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AMON DÜÜL

Krautrock • Germany


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Amon Düül picture
Amon Düül biography
Active from 1967 to 1971 in Munich, Germany (later reunion in the 80's is under the Amon Düül-UK band moniker)

AMON DÜÜL were a huge musical collective that had a spectacular appearance in a tv-show in 1968. Before they put out their first album they split though, and one half set off to form AMON DÜÜL II.

The others kept the name AMON DÜÜL and in 1969 published the first Krautrock album ever, "Psychedelic Underground". It was very badly produced, and the music consisted of long improvisations, but after this album no other band needed to have an inferiority complex. Their second official album "Paradieswärts Düül" (1970) is much better produced and has a folky touch. The albums "Collapsing - Singvögel Rückwärts", "Disaster" and "Experimente" stem from the same session as "Psychedelic Underground" and are of similar nature; they were published after the band had split up already.

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1974 Amon Düül II - Vive La Trance LP 1st US VG+/GD United Artists UA-LA198-F USD $20.25 Buy It Now 38s
Phallus Dei [Germany Bonus Tracks] [Remaster] by Amon Düül (CD, Nov-2002) USD $14.99 Buy It Now 5h 23m
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3 days
Amon Düül Dance Of The Lemmings - 1st 2-LP vinyl record (Double Album) UK USD $71.81 Buy It Now 3 days
Amon Düül Minnelied Japanese vinyl LP album record 22S-39 BRAIN METRONOME 1973 USD $90.67 Buy It Now 3 days
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Carnival in Babylon by Amon Düül (CD, Jul-2006, Repertoire) USD $11.99 Buy It Now 3 days
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6 days
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Collapsing Singvögel Rückwärts & Co. by Amon Düül Duul (CD, 1996) France USD $9.99 Buy It Now 10 days
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Amon Düül - Collapsing Singvögel Rückwärts & Co. GER LP 1969 FOC /4* USD $69.90 Buy It Now 14 days
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Carnival in Babylon [Bonus Tracks] * by Amon Düül II (CD, May-2007, SPV) USD $14.99 Buy It Now 17 days
Vive la Trance by Amon Düül (Vinyl, Jun-2014, Cleopatra) USD $33.36 Buy It Now 17 days
Wolf City by Amon Düül II (LTD. 180g Colored Vinyl LP), 2014 Cleopatra Records USD $69.95 Buy It Now 17 days

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AMON DÜÜL discography


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

2.35 | 58 ratings
Psychedelic Underground [Aka: Minnelied]
1969
2.20 | 21 ratings
Collapsing - Singvögel Rückwärts & Co.
1969
3.10 | 53 ratings
Paradieswärts Düül
1970
1.65 | 24 ratings
Disaster / Lüüd Noma
1972
2.35 | 13 ratings
Experimente
1983

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

AMON DÜÜL Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

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

3.00 | 2 ratings
Eternal Flow
1970

AMON DÜÜL Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Psychedelic Underground [Aka: Minnelied] by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1969
2.35 | 58 ratings

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Psychedelic Underground [Aka: Minnelied]
Amon Düül Krautrock

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

3 stars The 60s was a time for extremism and radical experimentation and nowhere was this more true than in the political communes of the world where kindred souls tuned out, dropped out and hooked up with like-minded individuals where they could nurture a new form of community. While the hippie movement was taking over the streets of places like San Francisco in 1967 as the Summer of Love captured the world's gaze, so too was a similar movement gestating in the Teutonic lands of southern Germany. In the very same year a radical commune formed in Munich and named themselves after the Egyptian Sun God - AMON. Seeking to distance themselves from their Germanic heritage, the commune attached the fictitious secondary DUUL to the end and thus a new collective of was born.

