Results 1 to 19 of 19

Thread: Featured album: Guru Guru - UFO

  1. #1
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    in a cosmic jazzy-groove around Brussels
    Posts
    4,689

    Featured album: Guru Guru - UFO

    http://www.progarchives.com/progress...30112016_r.jpg


    Guru Guru - UFO

    guru.jpg

    Tracks Listing:
    1. Stone In (5:43)
    2. Girl Call (6:21)
    3. Next Time See You At The Dalai Lhama (5:59)
    4. Ufo (10:25)
    5. Der LSD / Marsch (8:28)

    Line-up:
    - Ax Genrich / guitar, Fx
    - Uli Trepte / bass, electronics
    - Mani Neumeier / electric drums, cymbal, gong, electronics, tape, vocals


    Here is what Aussie-Byrd-Brother (AKA Michael H) had to say about it on ProgArchives
    The Guru Guru lessen - never know what to expect. Their debut `UFO' sees the German Krautrock band at this early stage playing in a much more free and experimental form than later albums, with hypnotic, maddening and stormy atmospheres of hard deep psychedelic ambient menace and cosmic unhinged trippiness. Don't expect the aggressive Hendrix-like guitar attacks of `Hinten', the comical boogie/doo-wop bent pop of the self-titled album or the acoustic/jazz-rock fusion of `Dance of the Flames', this album heads in a much darker direction, and the murky production gives the whole album a truly hazy and wasted sound. I came to this album after several of their other releases, and what a shock it was when I first heard it! Definitely not a case of love at first listen, rather an appreciation that rapidly grew after several exhausting and hard-going plays.

    `Stone In' bites at the listener right from the start, with it's snarling aggressive feedback drenched in waves of reverb and long drawn out atonal droning electric soloing. But it's Guru Guru mainman Mani's maniacal drumming that drifts from `Saucerful Of Secrets' repetitive hypnotic build to out of control chaos, dictating the dark rumbling grooves and schizophrenic changes in direction. Intimidating ground-rumbling bass shatters everything in it's path, incomprehensible moaning crying vocals try to break through to the surface, only to be swallowed almost completely by the whirlwind of searing noise.

    `Girl Call' adds an overwhelming sense of tension and danger, scratching at your nerves with it's brooding heaviness. The piece nears early Hawkwind levels of deep space menace and sonic torture, with bowel-rupturing monotonous plodding bass, pounding bashing drums, violent serrated electric guitar slices and crying howls from the dark that try to punch though. It builds to an almighty rising crescendo of noise before suddenly twisting into a dark groove at about the 4:20 mark, which will have you drowsily nodding your head in appreciation. There's a thrashing tormented tuneless guitar wail before `Next Time...' cuts in abruptly with it's clanging metallic Arabic patterns and suffocating oppressive percussion that speeds up, slows down, round and around, whipping the piece into a sludgy cult-like trance.

    `UFO' presents the band as true ambient tyrants, the slowly unfolding experimental piece a blur of rising feedback tension, increases and drops in electronic pitches, klaxon alarms and electric pulses. More of a sound collage of impossibly heavy sonic textures and splintering psychedelic noise than even close to resembling an actual tune, and easily the most challenging and hard-going piece on the album that's sure to test some listeners.

    The plodding `Der LSD March' opens as a morbid shuffle that blends together disorientating swirling patterns of darting stoned off-key flute and anarchic drum soloing, before tearing into an almost joyous guitar freak-out with pumping bass finale, plus some slight jazzy textures right at the end. It all ends a little too quickly, but wraps the album in an almost serene come-down manner to ease the listener back to reality as gently as possible.

    Perhaps potential fans who've found the band's trademark humour a little grating on other albums will find much to prefer here. Other than the occasional spoken word fragment, it's entirely instrumental which perfectly allows to album to cast its hypnotic spell over listeners without words to break up that momentum and atmosphere.

    Please don't judge this album based on one listen. I was immensely let down on my initial play, disappointed to find the band's usual deep grooves and more upbeat manic energy almost entirely missing. Yet you'll soon discover those elements worked into the mix in different ways, usually in a more thoughtful, moody and even slightly unsettling manner. It's frequently howling, tormenting and truly takes the listener to the breaking point.

    If you don't mind being swept along on a dark sonic trip for 37 minutes, then dumped back to Earth at the end as shattered remains once in a while, you'll find `UFO' a thoroughly intoxicating, moving and unforgettable experience! Highly recommended.




    Not on the album (but on Hinten), but in the same vein.
    Last edited by Trane; 1 Week Ago at 12:16 PM.
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

  2. #2
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Hudson Valley, NY
    Posts
    5,378
    Yes! Love it. Been a fairly recent (5 years or so?) discovery for me.
    If it isn't Krautrock, it's krap.

