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Amon Düül


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Amon Düül Psychedelic Underground [Aka: Minnelied] album cover
2.38 | 72 ratings | 14 reviews | 10% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1969

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Ein Wunderhübsches Mädchen Träumt von Sandosa (17:03)
2. Kaskados Minnelied (2:53)
3. Mama Düül und Ihre Sauerkrautband Spielt Auf (2:50)
4. Im Garten Sandosa (7:48)
5. Der Garten Sandosa im Morgentau (8:06)
6. Bitterlings Verwandlung (2:30)

Total Time: 41:10

Line-up / Musicians

- Rayner Bauer / electric 12-string guitar, vocals
- Ulrich (Uli) Leopold / electric & acoustic basses
- Wolfgang Krischke / drums, piano
- Angelika Filanda / drums, vocals
- Helge Filanda / congas, Fx, vocals
- Uschi Obermaier / maracas
- Ella Bauer / shaker, percussion, vocals

Releases information

Jamming sessions recorded in late 1968 or early 1969

LP Metronome - MLP 15 332 (1969, Germany)
LP Metronome 2001 - 200 146 (1973, Germany) Re-entitled "This Is Amon Düül" with new cover art
LP Brain - 0040.149 (1978, Germany) Re-entitled "Minnelied" with new cover art

CD Spalax Music - CD 14947 (1996, France)

Thanks to Philippe Blache for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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AMON DÜÜL Psychedelic Underground [Aka: Minnelied] ratings distribution

(72 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(10%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(12%)
Good, but non-essential (29%)
Collectors/fans only (31%)
Poor. Only for completionists (18%)

AMON DÜÜL Psychedelic Underground [Aka: Minnelied] reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars I discovered the first Amon Düül collective, as I was searching information about the later incarnations separated from this league of hippies. Though I like raw analogue sounds, the sound quality of this release goes a bit too poor for my own enjoyment. I believe this album has a historical value, as I understand it was some sort of groundbreaker in this kind of music genre. The recording has captured the freeform divine explorations of redemption by these people, and it is most certainly sincere search of atavistic levels. However I think the following recordings of the group were better, and I consider this hardcore album as artifact for the collectors, and for those who prefer very chaotic noise as for their desired musical adoration moments.
Review by philippe
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars No alternatives, no guiding lines, no structure, just a massive free musical expression, rather unclear, malevolent and cloudy. Personally I consider this first Amon Duul's jam session as an important item in the history of rock music but I'm not sure that the prog community will follow me on this one. Off course the music is made in a progressive way because of long instrumental explorations and dark experimentations, however there are no arrangements here, the music is really primitive, stoned and chaotic. However we can detect free music ideas which will announce the maturity of albums to come; psychedelic, ethnic combinations for endless and pointless improvisations. Absolute not conventional in its radical expression but a coherent document in the development of German krautrock underground.
Review by Certif1ed
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars None of your Bakerloo here...

"Psychedelic Underground" appears to be a collection of music that summarises much of the ideals and ethics of the Progressive/Underground scene that thrived in the mid-late 1960s, but also incorporates ideas popularised by the Beatles and Pink Floyd in terms of experimenting with the more avante-garde styles of music that had long been explored in the realms of art music (I hesitate to call it "Classical", as much of it did not even involve an instrument!).

The range of marks awarded to this album really reflects the kind of album it is - there's much to sneer at and cast derisory remarks about, not least the appalling production and rather weak jam sessions, but at the same time, a vital energy is projected such that even when the music descends into near-noise, we can still sense the togetherness of the musicians in spirit, at least... as puts it; "90% attitude and 10% skill".

This might or might not work for you, but patience brings its own rewards with music of this nature, and it's only when listening beyond the production and the notes that the rather wonderful raw and primaeval nature of the music comes alive.

The music tends towards simple jams of one or two chord riffs with minimal changes and much walloping of drums. "Ein Wunderhübsches Mädchen Träumt von Sandosa", which doesn't feel quite as long as you think it might consits of two of these, joined loosely with a tae interjection, and rounded off with another one.

"Kaskados Minnelied" is a lot less predictable, despite being built around a simple 'cello line. There's a better dramatic shape here, despite a desparate need for a 'cello tuner, and an overall dark, earthy sound that seems to approach that of a digeridoo.