While born out of the student movement, the members of AMON DUUL focused on their musical interests and set out to create a new freeform style of rock that was intensely psychedelic in nature but much less structured than their Anglo contemporaries such as Pink Floyd or the pop oriented sounds of the US emanating from the likes of Jefferson Airplane or The Doors. AMON DUUL initially began as a revolving door collective where anybody could join and jam with the lengthy freeform compositions that would spontaneously ooze from all the participating members. Although led by Ulrich Leopold and his brother Peter, the true nature of the frenetic free-for-all style of which would later be dubbed Krautrock was the epitome of a true musical democracy where no one instrument stole the thunder of another.

The nature of the loosey-goosy stylistic approach of musical composition immediately led to the more musically inclined members to quickly splinter off and create the more popular shoot-off called Amon Duul II. Both AMON DUUL and the second version that would capture the world's attention for their more accomplished recordings released their debut albums in 1969. Amon Duul II with their infamous "Phallus Dei" and the original band from whence they were spawned released their first album in the form of PSYCHEDELIC UNDERGROUND which many claim to be the very first Krautrock album that launched the entire movement although it could be argued that bands such as Sweden's Pärson Sound were on the same wavelength and the similarity of the freeform avant-garde jam sessions was more of a product of the entire region during the tumultuous electrically charged latter half of the 60s.

PSYCHEDELIC UNDERGROUND very much lives up to its title. The members that participated in the recording numbered seven with the typical rock setup of guitar, bass, drum, piano and drums with extra percussion provided in the form of congas and maracas. "Ein Wunderhübsches Mädchen Träumt von Sandosa (A Wonderfully Pretty Girl Dreams of Sandosa)" opens the album and provides half of the musical experience of the entire album with a steady stream of tribal drumming, looped guitar riffs and frantic nonsensical vocalizations. The track comes off as some sort of freeform mantra and transcendental meditative zoning out session that for many will be unbearable as the emphasis is on a receptive and hypnotic effect showcasing passion and attitudnal delivery over compositional prowess.

While the rest of the tracks clock in at much shorter length, they basically free flow as if they thread the continuity of the opening track with a rather predictable outcome that finds the steady rhythmic drive and looped melodic limitations skating along for the majority of the album. Only the finale "Bitterlings Verwandlung (Bitterling's Transformation)"displays any sort of deviation from the regularly scheduled program with classical samplings as well as production techniques like backmasking incorporated. In fact the last track is really the only one that feels like a studio track while the rest of them feel more like spontaneous live jamming sessions that were most likely fueled by mind-altering substances which allowed the inner demons to be exorcised into submission.

The development of two separate AMON DUUL bands that splintered and went on their own trajectories is an interesting case study for sure but i will have to join the ranks of the rest of the world in finding the original AMON DUUL to be vastly inferior to the more adventurous and disciplined musical output of the second version, however this feels like Krautrock at its most unadulterated and purest form which and an interesting musical experience that actually allows the listener to be transported back into the time and place and feel like a fly on the wall taking it in despite its clear disregard of any sort of musical standards. For that reason i find PSYCHEDELIC UNDERGROUND to be quite a veritable release although i admit that this is more of a collectible and only reserved for those rare moments when i feel like hearing primal freeform psychedelia from the era. While AMON DUUL will forever remain in the shadow of the Amon Duul II that followed, they nevertheless offered a unique insight into the German musical collectives that launched an entire subgenere within the world of psychedelic rock.

 Collapsing - Singvögel Rückwärts & Co. by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1969
2.20 | 21 ratings

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Collapsing - Singvögel Rückwärts & Co.
Amon Düül Krautrock

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

1 stars The second LP from the first Amon Düül offers more of the same rumblings from the counterculture jungle. It sounds an awful lot (with emphasis on the awful) like the band's mind-numbing 1969 debut album, "Psychedelic Underground', and with good reason: the tapes came from the same loosely organized, lo-tech recording session.

The second edition might actually be slightly more varied than the earlier effort. But the thrill (such as it was) is long gone, and the sequel can't hide what it really was: leftovers that didn't survive the first round draft. Don't blame the hippies, though. They unwittingly sold the rights to that legendary jam session to producer Peter Meisel, who would continue releasing outtakes under the Amon Düül banner for years to come, cynically riding the coattails of the more successful Amon Düül II.