    "And it's only the giving
    That makes you what you are" - Ian Anderson

  3. #3
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Fluffy Cloud
    Posts
    3,999
    I love the first three Guru Guru albums , all of which feature the Mani/Axel/Uli lineup.
    Nothing after that period comes even close for me by the band.
    I especially like the three song live performance by this trio on the Radio Bremen recordings from the high school gymnasium.

    The only things that come close for me are Axel’s first two ‘solo’ releases, ‘Psychedelic Guitar’ and especially the second, ‘Wave Cut’. At times, at their best, these two get close to the Guru Guru 1971 feel.....
    Steve F.

    www.waysidemusic.com
    www.cuneiformrecords.com

    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

    Any time any one speaks to me about any musical project, the one absolute given is "it will not make big money". [tip of the hat to HK]

    "Death to false 'support the scene' prog!"

    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

  4. #4
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    in a cosmic jazzy-groove around Brussels
    Posts
    4,689
    I'm also an original trio fan (well not sure Ax was the original guitarist), and nothing compares to those three.

    Only saw (twice) Guru in the 00's and Mani was still on fire.


    Quote Originally Posted by Steve F. View Post
    The only things that come close for me are Axel’s first two ‘solo’ releases, ‘Psychedelic Guitar’ and especially the second, ‘Wave Cut’. At times, at their best, these two get close to the Guru Guru 1971 feel.....
    Thanks for the heads up. I'll check it out.

    On a very different note, I love Uli Trepte's Move Groove (+/- same years, give a couple)
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

  5. #5
    Subterranean Tapir Hobo Chang Ba's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Frownland
    Posts
    1,392
    My favorite is Kanguru, but this is a very comfortable second. I agree that this original lineup that was unmatched in heaviness and psychedelic flair. The associated live albums (Essen 70, Wiesbaden 72, Wiesbaden 73, and Live 71) are basically essential if you like this period of GG (although the sound quality of Essen 70 is suboptimal).
    No humor please, we're skittish.

    Never let good music get in the way of making a profit.

  6. #6
    How close in style is this to Hinten, one of the most radical “power trio” albums I have ever heard?
    Confirmed Bachelors: the dramedy hit of 1883...

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve F. View Post
    Axel’s first two ‘solo’ releases, ‘Psychedelic Guitar’ and especially the second, ‘Wave Cut’. At times, at their best, these two get close to the Guru Guru 1971 feel.....
    wow I had no idea...
    Will check these out

  8. #8
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Fluffy Cloud
    Posts
    3,999
    Quote Originally Posted by Hobo Chang Ba View Post
    My favorite is Kanguru, but this is a very comfortable second. I agree that this original lineup that was unmatched in heaviness and psychedelic flair. The associated live albums (Essen 70, Wiesbaden 72, Wiesbaden 73, and Live 71) are basically essential if you like this period of GG (although the sound quality of Essen 70 is suboptimal).
    My fave of the studio albums is Kanguru as well.
    Steve F.

    www.waysidemusic.com
    www.cuneiformrecords.com

    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

    Any time any one speaks to me about any musical project, the one absolute given is "it will not make big money". [tip of the hat to HK]

    "Death to false 'support the scene' prog!"

    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

  9. #9
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Fluffy Cloud
    Posts
    3,999
    Quote Originally Posted by Progbear View Post
    How close in style is this to Hinten, one of the most radical “power trio” albums I have ever heard?
    IMO, all three studio albums are cut from the same cloth. If anything they just each slightly top the previous one.
    Steve F.

    www.waysidemusic.com
    www.cuneiformrecords.com

    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

    Any time any one speaks to me about any musical project, the one absolute given is "it will not make big money". [tip of the hat to HK]

    "Death to false 'support the scene' prog!"

    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Iowa City IA
    Posts
    1,697
    I love the dry, straight hard psych of the first two LPs. Kanguru has some great stuff on it, but already the goofiness in the intros and vocals is creeping in. That's not a bad thing when limited to intros but with every album after (that I have heard, that is; there are a few from the late 70s that I haven't) goofy seems to be more and more of the point of the music. And that was a mistake IMO.

    Of course, they still from time to time came up with some hard space rock tracks that absolutely knock my socks off, like Atommolch from Hey Du!

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by arturs View Post
    I love the dry, straight hard psych of the first two LPs. Kanguru has some great stuff on it, but already the goofiness in the intros and vocals is creeping in. That's not a bad thing when limited to intros but with every album after (that I have heard, that is; there are a few from the late 70s that I haven't) goofy seems to be more and more of the point of the music. And that was a mistake IMO.
    I still recommend Dance of the Flames, which goes off into more of a Mahavishnu-esque fusion direction, though there’s still a little goofiness present (the Dagobert Duck song). And Side 2 of their self-titled fourth delivers the cosmic goods. I get that people don’t like the rather silly A-side, but I dig it, even the Eddie Cochran medley which is totally just blowing off steam. “Whomp-bomp-a-loo-bomp, hit the gong!”

