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Vespero - Subkraut - U-Boats Willkommen Hier CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.93 | 111 ratings

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4 stars VESPERO's fourth album is significantly referring to the German U-Boat tradition (how terrible!) in the same way as to the special German rock music legacy (how irresisitible!). Similarity and contradiction at once - 'U-Boats Willkommen Hier' - this sounds provocative to me, sorry, probably meant as a pun - tainted with considerable speculation overall. But now for some clarification, the official label (R.A.I.G) announcement tells us that the album 'is a conceptual framework for six instrumental kraut-rock songs which are inspired by Russian Futurism of the early 20th century, German musical underground of the 70's, modern American fiction writers, as well as mysteries of the Great Ocean still not completely explained by mankind'. Yup!

'The Art Of Positive Thinking' - well, come what may, the title of the last song points us in the right direction, right?. Also put with intent I'm sure ... the song titles are alternating between English and German, just like following a policy or so ... German efficiency, eh? Seriously now ... there are bands I gradually have lost interest, since some repetiition in style and approach occured over the years. VESPERO obviously differ ... every album sounds in another way somehow. Often accompanied by a trancy behaviour they have worked with native female vocalists for example, but now they are on another track. There's a strong space jam appeal to state, which shows them close to Oresund Space Collective or the current Electric Orange style here and there. And subtle sax and violin input brings some variation to the general impression.

The groovy Underwater convinces me due to a very nice harmonic interplay of synths and space guitar. I can imagine a somewhat modern submarine boat incarnation - gliding underwater at first as usual, but then gathering speed, coming up crossing the surface, and finally blasting off into space. Another collaboration - I mean drums and percussion - is striking too here. Concerning the title Angriff, Ran, Versenken! this leaves me with mixed feelings, musically though the song is nominated for the album's highlight on the contrary - expresses dramaturgy all through, it's a very dynamic exemplar. I still do believe in artistic freedom by the way.

Some songs like Anpeilen! and Alarm ... The Art Of Positive Thinking show a drum work tending more to a typical hypnotic respectively mechanical appearance anyhow. That said, for some reason this really might be the closest album to krautrock they've ever recorded so far. But - on the other hand - since VESPERO started with 'Rito' in 2007 such influences never could be denied for sure, are reflected in every album, sometimes more, sometimes less. Although thematically a bit problematic for me I won't complain - music-wise this is another outstanding band output. If you still are not familiar with this crew, it's about time.

Rivertree | 4/5 |


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