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ELECTRIC ORANGE

Krautrock • Germany


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Electric Orange biography
ELECTRIC ORANGE is a german (neo) krautrock band, mainly based on two masterminds Dirk Jan Müller (keys) and Dirk Bittner (guitar). Up to now both musicians had uncounted collaborations during their development and produced a huge amount of material on MC, Vinyl and CD-R. Besides some temporary flirts with house/techno elements the band actually delivers modern trippy krautrock adapted music, where Tom Rückwald handles the bass guitar since the year 2000.

The sound is decorated with cheerful electronic elements adapted from Tangerine Dream or Popol Vuh as well as provided with obsessional rhythms in the vein of Can or even Kraftwerk - all you might expect as significant for a contemporary krautrock sound.

The band offer an irresistible blend of hypnotic and tribal beats, soaring organ and synths, spacey guitars, recitatives, samples as well as analogue effects. Hereby they are keen on experimenting with all sorts of rare, obscure and vintage instruments. The song titles are often provided with funny and thought-provoking puns.

In 2009 ELECTRIC ORANGE decided to offer the first DVD release 'Live On The Psychedelic Network Festival 2007' featuring a complete show from 2007 in Würzburg as well as other recordings from a period between 2005 and 2008. And then at the beginning of 2010 the band released the new production 'Krautrock From Hell' where the line up saw a change according to the drums while Silvio Franoli was substituted by Georg Monheim.

Soon after second guitarist Josef Ahns left the band as well. They decided to carry on as a quartet furthermore and once a year from now on a new album was produced, one of them including live recordings from Roadburn Festival in 2012.

Dirk Jan Müller and Dirk Bittner are also regular members of the band SPACE INVADERS

Electric Orange official website

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FleischwerkFleischwerk
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Imports 2008
Audio CD$32.66
$74.66 (used)
Electric OrangeElectric Orange
Import
Audio CD$193.99
Orange CommutationOrange Commutation
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Deler 1996
Audio CD$193.99
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  • Electric Orange + Datashock + Above the Tree & Drum Ensemble Du Beat at La Zone, Liège on 17 Jan 2015

ELECTRIC ORANGE discography


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

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

3.00 | 7 ratings
Electric Orange
1993
2.87 | 4 ratings
Tonbandreste
1994
3.04 | 5 ratings
Orange Commutation
1995
3.05 | 3 ratings
Cyberdelic
1996
3.00 | 3 ratings
Abgelaufen!
2001
3.05 | 6 ratings
Platte
2003
3.90 | 10 ratings
Fleischwerk
2005
3.98 | 23 ratings
Morbus
2007
3.77 | 53 ratings
Krautrock From Hell
2010
3.88 | 14 ratings
Netto
2011
3.09 | 3 ratings
XX
2012
4.09 | 8 ratings
Volume 10
2014

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

4.05 | 3 ratings
Unterwasser - Live 2002
2002
3.75 | 4 ratings
Live At Roadburn 2012
2013

ELECTRIC ORANGE Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.50 | 2 ratings
Live At The Psychedelic Network Festival 2007
2009

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

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

ELECTRIC ORANGE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Volume 10 by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.09 | 8 ratings

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Volume 10
Electric Orange Krautrock

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

4 stars The Peyote Diet

Strange time in a band's career to be experimenting with hallucinogens, but then again what do I know? David Gilmour started flirting around with cocaine in his 40s...

Starting out with a a series of menacing violin strokes, screeching and writhing over an elegant, if not rather mumbling piano, hazy synth percolations from way in the back and then something as disturbing as strings being plucked like a rooster losing it's feathers. There is no melody only brooding atmospheric noise.........but navigated through by the utmost care and fragility that the piece becomes musical, albeit a strange hybrid of it though, with ambient whiskers attached and long yearning cello like cries.....and then the hypnotic Shaman drums commence and you're out on the prairie running with the buffalo.

