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EPSILON

Krautrock • Germany


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Epsilon biography
Formed by members of Orange Peel and Nosferatu (the vocalist / guitarist Michael Winzkowski), the band Epsilon published three LPs between 1971 and 1974. Their self title can be considered as their best, a nicely varied and achieved combination between heavy blues rockin' sections and coherent progressive skills. Their second "Move on" (1971) represents a more mainstream rock album with a few enjoyable moments. With the album "Epsilon off" (1975) the band turn to a straight heavy rockin' trip in a typical 70s style.

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EpsilonEpsilon
Import
Bellaphon 1993
Audio CD$14.68
Epsilon / Move onEpsilon / Move on
Import
Citystudio Media Production 2006
Audio CD$21.99
$17.49 (used)
Truly yours and in loveTruly yours and in love
Import
Audio CD$9.61 (used)
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EPSILON discography


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

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

3.25 | 19 ratings
Epsilon
1971
3.04 | 11 ratings
Move On
1972
2.20 | 5 ratings
Epsilon Off
1974

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

EPSILON Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

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

EPSILON Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Epsilon by EPSILON album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.25 | 19 ratings

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Epsilon
Epsilon Krautrock

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars Early-70's Kraut-Rock act from Marburg, formed in 1970 and playing some sort of THE NICE Psych/Classical Rock at the beginning (they had a different name as well-Karthago, not to be confused with the Berlin-based band of the same name), just before ex-Nosferatu and Orange Peel guitarist/singer Michael Winzkowski entered the scene.The rest of the crew included bassist Michael Ertl, drummer Hartmut Pfannmüller and ex-Jeronimo keyboardist Walter Ortel.Their self-titled debut was released in 1971 on Bacillus Records.

The style of the band has significantly changed under the leadership of Winzkowski.This is a rather dated but well-executed example of Kraut/Hard Rock with big time Blues-Rock and minor Classical and Psych influences, not unlike bands like DEEP PURPLE or ATOMIC ROOSTER.Vocals are decent, all sung in English.The musicianship is far from great but very balanced between hard guitar drives and piano/organ offerings.Actually Winzkowski seems to be the central figure here, delivering bluesy riffing, strong solos and hard-sounding grooves in general, while his typical rockin' voice seems to suit perfectly with Epsilon's adapted style.Ortel is the second leading musician.Nice organ throughout in a JON LORD and KEITH EMERSON vein with a fair dose of Baroque-inspired parts but also some stronger groovy passages, while his piano parts alternate between soft jazzy touches to rhythmic interplays with Wiznowski's guitar.The rhythm section is strong and tight with some powerful playing throughout.The result is an album of frenetic Kraut/Hard/Prog with good perfomances but a very unoriginal style.

Add another reason for purchasing the album to the Classical-inpired re-edition of The Rolling Stones' ''Paint it black'', maybe the greatest idea Epsilon ever had.A good addition for the majority of the prog audience.Fans of Kraut-Rock, Hard Rock, Classical Prog, Proto-Prog and even bluesy Progressive Rock will find parts close to their likings in ''Epsilon'', thus the album comes eventually recommended.

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 Epsilon by EPSILON album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.25 | 19 ratings

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Epsilon
Epsilon Krautrock

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars This was EPSILON's debut album released in 1971. It's one of those albums that certainly has it's moments, just not enough of them. Still I think it's worth 3.5 stars.

"Two-2-11" sounds really good to start with those guitar expressions.The bass throbs and the drums also help out before the organ kicks in. It settles down when the vocals arrive. It kicks back in before 3 1/2 minutes before settling back again with vocals.Themes are repeated. A change though before 5 1/2 minutes with piano but it lasts just over a minute. "2-Four-4" also starts off great with that organ work as vocals join in then guitar 1 1/2 minutes in. A calm follows and reserved vocals join in. It kicks back in with organ and drums before settling back once more with vocals as contrasts continue.

"Everyday's Pain" is uptempo with organ, drums and vocals standing out as the guitar comes and goes. "Before" opens with piano and a beat as the organ comes in. Vocal melodies before 2 minutes. "Between Midnight" features piano and a light beat as strummed guitar then vocals join in. This is fairly laid back. "Paint It Black Or White" honestly sounds like a combination of GENTLE GIANT and THE ROLLING STONES. The sound goes back and forth between sounding like those two bands. "Hurry Up" is like a boogie-woogie tune with rough distant vocals.

