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WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP

Prog Folk • Germany


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Witthuser and Westrupp biography
Witthuser & Westrupp is a 70's psych folk duo from Munich. They are at the top of the German prog folk scene. Stylistically distinguishable, they have opted for a musical signature simultaneously "cosmic" and folk. The two musicians started their career back in the sixties. Bernd Witthuser was the manager of Podium Folk club and financial manager of "International Essener Songtagen" (1968). He recorded "Vampiren, Nonnen und Toten" in 1970 (a conceptual, humorous album based on vampires' literature). Walter Westrupp involved in a baroque ensemble and was the leader of "Night Reveller Skiffle Group". Their first release in duet "Trips und Traume" was published in 1971 for ohr. It delivers a pastoral, "trippy" folk rock with a few oriental elements. It's mainly acoustic, featuring folk guitars, flute passages, recitatives & discreet lyrics in German, electric organ arrangements. A few songs have a nive satiric approach. A very original record which is now recognised as a standard. It contains many kraut-folk hymns! The track "Illusion 1" will be recorded in a new version for the project "Tarot" (Walter Wegmuller). The two following albums "Der Jesuspilz" (1972) and "Blauer Plath" (1972) present both various sorts of acoustic trip folk songs. "Der Jesuspilz"is a concept album inspired by a text which reveals that bible is all about drugs. "Bauer Plath" features guests from the symphonic prog Wallenstein (the drummer Harald Grosskopf, the keyboardist Jurgen Dollase)

An essential band whose music had a great influence on kraut-folk related items. Witthuser & Westrupp also participated as guests in several krautrock albums: Walter Westrupp's Tarot, Sergius Golowin's Lord Krishna, Hoederlin's Traum.

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WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP discography


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

WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.80 | 10 ratings
Lieder Von Vampiren, Nonnen Und Toten
1970
4.07 | 24 ratings
Trips Und Traume
1971
3.80 | 15 ratings
Der Jesuspilz - Musik Vom Evangelium
1972
3.08 | 6 ratings
Bauer Plath
1972

WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.07 | 5 ratings
Live 68-73
1973

WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

4.00 | 1 ratings
Die Ohr CD Collection
1989

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

WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Trips Und Traume by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.07 | 24 ratings

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Trips Und Traume
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by stefro
Prog Reviewer

4 stars One can be forgiven for expecting something slightly meatier after first glancing at the cover of this highly- regarded krautrock record, yet instead of densely-cosmic rock what you have is a mainly acoustic blend of acid-folk and psychedelia. Formed in Munich during 1968, the duo of Bernd Witthuser and Walter Westrupp both had backgrounds in the burgeoning folk scene, though Westrupp had also featured in a couple of early skiffle groups. With the flowering of psychedelia during the late-sixties, the duo's sound began to take on more expansive elements, adding Eastern melodies and occasional cosmic effects to their progressively esoteric psych-folk style. Their second album overall, and also the second to be issued in 1971, 'Trips Und Traume' remains the pair's defining musical statement, a hazy, lazy, trippy concoction of sitar-like acoustic guitars, slow rhythmic pulses and occasonal sojourns into more psychedelic territory. Now more-or-less considered an established member of the top 100 krautrock records club, this ethereal album is yet another example of the febrile creativity the existed throughout the German music scene of the early-seventies, matching the likes of 'Tarot' by Walter Wegmuller and Yatha Sidhra's 'A Meditation Mass' for pure, ethnic-tinged underground ambience(funnily enough Westrupp actually featured on 'Tarot', whilst also playing on Sergius Golowin's equaly-trippy 'Lord Krishna Von Goloka'). If it's seriously cosmic krautrock you're after - only for a softer, more acoustic hue - then look no further than 'Trips Und Traume'. Imagine Fairport Convention on acid and you kind of get the idea.... STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2014

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 Trips Und Traume by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.07 | 24 ratings

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Trips Und Traume
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Lyrically crammed with overt drug references, Trips und Traume by Witthüser & Westrupp is not exactly a shy, coy, or subtle release. Essentially a psychedelic folk release, it is distinguished from similar efforts by extensive influence from the krautrock scene; in particular, I am reminded of Popol Vuh's Krautrock treatments of traditional musical forms and incorporation of ideas from diverse musical traditions from all over the world. The unique blend makes this one of the more progressive and intricate prog folk albums out there - or, if you prefer, one of the more acoustic and comedic krautrock albums you could hear; however you categorise it, it's certainly an interesting experience.