To me it feels as if the opener, Paraboiled, welcomes you into an album that seeks out the same as the old Indian medicine men of the west. As a matter of fact, I hear a lot of Indian spiritualism in Volume 10. Paraboiled is like walking into an Indian séance - with Richard Harris suspended from the tee-pee roof, dangling away in eagle's claws. The whole track is like a small 7 plus minute raga that ends in those drums and an organ that only rarely takes form, and when it does it's like a warm gust of winds.

By stripping their expression down to a raw caveman-like essence Electric Orange have succeeded in doing something, that I thought was near impossible. They have actually managed to do a modern Krautrock album, that not only sounds incredibly unique and original, but interjects itself straight into what the real and genuine Krautrock of yore was all about: mystery and fumbling around in strange dark places with but a mere flashlight and an adventurous soul. Volume 10 takes Krautrock back to the trip - the interstellar space voyages and freak out sessions of 1971.............but it's never a real "throw-back" album. It utilises some of the same instruments sure, but the overall musical expression has more in common with a modern SWANS release than say Yeti, Tago Mago or NEU!'s debut. I often think of SWANS The Seer when I listen to this album. Maybe I've completely gone fishing, but there's a similar magnitude of sound going on - something that almost sounds teutonic and Magma-like huge, only far more loosey goosey, wavering and Hiawatha inspired.

Another one of Volume 10s defining qualities is the free form of the material. The music often wafts overhead you in swirling patterns for then to be sculptured into something altogether different - a sporadic rhythm intervenes, an organ cuts through, a guitar slushes away and swoosh now the music seems to have caught wind of something intriguing and consequentially adapts and transforms into a collective sonic force: The tune is now under way.

Ranging from phonofiddles and banjos to double bass, moog, mandolin, mellotron and guitars in reverse - the arsenal of this group is anything but ascetic, even if the flow of the music occasionally can feel that way - meaning that it sounds like a 'back to the basics' kind of thing 'Let's just jam together, although it'd be cool if none of you had any preconceived ideas coming into it'.

What more? Well some of this album genuinely sounds like a band trying to make ambient music - only with all acoustic instruments...............and then suddenly the electronics turn on together with a full rockin' explosion of the aforementioned Shaman sensibilities, and what you had in mind with those thoughts about ambient music are suddenly put to shame; -everything now is different and a thousand miles from the tee-pee where Richard hung (out) at the very beginning.

If you have ever wondered about how prog would've sounded like, if the Cherokee had been a major contributing factor in sculpting it, then this is the album for you. Dig out your old tomahawks and some peyote and get ready to party like it's 1999, there's dust and colourful feathers everywhere and you're in a drug induced trance. HEIYAHH YAHH YAHH!!!

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 Krautrock From Hell by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.77 | 53 ratings

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Krautrock From Hell
Electric Orange Krautrock

Review by Neu!mann
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Does the idea of Krautrock still make any sense in the 21st century?

The original movement, in all its many form(s), was very specifically a product of its era: the music of an angry young generation rebelling against the post-war hypocrisies of its elders. That same attitude is more valid today than it ever was. But the underground is a lot closer to the surface now, and the current of social unrest that powered the engine of classic Krautrock no longer exists, at least not in this facetiously titled 2010 recording by one of Germany's more popular Neo-Kraut outfits.

It might not even be Krautrock at all, except geographically, and in the ultra-Teutonic bluntness of its song titles: "Bandwurm"; "Kunstkopf"; "Wurmloch" et al, milking that German identity for all its worth. But it's still a thrilling album on a superficial level, even so far removed from the historical context that originally made Krautrock so vital. The band is very much in tune with the spacier textures of analog '70s Psych-Rock, and they have that motorik repetition thing down to a science, thanks in part to a drummer who probably snuggles into bed at night with visions of Jaki Liebezeit dancing in his head.

This is a group that enjoys working a single chord to the edge of oblivion, or grinding out a simple 4/4 rhythm with industrial precision. And I do mean grind: the sound of Dirk Jan Müller's organ is like molten sunlight flowing over rough concrete, abrasive and shimmering at the same time. They can even indulge in a bit of old-school, Pink-era Tangerine Dreaming, during the pulsating album closer "Wurmloch".