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 Move On by EPSILON album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.04 | 11 ratings

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Move On
Epsilon Krautrock

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars EPSILON were a German band who put out three studio albums in the early seventies. This is the second one from 1972. Even though they hired Dieter Dierks as the studio engineer and drummer Curt Cress (ORANGE PEEL) to play on 4 tracks this isn't as good as the debut. "Move On" is pretty straight forward really with some heavy songs and commercial sounding tracks.

"Walkin' On My Way" is not the best track to start with as it's my least favourite. Some good organ runs though and I like the guitar 2 minutes in but overall too straight forward. "She Belongs To Me" is much better. An uptempo rocker although it does settle back at times. Vocals before 1 1/2 minutes as the organ pulsates.The guitar solos 2 1/2 minutes in. "Feelings" is laid back with flute, a beat and reserved vocals. Good song.

"What About Future" and "Move On" are both short but intense tracks. "Reichelsheim" is led by the guitar out of the gate but it settles back when the vocals arrive. "Hear Me Cryin'" has light drums and floating organ as reserved vocals join in. It does pick up each time on the chorus. "Waiting" is heavier with vocals. A guitar solo comes in after a minute. A nice instrumental section after 3 minutes. "Don't Know Why" is commercial sounding with backing vocals but I still like it,especially the keys after 2 minutes.

3 stars.

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 Epsilon by EPSILON album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.25 | 19 ratings

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Epsilon
Epsilon Krautrock

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

3 stars Proper time machine material!

I don´t usually write 3 star reviews, and that is not because I love everything - or find it difficult distinguishing diamonds from faeces, but rather to do with me having a huge record collection and wanting to highlight the albums that make me euphoric - tickle my spinal chord and send me packing in that special place where time evaporates and music is everything - all that exists. The 3 star albums I enjoy writing about is either obscurities that speak to me on a personal level - or albums that hold something unique and/or crazy. Ok, that was my small disclaimer - on to the Krautrock!!!

Errmm - sadly this is not a Krautrock record, let alone a prog one. In all honesty, I find little in this debut by German band Epsilon that justifies them being here on PA in a fully blown progressive category. Then why, if I just started out stating what I did earlier, do I concern myself with this album? Why then highlighting a record that clearly is a misfit in drag? Well my friends, it´s because it is a wonderful album - and a genuine honest one to boot. It´s got soul - soul as in Otis Redding, Paul Butterfield Blues Band and several of those early rhythm n´ blues based acts, those that wore their emotions on their sleeves and sounded like a storm of ashtray vocals, pelting Hammond organs and I´ll-put-my-wooden-clogs-up-your-backside tumbling and sweaty rock.

The lead vocals here are coarse, raspy and powerful soulful renditions of what you´d hear from a large quantity of bands at the time such as mark 1 Deep Purple and Free, but the cool thing about Epsilon is that, though Germanic in descent, there´s really no emphasis on words like "ze" and "bĉybi" - the singing is wonderfully done and it fills much of this album with a warm and delightful atmosphere. Like a woollen sweater you keep to yourself... Apart from the wall to wall organs that swoop through the tunes like swarms of pelicans, the real meat and potatoes of this band is the combination of all the musicians involved - the way they roll, and I find it hard to believe, that this in fact was their first outing. It is that well done, and it rocks like your dad on a pogo stilt after a bottle of Johnny Walker!

All the blues boxes are ticked off here with lines like: "Woke up this morning" and "Set me free", and all in all, along with those captivating organs and emotive vocals, it is by far the soul feel that is sitting at the front-wheel of Epsilon´s self-titled debut, and I happen to love it like I love driving south in a rusty old piece of junk watching the trees and shimmers of white paint on the asphalt drift by - like some surrealistic moving painting. This kind of music holds a special place in my heart, and to some extent I feel like I´m betraying this album by giving it a 3.5 rating, because personally it feels like more - feels un-rateable so to speak. Like putting a price tag on an elbow - 5.99 and that´s a proper elbow I tell you!

I just realized something on this my 4th listening of said magnificent album today. Epsilon sound a lot like Danish beat band Beefeaters, which, if you´re wondering, was a cornerstone of the new musical direction in Denmark back in 1967, and helped introduce the sounds of both black America and the psych revolution that was in full bloom all over the Western world. This is a huge compliment by the way, as I adore this band.