"Mama Düül und Ihre Sauerkrautband Spielt Auf" appears to be yet another piece built around the percussion section of "Saucerful of Secrets" - which was an impossibly influential release of the previous year. A little production experimentation fills out the 3 minutes in a way that is not so much interesting as baffling - but curiosity and a peculiar tenrions does encourage the listener to stick with it.

"Im Garten Sandosa" has a really peculiar air to it - a "vibe", if you will, and indicates a kind of progression in the album overall that I was not expecting. Yes, it's a single riff, with minimalistic changes - and that's its' strong point. Let yourself be sucked in by this one, and it's a buzzing journey filled with exotic locations and excitement with a climatic ending. Close your mind to it, and it's a terrible sitar-driven hippy dirge.

"Der Garten Sandosa im Morgentau" follows on quite naturally, and, dare I say it, logically from the previous track, and blends in elements of the earlier material on the album, becoming, as Julian Cope's site accurately puts it "the weirdest song on this very weird album.", full of ghostly spookiness, surprisingly fragile dark edges, and plenty of space, with hints of the first Hawkwind album.

"Bitterlings Verwandlung" is, if anything, even wierder, exploding, as it does, with taped "Classical" music, and regularly returning to odd snippets here and there in a kind of collage that seems to take inspiration from Stockhausen's work in a far more serious way than anything the Beatles attempted - including (or perhaps, especially) "Revolution #9".

A very unusual album - almost unique for 1969... except that a lot of unique albums were released in 1969 (and subsequently also virtually forgotten about), including the quite astonishing "An Electric Storm" by The White Noise.

Pretty much up there with Can's "Monster Movie" as an unmissable example of Krautrock, unmistakably, an Excellent addition to any prog music collection - and a comfortable 4 stars.

You may want to stick with it though - give it time... :o)

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars How can one album be even "Krauter" than Can? Well AD's very first album Can (I know ;-) and this is no small feat. This is probably the most rock'n roll album of all time, should you consider the mentality and atmosphere. Some psychheads will rave on for hours of the Garage bands sprouting in Southern California in the second part of the 60's, or the Detroit proto-punk scene of 68, but obviously those purists tend to disregard anything done in Germany by early pioneers like Amon Düül and Can. So out of Munich came these "eleven adults and two children which are gathered to make all kinds of expressions, also musical" (sic), and the hippy commune eventually broke up into two units, the first is this group that will record only two real sessions, the first being a huge jam that would eventually produced three albums and four discs worth of material, the other being Paradieswarts Düül. The second part, Amon Duul II, will become much more successful, but please see that entry. BTW, Amon Düül's name comes from an Egyptian mythological god (Amon) and a Turkish fictional character Düül.

The least one can say is that AD's sole historic record (the others were posthumous, if memory serves) is that it is a very cringey time for progheads looking for the usual prog clichés. Here, we are light years away from good production, good recording, tight arrangements and virtuosi interplay: what one would have to realize is that both version of AD came from heavy left-wing hippy communes and therefore the group's sound sounds as chaotic as you'd imagine a commune to be back then. Actually the Repertoire CD issue shows a few band pictures with the women in the band proudly showing the kids, and most likely a certain kind of promiscuity. Starting on a 17-mins Sondosa track, where they give the tone of the album, just repeating endlessly a riff, without any kind of musical explorations, except for the hypnotic nature of their "minimalist" approach to their musical universe, the group finishes the album with a three-minutes fast-evolving improv centred around the cello player. There is a bit of space rock ala Hawkwind avant-la-lettre feel throughout this album. BTW: Sondosa is a Spanish-spoof deformation of the Sandoz pharmaceutical labs that first produced the LSD molecule.

On the flipside, Mama Düül is a very percussive 3-mins track that strikes you as complete waste of tape, unless you're into shaman-type of percussion dances. Garten Sandosa is another slowly evolving jam built on repetitive riff, where some bass drones (most likely the cello again) are the main interest. The following Garten Morgantau (also an 8-miun improv) is again featuring cello under very approximate guitar arpeggios, with soft spacey Gilly Smyth-like whispers. Ending the album is Bitterlings Verwandlung another absurd jam stuck with classical (choirs) music sound collage that had never been done until then.