And yet there's something arguably too detached, almost dispassionate, in even their liveliest instrumental trips, including the epic 25-minute "Neuronomicon", with its fractured jamming and massive Space Rock mellotrons. This isn't a band of copycats, but they do at times play with the unruffled efficiency of a weekend Krautrock cover band. Or maybe I'm over-thinking here, as usual, and the question posed at the top of this review is meaningless. After all, authenticity doesn't need to be the final goal of creative music making. The music alone can be rewarding, despite its lack of deeper meanings.

Imagine the album as one of CAN's Ethnological Forgeries, but with the band itself as the subject of its own pastiche. In other words, hardly original but still unique, and totally unconcerned by the contradiction.

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 Volume 10 by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.09 | 8 ratings

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Volume 10
Electric Orange Krautrock

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

4 stars From the polished and carefully composed yet energetic grooving retro prog of their first self-titled album back in 1993, through modern electronic/dance influences, wild vocal- driven wig-outs and beyond, German band Electric Orange have constantly been evolving, changing their styles and sounds between albums on their unsuspecting listeners. Heading in directions that their last couple of albums only hinted at, `Volume 10' unleashes the band in pure Krautrock mode, with mostly instrumental lengthy freeform improvisations weaving a hypnotic spell over the listener, and the sparse production, along with the exploratory atmospheres and that necessary hint of danger ensures this is the band is honing the true essence of the style, something often missed in modern bands attempting to play in the Krautrock style.

Armed with a string of Black Sabbath punning titles, while the band doesn't employ attacking metal riffs like that band, there is a definite doomy atmosphere bubbling under `Volume 10', with the album almost resembling a long, murky bad confronting trip - emotionally, spiritually...perhaps chemically?! With ethnic instrumentation, warped electronics and ragged guitars, the plodding compositions (and I only mean that as a compliment) cast a murky shadow over the listener, only to be thrown back into reality at the end of almost 80 minutes, and there's no way they can remain unaffected.

`Paraboiled' is a stark opener, a lonely, droning middle-eastern theme with a thick tension trying to break to the surface, growing more rumbling and unsettled as it progresses. Crying mandolin, eerie spectral haunting Mellotron and a quickening beat easily intimidate, while off-key double bass slices at your mind with maddening results. `Slowbind' raises your pulse with a chasing beat and urgent banjo strums over sustained synth breakdowns. `Symptom of the Mony Nurse' brings brooding lonely wailing electric guitar strains around wavering deep-space synths, while the meditative 14 minute `Suite Beef' is a mournful early Pink Floyd/Popul Vuh styled organ drone, a dark spiritual reflection with weeping mandolin and driving drums to end on. These two especially show the talent of Dirk Jan Müller, on something of a run with the modern progressive electronic gem `Cosmic Ground' impressing earlier on in the year.

Rising and falling cymbal waves crash on `A Tuna Surprise', a bass violin rumination with crystalline electric piano tip-toes and blanketing Mellotron washes. The album suddenly moves up in tempo for the wild, unhinged 21 minute vacuum-like `Behind the Wall of Sheep', a real showcase for drummer Georg Mohnheim. In addition to his relentless primal drumming, you get ominous Mellotron choir, crackling white noise, Tom Rückwald's menacing thundering pounding bass and Dirk Bittner's squealing feedback laden guitars. `Seven and Smell' is a dark psychedelic mix of distorting electronics, reverse guitars, imposing recited voices and mesmerizing trance-inducing tribal percussion. Album closer `Worn Utopia' in one melancholic closer, full of twitching electronics, crackling static, twisting feedback, out-of-tune guitar note bending, maddening percussive repetition and harsh rising and falling synth hums that constantly speed up and slow down. There's a repulsive, suffocating machine-fuelled madness throughout the entire piece, along the lines of the darkest Tangerine Dream works like the claustrophobic deep space `Zeit' album, with only a skipping up-tempo beat and humming Hammond that slowly enters in the final minutes to offer any respite.