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 Trips Und Traume by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.07 | 24 ratings

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Trips Und Traume
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP are a duo i've checked into many times over the years but I never pulled the trigger because each time I saw them listed under Folk and not Krautrock. Well then I saw Guldbamsen's review of this record and I was convinced I needed this. This band's music has been described as Cosmic Folk or Psychedelic Folk for a reason and check out the album cover for evidence of that. Also Witthuser was part of the insanity that was Walter Wegmuller's "Tarot" recording. Yes these guys liked to consume psychedelics and then play music much like the COSMIC JOKERS and many other bands back then. This was recorded at Dieter Dierks studio and released originally by the Ohr label.

Up first is "Lasst Uns Auf Die Reise Gehn" which is such a moving tune for me. Reserved vocals, picked guitar, flute, zither and more. The vocals are in German but i'm just so touched by this song. No words. "Trippo Nova" is almost 9 minutes in length and it starts off slowly and builds. It sounds like female vocal melodies helping out in an almost haunting manner throughout. Reserved male vocals after 2 1/2 minutes almost speaking the words in German. An outburst 4 minutes in as the acoustic guitars take the lead, some percussion too. The vocals remind me of Mooney(CAN) here when he's almost speaking the words. It picks up again as contrasts continue. "Orienta" opens with a flute solo for almost a minute then calming guitar notes join in as the flute continues. Strummed guitar also joins in before 2 minutes. It becomes Eastern sounding before the vocals join in speaking the words. Cool stuff. Backing vocals 3 1/2 minutes in including female vocals. This is transcendental music right here reminding me of POPOL VUH. Great tune !

"Illusion I" is an instrumental that opens with strummed guitar, soon we have two of them playing then bass. It continues to build including some organ. Nice. Another beautiful feel good tune. "Karlchen" is the longest track at over 9 minutes. Guitar expressions slowly come and go to start as flute and cymbals create atmosphere. This goes on for 2 1/2 minutes when spoken female vocals join in speaking in German. This is so good. A change before 4 1/2 minutes as she stops and the music changes to an almost waltz-like rhythm. Trumpet comes in and dominates. Those spoken female vocals are back as the trumpet stops before 7 minutes. Flute is added to the slowly strummed guitar as we get the same soundscape as earlier. Great tune ! "Englischer Walzer" is a short instrumental with piano and more. "Nimm Doch Einen Joint, Mein Freund" is a cover(sort of) of THE FRATERNITY OF MAN"S "Don't Bogart Me" made popular by it's inclusion in the film "Easy Rider". This version is such a blast as we get English vocals for the first time as they sing about sharing weed and singing about hash and lsd. Humerous stuff.

A must for you space cadets out there who don't mind folky music with a psychedelic twist. Probably closer to 4.5 stars.

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 Trips Und Traume by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.07 | 24 ratings

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Trips Und Traume
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by Guldbamsen
Forum & Site Admin Group Site and Forum Admin

5 stars Leaving on a jet plane

This is without a doubt one of my favourite folk albums ever made! Deeply engulfed in the wobbly psychedelics of their home turf, Bernd Witthuser and Walter Westrupp offer up a slight twist to the rambunctious rock of their peers, and give to you something deliciously airy and sensitive. Trips Und Träume is chuck full of docile psychedelic auras that twinkle away under acoustic guitar strummings and a way with melodies that rivals even the good Sir Cliff Richard.

Laßt uns auf die Reise gehn starts off things with a jolly mood that evokes tall grasses and long lost summer days, where the air was so humid and lazy that all lederhosen affairs had been cancelled. The guitars sound warm and heartfelt, and if I didn't know any better I'd say they were the result of two 12 string entities making love beneath a shadowy bridge.

Then Tripo Nova comes in and we're instantly reminded of the great big Krautrock flares. With simple instrumentation the duo manages to erect a larger than life sonic structure that ever so gently washes over you with the force of a small mountain.