This one should please all you old school hippies and rock n´ rollers, that still feel like something got lost somewhere along the line, and still feel like you´re flying effortlessly on warm healing winds, when you pop on a Procol Harum album. This is a time machine in sound taking you back to a place in our modern history, where the money was a bi-product of the experience and not in control of the buttons. 3.5 stars.

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 Move On by EPSILON album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.04 | 11 ratings

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Move On
Epsilon Krautrock

Review by ozzy_tom
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Second album of German heavy prog rock band Epsilon isn't as good as their self-titled debut. "Move On" includes couple of rather less ambitious songs with more elaborated hard edged guitars and simpler riffing. Compared to previous LP we can find that band is sometimes trying to gain mainstream attention here. However we can't say that it's complete crap, in fact I'd definitely disagree to call it a waste of time. We can find enough clear prog-rock elements like inspired organ passages, classical music parts, some more complicated soloing or beautiful acoustic guitars fragments to call it enjoyable heavy prog/art rock recording. I can even say that few tracks on "Move On" are absolutely essential for prog rock fans.

So let's look into the songs more closely:

1. "Walkin' On My Way" - album begins with very simple rocker full of simplistic guitar chords and almost inaudible background organ lines. Vocal sounds very bluesy and refrain becomes tiresome after too many repetitions but it's still bearable track. But definitely no prog here!

2. "She Belongs To Me" - second song is a much better effort! According to sources it's Bob Dylan's song however I've never heard that original version so I can compare it only with another cover played by The Nice (first band of Keith Emerson). And I must say that in this comparison Epsilon's version doesn't look less compelling at all. In contradiction to The Nice's cover, these Krauts' version is much tighter and less experimental. Ortel's Hammond is shining throughout the song but Winzkowski's guitar also has its moments. However my favorite is the second part of this track when we can listen to fantastic organ-driven rock versions of classical & film music pieces. You can clearly hear The Nice/ELP influences here.

3. "Feelings" - pleasant folk-like song with acoustic guitar, flute (played by guest Christian Felke) and "ethnic" percussion. Seems to be very Jethro Tull inspired but vocal has nothing to to with Ian Anderson's voice at all. Good song but not so memorable.

4. "What About the Future" - short but extremely enjoyable prog'n'roll song full of fuzzed guitars and loud organ chops. Psychedelic Hammond solo included! Really nice.

5. "Move On" - straightforward hard rock song with rather generic electric guitar riffs/solos and complete lack of keyboard instruments. Not horrible but it's not a composition I'd expect to find in heavy prog LP.

6. "Reichelsheim" - along with "She Belongs To Me" & "What About the Future" it's my fave of "Move On" disk. Rather slow paced but entertaining piece of music driven by decent Hammond floods, acoustic & electric guitars and surprisingly classical inspired, sparkling piano. Soft organ solo in the middle sets perfect mood for the whole song. Winzkowski's slightly harsh vocal sounds truly emotional here too.

7. "Hear Me Cryin'" - another atmospheric composition with passionate and entertaining vocals. Whole song is based upon Winzkowski's fine vocals and melancholic/mysterious organ passages played by Ortel. However it's not a completely original track 'cause the whole melody is directly stolen from "Season of the Witch" written by Donovan (however I've never heard the original I know 3 other versions of that song recorded respectively by Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger & The Trinity, Vanilla Fudge & Pesky Gee! so I know this melody very well). Plagiarism!!

8. "Waiting" - dark and rather heavy but slow-moving song with psychedelic atmosphere created with omnipresent, repetitive apocalyptic organ flooding. I love middle part with fast gallop of thundering guitar & organ interludes. Whole song is very similar to another German band's material - Night Sun.

9. "Don't Know Why" - it's a very interesting song which includes 2 theoretically disjointed and unsuitable fragments. Basically it's just pop/hard rock song with generic refrain but during soloing we can listen to fantastic duels of keyboards (distorted organ & strange, up-beat piano chops) and acoustic guitar. This middle part saves the whole song from being pop garbage.

To sum up the whole "Move On" experience, I have to say that I enjoyed it much more than I though I will after reading few quite bad reviews. Second Epsilon's album is no masterpiece but in contrary to what some people say it's not a simple hard/pop rock LP. It's a mix-bag of straightforward tunes, prog-rock compositions full of typical 70s organ/guitar battles and atmospheric compositions with passionate, slightly bluesy vocals. Not a bad pick, but at first check their debut recording which is nearly early prog hidden gem.

