Thursday, November 15, 2007

Back a yard

And as you can see I picked up a few things on my travels...

Monday, November 05, 2007

Blogariddims 30 / Rufen Sie mich nicht "kraut" an

My interest in "Kosmische Musik" stems from hearing the cluster and eno lp a few years ago during the preperation that went into the shwantology mixes. This is usually how i find new (new - meaning music i don't know) music, i tend to latch onto something i really like and obsessivly track down any thing related to it. Hence cluster and eno, led me to harmonia, harmonia to neu!, cluster to kluster, kluster to conrad schnitzer, conrad schnitzer to tangerine dream (who i had a ignorant bias againist for years - my loss), tangerine dream to klaus schulze etc etc. Anyone interested in looking deeper will very quickly come across the insestuous relationships between all these different bands and their numerous connections and collaberations. Just one disclaimer about the mix - I don't by any means think this mix represents a definitave look at the genre - it is very much really just what i like - i'm not very intersted in the real prog rock guitar stuff or the kind of folky stuff - the experimental and ambient stuff is much more my cup of tea. There are a few notable artists / albums which I didn't fit onto this mix, that I should mention - Michael Hoenig and his amazing Departure from Northern Wasteland, AR and machines, Deuter (d) and Walter Wegmuller's Tarot, to name a few, will have to wait for next time.

Over the past year Ive been seduced by the golden promise of mp3 mixing software - programs like traktor open up a world where you can choose from a second "virtual" record collection - hours of music I have no hopes of finding in the real world and I would never have heard if not in mp3 format. When I was in the planning stage for this mix I had full intention to only use one deck, for one or two records I had, one cdj for cd's and primary use the mixing software to do most of the mix. As it turned out I ended up not using traktor or any other software at all for this mix - in fact I only use about 4 mp3's in total, played off my Zen. The set up was a highly tradition one of 2 1210's a cdj 800 mk2 and afore mentioned Zen. In the time between thinking about doing the mix and getting round to doing it, it turned out I had tracked down a huge amount of these "really hard to find" records in their physical form (in fact about 75% of the mix is on vinyl). Don't get me wrong - Im not trying to make a point that mp3 mixing software is a bad thing, in fact I think it's great, it's just that in planning the mix I realized that going back to "basics" can sometimes be very rewarding. I ended up not using the cross fader on my mixer at all, instead I used the high, mid and bass eg pots to mix tracks in and out - (thanks god I have a mixer with total kills on the eg pots. Anyone buying a mixer take note - I think it is one of the most important functions in a good mixer.) This is one of the problems I find with mp3 mixing software - the click of a mouse to fade down a eq pot (and is there software that has total eg kills, I guess there must be!) is not the same as the gradual turn of a rotary eq pot on a mixer. The control just isn't there. (Perhaps I should think about setting up my modular to control the eg pots in traktor via midi or just give in and buy ms pinky- but thats for another time) Using just the mixer and decks made for a very tactile experience - reminded me of when I was learning to mix records.


I did a couple of run through's before making this recording (in the days before I recorded it, and after a few weeks of deciding on tunes) which I thought I was happy with but I ended up changing the middle part of the set (Megahertz to UFO) on the day. After I did the initial recording I realized that section just wasn't working. So the mp3 below is a splice of 2 recordings, recorded one right after the other (the section from Megahertz to UFO is the second recording). As this is the 30th blogariddim (well done droid!), the mix is cd length (74 mins) instead of the usual 60.


