resemblances with GENESIS become here even stronger with the vocals of Jochen Grumbcow sounding now extremely similar to the voice of PETER GABRIELand the guitar touch of Christian Grumbcow closing more and more the STEVE HACKETT sensitive tunes.Even this way the music is top notch with pronounced folky vibes and emphatic instrumental deliveries with both complicated and elegant parts.Moreover there are also plenty of intense, lyrical moments surrounding the good musicianship of the band.Each track contains lots but tightly linked variations, evolving from laid-back overtones with a theatrical atmosphere to dense instrumental textures with nice interplays.These are characterized by some excellent violin work of Classical nature, smooth flute passages and the monster work of Jochen Grumbcow on keyboards, switching from jazzy electric piano to orchestral Mellotrons and from atmospheric synthesizers to irritating organ moves.As a result ''Clowns & clouds'' fails a bit in terms of originality, but still offers some great moments of professional music and well-crafted arrangements with a huge instrumental background.

Typical 70's Classic Prog by Hoelderlin.Adeventurous, demanding, rich but still melodic and poetic.Far from trully personal, but the contained music is absolutely sufficient and impressive.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

 Rare Birds by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.54 | 42 ratings

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Rare Birds
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by DrömmarenAdrian

3 stars "Rare birds" is the German group Hoelderlin (Hölderlin)'s fourth studio record and it was released in 1977 and featured Hans Bäär(bass), Michael Burchmann (drums), Christian Grumbkow(lyrics), Joachim Grumbkow(keyboards, vocals), Christoph Noppeney (viola, vocals), Pablo Weeber (guitar, vocals) and Manfred von Bohr (drums). An aesthetic cover with a fire bird and a girl predicted good music, but I don't find these songs especially rare.

When I put the record on I came into a nice world of prog rock, no doupt about that, but this music was in no way an eye opener or especially interesting. The early Hölderlin was a progressive folk rock band put the only folky here is the viola, but it doesn't make it folky alone. In some moments it's possible to hear symphonic approach. With German lyrics perhaps I would have liked it very much, but now it wasn't so fun. The singers didn't sang enough loud either so they didn't took place.

My favourite song on this record Rare birds is "Necronomicon" which is very good(8/10). It has the right prog edge, some kind of a melody and a dark feeling, some symphonic moves and viola solos.

Three other song are little more than just good. "Häktik Intergaläktik"(7/10) starts with giving this little withdrawn feeling. If you think other symphinic rockers use to be to pompous perhaps late Hoelderlin is something for you. Even "Before you lay down" (7/10) is nice and the closer "Sun rays (7/10) has also a pleasent soundscape with a great guitar solo in the end. Two songs doesn't make sense for me: "Rare bird" the titel track is too boring with weak vocals and a sleepy feeling (6/10) as well as "Sky-Lift" which is even more boring (5/10).

I find Hoelderlin in no way bad but in this way the choice to sing in a foreign language wasn't a good idea. A German band stays genuine with singing in German, that's my opinion. That's perhaps not Rare Birds biggest shortage but it's something. I will continue explore Hoelderlin but this record has to wait a while until I'll listen again.

 Hoelderlin by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1975
4.03 | 78 ratings

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Hoelderlin
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars At the end of 1973 Nanny de Ruig left Hoelderlin, but the band had already a major success with over 80 concerts in Germany, that continued the next year with a more 50 tour dates along the country.Hoelderlin even appeared in few occasions on TV programs and at the fall of 74' they signed a new contract with Spiegelei.Guitarist Joachim Käseberg (brother of Peter Käseberg) joins the band, which starts to work on texts by Bertolt Brecht, Erich Fried, and H.C. Artmann.The new album, entitled simply ''Hoelderlin'' and indicating a fresh start for the band, was recorded at Conny Planck's Studio in early 75' with guest appearances by Zeus B. Held on sax, Conny Planck on additional vocals and synths and Norbert Jacobsen of Release Music Orchestra fame on clarinet.It was released eventually during the spring of the same year.

