Psychedelic Classics revisited: 1971

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The self-titled debut from the Berlin based Ash Ra Tempel marked a new era in music known as Krautrock. They created music that was outside the conventional framework Taking LSD and recording improvisational jams. Krautrock started in Germany in 1969 inspired by the space jams of early Pink Floyd, Hawkwind and the improvisational whims of American west coast psych like The Grateful Dead. Krautrock features long improvisational experimental rock integrating newly developed synthesizers FXs. The music has long improvised leads, sections of purely ambient synth, blazing noisy experimental sounds, space rock, blues based psych were all included often in one 25 minutes song. This music is darker and more experimental then anything that had come before it.

“Amboss” starts with ambient synth and keyboards, harmonic relaxing and foreboding sounds lead the listener into the song. The drums pick up and distorted guitars come into view creating a sense of chaos like flames in the wind. Psychedelic guitar leads reveal themselves and fill the space with long solos. It all breaks down into subtle experimental sounds for a few minutes then kicks into a heavy fast energized lead guitar solo the likes of which we recognize today thanks to these krautrockers.  The song seems to always find a new piece of territory to explore, the sense of exploration and experimentation is infectious.

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“Traummaschine” is much like its predecessor with ambient synth and echoing humming tones taking a trip into relaxation station. Strange echoes repeating subtle percussion slowly sweeps into the mix until the listener is submerged in a beautiful and powerful rock guitar solo with over the top echo. A yell carriers down an endless cavern into a cosmic void which breaks the guitar and steers the ship back into deep space synthesis. A deep echoing guitar fills the void going sky high bliss filled leads giving nods to Pink Floyd and laying the foundation of future bands like Acid Mothers Temple.

Article written by: Temple Rose

Nathan Rose is a professional writer and musician in the band Black Satori (https://blacksatori.wordpress.com).  He also blogs at https://psychrock.wordpress.com, https://transpersonalspirit.wordpress.com. He writes about music, science, psychology, yoga and holistic health; currently writing for a Minneapolis based essential oil company.