Mastered by Eroc of Grobschnitt, `Volume 10' sees Electric Orange proudly bringing vintage influences howling into the modern age, yet never sounding like a pale imitation of the German bands noted for defining the Krautrock sound. For fans of Agitation Free, Popul Vuh, the Ash Ra Tempel and the earlier works of Pink Floyd and Tangerine Dream, this is Krautrock music in it's purest form, and some of the most subdued, intricate, thoughtful, restrained, mournful and uneasy ambience I've heard in years.

Four and a half stars.

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 Volume 10 by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.09 | 8 ratings

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Volume 10
Electric Orange Krautrock

Review by BrufordFreak

5 stars I am not going to back down from the admission that this is a masterpiece of Krautrock. Where others have shied away, I am putting it out there. From the very first listen to my most recent twenty-somethingth I hear the very special quality of this music. The reverence for the musics of the past is obvious but Electric Orange have gone further: they have added to the lexicon of Krautrock, even perfected it. The advantage of modern recording equipment and techniques adds a quality to this album that no Krautrock album from the 1970s I've ever heard has. Then this group of amazing musicians had the maturity and temerity to not only take turns featuring various instruments and musicians over the course of this 79+ minute long album but using time and space to slowly develop their ideas and slowly build each song's "sound palette." I love music like this! I love it when a theme or riff is beaten to death, given time to get into your head, get under your skin, take you into other worlds. And this is precisely what each and every song of this album does for me: takes me into other worlds, sometimes into altered states of consciousness. The journey of a listen to the whole album is well worth it--almost unavoidable because of the mesmerizing, hypnotic effect of the music.

I urge everyone to give this a listen-- but, please, not just ten seconds of each song. Let the album play while you cook, work on the computer, or read in bed. That way you'll have the chance to experience the music sucking you into its spiraling web. I can only imagine the pride the forefathers of Krautrock might feel upon hearing this album; the fact that the ground that they paved made this album possible must be humbling.

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 Volume 10 by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.09 | 8 ratings

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Volume 10
Electric Orange Krautrock

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator Psych/Space Team & Band Submissions

4 stars Oh ... at the very first I took notice of the album title ... immediately being about to check the truth content. You should know, the ELECTRIC ORANGE members don't take it too seriously. Or, better the other way round, they do not solely deliver exceptional music, they are also fundamentally taking delight in confusing people with uncommon aspects and their play of words. Well, in this particular case, when excluding 'Tonbandreste' (1994) and 'Orange Communication' (1995), both not listed as regular albums on their homepage, the working title 'Volume 10' suits, curiously enough. Now I'm sure we successfully have taken the first hurdle.

When considering the song titles though, it really goes crazy again - innovative in their view, and of course that's true, no doubt. As the second hurdle is build up a bit higher here, we stumble upon Black Sabbath infected puns - Paraboiled, Slowbind, Symptom Of The Mony Nurse, Behind The Wall Of Sheep ... and even more riddles, which I wasn't able to solve until today. A bizarre reference or not? What I only can assure is that they are not simply expressing nonsense. There's always at least an iota of truth given, you only have to dig deeper in order to reach for the hidden treasure or so.

As for that at the moment I will be content with the verdict, that the current ELECTRIC ORANGE outcome appears somewhat doomy ... though not depressive really on the other hand, more darkened than ever. And so the third hurdle, or challenge if you will, marks the music as such - well, it would not surprise me if we will detect some more of them somewhere in the future. How could I describe the sound in short at best? Absolutely tension-filled - 'Spannung pur' to say it in German. Going from the general to the particular, they certainly are on the way to enhance the neo kraut label again. So all in all this is what I would call 'provided with a nouveau tag' - or in other words genre pioneering.

Just while taking up the spirit of the past and establishing something pressing forward on top - whether improvised or not. I'm listening to a rather melancholic affair, featuring meandering soundscapes and tribal drums. Hereby they are using (experimenting with) all sorts of vintage and uncommon instruments. I mean, who really knows what a philicorda or a phonofiddle is? At least, headed by both Dirk's, who are currently also underway with the band SPACE INVADERS, this spiritually reminds me of the 'Unterwasser' ambience more than ever at some point.