This second effort shows the band shifting towards more British-styled Prog realms in a very attractive mix with hints from the Kraut Rock scene.The opening instrumental ''Schwebebahn'' shows clear KING CRIMSON influences, led by the dramatic violin exercises of Noppeney and the huge Mellotron washes of Grumbcow, delivered alongside Ethnic percussions and a quasi-improvised groove.''I love my dog'' shows touches of early GENESIS with acoustic guitars and flutes in evidence.The lyrics are now delivered exclusively in English, while the track ends in a Space/Fusion way with a great sax solo by Zeus B. Held and powerful, spacey synths and vocals.''Honeypot'' sounds like a mix of the opening tracks.Lots of acoustic guitars, improvised rhythmic passages, Classical influences on piano and violins and light Mellotron moves combine for another good composition.

The flipside opens with an almost ripoff of GENESIS tunes, the short but beautiful ''Nürnberg'', based on the PETER GABRIEL-esque vocals of Grumbcow, his lovely piano themes and the acoustic crescendo of his brother Christian.The 17-min. opus ''Deathwatchbeetle'' is not only the longest but also the best composition of the album.Split between Classic British Prog and Teutonic Prog Folk ala compatriots EDEN, it offers the listener series of beautiful moments.From the mournful violin textures to the great dual piano/organ runs, this piece follows delicate symphonic arrangements with Grumbcow singing again with a GABRIEL-esque color and the music alternating between obcure Kraut Rock groovy themes with soaring violins and synths and melodic, Classical interludes with evident GENESIS and RENAISSANCE touches, full of acoustic tunes and elegant piano, Mellotron and organ textures.The powerful closing with the grandiose orchestral mood is simply amazing.

Smart move by the Germans.They made their sound richer, incorpopating Classical, Folk and Psych inspirations in a very tight wat.After all, it is very hard to mix succesfully GENESIS delicate music with nods from Kraut Rock and the frenetic performances of KING CRIMSON.Absolutely satisfying and highly recommended.

 Hölderlins Traum by HOELDERLIN album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.09 | 148 ratings

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Hölderlins Traum
Hoelderlin Prog Folk

Review by DrömmarenAdrian

5 stars I did my last review about the swedish band Träd, gräs och stenar's first record which was quite bad even though it was progressive. This Hölderlin records isn't very progressive, but very good. I am new to the band Hölderlin/Hoelderlin, but I love German music and think it's a shame they sometimes sing in English.

The German Prog Folk group Hölderlin'f first record is a short one and that is an advantage beacuse the whole record is so superb. The starter and the closer tracks are the most progressive but not the best songs. The group was made up by six persons: Michael Bruchmann( drums, percussion), Nanny DeRuig (vocals), Christian Grumbkow(guitar), Joachim Grumbkow (guitar, cello, flute, keyboards, mellotron), Peter Kaseberg (bass, guitar, vocals) and Christoph Noppeney (violin, flute, piano). It also features Peter Bursch on sitar and Mike Hellbach on tablas on "Strohhalm" and Walter Westrupp on flute on "Erwachen". This record was released in 1974.

This is something for you who love acoustic guitars. They didn't thought it was enough with one, it seams they got many and that's lovely. "Waren wir" starts asking and what you love immediately is the beautiful voice of Nanny DeRuig who sings like telling a tale. This song contains rock instruments like a groovy organ for exampel. The last track "Traum" is also a rock song, instrumental and a little improvised I think. The rest is very folky, totally fantastic music I'll say. "Peter" is a pure but perfect folk song with excellent vocals and a pleasant text. "Strohhalm" has an indian feeling with beautiful flute and sung by men. "Requiem für einem Wicht" is a progressive folk song with many passages. This is folk in a symphonic way with violins and cello. Perhaps the best song on this record. "Erwachen" has some mystical sounds and "Wetterbericht" has a lot of guitar heroism. This is indeed a record I would recommend to anybody addicted to music. I think this records has something for everybody and a lot for progheads and folkheads.

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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