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Kraan - Andy Nogger  CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.78 | 112 ratings

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4 stars This is the best known album from this German band and also a fan favourite. There are some differences here compared to the band's first two albums. The main difference is, unlike the first two self-produced albums, this was produced by legendary producer/engineer Conny Plank who would continue to work with Kraan in the future. Another difference is that they get more accessible and song-oriented here, whereas the first album was very Krautrock sounding and improvisational and the second somewhere in between the two. Andy Nogger is also the last album with the original four piece line-up; the next album will add a keyboardist. There are vocals here in English, but it is still the actual music that grabs your attention. This is jazz and funk influenced rock music with great bass work from Helmut Hattler, with the saxophone being altered and modified; sometimes it sounds a keyboard.

"Stars" is some jazzy funk rock which features some Middle-Eastern inspired guitar lines. Also a bluesy guitar solo. The title track is the highlight of the album...prog-funk at its finest. This features a great memorable guitar riff and a melody on modified saxophone to die for. The rhythm section is as tight as tight can get. The only drawback may be the vocals - they are delivered in a weird way (as if the singer was intoxicated) that doesn't really add to the song. Would probably make a better instrumental, but it's still a great song anyway. "Nam Nam" is another standout track. Beginning as a smooth jazzy laid-back rock song, it picks up the pace later. Lots of room for the members to jam and solo. Great instrumental.

"Son Of The Sun" is a strong vocal song. Hattler's bass work is great here. The drumming stands out as well. Spacey sound effects at the end. "Holiday am Marterhorn" is a live favourite. Great melodic guitar and bass lines in this track. The melodies the saxophone plays are great as well. The interplay between the instruments is very well done. In concert this track gave the group lots of room to jam and improvise. You get a hint of all that on the studio version. Another standout instrumental.

"Home" starts out both spacey and jazzy. Goes into a groove as the vocals arrive. Lots of spacey effects here. I love the basslines in "Yellow Bamboo." The melody on saxophone is superb. Gets looser for awhile with some Middle-Eastern inspired sax playing. More studio altered sounds towards the end. A solid studio album (thanks to Mr. Plank) but like King Crimson and Magma, Kraan are at their best in a live setting. If you like your prog with some funkiness to it, give this a try. 4 stars.

zravkapt | 4/5 |


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