Impressive - they are back on track again. To be honest, I didn't expect an album offering such a high quality as the next step from this band. Please be keenly aware, this one needs some time to unfold its real beauty, as many other albums of such a caliber too. No chance to emphasize any particular song here (hey, apart from the puns). 'Volume 10' is a very rounded blend featuring eight sections, offering an intensive, dark mooded, certainly inspired atmosphere. However, to describe this gem fitting more exactly seems to me nearly impossible yet - 4.5 stars.

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 Cyberdelic by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 1996
3.05 | 3 ratings

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Cyberdelic
Electric Orange Krautrock

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team

3 stars Honestly, after having heard the excellent "Krautrock From Hell" when I happened to pick up this album I have to admit that I've almost skipped it entriely. Apparently this is just chill-out music, of the kind that is useful after a rave while one is waitng for the ecstasy taken to go down. I have never taken ecstasy but this is how somebody explained me that it works.

The album is full of this, effectively, but after quite a long time I have listened to it again, only because I have copied all my Electric Orange stuff on an mp3 reader and, know what? I have liked it!

Yes, it's borderline with the chill-out music, most of the tracks are good for the Buddah-bar but it contains a lot of good kraut, especially in tracks like "Mother's Cake" which is very close to CAN, or the unusual Indo/Raga of "Tartisma Zemini" which was very in advance with its time as indo music mixed with disco drones appeared and became a successful mainstream thing not less than 10 years after the album's release.

The album has much elements of what we use to call Krautrock. One for all, the stunning distorted guitar which cries in the background on some trakcs, barely hidden by a bass and drum base.

Probably, should this have been their only release, this band wouldn't be on PA, but this album even if borderline with chill-out music is borderline with krautrock as well and if somebody has enjoyed the disco-kraut of Kraftwerk in the 80s (and I'm not one of those) why not enjoying this as well?

Non essential and barely prog, but this is a good album. In my case, listening to it carefully with headphones on, respect of just as background, has made the difference.

Really not bad.

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 XX by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.09 | 3 ratings

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XX
Electric Orange Krautrock

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator Psych/Space Team & Band Submissions

3 stars ELECTRIC ORANGE and common song oriented structures - a contradiction in principle. And now 'XX' tops it all. Speaking of a double vinyl consisting of four extended jams, which means every flipside is representing one song, each around the twenty minute mark, simple as that. While missing any solos, equally acting instruments are on a serpentine line through space and time here. And this is a rather deep mooded trippy affair. It's not intended to release this stuff on CD so far, the album is distributed for download and vinyl in limited edition only.

Is there anything prepared before they start to proceed into such a mission? And is there anything reworked after returning back to Mother Earth? That's a valuable question indeed. Meandering guitar and keyboard interaction underlaid by impressive percussion work marks the fundament, and this surely is provided with professional environment, thus finally mastered by EROC once again. Ahh, by the way, it's a tradition meanwhile to offer song titles in German which are phantoms of imagination, a mysterious issue, not really a coincidence ... but you're missing a serious meaning too on the other hand.

Wechselkröte opens with much spirit, in a relatively promising and groovy way, speaking of propulsive drums, a pleading guitar, this underlaid by a nice spheric keyboard background. Right in the middle though they turn into a somewhat gloomy modus operandi, just following my imagination I can see a trundling starship which has no drive anymore. While seemingly missing any guitar contributions Mischwesen is dominated by drummer Georg Monheim, who comes in serving a tremendous groove after some time. The last four minutes are domianted by a hallucinative spin then.

With vinyl 2 they distinctly turn into a weird experimental attitude - I mean the monotonous keyboard patterns povided with an acid, partially creepy touch, not everyone's taste I'm sure and less inspired when it comes to my taste. Well, this album is dedicated to hardcore jam freaks first and foremost, who are well-provided with a lot of staying power, required for more than any other album ELECTRIC ORANGE have recorded 'til today. As for that the tracks are given with lesser variation this time, but you definitely will detect some thrilling moments again.