That backstory hardly improves the music, however. There seems to be less guitar and more drums this time around, all played with disarming amateur enthusiasm (i.e. badly). It might be unfair, but not inaccurate, to point out that the buzzing insects heard in the album's closing track "Natur (auf dem Lande)" exhibit more natural talent than the players themselves.

But in the end I have to admit I find the whole thing fascinating, in a tortured sort of way. Amon Düül was Punk Rock before Punk even existed: uncompromising and raw, but with the purest of hippie ideals behind it. The album makes a better political statement than a musical presentation, advocating creative freedom (without the straightjacket of talent), community fellowship, and of course a lot of mind-altering chemicals.

This may be the first time in over 1,153,473 reviews and ratings from the 53,770 members of these Archives that a single star was used as a mark of honor. If your taste in music runs to extremes, consider Amon Düül the first entrée in a Krautrock Paleo Diet.

 Experimente by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1983
2.35 | 13 ratings

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Experimente
Amon Düül Krautrock

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Here's an album that almost deserves the scorn normally directed at the first Amon Düül. I say "almost" because the jury is still out (believe it or not), and I'll be arguing for the defense a few paragraphs down. But first, a tough question from the prosecution:

Can this really be yet another collection of outtakes from that single, primitive guitar-and-percussion orgy that spawned three AD albums already, a decade earlier? The CD has no information about the music or the recording, which leads me to suspect a belated illegitimate release, aimed at exploiting the marquee value of the better known, more highly regarded Amon Düül II.

If you've already suffered through other AD albums (like the aptly-titled "Collapse" and "Disaster", or the awesome barrage of "Psychedelic Underground"), this one will add nothing new to your experience. And if you've never heard the Neolithic noisemaking of the original Düül this would be the last place to start. The album collects two dozen identically non-titled fragments and false starts, most of them only a minute or two long, performed by one guitarist, one bass player, and a small army of amateur drummers hitting anything within reach.

Nevertheless, I can't quite bring myself to call it a bad album, even while it scrapes the crusty dregs from a long-empty barrel. It's true the momentum of every groove is killed at each arbitrary splice, with 23 cuts over 67 total minutes, all of them with the painful shock of a tooth being pulled, minus any anesthetic. But the first Düül, keep in mind, was more a communal tribe than a musical group. And the grooves themselves, plodding as they are, possess an almost ambient purity to them, like caveman party music before the discovery of fire.

The same radical monotony that damns the group in the ears of many listeners is also what ultimately redeems them, by removing the music from any aesthetic context or comparison. It is what it is, whether you love it or hate it, with no excuses or apologies offered. And that's an attribute of true artistic expression.

After holding their music at arm's length for too long, I've finally learned something valuable from the earliest Amon Düül: how to be less judgmental. Thus my initial one-star jerk of the knee is elevated here to a more thoughtful two-star rating. This one, for better or worse, is strictly for diehard fans...and I know they exist, somewhere.

 Disaster / Lüüd Noma  by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1972
1.65 | 24 ratings

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Disaster / Lüüd Noma
Amon Düül Krautrock

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

3 stars I'm tempted to award this notorious (and notoriously well-titled) document five contrary stars, but I'm afraid such an act of dissent would only make me seem even more of a crackpot than I really am.

The prevailing opinion of the album, on this site and elsewhere, regards it as the equivalent of a kindergarten drum class, dragged out to an excruciating 68-minutes of unskilled clattering and bashing. A single, strummed electric guitar (and a little stoned scat singing, buried in the uproar) is the only link to anything resembling genuine music; otherwise it's a radical '60s version of The Gong Show, with a blacksmith's anvil (and a ton of bongos) instead of an actual gong. Even idle daydreams of a topless Uschi Obermeier smacking her tom-toms aren't enough to save it.