Just between these two tracks you get a sense of a singer-song writers wet dream caught in the up- draft of Krautrock's more direct persuasive methods. The music is infinitely easy going and gentle, yet somehow the end result sparkles it's way through your living room like a continuous stream of floating shimmering diamonds.

The rest of the album continues this path, and while most of the people picking up this baby naturally have an affinity for the wilder side of the German scene, the bits and pieces of smouldering laissez faire instrumentation are still more than likely enough to nurse a fleeting semi-boner in your trouser department. Personally I'd call this Krautfolk. The inclusion of mandolin, trumpet, zither, flute and some aptly placed bongos lift the album up from the mundane oceans of everyday 70s folk rock. Hell, this isn't even rock. There are no drums, no stomping sections or wild spiralling guitar solos, but what you get in turn, is a natural sounding concoction of breezy psychedelic music that evolves around the German singing that both feels rural and masculine while at the same time coming off rather enigmatic in a Bob Dylanesque kind of manner.

This album is filled to the brim with head turning moments, but with everything else on this release, they are conveyed in a subtle way. There's a gentleness about these pieces. A soft genuine persona engrained in it's very being. The acoustic guitars are surely testimony to this, and you'll often hear them duetting with each other during the longer rhythm sections, where the music suddenly lifts off in a calculated attempt to reach the very confines of our planetary borders. These are my favourite parts of this album. Put on Illusion 1 or the following Karlchen and catch this fragile beauty in it's purest form.

I heard this album while on an air plain to Rhodes. I zoomed out every obnoxious kid, every amphetamine fuelled stewardess and took off before the plain had reached it's runway. The bright sunlight peeping in from the tiny windows created a mosaic of white patterns inside of our flying box, and I felt an enormous symbiosis happening between the music and the bizarre alternating surroundings. I was leaving on a jet plain, didn't know when I'd be back again. Oh babe I love to go.

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 Der Jesuspilz - Musik Vom Evangelium  by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.80 | 15 ratings

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Der Jesuspilz - Musik Vom Evangelium
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Witthuser and Westrupp's sophomore LP was a concept album built around the notion that Christianity began as a magic mushroom cult, which is exactly the sort of crackpot idea that comes from too much of the stuff (drugs and/or religion, take your pick). Unlike their 1971 debut this one was more 'trip' than 'traume', showing all the visionary devotion and lysergic sloppiness of a hands-on psychedelic experience.

One can sense the guiding influence of R.U. Kaiser on these sessions. The WW duo had obviously become ardent acolytes of Kaiser's ongoing psy-fi revolution, and here they jumped head first onto his Cosmic Music bandwagon, dragging their plugged-in Folk Rock style behind them. The better tracks (the drifting "Schöpfung"; or the rolling minor-key acoustic guitars of "Besuch aus dem Kosmos") anticipated the loose Teutonic jamming and blissfully deadpan narrations of the Sergius Golowin and Walter Wegmüller albums, recorded around the same time with input from both Westrupp and Witthuser.

A guest appearance by Gille Lettmann (the Kaiser's own 'Starmaiden') further solidified the Kosmische Connection. Ditto the contributions of producer Dieter Dierks, who played the moody blue mellotron on the obvious album highlight, "Erleuchtung und Berufung": a psychedelic Baltic Sea shanty with a lively choir of small children (or are they Black Forest fairy folk? It's hard to tell...)

This one song was maybe the best example yet of the team's often uncanny acid-folk ethos, and is also one of the more tightly arranged selections here. Elsewhere on the album the slapdash lack of focus gives it more charm than was probably intended, and nowhere is this more obvious than during the ten-plus minutes of "Versammlung / Bekenntnis / Die Aussendung". The tripartite suite, accounting for almost one-third of an already brief album, has to be one of the most ramshackle mini-epics ever written, most of it devoted to a Witthuser clinic on how not to play the kazoo (memo to Bernd: you weren't supposed to smoke it).

All fun stuff to be sure, even if much of the album sounds like a gypsy caravan with mismatched wheels. I don't think the religious message was intended seriously (hard to tell, for a non-German speaker), but I'll take a tongue-in-cheek Krautrock gospel over the tormented soul-searching of born-again neo-proggers like Neal Morse any day of the week, including Sunday.