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 Orange Commutation by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.04 | 5 ratings

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Orange Commutation
Electric Orange Krautrock

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

3 stars A companion CD to their double self titled debut album, Electric Orange's `Orange Commutation' is a collection of new tracks, remixes and reinterpretations of previous works by the modern Krautrock band. Masterminded by main-man Dirk Jan Muller, with contributions from several guests, their style has always been mixing rough noisy Kraut rhythms, spacey and psychedelic progressive rock with modern dance influences, bridging the the gap perfectly between all eras in a vibrant and exciting fashion. Reference points might be Brainticket, early Pink Floyd and the Ozric Tentacles, while their use of the Mellotron is similar in parts to 70's electronic and Tangerine Dream albums. Although full of analogue and vintage equipment, the music never sounds like retro-prog or merely imitating what's come before.

`Electripity Chapter 99' is a very groovy track with lots of head-nodding beats! It's hazy atmosphere is highlighted by eerie sitar and shimmering keys at the start, before stomping programmed beats and thick organ kick in. Murmuring slinky bass all the way, and some nice bouzouki, a plucked string instrument that adds to the middle-eastern hypnotic sounds of the piece.

`Journey...' is full of funky wah-wah guitar riffs, clubby beats, swirling treated other-wordly voices, chunky Leslie organ and relentless bass, all backed to a veil of Mellotron clouds. Listen out for the mumbling and wasted female vocal in the second half, which sounds like parts of the `Psychonaught' and `Celestial Ocean' albums by Brainticket!

A beautiful trip-hop beat loops through `The Return Of Eugene...', a reimagining of the classic Floyd track, more along the lines of the live version from their album `Ummagumma' and endless bootlegs, but with Electric Orange's own ideas and additions. Filled with lovely Farfisa and stoned rising-and-falling electronics, I also love the haunting wolf cries, but the `scream' in the middle is badly implemented and quite obtrusive, along with the murky and noisy live-drum assault with wailing guitar freakout solo. Once that section drops out, we're back to the programmed beat now with ghostly Mellotron behind it and a lonely weeping guitar. These final few minutes drift into blissful infinity.

`Back Is Strange Worlds (Forbidden Mix)' is packed with different types of programmed and club beats, with glistening psychedelic synths, electronic bass and Gilmour-like guitar phasing in and out in the background. If the beats weren't so heavy this might sound more like Tangerine Dream. A very modern sounding track with one foot firmly in the doorway of the ambient floating moodscapes of the 70's too.

Overloaded with heavy Hammond and Rhodes, distorted urging female voices and evocative dancing flute, `Reflections...' has a nice plodding beat and a grubby guitar solo at the end. Plenty of great flow and build throughout this piece, with loose psychedelic and spacy sounds colouring the track. Admittedly this remix is very similar to the version found on the debut album, so it probably would have benefitted from a little more reworking to make it stand on it's own.

Another quality Delerium release, `Orange Commutation' is a hardly a very important album, but the wonderful music is full of energy, colour and originality. The front cover is quite cool, too! The remixes mostly all stand as unique ideas on their own, and I even think the dance/programmed elements would attract the ear of listeners who usually wouldn't be interested in progressive-related genres.

Three stars!

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 Morbus by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.98 | 23 ratings

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Morbus
Electric Orange Krautrock

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

4 stars The sea-captain's favourite

I live on the north western side of Denmark. I can almost spot the sea, if only I was 15 feet taller that is. On a daily basis the wind freely sloshes in over the countryside without any form of restraint. This is agricultural lands, so there is literally nothing put in its way, leaving the wind unchecked and free to flow like - yep you guessed it: the wind. It has a way of humbling you. It sets you straight - you often feel these wild powerful gusts crashing into you without warning - reminding you of mother nature and just how fickle she can be.

I don't know why it dawned on me, but earlier during a meaningless walk around the neighbourhood, I felt this particular natural trade in many ways complimented Electric Orange's Morbus record. I might be insane and a bit off, but to me that aforementioned sloshing quality - the sailor-like shifting back and forth, like were you standing on a ship in heavy seas, that is in fact the essence of what makes this album so magnificent.