    Of course, they still from time to time came up with some hard space rock tracks that absolutely knock my socks off, like Atommolch from Hey Du!
    “Atommolch” is one of the best tracks of their whole career. A shame it had to come at the end of a deeply substandard album.
    Confirmed Bachelors: the dramedy hit of 1883...

  12. #12
    That's Mr. to you, Sir!! Trane's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    in a cosmic jazzy-groove around Brussels
    Posts
    4,689
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve F. View Post
    IMO, all three studio albums are cut from the same cloth. If anything they just each slightly top the previous one.
    Still think of Kanguru as the weakest of the first three, because the Diddley thing is too present, IMHO, but still an excellent album.

    Quote Originally Posted by arturs View Post
    I love the dry, straight hard psych of the first two LPs. Kanguru has some great stuff on it, but already the goofiness in the intros and vocals is creeping in. That's not a bad thing when limited to intros but with every album after (that I have heard, that is; there are a few from the late 70s that I haven't) goofy seems to be more and more of the point of the music. And that was a mistake IMO.
    Yup, TBH, once Trepte was gone (after Kanguru) the band never recaptured the early psych vibe, even though Ax was still there for both 73 albums, but indeed the German idea of humour in music is not striking much interest with me. Though the s/t album's flipside is ok (not that much a fan of the Elektrolurch), I don't see much to recuperate in those 4th & 5th albums.

    I don't know how early this weird stage giant voodoo thing appeared on stage, but I can't help thinking of Grobschnitt's stage voodoo doll.



    Quote Originally Posted by Progbear View Post
    I still recommend Dance of the Flames, which goes off into more of a Mahavishnu-esque fusion direction, though there’s still a little goofiness present (the Dagobert Duck song). And Side 2 of their self-titled fourth delivers the cosmic goods. I get that people don’t like the rather silly A-side, but I dig it, even the Eddie Cochran medley which is totally just blowing off steam. “Whomp-bomp-a-loo-bomp, hit the gong!”
    I do agree that Flames is quite an improvement on the previous two albums, but we're still a long way from Hinten/UFO. Not that it's a bad thing, though. Too bad it didn't last.
    my music collection increased tenfolds when I switched from drug-addicts to complete nutcases.

  13. #13
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Hudson Valley, NY
    Posts
    5,378
    Has anybody ever been to the Guru Guru Festival in Finkenbach? I have just learned of it from the Krautrock doc (II). I can't believe that its been going on for as long as it has...super cool stuff. The location looks gorgeous and the vibe looks amazing - I'm sure folks like to catch a B-U-Z-Z-Z-Z-ZZZZ there. Mani seems like a great guy.
    If it isn't Krautrock, it's krap.

    "And it's only the giving
    That makes you what you are" - Ian Anderson

  14. #14
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Fluffy Cloud
    Posts
    3,999
    "Dance Of The Flames" is quite good. I just don't like the fact that one of my favorite ever power trios decided to go that route.
    Steve F.

    www.waysidemusic.com
    www.cuneiformrecords.com

    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

    Any time any one speaks to me about any musical project, the one absolute given is "it will not make big money". [tip of the hat to HK]

    "Death to false 'support the scene' prog!"

    please add 'imo' wherever you like, to avoid offending those easily offended.

  15. #15
    Dance of the Flames was the first Guru I got. Purchased for 10 NOK (ca. 1$) at what was practically an indoors scrapyard in Bergen sometime in 1991; a completely soiled vinyl copy sans innersleeve.

    I had a roommate back then who got completely fixated on that loony tune of "Samba das Rosas" and would promptly always pull out the acoustic guitar and start farting about with the song whenever we were drinking and partying. I remember coming to a point where I threatened to crush the already sacked instrument if he didn't leave it alone.

    I then got the s/t (with the Cochran-cover) and deemed it the worst "krautrock" piece I'd ever heard. And so I didn't really regard myself as a fan of the band until I heard UFO on CD several years down the line.

    I've got the vinyl now.
    "Improvisation is not an excuse for musical laziness" - Fred Frith
    "[...] things that we never dreamed of doing in Crimson or in any band that I've been in," - Tony Levin speaking of SGM

  16. #16
    Classic album!
    Macht das ohr auf!

    COSMIC EYE RECORDS

  17. #17
    Punk rock, heavy metal - they didn't need to happen. It's more than 50 years and nothing beats the explosive strength of the first 2 Guru albums.

  18. #18
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Hudson Valley, NY
    Posts
    5,378
    Quote Originally Posted by spacefreak View Post
    Classic album!
    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    Punk rock, heavy metal - they didn't need to happen. It's more than 50 years and nothing beats the explosive strength of the first 2 Guru albums.
    Yeah muthatruckas!!

    Love,
    Ella Guru

  19. #19
    Member Mythos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Wolf City
    Posts
    582
    Never heard of this UFO album, my favorite was Phenomenon, you know, with "Doctor, Doctor" and "Rock Bottom"...

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •