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↑ Amon Düül II — Only Human (1978) [Reissue 1991]

Amon Düül II — Only Human (1978) [Reissue 1991]

Germany     Amon Düül II — Only Human (1978) [Reissue 1991]
Location: Munich, Germany
Genre: Progressive/Krautrock
Album release: 1978 / 1991
Record Label: Castle Communications
N°: (CLC 5022)
Duration:     33:56
Tracks:
01. Another Morning     4:05
02. Don't Turn Too Stone     3:57
03. Kirk Morgan     3:22
04. Spaniards & Spacemen     5:51
05. Kismet     7:59
06. Pharao     4:47
07. Ruby Lane     3:55
Line–up / Musicians:
≡   Klaus Ebert / bass, acoustic guitar, vocals
≡   Chris Karrer / acoustic & electric guitars, violin, Soprano sax, vocals
≡   Peter Leopold / drums
≡   Stefan Zauner / keyboards, acoustic & electric guitars, vocals
•   Amon Düül II was born of an artistic and political community called Amon Düül (which recorded during the late sixties a long live session made around collective and free musical improvisations). The band emerged from the underground German rock scene with a very original and eccentric album called "Phallus Dei" (1969). Only Human (1978) is way better than people give it credit for. Granted, it does not sound like Phallus Dei at all, but that doesn't make it bad, just different. What we have here is a band stretching out to encompass the style of the times, while adding its own unique flavor. As such, Only Human shows strong Disco influences, often incorporating elements from World Music. Spaniards & Spacemen is a delightful highlight, fusing flamenco guitar with cutting edge electronic dance music. Kismet is also wonderful, with a distinct Middle East flavor. So if you're open minded and not averse to a little Disco, give Only Human a listen.
•   The other Amon Düül II album in my collection is 1978’s Only Human. This pressing is indeed from 1978, and the cover has suffered a bit of wear and tear over the past 35 years. Even so, the vinyl itself is in absolutely pristine condition.
•   Only Human is not generally held in the highest esteem among Amon Düül II fans, and it’s not hard to see why. The record strays pretty far from the inventive, psychedelic sound the group is known for. To me, it feels like an attempt at a pop record, verging very much into disco territory at times. The vocalists switch off on every song, and there are a few decent guitar solos here and there, but I’d say that 70% of the album is not extraordinarily compelling.
•   There were two tracks that I did really enjoy. The first was “Spaniards & Spacemen”, which closes side A. This is a ridiculously dance–able instrumental electronic track, carried by a sweet 8–bit sounding synth line. The song falls into a fast–paced Spanish–style guitar part in the middle, which I guess has something to do with the song title.
•   The second track that stood out was “Kismet”, the opener to side B. There are a lot of interesting transitions in this song, which serve to assure the listener that, yes, they are actually listening to Amon Düül II. There are several guitar lines throughout the track which hooked me. At one point, a flurry of acoustic picking brought early Genesis to mind. And I dare you to go listen to the segment between 4:05–4:30 and tell me that it doesn’t sound waaaay too similar to a particular Opeth snippet that I’m having trouble identifying at the moment.
•   I guess that’s really all I have to say about Only Human. It’s not a bad album at all, but it pales in comparison to their other work, including Yeti. :: http://sverddans.com/
Band members:
≡   Chris Karrer — violin, guitars, saxophone, vocals (1969–1981)
≡   John Weinzierl — guitar, bass, vocals (1969–1977)
≡   Falk Rogner — organ, synthesizer, electronics (1969–1971, 1972–1975, 1981)
≡   Renate Knaup — vocals, tambourine (1969–1970, 1972–1975, 1981)
≡   Dieter Serfas — drums (1969)
≡   Peter Leopold — drums, percussion (1969–1972, 1973–1979)
≡   Christian "Shrat" Thierfeld — bongos, vocals, violin (1969–1970)
≡   Dave Anderson — bass (1969–1970)
≡   Lothar Meid — bass, vocals (1971–1973, 1974)
≡   Karl–Heinz Hausmann — keyboards, organ, electronics (1971–1972)
≡   Danny Fichelscher — drums, percussion, guitar (1972, 1981)
≡   Robby Heibl — bass, guitar, violin, vocals (1973, 1975)
≡   Nando Tischer — guitar, vocals (1975)
≡   Klaus Ebert — guitar, bass, vocals (1976–1979)
≡   Stefan Zauner — keyboards, synthesizer, vocals (1976–1979)
≡   Jörg Evers — bass, guitar, synthesizer (1981)
Website: http://www.amonduul.de/intro.html
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↑ Amon Düül II — Only Human (1978) [Reissue 1991]

 

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