In retrospect, this album as well as others posthumous release from AD, might just be the foundation stone of Germany's awesome scene. In some ways, the strength of AD is that even when the band gets cacophonous and downright chaotic, you can feel the mega line-up remaining as tight as if they were a trio, probably a side effect of their tribal commune instincts. I have a difficult time giving such a badly produced and indulgent record a good rating, but its historical importance cannot be denied and therefore gets an "essential but not that good" rating of three stars.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
1 stars "Psychedelic Underground" is the debut full-length studio album by psychadelic/krautrock act Amon Düül. The album was released through Metronome Records in 1969. Amon Düül was one of the early pioneers in the krautrock style and "Psychedelic Underground" is widely considered one of the earliest examples of the style. or at least a taste of it.

The 41:10 minutes long album features 6 tracks. All repetitive, rather noisy, and badly produced psychadelic rock songs and odd sound experiments. It´s jam packed and psychadelic and generally features very little that resembles structure of any kind. So at times it almost sounds like a bunch of kindergarden kids on acid hammering on anything they can get their hands on. The playing is sloppy and combined with the murky sound production this is a bit of a trying listening experience unless your poison is unstructured psychadelic jams. If you ask me it´s a stretch to call this adventurous even though it´s certainly unconventional. Art for arts sake, or noise for the sake of it, sounds more valid to my ears.

This is the kind of album that serves best as a historical document capturing the free spirit and experimentation with sounds and music of the late 60s, and not really for listening pleasure. At least I have a very hard time getting any kind of enjoyment out of listening to the album. If you´re interested in the earliest origins of krautrock this might suit your tastes though. Personally I refuse to give "Psychedelic Underground" more than a 1 star (20%) rating. Subjectively because I simply can´t stand listening to it and more objectively because of the sub par musicianship, the non-existent songwriting, and the poor sounding, murky, and noisy production. Enter at your own risk.

Review by octopus-4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
2 stars Native Americans in an overdose of Peyote? The mad of the village hitting a trashcan with a wand? Probably with a better production it would have sounded intelligible, but the awful recording makes it just a collection of repetitive noise. It's a pity because there are hints of 60s flower power that could have make this album interesting even if over 17 minutes are too much for the first track. All you can hear in the first 7 minutes is percussion and voices while an acoustic guitar tries to be heard. At least the guitar is tuned, but I've listened to bootlegs better recorded, also in the 60s.

Things are a little better with the second track that has an indian flavour. Good enough to trip on it, but no more than this. The third is like an appendix of the first. There was probably more in the band's intentions, but the recording is so poor that I can just appreciate the repetitions.

The following track is a "rocky" sequence of 8 notes over which what seems to be a cello makes some noise. This track is hypnotic enough and reminds me to the quite unknown album of the Japaneses Kharuna Kyal. Track 5 starts as a follow-up to the previous one, but it's quiter, based on a string instrument that seems an acoustic guitar played with a pencil on the strings and on weird vocalisms. This second hal of the album is a little better than the first. In particular this track is spacey.

The last track is quite similar to the first but it's only 2:30 minutes long. It seems that the production has been enhanced on the last two tracks or it's only that my ears are now used with it.

The second side is not enough to save this album even if surely better than the first. This is just for hard lovers of the genre, and mainly as a document as there's very few to enjoy here

Review by Dobermensch
3 stars Krautrock's most hated and despised band. This is mayhem, tuneless drivel by a bunch of wasted hippies, and it sounds great!

A definite 'love it or hate it' album for most folk.

There's not much in the way of music going on. Somebody unwisely handed out a few sets of bongos and guitars to these guys without realising what the repercussions would be. There's a few cut up tapes thrown in willy nilly which contributes to the oddness of this album. You could be mistaken for thinking that you're hearing the 'Bismarck' docking at Kiel.

Honestly... 'Psychedelic Underground' sounds like a cow in labour. You're ears will be melted off by this buttock clenching squonck fest. The palms of my hands were bleeding by the time I got through this - after my fists clenched tighter and tighter until my knuckles were a shade of ghastly white...

And yet... Each time I hear this album something new pops out. Amidst the dodgy production and lack of musicianship, there's something that clicks. Something tribal, something pure, something beautiful in the ugliest of ways.

Close to a 4 star - but reason dictates a 3.

Review by ZowieZiggy
1 stars I guess that there are two ways to consider this album. The first one like some fellow colleagues mentioned is to grant this album because of its landmark for the Kraut genre. But IMHHO, the music performed was just avant-garde and unbearable for human ears.

