Brockmann // Bargmann - Licht album review

Berlin duo sculpt a modern Krautrock classic

Brockmann // Bargmann - Licht album artwork

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Somewhat recalling Fripp and Eno’s spontaneous mid-70s live ejaculations, guitarist Franz Bargmann and keyboardist Timm Brockmann (founder members of Berlin trio Camera) decided to mate their guitars, pianos and analogue synths with no preproduction and see what happened. The liaison paid off as Bargmann (currently with Michael Rother’s live band) strikes up guitar reveries that evoke Frippatronics and Cluster, yet also veer into the deeply textured reveries pioneered by New York’s iconoclastic Loren Connors, all set against Brockmann’s spectral dream colours. While Softarps and Prisma are immensely soothing, the 10-minute Schatten whips up a searing behemoth of a space jam reminiscent of early Amon Duul II, bolstered by Automat drummer Achim Farber’s canyon-demolishing bombardment. The motorik groove underpins the sleek cruise of Horizont, and Eurodisco even exposes itself on the cheeky Muezzin, but it’s when the pair dispense with beats in favour of their hauntingly celestial out‑of-body excursions that the real magic sparks. Watch out for trick closer Hyper which, after falling silent for 15 minutes, crashes back in for a final lap with all guns blazing.

Kris Needs

Kris Needs is a British journalist and author, known for writings on music from the 1970s onwards. Previously secretary of the Mott The Hoople fan club, he became editor of ZigZag in 1977 and has written biographies of stars including Primal Scream, Joe Strummer and Keith Richards. He's also written for MOJO, Record Collector, Classic Rock, Prog, Electronic Sound, Vive Le Rock and Shindig!