And yet, after sixty-plus minutes of uninterrupted exposure, the whole thing can begin making a warped sort of sense. A full hour of amateur Krautrock drumming by obvious non-musicians will sometimes have that effect: wearing down your aesthetic defenses and eroding your critical inhibitions.

This was the band's third album, all of them supposedly culled from a single, monster jam session, three years earlier. By this point you might expect it to represent the bottom scrapings of a very shallow barrel, and it's true that the energy level can't compare to the apocalyptic chaos of "Psychedelic Underground", the initial gleaning from 1968.

But the less hectic pacing actually improves the music (and here I'm using the word 'music' only in its most generic sense). None of the tracks has a real beginning or end; the edits merely interrupt a casual performance in progress. But the total effect is something (slightly) more than the sum of its haphazard parts, showing evidence of nominal post-production structure in places. There's even a surprising nod to The Beatles, in the song "Yea Yea Yea (Zerbeatelt)": a sixty-second cover of "I Should Have Known Better", from "A Hard Day's Night".

Albums like "Disaster" function like an audio litmus test, useful in determining a) the listener's forbearance in the face of extremity, and b) his or her attitude toward the ephemeral boundary separating music from noise. Even the album's mirrored subtitle (Lüüd Noma) seems appropriate, describing a communal music experience almost backward in its non-musical naïveté.

An hour of the stuff is certainly a lot to sit through. But I'm sure there's a few misfits reading this who might learn to appreciate it, if only for the brazen arrhythmic middle finger raised defiantly against The Establishment.

 Psychedelic Underground [Aka: Minnelied] by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1969
2.35 | 58 ratings

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Psychedelic Underground [Aka: Minnelied]
Amon Düül Krautrock

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

2 stars I think a new rating benchmark needs to be established for the debut Amon Düül album. Instead of the usual stars, how about five energy-sucking black holes, denoting an absolutely essential but altogether unlistenable Prog Rock experience?

The First Amon Düül didn't even consider themselves a musical group. They were all simply fellow travelers in the same radical-political Munich commune, who liked to make a lot of noise together...maybe too much, considering their association with the Baader- Meinhof Gang. Eight credited musicians (and I use the term very loosely) were involved in this mess, the end result of a single 1968 jam that provided enough material for two other albums as well, one of them a double disc.

The multitude of talent (and I use the term even more loosely) sounds impressive until you realize six of them, including '60s sex kitten Uschi Obermaier, were strictly amateur drummers, flailing away on an assortment of toms, bongos, and at least one blacksmith's anvil (!) So it's hardly surprising to hear the album open with an unrelenting 17-minute percussion orgy, setting the mood for an album-long train wreck of Neanderthal grooves and haphazard edits, with lots of Dionysian pounding and shouting.

Half the track titles reference the Sandoz Laboratories, manufacturers of the first LSD, making the album more of a stoner homage to altered consciousness than a commercial music venture. In its own crude way the effort was more honest and effective than the later Ash Ra Tempel / Timothy Leary acid epiphany of "Seven Up", with a certain integrity all its own: totally primitive to be sure, but still intact. The raw, lo-fi sound of the LP is part of its enduring mystique, although the 'Underground' of the title might have been literal: it sounds like the microphones were buried under several feet of loose clay.

If you subscribe to the Philosophy of the World articulated by The Shaggs (see my PA avatar) you'll know that technical ability isn't always a requirement for musical expression. In other words, it's sometimes what you say, not how you say it, and the message here was one of pure anti-establishment vitality (i.e. noise).

In its own barbaric way it's an astonishing document, almost singlehandedly birthing the entire Krautrock scene. But that doesn't make the album any easier to sit through. And because my innovative gravity-well rating idea will probably never fly, I'm leaning toward a more wishy-washy compromise: two conservative but entirely respectable stars, for diehard Krautrock scholars and other masochists.