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 Trips Und Traume by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.07 | 24 ratings

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Trips Und Traume
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Krautrock has always had its great partnerships: Ralf and Florian; Moebius and Roedelius; Rother and Dinger...and while the duo of Bernd Witthuser and Walter Westrupp may not have the same brand-name recognition, they still opened a unique path across otherwise familiar territory, approaching the psy-fi mind warp of the era from a more accessible folk music direction.

"Trips und Traume" was the name of their first official LP together, and fortunately the music leaned more toward the 'traume' (see the album "Der Jesuspilz" for a trippier side of their alliance). The lysergic cover illustration describes only part of the band's hybrid style: a psychedelicized pagan Folk Rock, tapping into an almost atavistic undercurrent of older German cultures.

(On an unrelated side note, the artwork also recalls experiments made alongside my art- nerd classmates using the library Xerox machine in high school. Shift your face across the moving scanner and you'll get a similarly skewed self-portrait: see the CAN album 'Rite Time' for another example.)

Maybe the trips of the album title were more aesthetic than chemical (...yeah, right). Side One of the original vinyl follows what might have been an ongoing musical epiphany, beginning with the more traditional Teutonic folk melody of "Laßt uns auf die Reise Gehn", beautifully illuminated by the evocative shimmer of Walter Westrupp's bowed zither. The bluesy, dreamlike aura of "Trippo Nova" (daffy Latin for "New Trip") signals the beginning of a celestial journey, reaching its apogee in "Orienta", where the mandolin and recorder set up a cosmic chant that works like secondhand smoke to your psyche.

The pipe dream continues on Side Two with "Illusion 1", a tune later recycled for WALTER WEGMÜLLER on his epic 1972 album "Tarot", and concludes with the dumb fun of "Nimm Doch Einen Joint, Mein Freund". Dopey is the obvious adjective for this last bit of nonsense: simply listening to it can put you at risk of a contact high.

The language barrier is clearly a bonus; otherwise the team would be just another pair of counterculture folk singers with a weakness for soft drugs. But anyone tuned in (or turned on) to the same wavelength will discover a fabulous pathway to the milder edge of the always subversive Krautrock spectrum.

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 Trips Und Traume by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.07 | 24 ratings

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Trips Und Traume
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by Dobermensch

4 stars One time street buskers and very obvious drug fiends Witthuser and Westrupp released 'Trips and Traume' in '71. It's an atmospheric cosmic folk record which is very laid back and acoustic in sound. Unless my ears deceive me there's a fair amount of 12 string guitar being played here - so they can't have been too smashed!

Everything has a kind of cosy, lazy vibe going on and the Germanic vocals work wonders on what would have been a very ordinary album without them. I can't think of too many comparisons, although the folkier side of 'Current 93' would be an obvious one. After the rather straightforward opener things get strange pretty much for for the duration. 'Trippo Nova' - despite utilising only guitars and drums has a very trippy feel.

'Karlchen' is probably the highlight and is also the longest track. A sexy sounding Renee Zucke waffles on in German as flutes, guitars and cymbals are used playfully, slowly and without urgency. Trumpets emerge half way through adding to the general strangeness before the unfathomable (to me) female vocals re-appear.

'Englischer Walzer' sounds like me and my pals trying to play music at 3.00am after a bucketload of booze. Sensibly they keep this one short, although it certainly contributes to the overall masterplan. The outro 'Nimm doch einen Joint, mein Freund' is reminiscent of German 70's superstar 'Heino' - that funny looking albino guy with the big glasses who sang lots of Christmas Carols.

An excellent and curious little album which sounds like it was recorded without a care in the world by two guys who were clearly away with the fairies.

