lunes, 19 de enero de 2015

Faust - Faust

In 1969, German record producer Uwe Nettelbeck was given the task of finding Germanys version of The Beatles, but for electronic music. The record company, Polydor, must have had no fucking idea what they got themselves in to with Faust. Faust were not equatable to The Beatles in any way imaginable. Faust were experimental musicians willing to break down any traditional ideas of rock music and play music they wanted to play, and it seems everyone knew this except Polydor (This 2009 BBC4 documentary 'Krautrock: The Rebirth of Germany' is well worth a watch for a pretty great history of krautrock).

Faust's 1971 self titled debut is one of the ultimate deconstructions of rock music ever recorded. The border between avant garde and rock music is pushed on this album, with nothing on this record sounding like anything before it, and certainly not like any British of American rock music. Faust had torn apart rock music, and glued it back together with an adhesive made of surrealist electronics.

Within the first minute of the opening track, Faust have already literally torn apart rock and roll, by playing fractions of The Rolling Stone's 'Satisfaction' and The Beatles' 'All You Need Is Love', and drowning them in electronics (almost laughing in the face of their recording contract only coming in to existence because of a search for The Beatles of electronic music). As old mate Scaruffi points out that British rock and roll was just American rock and roll repackaged for a different audience, Faust are essentially throwing out the old and coming in with the new (as practically every krautrock group did, which is probably the only link between any of them). On this track a Frank Zappa influence can firmly be heard. But where Zappa had a penchant for satire and not taking himself too seriously, Faust replace that with electronics and musique concrete. Piano, drums, and horns then join for a jam, with the horns taking over the roll of guitar in traditional rock music, eventually being joined by loud distorted guitar, which then plays it all again in a crazy psychedelic jam. The surrealism continues with a strange German conversation being dropped in the middle of the music. Their twisted take on minimalism is one that, even for krautrock, is out there.

Meadow Meal follows, which opens with what sounds like a duet of piano and a flute made out of a rusted pipe, one of many odd sounds. The musique concrete continues over these quirkly piano and percussion lines for a little while, until the haunting horns cut everything out, and the 'interesting' lyrics (me is a meadow meal / and the guess I get it / and the gate I get it / and the game I get it) sung so over a instrumental track which just cries of helplessness. The jam that follows it is easily the best part of the album, and the most 'rock' like thing on the album, which is saying a LOT. A huge storm over a powerful organ finishes the track, one of the few nods to classical music.

A colossal five minute jam opens Miss Fortune, one which is firmly European in mentality, and free formed rather than a progressive rock jam in a British style. It slowly morphs in to a voice chanting over a sombre piano ballad, before forming once again in to another colossal jam between piano, drums, and electronics. The album closes with a strangely haunting and surprisingly poetic little bunch of lyrics (Are we supposed to be / or not to be / said the angel / to the queen) over a simple folky guitar, not the end anyone would have expected, but after listening for the first 30 minutes, expecting anything isn't a good idea.

The surrealist collage that is Faust's debut album is one that is not beautiful in the traditional sense. And, as is the spirit of krautrock, that is the point of it. This is not rock and roll, this is not blues, this is not classical. Krautrock was made by German artists that were sick of the old way of thinking, and in the late 60s and early 70s, created this abstract, free formed music which is totally of themselves. This album is certainly not for everyone, but if you want to listen to an important point of rock music, then this is certainly one of them. Strap yourself in and enjoy.


Track list:

1. Why Don't You Eat Carrots (9:35)
2. Meadow Meal (8:05)
3. Miss Fortune (16:35)


320 kbps mp3 - Germany - 1971


omg more english! I wish I could read Spanish it looks so cool with upside down question marks

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