Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography

XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL

Krautrock • Germany


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Xhol Caravan / Xhol picture
Xhol Caravan / Xhol biography
XHOL was one of the first bands who participated at the send of the 60s to the launch of the Krautrock movement in Germany. Nevertheless their music cannot be categorised. Their roots came from rhythm'n blues with soul tendencies. With their second album "electrip" they rapidly found their own style which can be considered as an original fusion of free jazz, psychedelic rock and electronic experimentations. Very dynamic their jazz rock can sometimes be compared with the spirit of the psychedelic soul developed by SOFT MACHINE. However the unusual use of electric instruments and electronic manipulations made XHOL absolutely unique. After "Electric", the band carries on their musical adventure with two great and totally free jazz rock albums. Dominated by endless, electric and cool improvisations "Hau Ruk" is a must for fusion and jazz lovers. Their last studio album "Motherf**kers GmbH" recorded in 1972 is a monument. All the compositions have their own feelings, sometimes delivering captivating and powerful blues, kraut, and jazz elements. However this album put the stress on a second fascinating side of XHOL's musical universe: experimental organ works and psych/ folk interludes. This last album is nearer to Krautrock mesmerizing musical themes, more twisted, spacey and devoted to avant-garde. XHOL's influence on a bench of german prog bands and on the adepts of free rock music in general is undeniable.

: : : Philippe Blache, FRANCE : : :

XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL forum topics / tours, shows & news


XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL forum topics
No topics found for : "xhol caravan / xhol"
Create a topic now
XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL tours, shows & news
No topics found for : "xhol caravan / xhol"
Post an entries now

XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL Videos (YouTube and more)


Showing only random 3 | Show all XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL videos (1) | Search and add more videos to XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL

Buy XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL Music



More places to buy XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL music online

XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL discography


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

XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.33 | 9 ratings
Get In High
1967
3.49 | 55 ratings
Electrip
1969
3.52 | 28 ratings
Motherfuckers G.M.B.H & Co. KG
1972

XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.78 | 36 ratings
Hau-RUK
1970
4.25 | 8 ratings
Motherfuckers Live
2001
3.53 | 10 ratings
Altena 1969
2006
4.29 | 7 ratings
Altena 1970
2006
4.20 | 5 ratings
Essen 1970
2010

XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

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

XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Electrip by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.49 | 55 ratings

BUY
Electrip
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars The story of XHOL CARAVAN is a complicated one. The band started off simply as Soul Caravan which featured the two African American singers James Rhodes and Ronny Swinton and although hinting at the prospects of the then future Krautrock scene, was nothing more than a Motown inspired style of psychedelic soul but nevertheless paved the way for what was to emerge a couple years down the road. After the departure of the two singers, the initial founders of the band which included saxophonist Tim Belbe, sax and flute player Hansi Fischer and Klaus Briest on bass gave the band a complete makeover including a hipper name change which resulted in the altered spelling XHOL CARAVAN but pronounced exactly the same.

With the 1969 release of ELECTRIP, this German band from Wiesbaden is considered one of the true pioneers of the Krautrock scene alongside the likes of Can's "Monster Movie," Amon Düül II's "Phallus Dei" and lesser known groups like Trikolon, Ihre Kinder and The Inner Space. While ELECTRIP was the only album released under the XHOL CARAVAN moniker (the band would drop the CARAVAN part of its name due to confusion with the English Canterbury Scene band), this late 60s album was nonetheless extremely inspirational for the jazzier side of Krautrock that would fully come to fruition with bands like Embryo, Out Of Focus, Ikarus, Thirsty Moon, Kraan, Et Cetera, Tortilla Flat, Missus Beastly, Eiliff, Brainstorm, Missing Link and i could go on and on and on!

As a latecomer to XHOL CARAVAN and its lauded 1969 album that launched the jazzier side of the Krautrock scene, i have been loath to accept its majesty due to the fact i much prefer the farthest out trips that the German scene had to offer but yet i'm admittedly also mesmerized by the jazz-rock fueled trippers that followed as well, so in a nutshell i simply had to readjust my barometer to focus on the timeline from which this emerged and after the proper antennae adjustments, lo and behold it all started to make sense. After all some music is about tuning into the zeitgeist of a specific era. All music doesn't have to be timeless, ya know. Well ELECTRIP is very much a product of its time and there is no possible way to misidentify this album from coming from any other period than the 1968-70 era.

ELECTRIP begins with the rather psychotic "Electric Fun Fair" which displays a form of jazz-rock fusion that would become the staple of bands like Soft Machine once they kicked Robert Wyatt out however this one features organ and electric piano sounds courtesy of Öcki von Brevern and directly links the band to that period technology but the swinging rich brassy parts bring Oktoberfest to mind. "Pop Games" begins with sped up vocal chattering thus relaying a chipmunk effect but turns into a more stable jazz-rock tune whereas "All Green" revived some of the psychedelic soul aspects of the past only tripped out a bit with the organ runs. The first three provide an upbeat rather stable run of jazz-rock with psychedelic extras but then the album shifts a bit. The mix of the tenor, alto and soprano saxes along with the tuba gives these tracks a robust brass heft.

The fourth track "Raise Up High"which takes up roughly half the album runs almost 18 minutes long and unlike the first three features the madman vocals of drummer Skip Van Wyck. Much like the Can albums that would dominate the Krautrock scene of the 70s, XHOL CARAVAN started ELECTRIP with somewhat accessible tracks that featured recognizable jazz and rock albeit mangled up but with this lengthy behemoth after the initial Captain Beefheart inspired vocal performance, the track delves into what can be considered truly mature Krautrock which nurtures all the psychedelic features alongside the more avant-garde freeform jazz. Not too far from what the American trippy Sun Ra was doing at the time only with more rock heft especially in the form of the bass and drums since XHOL CARAVAN was completely without a guitarist. "Raises Up High" sounds like the perfect psychedelic jam as if Amon Düül II was jamming with the Mothers of Invention especially around the "Hot Rats" era.

The album closes with the palette cleanser "Walla Mashalla," a short little reprise to the opening track. While the band released only ELECTRIP under the XHOL CARAVAN moniker, the band decided to drop the CARAVAN part due to constant confusion with the Canterbury Scene band across the pond and would release two more albums on the Ohr label simply as XHOL. While ELECTRIP may not be the trippiest example of Krautrock or even the most electric due to the large wind section save the longest track on board, this one was one of the most influential impetuses of the entire jazzy side of the German scene. Although it took a few spins to warm up to, i've actually come to love ELECTRIP for its bold reach for the sky and clearly shows hints of the burgeoning Kraut scene just around the corner. While XHOL CARAVAN doesn't seem to make the top list of Krautrock albums from those early years, its 1969 landmark ELECTRIP is nonetheless one not to be missed as it is the perfect blend of brassy jazz-rock with fuzzed out 60s psychedelia.

 Hau-RUK by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Live, 1970
3.78 | 36 ratings

BUY
Hau-RUK
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams

4 stars Without considering the bonus track, which is present only on the CD reissue, the only flaw of this album is the bootleg quality. It seems recorded in a garage, the drums don't have a proper mike set but this is not a big issue in Krautrock. If one can survive the first jam of Amon Duul, can survive to everything.

Said so, the music is good. The two side long tracks have that psychedelic mood vaguely reminding of early PINK FLOYD, especially in the bass line, which is made jazzzier by the sax. It's a nice trip, not too acid, which contains very good passages.

Of course, being a jam, the bass line is almost repetitive, but the sax makes its good work and also keyboard and guitar are able to fit in the ensemble without any jamming excess. In brief, even jamming, the band shows good skills.

A mention is deserved by the bonus track, The sound quality is really better, the fact that half of the band is not the same of the first two tracks doesn't impact too much. It's not nice that the best thing in an albnum is the bonus track. Basing of the two side long tracks I would have rated it with three stars, but the very high levek of the third deserves a good appreciation. The flute added to the sax is an enhancement and the over 20 minutes in which it developes are a pleasant journey.

4 stars

 Electrip by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.49 | 55 ratings

BUY
Electrip
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by MJAben

3 stars Some direction would be nice, but I suppose we'll have to live with the originality and musicianship on this one, which is by no means a bad thing. Unfortunately however, this album falls into that category that so much prog music falls into, of being incredibly talented, limitlessly entertaining and so lacking in direction that the music falls into ear-grating, incessant noodling. This here is not music for us, it's music for musics sake, I can respect that, but it doesn't mean I want to listen to it. The incredibly annoying sound effects interspersed do not help the album.

The album is a bit of a mixed bag, the circus sounds of Electric Fun Fair do little for me but the jazzy laid back music of Pop Games and All Green I find quite enjoyable. The closing song Raise up High makes me feel as though the band is trying to do too many different thing's at the same time, all the while forgetting how to develop a lengthy song.

I appreciate the virtuosity, the ingenuity and the importance of this album to krautrock, jazz rock, canterbury scene and so on and so forth. But I don't always appreciate the music.

2.5 stars rounded up to 3 because there are some genuinely brilliant moments here and there that I fail to elude to properly.

 Motherfuckers G.M.B.H & Co. KG by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.52 | 28 ratings

BUY
Motherfuckers G.M.B.H & Co. KG
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

3 stars The least we can say is that Xhol's last album is a typical Xhol thing, but they certainly didn't worry about dressing it up (most basic and untidy sleeve), other than give an offensive (for some) name. From what I know, MF is a posthumous release, since they'd disbanded by now and this album is made from various studio tidbits that predate their previous live album.

The opening Radio track tuning will feature glimpse of their early days, when they called themselves Soul Caravan and other Xholian weirdness, but right after (and we're already in the third track by then), we have an experimental drone by a slow almost-10-mins Organ Solo. You'll find further Hammond madness, in the following First Day but this time accompanied with a haunting flute, excellent bass and hypnotizing drums. On the flipside, Grille features crickets summer calls mixed in with flutes and bongos buried in. Very basic, and to be honest, without the slightest interest: basically a waste of 7 minutes on an album. The closing 13-mins Love Potion 25 is really where most of the substance of this album resides, the only sung-track with excellent Hammond and great sax lines, sometimes nearing dissonance. Definitely great stuff, where you can hear their early soulish soul mixed in with their improvisation.

MF is well in the line of Electrip and their Hau-Ruk live album, with plenty of usual madness. It might be a collection of tidbits, but the amalgam is well worth the acquisition if you're into their previous albums, despite the near-void of the 7-mins Grille. In both side-closing tracks, you can be reminded of Traffic's second era.

 Hau-RUK by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Live, 1970
3.78 | 36 ratings

BUY
Hau-RUK
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by Guldbamsen
Special Collaborator Retired Admin

4 stars Early Krautrock Classic

There are many different things about this album that I love, but the one thing that always lingers in me long after I've spun it, is the overall impression of 'feel'. Now as daft as that may sound to some of you out there, I still stand by my statement. This album, with its wonderful title Hau-RUK, is perhaps the benchmark of what you can do musically, when all you have at the front wheel is feel.

Sure all music revolves around feel, and so it should, but with Xhol(remember this is after they ditched the Caravan part of their name) - and especially this album, there is little to hold it all together in form of chords, structure and what have you. This does however not mean that the music is unmelodious or mad - on the contrary; this is some of the most alluring and bobbing music out there.

Two long cuts, and if you've got a hold of the reissue one like I have, then you additionally get yet another 20+ minute track. Think Doors mixed up with The Paul Butterfield Blues Band seriously on acid - and then move this rather rambunctious setting into a more playful psychedelic jazz rock costume.that quite literally sounds as if the music was made in high seas on a river raft. So much bounce to this mother, you wouldn't believe it!

The drums are caveman raw, the organs sound like a bottom dwelling sea creature throwing up rhythmically and in tune, and still there is an imminent sense of chill about Hau-RUK - a characteristic about the whole thing that allures the listener out in deep hypnotising stints, where you feel like running through a maritime carnival in ultra slow motion.

In all fairness though, and just to play devils advocate, this record shouldn't work. It really shouldn't. This is basically jams with no preconceived idea of where to venture next. So you get this snaking thing that writhes and bobs - grows enormous and minuscule, frail and gentle - heck at times it even metamorphoses into something sensuous on accord of the sax - and yet I don't get anything meandering about it. Too many wicked rocking grooves and beautiful serene organ lead sections for that to be true.