Blogariddims 30 / Rufen Sie mich nicht "kraut" an - (105mb mp3)

00:00 1 - Gendenkminute - Neu! - Neu! 2 (Brain) 1973
00:00 2 - The Electric Scene / Kinder des Alles II The Cosmic Jokers - Sci Fi Party (Ohr) 1974
00:02 3 - Phaedra - Tangerine Dream - Phaedra (Virgin) 1974
00:04 4 - Rosa - Cluster - Zuckerzeit (Brain) 1974
00:06 5 - In den garten pharaos - Popol Vuh - In den Garten Pharaos (Pilz) 1972
00:09 6 - Boat woman Song - Holger Czukay - Canaxis (Music Factory / Spoon) 1969
00:13 7 - Tone Float - Organization - Tone Float (RCA Victor) 1970
00:14 8 - Suche Libre - Ash Ra Tempel - Schwingungen (Ohr) 1971
00:16 9 - Fly and Collison Over Coma Sola - Tangerine Dream - Alpha Centrui (Ohr) 1971
00:21 10 - Track 2 - Cluster - Cluster 71 (Philips) 1971
00:22 11 - Traumnaceline - Ash Ra Tempel - Ash Ra Tempel - (Ohr) 1970
00:25 12 - Megahertz - Kraftwerk - Kraftwerk 1 (Philips) 1970
00:27 13 - Chamsin Soundtrack-The Marylin Monroe Memorium Church - Amon Duul 2 - Tanz der Lemmige (Liberty) 1971
00:28 14 - Some velvet phasing - Klaus Schulze - Blackdance (Virgin) 1974
00:29 15 - Aumgn - Can - Tago Mago (United Artists) 1971
00:31 16 - Rubycon part 1 - Tangerine Dream - Rubycon (Virgin) 1975
00:32 17 - Krautrock - Conrad Schnitzer - Rot (Private Pressing) 1973
00:35 18 - Setz Gewitter - Klaus Schulze - Irrlicht (Ohr) 1972
00:36 19 - Georgel - Cluster - Cluster 2 (Brain) 1972
00:38 20 - Ufo - Guru Guru - Ufo (Ohr) 1970
00:39 21 - Aqua - Edger Froese - Aqua (Virgin) 1974
00:40 22 - Mountain of Sound - Kraftwerk - Ralf and Florian (Phillips) 1973
00:43 23 - Ich mache einen spiegel (dream part 4) - Popol Vuh Affenstunde (Liberty) 1970
00:44 24 - Birth of liquid plejades - Tangerine Dream Zeit (Ohr) 1972
00:45 25 - Wahnfried 1883 - Klaus Schulze Timewind (Virgin) 1975
00:48 26 - Yeti (Improvisation) - Amon Duul 2 - Yeti (United Artists) 1970
00:52 27 - Km6 - Michael Rother - Katzenmusic (Sky) 1979
00:53 28 - Fauni Gena - Tangerine Dream - Atem (Ohr) 1973
00:54 29 - Ohrwurm - Harmonia - Musik Von (Brain) 1974
00:57 30 - Scarlet score for mescalero - Edger Froese - Stuntman (Virgin) 1979
00:58 31 - One - Cluster and Eno - Cluster and Eno (Sky) 1977
01:01 32 - Mountainside - Cozmic Corridors - Cozmic Corridors (Pyramid) 1974
01:02 33 - Main Title - Tangerine Dream - Sorceror OST (MCA) 1977
01:05 34 - Leb Wohl - Neu! - Neu! 75 (Brain) 1975
01:06 35 - Part1 - Kluster - Eurption - (Private Pressing) 1971

00:00 1 - Gendenkminute - Neu! - Neu! 2 (Brain) 1973
00:00 2 - The Electric Scene / Kinder des Alles II The Cosmic Jokers - Sci Fi Party (Ohr) 1974
00:02 3 - Phaedra - Tangerine Dream - Phaedra (Virgin) 1974
00:04 4 - Rosa - Cluster - Zuckerzeit (Brain) 1974

I start the mix with Neu!'s "minute silence" from Neu!2, closely followed by 2 tracks from the Sci Fi Party LP from the German "super group" The Cosmic Jokers. The story behind how this and the other Cosmic Jokers lp's came into being is quite bizarre and sordid. Check here for more info. The title track from Tangerine Dream's Phaedra lp provides more vibes and backing for cluster's Rosa to fade in. Rosa's taken from cluster's Zuckerzeit, which is the first lp released after Moebius and Roedelius moved out to rural germany to set up their studio (also where / when Music Von Harmonia was recorded with Michael Rother, in fact I think Rother had some hand in the making of Zuckerzeit as well) and has a much more rocky / poppy feel, quite a departure from the first few Cluster / Kluster lp's but for me it's still great (in fact I haven't found a "Cluster" lp I don't like yet, including their much later work)

