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Emtidi - Emtidi CD (album) cover

EMTIDI

Emtidi

 

Prog Folk

2.66 | 23 ratings

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ClemofNazareth
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk Researcher
3 stars If you’ve ever wondered what Bob Dylan would sound like with a kazoo backing him up, just hunt down this record and check out “No Turn Back”. German Maik Hirschfeldt, who does a fairly decent job of parroting Dylan’s intonation and (sic) articulation on this album is backed by kazoo on that song by Dolly Holmes, a Canadian and the other half of this odd early seventies folk duo. This is their first album, and is even more obscure than their second and final, the sometimes praised ‘Saat’ (but not by me).

This record was first released in 1970 on the Thorofon label, a company better known for their classical music catalog. You won’t find a copy of that anywhere; and the 1995 CD from the dubious Germanophon label is a poor copy from the vinyl from what I’ve read. Wah-Wah Records issued a vinyl copy from the master tapes in 2007, and that’s probably the only one that can be found anymore. Not that I’d recommend going to too much trouble to do so – this is an unexceptional recording and not even as interesting as their slightly more approachable Krautfolk follow-up ‘Saat’.

There are no drums, bass or electric instruments here, and in fact the duo recorded it with nothing more than a couple of acoustic guitars, occasional flute, a bouzouki and the aforementioned kazoo which seems to only appear on “No Turn Back”. The guitar playing is fairly generic acoustic folk stuff, with a bent note or tempo shift here and there just to let you know the two musicians are capable of a bit more than simple strumming. The flute is almost imperceptible when it does appear and really barely counts as an instrument as a result (except on the closing “Flutepiece”). And the bouzouki blends with the 12-string acoustic to the point where neither is distinguished from the other.

The most interesting thing about this album is how distinctly different the front and back sides are. The first five tracks are not much more than simple hippy folk that was so prevalent in that era that there are likely hundreds of forgotten, similar albums who are even more lost to time than this one. The back side, on the other hand, branches out just enough to make the ‘acid folk’ label seem appropriate. The title of “Let the joint go ‘round” speaks for itself, a five minute disjointed acoustic guitar jam with half-discernable vocals and the overall feel of a mellow buzz on a slow afternoon. “Yvonne's Dream” is more of the same although shorter, and here I almost get the impression the two artists are poking a bit of fun at the genre.

The back side of the record is also mostly instrumental, including a very pleasant if unoriginal acoustic guitar solo on “Birds on a Graveyard”, and a sort of folk freak-out bouzouki-and-flute extended play called “Flutepiece” that makes it clearly apparent these two were tripping and recording at the same time. It was 1970 after all.

This isn’t anything close to a masterpiece, but it may be of mild interest to serious progressive and acid folk fans. I’m going to round up my assessment (2.6 stars) to the next even number and call it three, but with only a tepid recommendation. Don’t spend your money on this one unless you are the sort of person that listens to bands like Höelderlin, It’s a Beautiful Day or the Ghost.

peace

ClemofNazareth | 3/5 |

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