This is first and foremost simple music. You won't find much in the way of blistering solos or crazy Haydn inspired oboe segments, although you may encounter the odd time sig here and there, - no the music is all about creating brooding sloshing atmospheres, that take you out on windswept journeys where only mad sea-captains have ventured before. For a long period of time I had the sneaking suspicion, that I knew the music - that I at least knew the feel of it. Like it was lying on the tip of my tongue, yet no dice - there was absolutely nothing that came to mind in terms of other Germanic Krautrockers or the likes. Then I attended a social gathering with some old school buddies of mine, and suddenly whilst drinking Tuborg beers and snaps it struck me like a ton of bricks: Damn!!! Is that Cypress Hill we're listening to?!?!?!

We were in fact listening to Cypress Hill playing live at the Filmore. Now don't start with me before you hear me out, because I reckon you may find it hard believing in any sort of redeeming parallels between west coast gangsta rap and modern day Krautrock, but the fact of the matter is that there are a couple of valid references. Firstly, Cypress Hill were playing with a real backing band. On one of their more politically charged tunes called Looking Through the Eye of the Pig they wield a tasty form of psychedelic guitar driven rock, and it is here that I suddenly heard the similar qualities that I'd been searching for. Electric Orange flow much in the same vein. Like the aforementioned sloshing winds, the guitars also feel sluggish, lethargic, thick like melting glue. They are rhythmic figurines accompanied by slow oscillating organ parts that drift and waft like a dense sauce-like fog. On the backbone of this you have the bass and drums keeping things nice and heavy - spreading out roots for this high towering smeared musical endeavour.

Like I said, this is essentially very simple music. It takes some of the best facets of post- rock and apply them to an endemic musical force, making it sound nothing like the genre. I don't hear any post-rock, but the constant bobbing back and forth on these sloshing guitar driven hard hitting psych textures - are testimony of what you can obtain with the approach.

I love everything about this release: the constant overhanging organ thicket occasionally replacing itself with a flügel - or some floating mellotron. Or maybe all of this gets thrown into one big smoothie and the music suddenly feels like it's swimming. I simply adore it. I also am completely smitten by the agitation style of Rote Flocken, that incorporates these German military vocals into a porous and psychedelic piece of Krautrock. And let's not forget about the fabulous Wald that hypnotizes you with it's lengthy stroboscopic washes of worming guitar-riffing.

In fact, I find it very hard not rating this with a full 5 stars, but somehow the length of nearly 80 minutes does amount to the tiniest of dents in the armour. So consider this the biggest 4 stars you'll ever encounter. I'm talking 4.99999999999999 here people!

This album is however a brilliant exhibition of modern Krautrock. It is psychedelic, brooding, heavy, lethargic, simple, oscillating, effervescent, floating, relaxing, sloshing, hypnotic and very much in tune with its forbears - yet without ever resolving to borrow anything directly from them. Morbus feels original and like it was conceived in a musical Zoo with lions, tigers and lizards all over the place, if only to rub off that fickle and fleeting animal essence to the proceedings - you know the part of music that makes us into reptiles and humans all at the same time.

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 Krautrock From Hell by ELECTRIC ORANGE album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.77 | 53 ratings

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Krautrock From Hell
Electric Orange Krautrock

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team

4 stars I can't believe that an album like this has been released in 2010. Before it I didn't know anything about this neo-kraut band, not that I know much even now, but at least I know this album that's extremely good.

I want to start from the best: the last two tracks are an epic and a spacey drone the first is a 25 minutes track full of different things, the other is very reminding of very early Tangerine Dreams. What is very remarkable is that the instruments are not "so much" electronics as one could expect. They have flute, guitars, percussions, they are closer to Electronic Meditation than to Atem.

All the other songs are good, with a strong old-krautrock fashion. Ash Ra, Can and Amon Duul II can be some references.

Now by order: "Bandwurm" is opened by German speech, not infrequent in Krautrock, then a bass riff comes from behind toether with some electronic noises. The production is typical of Krautrock but the track is more easily listenable than most of the 70s krauts It's not as challenging as some Can's tracks for example. The bass riff is a sort of 70s spy movie soundtrack. The noises are not dissonants and the last part of the song with more drums sounds like early Pink Floyd.