00:06 5 - In den garten pharaos - Popol Vuh - In den Garten Pharaos (Pilz) 1972
00:09 6 - Boat woman Song - Holger Czukay - Canaxis (Music Factory / Spoon) 1969
00:13 7 - Tone Float - Organization - Tone Float (RCA Victor) 1970
00:14 8 - Suche Libre - Ash Ra Tempel - Schwingungen (Ohr) 1971

I'm a huge fan of Popol Vuh's later work (especially the Herzog soundtrack's) but it's their first two lp's that really do it for me. The incredible "in den Garten Pharaos" sets the stage for Can's Holger Czukay's "Boat Woman Song" from the pre Can LP Canaxis. Recorded in a stolen night in Stockhausen's studio, the lp was a revelation for me the first time I heard it. It's hard to believe it was recorded nearly 40 years ago! The Kraftwerk proto group, Organizations "Tone Float" take over the disintegrating percussion from the Popol Vuh track and pushes forward with more Asian influenced drums. (This is another standout track for me, with the drums reminding me in places of AE's crazed random / not random percussion) Ash Ra temple provide the running atmospherics' and dull tones underneath it all.

00:16 9 - Fly and Collison Over Coma Sola - Tangerine Dream - Alpha Centrui (Ohr) 1971
00:21 10 - Track 2 - Cluster - Cluster 71 (Philips) 1971
00:22 11 - Traumnaceline - Ash Ra Tempel - Ash Ra Tempel - (Ohr) 1970
00:25 12 - Megahertz - Kraftwerk - Kraftwerk 1 (Philips) 1970

The combination of Tangerine Dream and then Cluster takes us to a much noisier place ( i had to stop myself putting more cluster into the mix, this is the second of the five i use), with Traumnaceline from Ash Ra's first LP again providing more vibes and and leading to slightly more musical interlude before the amazing Megahertz from Kraftwerk's Kraftwerk 1, brings the mix back to spacial rumbling and clicky sound experiments.

00:27 13 - Chamsin Soundtrack-The Marylin Monroe Memorium Church - Amon Duul 2 - Tanz der Lemmige (Liberty) 1971
00:28 14 - Some velvet phasing - Klaus Schulze - Blackdance (Virgin) 1974
00:29 15 - Aumgn - Can - Tago Mago (United Artists) 1971
00:31 16 - Rubycon part 1 - Tangerine Dream - Rubycon (Virgin) 1975

There's quite a lot of the Amon Duul 2 stuff that doesn't really interest me, they tend to go off on a proggy tangent a little too often for my liking. For me when they dwell on the improvised is when i get interested, as they do in this section of Tanz Der Lemmige. Coming up out of the Amon Duul 2 is a phasing delight, as the title suggests from Klaus Schulze. The sheer number of his albums can be quite intimidating - Id recommend the anything from 1972 up to 1979. After a lot of debating on what Can track to use in the mix, i thought for a long time it would be one of the tracks off Future Days but ended up with Aumgn for Tago Mago. "The Dream" add string lines and hints of synth appagios from part 1 of 1975's Rubycon (which i changed at the last minute from part 2)

00:32 17 - Krautrock - Conrad Schnitzer - Rot (Private Pressing) 1973
00:35 18 - Setz Gewitter - Klaus Schulze - Irrlicht (Ohr) 1972
00:36 19 - Georgel - Cluster - Cluster 2 (Brain) 1972
00:38 20 - Ufo - Guru Guru - Ufo (Ohr) 1970


So, was it Conrad Schnitzer that coined the term "krautrock" with this track from his Rot lp? The track it's self is a wonderful journey of rolling drum lines and shifting bass and synth lines that sound quite modern. Electrical interference from Klaus Schulze is taken over by deep droning from Cluster leading into the title track from Guru Guru's UFO. Ive been told i should give Guru Guru more of a chance, having listened to only a few of there lp's. i only really got this album for the UFO track itself, but Ive been assured that more investigation into their back catalogue is worth it.