 Paradieswärts Düül by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1970
3.10 | 53 ratings

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Paradieswärts Düül
Amon Düül Krautrock

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

3 stars A very loose translation of the title "Paradieswärts Düül" might be "We're Bound For Glory". And the vehicle of choice for the journey, in counterculture Munich circa 1970, was a radical communal lifestyle and, presumably, a lot of psychotropic drugs. It may not have been the best answer to the lingering reactionism of post-Nazi Germany. But at least the music was worthwhile, in retrospect more so than the movement itself.

Unlike the more dedicated musicians of Amon Düül II, the first incarnation of the band (actually more of a disorganized collective) was strictly an amateur project, on this album playing a haphazard assortment of flutes, bongo drums and acoustic guitars (I'm surprised the lineup on these pages doesn't list 'cannabis' as a primary instrument). After two very noisy free-form LPs the unexpected pastoral gentleness - more Krautfolk than Krautrock - might have been a conscious reaction against the urban guerilla warfare of the Baader- Meinhof gang: fellow travelers in the same Munich commune and early fans of the band.

How else to explain the meandering 17-minute mantra "Love is Peace", really just a three- minute exercise in Flower Power stretched to fill an entire side of vinyl. Or the grammatically- challenged "Snow Your Thirst and Sun Your Open Mouth", the title to which is evidence of either a failed German-English translation or a fried brain stem. The two best songs here weren't even on the original album: "Eternal Flow" and "Paramechanical World", a pair of haunting, minimal Krautballads first released as a 7-inch single and nicely positioned here as a bonus coda.

The musical skills of the ersatz group were never more than rudimentary, and worked better that way. At the start of a musical decade that would increasingly become a celebration of sometimes empty virtuosity and thematic overkill, the disarming innocence of the playing on this album remains the melodic equivalent of a breath of fresh air.

Well, maybe not entirely fresh. The album is very much a product of its era, and hearing it for the first time more than forty years later is like inhaling a lungful of secondhand pot: a mildly stimulating diversion at best, but high times to an old square like me.

It would take a more generous pair of ears to award "Paradieswärts Düül" anything more than three solid stars (for the music alone...give the album five stars for the integrity of its hippie idealism). And while it certainly casts a unique and peculiar spell, I'm not really tempted to explore any deeper into the anarchic rituals of earlier Amon Düül albums like the notorious 1969 freak out of "Psychedelic Underground". Pardon the lousy pun, but I think I'll quit while I'm a Head.

 Collapsing - Singvögel Rückwärts & Co. by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1969
2.20 | 21 ratings

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Collapsing - Singvögel Rückwärts & Co.
Amon Düül Krautrock

Review by Dobermensch
Prog Reviewer

1 stars Not an album to be tossed aside lightly... it should be thrown down with great force.

Jeez! This really is poor. Much worse than I remembered. A shockingly stark, poorly produced, rambling mess of an album that holds no coherence whatsoever. Recorded by a bunch of drug addled stoners who could barely lift a fag to their mouths. They're as sharp as a pound of wet liver.

'Collapsing' is the name this album deserves. It's clearly a jam by a bunch of layabouts who clearly couldn't give a monkeys about how the final cut would end up sounding. Give me one person... just one... who says this is a masterpiece and I'll shake them by the hand (or throat).

An album without one redeeming quality whatsoever. Even the junkies in the background can't shake their bloody bangles in time with the out of time bongos!

When they finally realise that things are falling apart at the seems we get tape cuts of noise in an attempt to cover the ineptitude. These splices are the the best parts of the album... .

Unfortunately life's too short to lisen to this rubbish.

 Paradieswärts Düül by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1970
3.10 | 53 ratings

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Paradieswärts Düül
Amon Düül Krautrock

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

2 stars The lineup on this album features twelve elements. I would wonder why just bongs, guitar and voice can be heard on the first 8 minutes of the first track, but I already know the Amon Duul's unlistenable debut album and this, at least, is not that bad.