Just try and listen to the whole "Ein wunderhubsches Madchen Traumt von Sandosa" (even the title of this song is quite an article on its own).

The sound which has to be endured during this seventeen minutes "epic" is even more garage oriented than most punk bands have ever produced. This is a total disaster: a huge waste of time to listen to this sort of track (let's be honest: one can't talk about music here). I was sooooo happy when this joke came to an end.

Each of the qualities mentioned above also applies to the short "Kaskados Minnelied". One chord wonder (?); but without the guts of the later "Adverts".

To listen to this album in a row is a nice little nightmare. Should I recommend trying and enduring this? Or just tell you to run away as fast as you can? I guess that the second option is the only choice. When I will add that the sound is awful, is there one SINGLE reason to like this album?

IMHHO: no. Not a single one. Unless being under "influence". But then seriously. Hype and joke: yes! Star rating: one. Overall feeling: ugly and repetitive to death. Gosh!

Review by Neu!mann
2 stars I think a new rating benchmark needs to be established for the debut Amon Düül album. Instead of the usual stars, how about five energy-sucking black holes, denoting an absolutely essential but altogether unlistenable Prog Rock experience?

The First Amon Düül didn't even consider themselves a musical group. They were all simply fellow travelers in the same radical-political Munich commune, who liked to make a lot of noise together...maybe too much, considering their association with the Baader- Meinhof Gang. Eight credited musicians (and I use the term very loosely) were involved in this mess, the end result of a single 1968 jam that provided enough material for two other albums as well, one of them a double disc.

The multitude of talent (and I use the term even more loosely) sounds impressive until you realize six of them, including '60s sex kitten Uschi Obermaier, were strictly amateur drummers, flailing away on an assortment of toms, bongos, and at least one blacksmith's anvil (!) So it's hardly surprising to hear the album open with an unrelenting 17-minute percussion orgy, setting the mood for an album-long train wreck of Neanderthal grooves and haphazard edits, with lots of Dionysian pounding and shouting.

Half the track titles reference the Sandoz Laboratories, manufacturers of the first LSD, making the album more of a stoner homage to altered consciousness than a commercial music venture. In its own crude way the effort was more honest and effective than the later Ash Ra Tempel / Timothy Leary acid epiphany of "Seven Up", with a certain integrity all its own: totally primitive to be sure, but still intact. The raw, lo-fi sound of the LP is part of its enduring mystique, although the 'Underground' of the title might have been literal: it sounds like the microphones were buried under several feet of loose clay.

If you subscribe to the Philosophy of the World articulated by The Shaggs (see my PA avatar) you'll know that technical ability isn't always a requirement for musical expression. In other words, it's sometimes what you say, not how you say it, and the message here was one of pure anti-establishment vitality (i.e. noise).

In its own barbaric way it's an astonishing document, almost singlehandedly birthing the entire Krautrock scene. But that doesn't make the album any easier to sit through. And because my innovative gravity-well rating idea will probably never fly, I'm leaning toward a more wishy-washy compromise: two conservative but entirely respectable stars, for diehard Krautrock scholars and other masochists.

Review by siLLy puPPy
3 stars The 60s was a time for extremism and radical experimentation and nowhere was this more true than in the political communes of the world where kindred souls tuned out, dropped out and hooked up with like-minded individuals where they could nurture a new form of community. While the hippie movement was taking over the streets of places like San Francisco in 1967 as the Summer of Love captured the world's gaze, so too was a similar movement gestating in the Teutonic lands of southern Germany. In the very same year a radical commune formed in Munich and named themselves after the Egyptian Sun God - AMON. Seeking to distance themselves from their Germanic heritage, the commune attached the fictitious secondary DUUL to the end and thus a new collective of was born.

While born out of the student movement, the members of AMON DUUL focused on their musical interests and set out to create a new freeform style of rock that was intensely psychedelic in nature but much less structured than their Anglo contemporaries such as Pink Floyd or the pop oriented sounds of the US emanating from the likes of Jefferson Airplane or The Doors. AMON DUUL initially began as a revolving door collective where anybody could join and jam with the lengthy freeform compositions that would spontaneously ooze from all the participating members. Although led by Ulrich Leopold and his brother Peter, the true nature of the frenetic free-for-all style of which would later be dubbed Krautrock was the epitome of a true musical democracy where no one instrument stole the thunder of another.

