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Flaming Bess - Tanz Der Götter  CD (album) cover

TANZ DER GÖTTER

Flaming Bess

 

Symphonic Prog

3.32 | 49 ratings

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erik neuteboom
Prog Reviewer
3 stars

The German symphonic rock formation Flaming Bess was founded in 1969. They hailed from the West-German city Düsseldorf and the first line-up featured Hans Wende on guitar, Horst Wagner on bass, Rolf Selbach on drums and Peter Figge on keyboards. The name is derived from a fantasy story in which Flaming Bess is the Goddess of Light. The band went through numerous changes in the 10 years before they released an album. Flaming Bess got their first break when featured on the music programme Rockstudio on WDR and the interest generated led to them recording and self-producing their debut LP Tanz der Götter in 1979. It is a fantasy concept album about Flaming Bess, the Goddess Of Light who reigns over a country that is threatened by demons, mean magicians and other unpleasant creatures. Reputedly it's an elaborate and sophisticated progressive like a early Camel. The music press hailed Flaming Bess and they even reached the #1 spot in the most popular German hitparade, within 6 months the album solds 40.000 copies, incredible for an unknown German symphonic rock band! If you are interested in the rest of the Flaming Bess history, please visit their website.

In general their debut LP Tanz Der Götter (1979) is considered as their best and most progressive effort. The album contains five tracks (between 2 and 9 minutes), each preceded by a short intro featuring spoken words (about the story of Flaming Bess and Arkana), acoustic guitars, sound of singing birds and a wide range of keyboards. The five compositions often deliver swinging rhythms with lush Hammond organ (like Peter Bardens) and moving guitar work, to me it sounds like early Camel, very warm and melodic. I am very pleased with the wonderful vintage keyboard sound, from the Solina string-ensemble, Hammond organ and Minimoog synthesizer to the distinctive Hohner D6 clavinet. Although the Camel hints are obvious, Flaming Bess does their best to present own ideas like the swinging break with funky rhythm guitar and bass in Bedrohung Part II, a long and fiery guitar solo in Kampf Und Vertreibung Part II, flowing jazzy guitarwork in Oasis Part II and a catchy clavinet with delicate solos on piano and saxophone in the titletrack. This remastered DeLuxe Edition 2005 contains 3 bonustracks (18 minutes): Oasis Leslie Mix (a beautiful, extended version of Oasis Part I with moving guitarplay), Start Und Vertreibung Henri Ford Edit (German humour with a starting car mixed in the music) and finally Tanz De Götter Roh & Dreckig Mix, this is an instrumental version of the titletrack with an omnipresent clavinet sound and wonderful other vintage keyboards like the Solina string- ensemble.

If you like melodic Seventies symphonic rock with a lush vintage keyboard sound, this album is yours, especially the early Camel fans will be pleased! My rating 3,5 stars.

erik neuteboom | 3/5 |

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