BTW if you like heavy prog genre, debut and "Move On" are the only albums you need to check out. Their last LP called "Epsilon Off" is completely unrelated to preceding output. It's just generic poppy rock disk with almost no keyboards at all (except few piano moments played by second guitarist who was hired after Walter Ortel left the band).

3,5 stars for "Move On" from ozzy_tom

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 Epsilon by EPSILON album cover Studio Album, 1971
3.25 | 19 ratings

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Epsilon
Epsilon Krautrock

Review by ozzy_tom
Prog Reviewer

4 stars First, self-titled album of German prog-rock band "Epsilon" is definitely their best one. It's a classic example of organ-oriented monster from 70s clearly influenced by British late 60' and early 70' prog/psych movement. All songs are sang in English language and overall "feeling" of this production has nothing to do with (over)experimental Krautrock scene. This album can be easily compared with such underground, organ-oriented bands from UK as "Atomic Rooster", "Cressida", "Beggar's Opera", "Fantasy", "Still Life", "Argent", "Bodkin" and even "The Nice" (in fact musicians from "Epsilon" played The Nice's covers under "Karthago" moniker before!).

1. "Two-2-II" - the longest (more than 8 minutes) song on the album is a really good piece of music. "Two-2-II" has a very untypical for prog-rock, "bouncy" rhythm and melody which sounds almost danceable. But don't worry it's a truly fantastic art rock track with ripping organ riffs, bridges and amazing solos (often Ken Hensley inspired). Winzkowski (BTW, seems to have some Polish "roots" :-) also delivers some good guitar licks from time to time, but Hammond still dominates. Take note this hilarious clavinet solos followed by short fragment taken from rock'n'roll classic "Keep A-Knockin'", these guys knew how to have fun!

2. "2-Four-4" - another long track begin with army march-like melody played on clavinet & organ and I have to say that this fragment builds really fine, almost symphonic atmosphere. After a while organ kicks in again with powerful chords. But few moments later tempo changes again and guys start to play juicy blues-rock a la "Led Zeppelin" with suitable for this type of music vocals. We can also listen to jazzy piano solo here. In the end "Epsilon" reprises melody from the beginning. Really enjoyable track with many different tempos and signatures.

3. "Everyday's Pain" - fast hard rocker based on fat organ chops. In the middle smokin' B-3 solo which shows that Walter Ortel surely could play Keith Emerson's material in the past. Great song.

4. "Before" - it's a really fantastic instrumental with Santana-influenced, bossa-nova-like rhythm & melody. However instead of electric guitar we can listen to ear pleasing organ, acoustic guitar & piano solos. Almost my favorite track here.

5. "Between Midnight" - surprisingly it's a romantic ballad with piano-oriented melody and very good acoustic guitar lines. Very catchy and relaxing. Nice interlude between all of these hard&prog compositions. Sounds like "Procol Harum" a bit.

6. "Paint It Black Or White" - stunning cover of "Rolling Stones'" classic hit "Paint It Black"! In fact it's almost completely different than the original, more psych oriented, just like "Beatles" covers of early "Deep Purple" and "Vanilla Fudge". This version really gives completely new dimension for the song. Main riff played on organ sounds amazing and this psychedelic solo in the middle... Love it!

7. "Hurry Up" - Oh my..., why they had to close this great album with such horrible turkey. Piano-oriented woogie-boogie is not what I expected from these guys. Thanks God it's short. "ELP" and "Argent" also liked to include such duds on their albums, so I won't blame "Epsilon" so much...

Overall it's a highly enjoyable effort which should please fans of organ-driven heavy prog and classic rock. Their next album "Move On" is more guitar-oriented and it's focused on more simplistic arrangements and song structures. However it's not bad (in fact it's quite good hard rock album with some nice prog/art rock elements), you should better start from this debut record. Besides, their 3rd and last release called "Epsilon Off" is a mainstream rock album with very generic, keyboards-free songs with no interests for more ambitious listeners.

Anyway if you like Epsilon's debut, you should also check other early 70s, Hammond oriented German prog bands: "Tyburn Tall", "Twogether", "Trikolon"/"Tetragon", "Murphy Blend", "Sixty-Nine", "Amos Key", "Twenty Sixty Six and Then", "Odin", "Frame", "Pell Mell", "Virus", "Magma" and "Frumpy", along with more famous ones, like: "Jane", "Birth Control" and (early) "Eloy".

4,5 stars from me.

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