The nature of the loosey-goosy stylistic approach of musical composition immediately led to the more musically inclined members to quickly splinter off and create the more popular shoot-off called Amon Duul II. Both AMON DUUL and the second version that would capture the world's attention for their more accomplished recordings released their debut albums in 1969. Amon Duul II with their infamous "Phallus Dei" and the original band from whence they were spawned released their first album in the form of PSYCHEDELIC UNDERGROUND which many claim to be the very first Krautrock album that launched the entire movement although it could be argued that bands such as Sweden's Pärson Sound were on the same wavelength and the similarity of the freeform avant-garde jam sessions was more of a product of the entire region during the tumultuous electrically charged latter half of the 60s.

PSYCHEDELIC UNDERGROUND very much lives up to its title. The members that participated in the recording numbered seven with the typical rock setup of guitar, bass, drum, piano and drums with extra percussion provided in the form of congas and maracas. "Ein Wunderhübsches Mädchen Träumt von Sandosa (A Wonderfully Pretty Girl Dreams of Sandosa)" opens the album and provides half of the musical experience of the entire album with a steady stream of tribal drumming, looped guitar riffs and frantic nonsensical vocalizations. The track comes off as some sort of freeform mantra and transcendental meditative zoning out session that for many will be unbearable as the emphasis is on a receptive and hypnotic effect showcasing passion and attitudnal delivery over compositional prowess.

While the rest of the tracks clock in at much shorter length, they basically free flow as if they thread the continuity of the opening track with a rather predictable outcome that finds the steady rhythmic drive and looped melodic limitations skating along for the majority of the album. Only the finale "Bitterlings Verwandlung (Bitterling's Transformation)"displays any sort of deviation from the regularly scheduled program with classical samplings as well as production techniques like backmasking incorporated. In fact the last track is really the only one that feels like a studio track while the rest of them feel more like spontaneous live jamming sessions that were most likely fueled by mind-altering substances which allowed the inner demons to be exorcised into submission.

The development of two separate AMON DUUL bands that splintered and went on their own trajectories is an interesting case study for sure but i will have to join the ranks of the rest of the world in finding the original AMON DUUL to be vastly inferior to the more adventurous and disciplined musical output of the second version, however this feels like Krautrock at its most unadulterated and purest form which and an interesting musical experience that actually allows the listener to be transported back into the time and place and feel like a fly on the wall taking it in despite its clear disregard of any sort of musical standards. For that reason i find PSYCHEDELIC UNDERGROUND to be quite a veritable release although i admit that this is more of a collectible and only reserved for those rare moments when i feel like hearing primal freeform psychedelia from the era. While AMON DUUL will forever remain in the shadow of the Amon Duul II that followed, they nevertheless offered a unique insight into the German musical collectives that launched an entire subgenere within the world of psychedelic rock.

Latest members reviews

2 stars Ever wondered what music sounds like played by people that can't play any instruments and don't know how to write a song? If you have then satisfy your curiosity with a terribly done album known as "Psychedelic Underground" There is literally no point in doing a track by track analysis, every ... (read more)

Report this review (#2486299) | Posted by Beautiful Scarlet | Sunday, December 20, 2020 | Review Permanlink

2 stars I think that he(it) is time(weather) to découter with attention this album, although worship(cult). Amon Düül ets separated from his(her) best musicians, here there is only a foundation of the group, but those this does not know how to play really. The titles(securities) are psychedelic, has the ... (read more)

Report this review (#226721) | Posted by Discographia | Tuesday, July 14, 2009 | Review Permanlink

1 stars This is one of those records that do not have the merit in the music itself but in the role it played those days and in future developements of the band and he genre. As some people say, this album is the start point of the so called krautrock movement, and this record captures, in a very primit ... (read more)

Report this review (#128040) | Posted by victor77 | Tuesday, July 10, 2007 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Amon Düüll's first incarnation as an important psychedelic jam band is quite uncommercial and totally unlistenable. At the time Amon Düüll was political-musical community that broke out when members were divided between music and politics. The music-oriented members when out to form what would la ... (read more)

Report this review (#113600) | Posted by samhob | Monday, February 26, 2007 | Review Permanlink

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