"Sundos" is not very different, but there's an upbeat section in the middle that shows its modernity. Try to imagine it with some distorted guitar and a bit of growl. Drums and organ are in evidence on this song.

"Chorg" starts with a bass organ note, but when guitar and drums enter we are in proximity of a Tsunami. I mean the omonimous track of the Dutch band 35007(LOOSE). At half the song, it's again the bass which starts repeating its riff, quickly joined by guitar, organ and drums. It's just a passage to another section more relaxed. A very good and hypnotic track.

"Hers" opens between Syd Barrett (Lucifer Sam) and Amon Duul II (is it psychedelic enough?) but after about three minutes we are back to the 60s in the psychedelic period of the Beatles. Amazing.

With "Kunstkopf" we are again in the Barret's territory. The opening has the same flavor of Astronomy Domine but after the drum crescendo instead of an acid guitar it goes repetitive, even more acid. At about half of the song the drums stop for a while. If you like this part, give a listen to a 80s band called "Felt" and their "The Splendour of Fear". The last minute and half is very Floydian instead.

A Paraphrase of the HP Lovecraft's invented grimoire Necronomicon gives the title to the epic "Neuronomicon". A simple acoustic guitar harping occupies the first minute and half, then a rhythm a-la-Jarre brings in chord passages a-la-Senmuth. Just one minute and there's a part with the drums in the frontline just backed by the other instruments. The guitar sounds "end 60s" but not properly acid. At minute 5 there's a bit of piano solo. Just chords (and harpsichord?). then drums and keyboards. A bass note over a slow rhythm and few bass, like the intro of Floyd's Obscured by Clouds on which there's some distorted speech in the background, maybe recorded reversed. There's a crescendo including a more than decent guitar riff while the bass becomes obsessive. until at minute11:30 the music stops and there's time for bass and keyboards. Here the sound is cold and subtle. It reminds me to Bo Hansson's Lord of the Rings, but in general the band is never too distant from Barrett or from the early Waters. The sounds used are "retro" enough to make it sound like it was written 40 years ago. A long slow hypnotic part in 6/8 (I think) proceeds for some minutes. At 16:00 its coda leaves only a ooh keyboard and some noises behind. It's a transition to the following part which starts with a sequence of long guitar notes. Well, it can be a guitar with a lot of sustain or a keyboard. The Korg M1 has a similar sound in its default bank. On those six notes we proceed repeating and adding drums, bass and violins (keys). It slightly develops in a slow crescendo. Tracks like Camel's Nimrodel come to my mind until the drums stop leaving only spacey sounds and drums behind. At minute 22 another section. The six notes are now six chords, not exactly the same as before but similar. The tempo is increased and we are now in the Ozric Tentacles realm, with a touch of Porcupine Tree. All the instruments leave one by one, the drums slow down and the track ends.

There is still time for a travel in the deep space inside a wormhole (Wurmloch). Think to a starship approaching a black hole, the noises produced by the structure under the pressure of the gravity, All around is dark and silent. In the vein of Zeit and Aplha Centauri this could be considered a drone, but as in the works of the pink period of Tangerine Dream it's not just a keyboard. The bass is a constant presence, we can hear an ethereal flute while the drums add some accents here and there. In the middle of the track it's like the second section of Saucerful of Secrets but when at minute 9:30 a sequence of bass supports a drum riff, the track is more reminding of Phedra and Stratosfear. The flute is always present and even in the background plays a very important role in this track. Probably this part represents the passage in the wormhole, so that one may wonder what the starship will find out of it. The track ends suddenly with some drum hits. The starship is out. No information about what's next. Hopefully another great album like this.

This band has interpreted the best of the German electronic (and not only) music of the 70s, composing and playing like the time was not passed, taking into account the various influences but creating something fresh and technically speaking at the level of the best Tangerine Dream. It's a band that I will surely explore more deeply. If the whole album was on the same level of the last two tracks I would not hesitate in rating it five stars. It's "only" 4 but it's one of the best things that I have heard in the last two years.

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