The 8 mentioned minutes have the appearance of a song and when it becomes psychedelic for few seconds one could think that something good is coming. Unfortunately it falls back into the first album's poor recording (and poor writing, too). The untuned 12 strings guitar and the hippy/acid percussions don't enhance this monotonal song. Well, if you are around a fire with stoned friends smoking everything passes through your fingers it can sound good, but "the times ar ea-changed". this music is flat and repetitive. So repetitive to be hypnotic and this is probably its purpose. At least is better recorded and less chaotically improvised than the debut, that's the only other Amon Duul album that I know. "Peace, brothers".

"Snow Your Thirst and Sun Your Open Mouth" is a bit better. Bass and guitar are again repetitive, but it's seems that they have written something. This is not a bad track, even if I still can't understand where the 12 elements credited in this album are, or how many of them were awaken while the session was being recorded. What we have is two different tracks, really, as the second half is occupied by a guy trying to tune his guitar with the bass....at least this is what it seems.

A great new on the last track: two chords instead of one. This is a big enhancement in the songwriting. I know that tuning a 12 strings guitar is not very easy, but there's people able to do it, so why playing in this way on an album? I have to say that this is the thing with more similarities with music that can be found on this album, and this is really an enhancemnt respect to the debut that didn't contain anything of this kind.

I'm undecided between 1 and 2 stars, but being it not as bad as the debut so it can have two. Only for fans, if any.

 Disaster / Lüüd Noma  by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1972
1.65 | 24 ratings

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Disaster / Lüüd Noma
Amon Düül Krautrock

Review by ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer

1 stars There is at least one great thing about this (double) album : its title. Great inspiration for sure!

Having said this, I guess that there little to be added. This band continues to "offer" the same noisy, fully jam-oriented stuff (can't call this music really). The sound is awful (not even of decent boot quality), the "tracks" are totally uninspired, lousy and quite dispensable.

I was a bit less harsh with their "Paradieswarts Duul" (two stars), but even this one was no big deal. But this one is probably the "climax" of all their albums so far. And it is a double one! Can you imagine the pain to endure? For about seventy minutes of this treat is quite a hard exercise.

Is there a track worth mentioning? Huuumm: I don't think so. Maybe under influence, but even so I am not sure that something would stand out from this "Disaster".

After a super dull "Broken", I can cope for a while with "Somnium" (but not for too long to be honest). It is probably the most digestible track of all featured here. If you would like to torture yourself, you can listen to this double album but you have been warned.

One star of course.

 Paradieswärts Düül by AMON DÜÜL album cover Studio Album, 1970
3.10 | 53 ratings

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Paradieswärts Düül
Amon Düül Krautrock

Review by ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer

2 stars After the release of the chaotic and dreadful "Psychedelic Underground" the band released several albums which were apparently taken from the same sessions. As the great "Ramones" have said: "Third verse, same as the first".

The "epic" opener is just a seventeen minutes poor piece of music (?). It is a mix of acoustic guitar and repetitive riff with poor vocals that lead to a total chaos again. As usual should I say. To be totally fair (as I have always tried to be), I have to recognize that the second track "Snow Your Thurst & Sun Your Open Mouth" is quite decent and acceptable.

Totally hypnotic and repetitive it is the best (?) piece of music featured by this band so far in their career as far as I am concerned. It is fully psychedelic and the ones who like the early live Floyd appearances should like this track.

Some might feel great while listening to "Paramechanische Welt", but I can't. To my ears, it is just another long and dull track. Some decent percussion are present, but it features weak acoustic guitar background and poor vocals as well. What else?

Well, some average psyche song actually; under the form of "Eternal Flow". Sure that those guys must have been pretty loaded to generate such a track (which is a bonus on the CD version).

At the end of the day, this album is better than their debut but I can't be laudatory about such a work. But maybe is this what's Kraut is all about.

Two stars.

Thanks to BaldJean for the artist addition. and to E&O Team for the last updates

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