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 Der Jesuspilz - Musik Vom Evangelium  by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.80 | 15 ratings

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Der Jesuspilz - Musik Vom Evangelium
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by Tom Ozric
Prog Reviewer

4 stars German folk duo Bernd Witthuser and Walter Westrupp tried to convince a small minority of music lovers that the World existed from a mushroom, and that certain passages of the Bible were linked to drugs. Highly vivid imaginations, indeed. But then again, lysergic has the tendency to do that. Between the two musicians, they play almost 30 instruments, mostly acoustic guitars, banjos, percussive instruments, flutes, kazoos, and some organ and harmonium. Several helping hands have been invited to play, including Dieter Dierks contributing Bass and Mellotron. To be honest, the album has some shakey moments here and there, like the opening track, 'Liturgie' which features a jaw-harp, spoons and some drunken vocals. The melody is firmly folkish. Thankfully it's short, and the next piece is more involved. 'Schopfung' (8.25) has some inspired acoustic guitaring (here I am reminded of Canada's Bruce Cockburn, another highly creative folkie). The German narration is hypnotic. Some acidic wah-wah guitar and drums are added as the volume increases, all the while maintaining a very loose and jammy nature. 'Erleuchtung und Berufung' is laden with Dierks' mellotrons, a childrens choir and a catchy melody. It's all very nicely done. Flipside, the 10min+ 3 part 'epic' has some of those shakey moments, especially regarding the kazoo playing - yes it's an amusing instrument, however it's not played well, but still makes me laugh. I suppose I can forgive them. The 2nd part is based on some gorgeous harmonium themes and narration. Part 3 is again a reprise of the kazoo theme - perhaps that's the sound of kazoo when you blow dope-smoke through it...... !? 'Nehmet hin unf esset' features acoustic guitars and a splash of organ. This instrumental piece sounds rather sombre but very beautiful. The final track 'Besuch aus dem Kosmos' (9.45) is superb - combining rich acoustic instrumentation with spacey vocal manipulations. An incredible blend of flamenco/Spanish music, kraut sensibilities, folk-rock and Psych/Space elements. Granted, this is the only LP of theirs I've managed to obtain, and short-comings aside (they are minor), this is quite a unique form of Progressive Kraut-Folk and should be heard by more. 4 stars.

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 Bauer Plath by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.08 | 6 ratings

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Bauer Plath
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by philippe
Special Collaborator Content Development & Krautrock Team

3 stars Witthuser & Westrupp made two ultimate progressive folk classics with "Trips & Traum" and "Der Jesuspilz" but don't reiterate their effort in this "Bauer Plath" wich is a vague collection of teutonic country folk music. The compositions don't lost their bucolic charm but the adventurous "acid" / "esoteric" dimensions of the band have gone. The introduction track is a nice dancing folk song for Harmonica & Banjo, very "rustic". "Vision 1" is a melancholic ballad with German narratives, banjo, choir and plaintive organ chords. "Der rat der Motten" is a refined, little "bucolic" ballad, always with this nostalgic feeling. A good traditional "teutonic" folk document, including a few proggy elements. A pleasant listening but only for fans!

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 Der Jesuspilz - Musik Vom Evangelium  by WITTHUSER AND WESTRUPP album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.80 | 15 ratings

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Der Jesuspilz - Musik Vom Evangelium
Witthuser and Westrupp Prog Folk

Review by philippe
Special Collaborator Content Development & Krautrock Team

5 stars After their ultimate acid folk classic "Trips & traum", the duo is back with an other surprising effort whose concept is to convince (within a satirical dimension) that the bible is all about drugs. However it doesn't matter for those who don't speak German, let's be focuse on the music with its one more time brilliant and gorgeously pastoral, delicate and trippy. The introduction part (Liturgie) is a humorous little composition written in a very folkish vibe. "Schöpfung" is among my favourite Witthuser & Westrupp"s pieces: it starts with acoustic, dreamy like, quasi magical guitar parts. It also features narratives in German and a very poetical, mystical sense of harmony. "Erleuchtung" is a luminous, druggy psych folk tune wich includes a variety of acoustic instruments (voluptuous flute lines, folk guitars, percussions), an effective, dancing chant in German and children choirs...a really intimate, beautiful song. "Beasuch aus dem Kosmos" is a ravishing spaced out folkish excursion for deep organic chords and acoustic guitars...it also include vocals in German. A lovely, living, dying soundscape with a magnificant classical (almost flamenco) introspective guitar melody. Among my favourite kraut-folk compositions. The instrumental sections are more achieved than on the previous recordings (notably the guitars). Really German-ish folk music with an evident taste for old, odd music, popular counts, mysteries and dark medieval age...at the top of 70's psychedelic folk music.

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Thanks to Philippe Blache for the artist addition.

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