Thursday, 14 June 2018

Günter Schickert "Labyrinth" 2018 Kraut Rock,Experimental,Electronic,Berlin School


Günter Schickert  "Labyrinth" 2018 Kraut Rock,Experimental,Electronic,Berlin School
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Labyrinth is his first solo album to be released on vinyl format since 1983`s Kinder In Der Wildnis. It is a record that stands for versatility, where genres do not matter, soundscapes or life situations take over, song-writing emotions pop out, handing out a spectrum of surprises to the listener. You may find yourself flying low along steep cliffs and with a blink of eye you are thrown into a Middle Eastern scenery. 

The album is divided into two parts, two different production bulks and periods of Günther Schickert’s life. 
Side A features a selection of tracks recorded in 1996, appearing on the 2012 album HaHeHiHo, released via Pittsburgh based VCO Recordings, on a limited press of 100 units, tape format only. We felt that the visionary and emotional richness of these pieces deserved the vinyl format and a chance to reach to a wider audience. 
The Raga-inspired “Morning” opens Labyrinth with exotic charm and bitter-sweet nostalgia. “Sieben” kicks off with the same guitar scales of the previous theme, before the motorised progressions of a Korg MS-20 synth surprisingly storm in, carrying along an intersecting multitude of filters and sharp guitar effects, flowing into an epic, paradisiac ending. “Ninja Schwert” remains on astral dimensions, it is a struggle of cosmic forces, where the steady ride of a pounding beat gets embraced by different guitar layers and analogue electronic filtering. The side closes up with “HaHeHiHo”, a slow ballad featuring Mr. Schickert on vocals, guitar, bass guitar and drum machine - an example of simple, stripped down yet gifted songwriting that is capable to reach the heart of the listener. 

Side B contains material produced between 2007 and today. The intricate, bewildering “Tsunami” shows the multiinstrumental and recording abilities of Günter Schickert: a field-recorded storm with mesmerising powers, a peculiar 
progressive approach to guitar playing. Mysterious sinister spirits and sounds are emerging and the feeling of being lost in a pleasant trance arises. In contrast, “Oase” muffles the intensity and jumps into a completely different soundscape, where in liaison with the sounds of a rolling drum tom and a desert-like trumpet, the microphone carefully captures the found sound tones of everyday-life objects and actions. Like “HaHeHiHo“ on side A, “Checking” represents the vocal gem of the B side, in a raw and direct way of songwriting like if Syd Barrett was his invisible helper. “Palaver” (which means “unnecessarily talk” in German) assembles different vocal recordings of Schickert into a bizarre free-style conversation through a mysterious language, where he attempts to emulate illiterate children conversating. The final track, “Morning (Slide)”, reprises the opening theme, this time solely performed through the caressing dilated sounds of Günter`s slide guitar….Malmo music….~

Günter Schickert, four decades of multi-instrumental cosmic explorations, under Berlin’s sky, above genres, and compromises. Marmo present on his seventh album to date, Labyrinth, the first to be released on vinyl format since 1983’s Kinder In Der Wildnis. Schickert’s Samtvogel (1974), equaled the imaginative leap and sonic power of the early Pink Floyd, Manuel Gottsching’s 1975 album Inventions For Electric Guitar (MGART 401CD/901LP) or A.R. & Machines’s Die Grüne Reise (1971). Überfällig – originally released on Sky Records in 1979 and reissue by Bureau B (BB 096CD/LP, 2012) – little acclaimed, spans a large spectrum of music styles, always through a distinctive and personal aesthetic, that is deeply linked to the one he firstly crafted back in ‘74, when Schickert pioneered the use of echo effects applied to guitar playing. And now Labyrinth, a record that stands for versatility, where soundscapes or life situations take over. The album is divided into two parts, two different production bulks and periods of Günther Schickert’s life. Side A features a selection of tracks recorded in 1996, appearing on the 2012 album HaHeHiHo, released via Pittsburgh based VCO Recordings. The raga-inspired “Morning” opens Labyrinth with exotic charm and bitter-sweet nostalgia. “Sieben” kicks off with the same guitar scales of the previous theme, before the motorized progressions of a Korg MS-20 synth surprisingly storm in. “Ninja Schwert” remains on astral dimensions, it is a struggle of cosmic forces, where the steady ride of a pounding beat gets embraced by different guitar layers and analog electronic filtering. The side closes up with “HaHeHiHo”, a slow ballad featuring Schickert on vocals, guitar, bass guitar, and drum machine. Side B contains material produced between 2007 and today. “Tsunami” shows the multi-instrumental and recording abilities of Günter Schickert: a field-recorded storm with mesmerizing powers, a peculiar progressive approach to guitar playing. In contrast, “Oase” muffles the intensity and jumps into a completely different soundscape, where in liaison with the sounds of a rolling drum tom and a desert-like trumpet. Like “HaHeHiHo”, “Checking” represents the vocal gem of the B side, in a raw and direct way of songwriting like if Syd Barrett was his invisible helper. “Palaver” assembles different vocal recordings of Schickert into a bizarre free-style conversation. “Morning (Slide)”, reprises the opening theme, this time solely performed through the caressing dilated sounds of Günter’s slide guitar. Includes printed inner sleeve and download code…..~

Though his name barely registers among most of the Krautrock intelligentsia, Gunter Schickert was both prolific in the background and an important artist. Along with the better-known Achim Reichel, Schickert pioneered the echo guitar, where the repeated guitar tones create unique, multi-layered textures that take the instrument quite beyond the ordinary. 

Schickert was active through much of the '60s in the Berlin free jazz scene, though it wasn’t until 1974 that his first album, Samtvogel, came out, self-released by Schickert in a small batch. The album was unique enough that it was quickly snatched up by the legendary Brain label, and they reissued the record the next year. Samtvogel is quite similar to Manuel Göttsching’s solo-guitar album, Inventions for Electric Guitar, where guitar sounds are layered and layered on top of each other to create new hypnotic textures. 

In 1973, Schickert founded the trio GAM, with guitarist Axel Struck and percussionist Michael Aleska, and with Schickert on guitar, vocals, and trumpet, this group created a unique sort of freaked-out space rock. GAM recorded some jam sessions in 1976, which were finally released on cassette in 1986 and titled Gam 1976, and an unreleased album called Eiszeit in 1978. 

At this time Schickert was also creating music for a theater company, and even performing live on-stage in some of the productions. He also served as a roadie for electronic music pioneer Klaus Schulze, and sometimes played live with Schulze as well. Schickert’s second solo album, Uberfallig, came out in 1979 on Sky Records, this time with Charles Heuer on drums to augment Schickert’s echoed guitar textures. 

In the '80s, Schickert’s work in theater production continued, and he also took part in a couple of bands, No Zen Orchestra and Ziguri Ego Zoo. A third album under his own name, this one a completely solo effort with him on guitar, tapes, vocals, percussion, and trumpet, 1993’s Kinder der Wildnes only came out on cassette, though it showed that Schickert was expanding into a wider range of musical styles. Another collection, Somnabal, was released in 1995 on CD with music from throughout the decade-and-a-half before that. Though his recordings are few and hard to track down, especially the debut Samtvogel, Schickert is an innovative music creator who deserves more notice. ~ Rolf Semprebon…..~

This work by kosmische music pioneer Günter Schickert, recorded between 1996 and 2017, is his first solo-album to be released on vinyl since 1983’s 'Kinder In Der Wildnis’…..~

Born in 1949, the musician Günter Schickert (guitar, trumpet) is a pioneer of cosmic music and a central protagonist of the Krautrock underground. He also works as a painter and multimedia artist. His musical career began in the late 1960s in Berlin, where he met creative freethinkers like Klaus Schulze, who was still drummer at Tangerine Dream at the legendary Club Zodiak Free Arts Lab (founded by Konrad Schnitzler and Hans-Joachim Roedelius). With Schulze he later went on tour as a roadie and fellow musicians. Most notable for his signature repetitive echo guitar sound, Schickert was a member of GAM (with Axel Struk and Michael Leske), No Zen and Ziguri Ego Zoo, composed numerous theatrical music and released several solo albums, including “Velvet Bird” (1974), “Overdue” (1979) and “Children in the Wild” (1983). Labyrinth is Schickert’s first vinyl release since the last LP. The plate combines two parts. On the A-side, there are recordings from 1996, which were released in 2012 in a limited edition of 100 as cassette with the title »HaHeHiHo«. The B-side gathers material that was created between 2007 and 2017…..~

Among the Krautrockers one Günter Schickert to yet lesser known protagonists. The pioneer of the “echodrive,” with which he uses his guitar in a loop pattern for rolling patterns, first published his debut album »Samtvogel« in 1974, in 1979, followed in 1979 with »Überfall« a record on the legendary Sky label. Several years ago both albums were re-released, since then some new productions have been released by Günter Schickert and others have been reissued. His latest work »Labyrinth« combines recordings from 1996 on the one hand and from 2007 to today on the other hand. Stylistically diverse, from ragaartig-meditative numbers on flat electronic pieces to the herbaceous song, one can Günter Schickertget to know here from quite different sides. Of course, the characteristic echo loops are also included. And with the instruments he is not limited to the guitar. Trumpet, shell horns and flutes are just as much part of his repertoire……~


Tracklist 
A1 Morning 4:09 
A2 Sieben 6:23 
A3 Ninja Schwert 3:10 
A4 HaHeHiHo 3:29 
B1 Tsunami 6:08 
B2 Oase 4:53 
B3 Checking 2:59 
B4 Palaver 1:54 
B5 Morning (Slide) 2:29 

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