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Harald Grosskopf & Eberhard Kranemann - Krautwerk album review

Krautrock royalty Harald Grosskopf & Eberhard Kranemann make a modern classic

Harald Grosskopf & Eberhard Kranemann - Krautwerk album artwork

There’s some fierce pedigree running amok in this first collaboration between these two German maestros.

Grosskopf first appeared playing drums on Klaus Schulze’s 70s albums including Moondawn and Body Music before joining Manuel Gottsching’s Ash Ra Tempel-succeeding Ashra (appearing on 13 LPs) and releasing several solo albums. Kranemann was an early member of Kraftwerk and Neu! before reinventing himself as Fritz Muller and forming his own band. Both also boast a heap of other collaborations. Working together, the pair show how Krautrock can still be a formidable force with unashamedly lengthy tracks that include Midnight In Dusseldorf Berlin (a shadowy afterdark cruise with scathing guitar), and Happy Blue, combining ethereal melodies with mid-period Can-style disco groove exploring the unknown, Gosskopf lacing Jaki Liebezeit’s minimal drive with his own spin. Buddhatal is a 12-minute beatless drone meditation in deep space, before Be Cool ignites toupee whisking banging techno, napalming the autobahn with cross-panning and scrabbling no wave guitar. All told, a relentlessly exciting or brain-massaging collaboration that can be considered a modern Krautrock classic

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!