I think all musicians know how it feels when everything falls into place - the times where you really cook and take off..........somewhere, and it feels like sex and drugs and everything in between. You catch each other in the music, and wield each other in, dance around, play and communicate through soundscapes, gestures and hidden sonic languages. Hau-RUK is exactly one of those times! Now whether that's down to high doses of mescaline, or just through the sheer power of music, I honestly don't know - and who really gives a flying feck anyhoo?

Xhol/Caravan(the first incarnation of the band), were actually one of the first Krautrock bands ever. They were part of the initial wave together with acts such as Amon Düül, CAN, Kraftwerk, Floh de Cologne, Tangerine Dream and Kluster, but I think it's fair to say that they were the first to merge the psychedelic Kosmische universe with jazz. Later on groups like Embryo, Exmagma and Kraan would go on to further evolusionise this branching of the Krautrock tree, but this was where it all started - with Xhol. This is however not your everyday jazz rock. It feels infinitely more sluggish and larval - like it moves forward on its tummy in huge sweaty gulps - mimicking the kind of early blues infatuated jazz rock feel you'd get from an album like Valentine Suite, although Colosseum and these Germans sound nothing alike. Yep makes no sense whatsoever, but that's how I roll...

The one thing that originally put me a little off with this album, was the sudden change of pace during the second cut, where you suddenly are met with a trashy and somewhat archaic take on the old BB King classic 'Rock me Baby'. This is a thing of the past, and ever since I started eating small children - I've really been digging it. Again - we're talking about feel. The live-in-your-face-untethered-imaginative and highly seductive musical experience that sometimes gets caught on tape, but far too often remain hidden brain polaroids in the back of long lost hippies... Well not this time. This is the real deal.

Catch this one for its thick gooey organ work - better yet get it because of its sensuous and at times wonderfully chirping saxophone spurts - or maybe for it's way of edging you into a murky dream state with everything around you exuding the type of melted reality you encounter in a Salvador Dali painting. 4.5 stars.

 Electrip by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.49 | 55 ratings

BUY
Electrip
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by DamoXt7942
Forum & Site Admin Group Avant/Cross/Neo/Post Teams

4 stars Quite surprised (and amazed) at such a superb album released in 1969.

Already renowned as a pioneer of a psychedelic Krautrock project, but I've felt not only Krautrock but also more eclectic and versatile. Guess they had played under their "original" style without any intention but their soundscape should be incredible in those days (and sadly not popular for commercialism maybe). With cheap sound effects or cheap electronic boards, they could played enthusiastic jazzy / psychedelic / experimental lumps fully in this creation.

In the beginning of the first track "Electric Fun Fair" complex and powerful horn section sounds based upon hard-edged drumming kicks blow us completely, and following those, funky, freaky swinging jazz sounds make us comfortable. In the middle part an improvised / experimental session primitive as one of Krautrock jobs pushes us away into another bot. The second track "Pop Games" is deep bluesy jazz rock filled with heavy riffs based upon brilliant bass and drum kicks and a bit cheesy tape effects. This song can be thought not a typical Krautrock stuff but simultaneously can let us know what the German experimental pioneer should be. The track closest to golden road of Krautrock might be the third one "All Green" I suggest ... funky speed rock seasoned with some electronic weirdness, can surprise us definitely.

The Side B gets started with another bluesy scene called "Raise Up High" filled with funky jamming texture and experimental psychedelia spice. Very powerful, very eccentric fuzzy voices are not of comfort but courageous for us surely. Not typically Kraut-flavoured but interesting feeling in early German progressive rock world. The last track "Walla Mashalla" can be said as the most innovative ending throughout this album I imagine. Fascinating, addictive yodels and a big bang noise of a toilet door closed should give us a bit loneliness definitely ... the fantastic hour in a lavatory has finished, with something fresh and cool like the spring air. Excellent album-theatre indeed ... of fantastic Electrip.

