Tag Archives: Krautrock


Self-Titled, 1972

Two days in a row — let’s keep the ball rolling. Perhaps the greatest compliment you can pay any artist is to call their work “timeless.” Since we’re on the topic of Krautrock, help yourself to some classic Neu! today: same bat-time, same bat-country as Can. Here we have what may be the finest example of Motorik drumming in the history of music or drumming: a taut 4/4 timekeeper so cool it actually becomes the song — everything else is just well-executed window dressing. The last 40 years of popular music have conditioned us to the effect, but prior to the era it was rare to hear a rock sound so driven, so bloody-minded, so precise. These 10 minutes pass quickly; this record just turned 42. And in related news: time flies.

[audio https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/14312140/01%20Hallogallo.mp3]


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Tago Mago, 1971

So this is the New Year! Let’s make a deal: if I resolve to be a little more consistent about posting to TBSYHAD (5 songs a week, like I told myself in the beginning), will you resolve to check the site more often? Really? You will? As a sign of your loyalty, will you also promise to listen to “Halleluhwah” in its entirety today? I’m not gonna ask that you stay seated the entire time — it’s cool if you need to get up to do the dishes or something. I mean, 19 minutes … that’s about how long it takes to do dishes anyway. I promise it’ll be worth it. I was reminded recently how much I love this band — specifically for this album and Ege Bamyasi — when I heard the spooky “Vitamin C” over the opening moments of Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice. “Halleluhwah” captures a similar anxious groove, then stretches it beyond all reasonable measure.

[audio https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/14312140/04%20Halleluhwah.mp3]


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The Inheritors, 2013

James Holden’s The Inheritors was one of the most fascinating records I heard in 2013. By turns inventive, engaging and exhausting, it has also proven to be one of the hardest to shake. Long a respected electronic musician, The Inheritors represents a foray into more organic instrumentation for Holden. The net effect is something akin to the relentless attack of the feistiest krautrock, with all the experimentation and none of the traditional rock signifiers. Shimmering and explosive, “Renata” is the closest the record has to a traditional four-on-the-floor stomper. And yet even at its most conventional, with all of the build-ups and breakdowns, “Renata” can wear you out. As the album title alludes, this is music willing to outlast its audience in every sense of the word.

[audio https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/14312140/03%20Renata.m4a]


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“Fuzzy Reactor”

Boris & Michio Kurihara
Rainbow, 2007

What to say about “Fuzzy Reactor” that can’t already be explained by that title? It sounds like what it is: a swirling, psychedelic jam with a krautrock engine. This is my favorite track off “Rainbow,” the collaborative album from experimental Japanese band Boris and guitarist Michio Kurihara. Like the best ambient/incidental music, it has the power to make you forget you’re listening.

[audio https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/14312140/07%20Fuzzy%20Reactor.m4a]


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