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LIFE

Krautrock • Germany


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Life biography
The story of Life and their only album 'spring' began sometime early 1971 after Christian Burchard from Embryo visited composer, musician, producer, sound engineer and artist Julius Schittenhelm in his Munich studio. In his forthcoming autobiography Julius Schittenhelm writes about the beginning of Life, the difficulties of the LP production and the abrupt end of the band.

'Once again Christian Burchard came to my studio romancing about an American Trio called 'The Wedge' that wanted to make a record in Germany. When I met them they were only a duo - the bass player had gone back to America. The band leader, originally the drummer and lead singer, was called Linus, he spoke German with a strange Frankfurt accent was now a rhythm guitar player. He was of average build like myself, had a scarred face, large nose and a tough look. The second man was called Jason and was half Red Indian. He played lead guitar, sang backing and sometimes lead vocals. They soon found a drummer, Marcel Mohr, and a bassist, Gernot Pilz who both came from the Munich area. Gernot was also a press photographer.

An opera singing couple from the Munich suburb of Schwabing had set up a studio and practice rooms in their cellar in Martiusstrasse which they rented out at affordable prices. This is where the band practiced. The music was Rock 'n' Roll with slight Country influences, not exactly my sort of music but fashionable and on the up.

Most of the songs were written by Linus, three were from Jason and one from Gernot. Linus was a perfectionist and thus the band needed a few months for the precision he found was required for a record production.

At the beginning of July the Rock 'n' Roll musicians were in perfect harmony with each other so we could start recording. This took place in two of the Martiusstrasse practice rooms. I used 2 Revox machines switched on simultaneously to record four channels at once.

An electrician I met by chance built me a circuit board with which I could synchronise the Revoxes using a remote control. Until then I had been operating the two machines using two fingers and for the third one I needed help with some 'one-two-threes' and was happy when it worked. The third machine was for the mix.
It took a whole hot summer month until all the tracks were in the can.

After all the tapes were carefully numbered and catalogued we started mixing and at the end of July the master tape was finally finished. Linus, who had...
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LifeLife
Import
Rpm Records UK 2013
Audio CD$11.03
$17.57 (used)
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(CD) WEEZER - The Good Life / 2 Trk / PROMO US $9.99 Buy It Now 29m 45s
Andy Falco (of Infamous Stringdusters)-Sentenced To Life With The Blues-Sealed US $8.79 Buy It Now 30m 22s
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Life Is A Cabaret - The Very Best of - Liza Minnelli - CD US $2.00 [0 bids]
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European Sons The Love of Life CD Sonic Boom Spacemen 3 US $59.99 Buy It Now 31m 6s
Crazy Kind of Life by Bill Perry (CD, Oct-2002, Blind Pig) US $1.99 [0 bids]
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(DH35) Steve Kelly & Andy Towell, Life Songs - 2011 CD US $9.96 Buy It Now 31m 40s
Brothers 4 Life US $10.98 Buy It Now 33m
Solid Gold Soul 1968 CD - 22 Hits - Time Life Warner US $9.99 [0 bids]
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SCHASCLE Haunted By Real Life 1991 CD & VHS PROMO SET IN BOX US $9.99 [0 bids]
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SQUACKETT (CHRIS SQUIRE/STEVE HACKETT)**A LIFE WITHIN A DAY**CD US $12.58 Buy It Now 33m 31s
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Stevie Wonder - Key Of Life [CD New] US $55.98 Buy It Now 33m 43s
Dj Kou - My Whole Life [CD New] US $38.32 Buy It Now 33m 49s
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Ink Spots 78 The Best Things in Life are Free/I Woke Up w a teardrop in my eye US $9.78 [0 bids]
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Beautiful Dreamer/Street Life [Single] by Glay (CD, Oct-2003, Toshiba EMI... US $2.00 [0 bids]
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John Lennon Yoko Ono - Life With Lions LP ZAPPLE s US $49.99 Buy It Now 35m 12s
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R.E.O. Speedwagon "Life As We Know It" US $8.99 Buy It Now 36m 54s
BLACK OAK ARKANSAS // Ain't Life Grand / ORIGINAL 1975 US LP SEALED / Mint-! US $19.75 Buy It Now 36m 55s
Four Tops 45 "Yesterday's Dreams / For Once In My Life" US $4.99 Buy It Now 37m 26s
The Chronicles of Life and Death [Slipcase] [DualDisc] by Good Charlotte (CD,... US $0.50 [0 bids]
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Time Life Music Your Hit Parade: 1943 (Audio CD 1991) SEALED US $20.00 [0 bids]
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The Swing Era "Swingtume" 2 CDs- Time/Life Series US $3.99 [0 bids]
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Time Life Music Your Hit Parade: 1946 (Audio CD 1989) SEALED US $20.00 [0 bids]
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THE GOOD LIFE - Album of the Year - RARE 12 Track Advance Promo CD 2004 (LBJ-64) US $4.54 Buy It Now 39m 32s
Dido - Life For Rent (Repackaged) (CD 2004) - Cheeky Label US $4.88 Buy It Now 39m 33s
Time Life Music Your Hit Parade: 1942 (Audio CD 1990) SEALED US $20.00 [0 bids]
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Aisha Burns Life in the Midwater CD Balmorhea member! FREE USA SHIPPING US $9.89 Buy It Now 41m 1s
Time Life Music Your Hit Parade: 1940 (Audio CD 1991) SEALED US $20.00 [0 bids]
41m 10s
TEDDY PENDERGRASS LP LIFE IS A SONG WORTH SINGING US $6.99 Buy It Now 41m 11s
This Crazy Life by Joanna (Pop) (CD, Aug-2006, A&M (USA)) US $0.25 [0 bids]
41m 24s
Time Life Records Story Of Great Music The Early 20th Century 5 Record Box Set US $5.00 [0 bids]
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Time Life Records The Story Of Great Music Age of Elegance 4 Record Box Set US $5.00 [0 bids]
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Example - Live Life Living: Deluxe Edition [CD New] US $23.54 Buy It Now 41m 58s
Time Life Records The Story Of Great Music Slavic Traditions 5 Record Box Set US $5.00 [0 bids]
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42m
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Time Life Music Your Hit Parade: 1958 (Audio CD 1990) US $15.00 [0 bids]
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Time Life Records The Story Of Great Music Age of Revolution 4 Record Box Set US $5.00 [0 bids]
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42m 48s
David Gray Life in Slow Motion CD DualDisc with bonus DVD side FREE USA SHIPPING US $9.89 Buy It Now 43m 7s
SALE OZ JAZZ CD "Life On Earth" THE CATHOLICS (SWANTON/EVANS/BREWER) : EX US $5.07 Buy It Now 43m 20s
Time Life Music Your Hit Parade: 1953 (Audio CD 1989) US $15.00 [0 bids]
43m 30s
Ritualized Murder by Aversion To Life (CD, May-2006,... US $10.74 Buy It Now 43m 41s
Time Life Music Your Hit Parade: 1955 (Audio CD 1989) US $15.00 [0 bids]
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Cicero Blake She's Cheatin' On You / School Of Life Paula 448 45 rpm VG+ Vinyl US $7.80 Buy It Now 44m 10s
Time Life Music Your Hit Parade: 1950 (Audio CD 1988) US $15.00 [0 bids]
44m 21s
A Day in the Life [ECD] by Eric Benet (CD, Apr-1999, Warner Bros.) US $5.99 Buy It Now 44m 37s
Live the Life by Michael W. Smith (Album CD, Mar-1998, Reunion) US $5.75 Buy It Now 45m 57s
EDDIE RABBITT "THE BEST YEAR OF MY LIFE" 45 RPM US $3.99 Buy It Now 47m 59s
THE HUMAN LEAGUE - Life On Your Own (UK 2 Tk 1984 7" Single PS) US $4.88 Buy It Now 48m 36s
BIG BANDS -ON THE ROAD 2LP set LIFE TIME rec NM- US $3.00 [0 bids]
48m 38s
45 rpm JUDY COLLINS Sunny Goodge Street/In My Life ELEKTRA MINT! Sample US $11.00 Buy It Now 48m 47s
Pop Soul? 45 JACKIE DUVAL Life Goes On WAG 444 *LISTEN* US $11.00 Buy It Now 48m 47s
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Miracles: Night Life / Smog [New and unplayed] US $6.97 Buy It Now 49m 42s
PLA'CIDO DOMINGO-The women In My Life-TENOR-Classical-VOCALIST-Opera-SPAIN-Cd US $7.49 Buy It Now 50m 33s
BIG BANDS COTTON CLUB NIGHTS Duke Ellington 2LP set LIFE TIME rec VG++ US $3.00 [0 bids]
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Ultimate Love Songs - Together Forever - Time Life Music 18 songs - NEW US $12.95 Buy It Now 50m 55s
Rock for Life from XL102 in Richmond VA 1988 Sealed NEW US $31.50 Buy It Now 52m 24s
Shadows Fall Threads of Life CD (All that Remains,Unearth,God Forbid,Trivium,KSE US $4.99 [0 bids]
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Celine Dion Loved Me Back to Life CD '13 (SEALED) US $5.00 Buy It Now 52m 35s
Charmed Life by Billy Idol (Cassette, Jul-1990, Chrysalis Records) US $3.00 Buy It Now 52m 51s
STEVIE WONDER SONGS IN THE KEY OF LIFE JAPAN 2 SHM MINI LP CD NEW OOP UICY-93936 US $89.99 Buy It Now 53m 50s
Pierre Cosso Face Your Life 45 rpm US $9.99 [0 bids]
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That's Life, Landau Eugene Murphy Jr, New US $13.60 Buy It Now 54m 38s
The Life and Death of an American Fourtracker by John Vanderslice (CD, Jul-20... US $5.99 Buy It Now 55m 59s
(BZ551) White Babbits, The Salesman (Tramp Life) - 2010 DJ CD US $4.49 Buy It Now 56m 43s
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(BJ241) Alice Deejay, Back In My Life - 1999 CD US $4.88 Buy It Now 57m 21s
(DP215) Robert Vincent, Life In Easy Steps - 2012 DJ CD US $4.88 Buy It Now 57m 27s
(BZ564) Toploader, Time Of My Life - 2002 DJ CD US $4.49 Buy It Now 57m 48s
Dntel Life is Full of Possibilities 2xLP sealed vinyl + download Postal Service US $24.98 Buy It Now 57m 55s
New Organic Life 2 by Pete Namlook (CD, Sep-2001, Fax) US $9.99 [0 bids]
58m 17s
NO 14 CD SINGLE..RICKY MARTIN..THE CUP OF LIFE..666104 2 US $9.00 Buy It Now 58m 17s
My Life's Lyric by When Singers Meet (CD, Jun-2010, ... US $6.39 Buy It Now 58m 36s
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Time Life  Sounds Of The Eighties 80s  1986  18 HITS  Minty CD  New Case US $8.49 Buy It Now 59m
KOOL & THE GANG- HANGIN' OUT/ GOT YOU INTO MY LIFE 7" SINGLE US $4.99 Buy It Now 59m 31s
Hard Knock Life [PA] by Jay-Z (CD, Sep-1998, Roc-A-Fella (USA)) US $6.00 Buy It Now 59m 36s
Vol. 3: The Life and Times of Shawn Carter [PA] by Jay-Z (CD, Dec-1999,... US $6.00 Buy It Now 59m 37s
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59m 47s
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LIL LOUIS & THE WORLD: Scared My Life LP EPIC RECORDS 4974410S1 US 1992 12" VG++ US $11.69 Buy It Now 1h
LEON RUSSELL -- Life and love -- His 1979 LP release US $4.00 Buy It Now 1h
Legal Weapon Life Sentence To Love SEALED LP 80's Rock Punk Alternative SKB NICE US $5.56 Buy It Now 1h
Bebe & Cece Winans-celebrate New Life-lp-single-capitol US $1.00 [0 bids]
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1h
SHAR And The Boys Life's A Beach Vinyl Lp SEALED US $15.00 Buy It Now 1h
ROLLING STONES STILL LIFE 1982 LP AMERICAN CONCERT 1981 US $5.98 Buy It Now 1h
The Basics of Life by 4Him (CD, Aug-1997, Verity) US $4.00 Buy It Now 1h 2m
FIVEPENNY PIECE life is a game of chance LP 13 track (9109234) uk philips 1979 US $8.15 Buy It Now 1h 2m
Fiend- Street Life [PA] CD 1999 Priority/No Limit Records/Rare/OOP/Brand New US $31.99 Buy It Now 1h 2m
VA Music Life Epic / Sony Version 1990 JAPAN CD Boston Heart Judas Priest Wham US $16.00 Buy It Now 1h 2m
New Organic Life by Pete Namlook (CD, 2001, Fax) US $9.99 [0 bids]
1h 3m
Frankie Laine - "Granada" "I'd Give My Life" Record / Vinyl 45 RPM US $4.79 Buy It Now 1h 3m
ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK/ - DAN IN REAL LIFE [ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK/VARIOUS - NEW CD US $13.69 Buy It Now 1h 3m
Prince And the Revolution Hello/Pop Life Paisley Park Records 7-28998 VG Vinyl US $0.49 [1 bids]
1h 4m

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LIFE shows & tickets


  • LIFE (JAPAN) One off UK show on 19 Nov 2014

LIFE discography


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2.07 | 7 ratings
Spring
1971

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LIFE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Spring by LIFE album cover Studio Album, 1971
2.07 | 7 ratings

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Spring
Life Krautrock

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

2 stars 'Spring' - Life (3/10)

If you have a moment, I'd like to talk about Life.

Somewhere in the fray of American blues, psychedelia and the fuzz of garage rock, Life was born. Following the trend of many late 60's European acts, Life attempted to emulate American culture through voracious use of the 12 bar progression, mouth-organ and guitar leads aplenty. These efforts and influences resulted in "Spring", an album that's held in some regard by garage rock experts, if I'm not mistaken. Even for 1971 though, Life'ssound feels outdated and recycled. Rehashing the sound and tricks of the decade past, Life's style is predictable and underwhelming; their execution rough and occasionally downright amateurish. There's a garage charm to this album, but "Spring" doesn't come close to comparing to the music it desperately tries to emulate. Unfortunately, Life would never get an opportunity to improve their sound, as they would break up a year later in mid-tour.

Although Life and "Spring" are most often associated with the Krautrock movement, this is much less about the sound of the album, and more about who took part in it. Julius Schittenhelm (best known for his contributions to Amon Duul) was the producer behind the album. Barring that, Life performs a very familiar brand of blues rock, with virtually none of the strange experimentation and sonic density Krautrock is known for. Its context aside, I would have guessed "Spring" was the work of a gang of American youngsters, trying to emulate their rock idols. This sort of American blues influence on European music was widespread throughout the late 60's, arguably best exemplified by Led Zeppelin's first two albums. In fact, the beginning of "Spring" sounds as if it could be a nod in the direction of Zeppelin's blues rock, minus Jimmy Page's legendary distortion. The instrumentation is straightforward and plain, offering little room for the imagination to run amok. The guitar tones are largely clean, and the drum beats simplistic to a fault.

The most interesting aspect of Life's sound are the vocals of Linus. While the rest of the band fails to achieve any sort of grit with their performance, Linus delivers a surprisingly diverse and interesting performance, going everywhere from soft whispers to a yell, suitable tenor and everything in between. Particularly from a band that otherwise sticks to colouring within the lines, it's refreshing to hear a vocalist that tries to go so many places with his voice. Unfortunately, while the range and variety of styles are interesting, his more conventional singing is just as underwhelming as the rest of the band. The songwriting on the album follows suit in this pattern of mediocrity- when Life aren't being derivative or outright copycats, their more experimental ideas never go anywhere, often feeling like sketches of songs that could have been.

Although much of Life's sound is painfully bland, the use of a flute gives their sound some much needed depth. The album's more ambitious set of a bonus tracks also hint that Life could have achieved something much better, had they stuck with it. Instead, "Spring" is the band's one output. Bland musicianship and forgettable songwriting make this one an album for the dustbin. At least it's got a nice cover!

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 Spring by LIFE album cover Studio Album, 1971
2.07 | 7 ratings

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Spring
Life Krautrock

Review by hdfisch
Prog Reviewer

2 stars The story of this singular album began in Munich in spring (!) 1971 when composer, artist, songwriter and producer Julius Schittenhelm (worked also for Embryo, Guru Guru, Amon Düül 1, Annexus Quam and Floh de Cologne) got a visit by Christian Burchard slobbering over a band of American Germans called "The Wedge" that intended to do a record in Germany. When Schittenhelm met them unfortunately the original trio just consisted of the drummer/lead singer "Linus" and lead guitarist "Jason" since the bass player had disappeared back to USA already. Linus exchanged drums with rhythm guitar and soon after two local guys had been found for drumming (Marcel Mohr) and for bass (Gernot Plitz) and the band LIFE was born. Under quite amateurish conditions they recorded the songs for their debut. The band gave a couple of concerts after and recorded a few more songs for a planned second album which finally found some place on this CD re-release presented here (tracks 12-14). In 1972 they disbanded during a tour through Italy and the musicians vanished in the haze.

Now let's speak about the material presented here. Just to make things clear, it ain't anything that can be considered what we usually know as Krautrock (might be redundant for connaisseurs of this particular sub-genre to mention that not everything "made in Germany" during early 70's can be classified as such). Instead what we have here can be easily described as quite standard proto-prog that is a not so bad mix of westcoast/psychedelic blues-tinged rock'n'roll with some nice trippy flute added-up. Just imagine a combination of Edgar Broughton, early Tull with Paint it black/Sympathy for the devil-era Stones. Though this release might be a bit disappointing for the advanced prog listener and in particular for the specialised Kraut-fan it's nonetheless a quite enjoyable one for a couple of spins. There isn't any free-form experimentation to be found on here but some songs have quite appealing extended jammin' parts with track lengths crossing the 6-minute mark. At least for me the most attractive features were the really great flute play and the occasional mouth-organ as well some sax in the jazzy "Last song". Best songs are "Dream Machine", "Then I Am" and "Hawaiian Jack", most redundant ones the three added bonus tracks. Production quality is very good considering the non-professional recording conditions. Schittenhelm, who's in his eighties meanwhile by the way and still doing some experimental avant-garde music did really a great job here.

I guess in the context of this website here this album cannot be considered other than a collector's item. On another forum not dedicated to Prog in particular I would give it a 3-star rating but I won't take the risk being accused for favouring my local obscure raritities and will reduce it to 2 stars here.

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