00:39 21 - Aqua - Edger Froese - Aqua (Virgin) 1974
00:40 22 - Mountain of Sound - Kraftwerk - Ralf and Florian (Phillips) 1973
00:43 23 - Ich mache einen spiegel (dream part 4) - Popol Vuh Affenstunde (Liberty) 1970
00:44 24 - Birth of liquid plejades - Tangerine Dream Zeit (Ohr) 1972


Edger Froese uses a unnamed synth to create the water simulations on Aqua, which is closely followed by the beautiful and truly musical Mountain of Sound from Kraftwerk. My second fav Popol Vuh lp gives this section it's rotating ambient machine noises which lays a coarse foundation for the incredible Birth of Liquid Plejades from Tangerine Dream. This was my first Tangerine Dream LP (after my wrongly deciding they weren't for me - see above) and i was amazed by it - also managed to pick up a 2x LP original copy of it for a fiver (thank you ebay) - there's a great sense of space (room, not cosmic) in this track and i love the droning strings.

00:45 25 - Wahnfried 1883 - Klaus Schulze Timewind (Virgin) 1975
00:48 26 - Yeti (Improvisation) - Amon Duul 2 - Yeti (United Artists) 1970
00:52 27 - Km6 - Michael Rother - Katzenmusic (Sky) 1979
00:53 28 - Fauni Gena - Tangerine Dream - Atem (Ohr) 1973


Wahnfried 1883 comes up out of the TD - the Vangelis like strings - and i mess around with the eq's of both for a while, while the Amon Duul 2 gives the only recognizable guitar to the mix - again this is one of their improv pieces. Next up is a track from Michael Rother's Katzenmusic - the LP is not his best work by any stretch but it has it's moments - km6 being the best one. Atem is another one of my Favourite TD albums (i think i like Zeit just a little more) Im really into the sampled / simulated wild life at the beginning of Fauni Gena - it set's up the track beautifully. (Have to find this on vinyl!)

00:54 29 - Ohrwurm - Harmonia - Musik Von (Brain) 1974
00:57 30 - Scarlet score for mescalero - Edger Froese - Stuntman (Virgin) 1979
00:58 31 - One - Cluster and Eno - Cluster and Eno (Sky) 1977
01:01 32 - Mountainside - Cozmic Corridors - Cozmic Corridors (Pyramid) 1974


A regret i have about this mix is not getting any music from Tracks and Traces (the Harmonia / Eno LP) in but as i said before there is probably enough Kluster / Harmonia etc in here already. Ohrwurm from Music Von Harmonia comes out of the TD with it's sickly circular guitar. Despite the dodgy covers of his albums (ages is particularly nice!), Edger Froese's output throughout the 70's was stellar, as Scarlet score for mescalero from his 1979 LP stuntman proves. Out / into that goes the Asian influenced One from the Cluster and Eno album, and i end this section with a Cozmic Corridors track, from their self titled LP. I have no idea who they are or if they have any other albums after this one - anyone know anything about these guys?

01:02 33 - Main Title - Tangerine Dream - Sorceror OST (MCA) 1977
01:05 34 - Leb Wohl - Neu! - Neu! 75 (Brain) 1975
01:06 35 - Part1 - Kluster - Eurption - (Private Pressing) 1971


Tangerine dream started their sound tracking career with the score for this William Friedkin film (the film he made after The Exorcist) - it's pretty much what you'd expect. I finish up kind of where i started with a Neu! track from the Neu!75 LP. Again it's one of there ambient pieces, field recordings and floating piano with groaning vocals over it all. Kluster fade / eq in and out up to nearly the end.