 Hau-RUK by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Live, 1970
3.78 | 36 ratings

BUY
Hau-RUK
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by Bonnek
Special Collaborator Prog Metal Team

3 stars With an album title as enigmatic as the band name, this German outfit created a very alluring psychedelic jazz-rock album. Recorded live, these free-form based jams will probably sound a bit indulgent to some listeners, but fans of Soft Machine's "Third" or Annexus Quam's "Osmose" shouldn't hesitate to check this out.

While "Hau-Ruk" doesn't match the quality of the two named albums it is still a very imaginative album, with two long improvised tracks full of strong psychedelic organs, intuitive drumming, smooth bass work and saxophones from Tim Belbe and Hansi Fisher. The latter would turn up again on Embryo's "Rache" album. The first track is the most consistent; the second has a very psychedelic and impressive first half before it changes to a rather dull take on BB King's "Rock Me Baby".

A nice album if you like that meeting ground between kraut and jazz/rock, where free-form improvisation, jazz and psychedelicca blend together without effort. Also fans of the experimental side of the Canterbury scene might dig this.

 Motherfuckers G.M.B.H & Co. KG by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.52 | 28 ratings

BUY
Motherfuckers G.M.B.H & Co. KG
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by Dobermensch
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Apparently 'Xhol Caravan' lost the 'Caravan' moniker so as not to be confused with the Canterbury band of the same name.

I don't know why they bothered. They're as dissimilar as a loaf of bread and a carton of milk.

'Orgelsolo' - is a really dull and uninspiring track with mind numbingly bad keyboards which veer off in no direction whatsoever making me very annoyed. Things pick up a bit with 'Side One First Day' where the keyboardist, gives it his all. Unfortunately it's tuneless and random at best. 'Grille' goes on for ages with some crickets making the sound that crickets make before a bit of flute appears. Happily the flute and crickets get along famously, creating an atmosphere that belongs in Egypt and sounds quite nice really. Quite 'Floydy' circa 1970 in many respects but not as well recorded.

The 13 minute 'Love Potion 25' finally sees some vocals enter the foray. All of a sudden things burst into life with big fat organs all over the place. This is the best tune on the album making up for the previous rubbish I've had to endure even though there's a lot of 'blues' feel to it. There's horns, jazz bass and nutty vocals all over the place lifting this album up to a 3 star rating rather than the 2 it was dive-bombing towards.

 Electrip by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Studio Album, 1969
3.49 | 55 ratings

BUY
Electrip
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Second Xhol Caravan album and possibly one of the very first German kraut rock release.

Original LP includes 5 compositions, mostly psychedelic jazz-rock with soul and blues-rock roots. Combination of organ, sax, flute and free jazz jamming, combined with German folksy elements, humor and some soul vocals gives to that recording quite specific sound.

No great melodies or recognizable songs, but common atmosphere is freaky on a manner of 1969! Long jamming is more about psychedelia, not about technical abilities demonstration.

Two CD bonuses are a bit different from main album's material: Planet Earth has soul slightly bombastic vocals and guitar soloing. "So Down" is bluesy romantic ballade with psychedelic scent, again with some electric guitar soloing and organs passages. Both songs sound as borrowed from "Jesus Christ Superstar" album.

Interesting release, important for kraut rock fans and still attractive for early psychedelic jazz-rock lovers.

 Hau-RUK by XHOL CARAVAN / XHOL album cover Live, 1970
3.78 | 36 ratings

BUY
Hau-RUK
Xhol Caravan / Xhol Krautrock

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Early German psychedelic jazz-rock (krautrock) band's live album contains just two long compositions. I like this lazy free-jazz improvs with plenty of soloing sax and electric piano.

Band's roots are in blues-rock and r'n'b, so you quite often can hear there some characteristic chords and structures. Between their spacey organ passages they even use B.B. King's "rock Me Baby" as element, included between their jamming!

Even when using plenty of spacey sounds, whole music is quite minimalistic, with excellent accents on separated sax, electric keyboards and great drumming. As often with such music, the album could sound a bit unfocused, but I don't think there it's a big problem.

If you like early kraut-rock, melting psychedelic spacey sounds with excellent minimalistic free-jazz jamming to one long improv, you must listen this album!

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition.

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — jazz music reviews and archives | MetalMusicArchives.com — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.