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Cornucopia - Full Horn CD (album) cover





3.92 | 67 ratings

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4 stars Whatever else this racket might be, it certainly isn't Jazz Rock Fusion, as currently labeled on the band's page here at Prog Archives. Is that because there's an occasional saxophone in the mix? By the same yardstick the Dada collages of a kindred band like FAUST should be re-categorized as Prog Folk.

Let's face it: the first and only Cornucopia LP is unadulterated Krautrock, full stop, period, end of sentence. And if the initial moments of the opening twenty-minute roller coaster "Day of a Day-Dream Believer" don't send you screaming off the nearest parapet, chances are you've been successfully immunized against the mind-frying musical extremities of counterculture Germany.

I won't even begin to describe the album itself, except to say it makes even the most bizarre Krautrock sound halfway normal by comparison. The music is never less than wildly creative, or maybe just creatively wild, in places achieving a reckless intensity similar to what THE MARS VOLTA (that popular bossa nova band) would later aim for. There's a little something for everyone here, from cosmic rock parody to demented circus music to some of the catchiest psychedelic pop this side of Syd Barrett ("Morning Sun, Version 127").

Need another easy parallel? They shared a streak of deadpan Teutonic humor with Faust: look at the track titles, or listen for the sound of snoring at the end of the "Day Dream" suite. And the heavy saxophone-organ combination strongly recalls the signature snarl of early Van Der Graaf Generator (the Famous Charisma Label klezmer quartet).

The production too was unusually sharp for its time: in-your face organ solos; front-loaded guitar heroics; and some of the meatiest electric bass grunge since the arrival of rockabilly legend John Wetton. Eight credited musicians contributed to the din; three of them were named Wolfgang.

It's an almost criminal shame they managed to record only one album, and that it somehow fell so completely between the cracks. With a little more effort and output Cornucopia might have been superstars, instead of an unknown ensemble still waiting for rediscovery. But never in a million years by the Jazz Rockers among us...

Neu!mann | 4/5 |


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