Friday, May 7, 2010

La Dusseldorf - La Dusseldorf (1976)

Most people who have heard the term "Krautrock" are familiar with one of that genre's most celebrated bands "Neu!" What those people don't know is that when Neu! dissolved after three incredible albums, drummer Klaus Dinger started a new band called "La Dusseldorf." This is their first effort, and it's a mighty impressive one.

From the first few seconds, the Neu! influence is obvious, but here the sound is a little more polished. There is a substantial keyboard presence that gives the production a shiny gloss that sometimes borders on psychedelic, but the chugging drum and guitar parts maintain the same rhythmic feel of the band's predecessor. The album cosists of four rather lengthy tracks, but the first two are really seperate parts of the same idea, a title suite ode to the band's namesake city.

The music is minimal, repetitive and hypnotic, invoking feelings of driving along very long, very straight roads. The vocals arelargely limited to the chanting of song titles, although the last track "Time" contains a large numbers of somewhat clever German puns, a treat for the bilingual listener.

Whereas Dinger had been primarily a drummer, here he switches to guitar, feeling that he had accomplished all he could from behind the drum kit. To be honest, this switch isn't terribly obvious, as the drumming retains a very "Dingeresque" feel.

La Dusseldorf is an excellent Krautrock record, and while it lacks the adventurous experimentation of Neu!, it makes up for it in polish and accessibility. This is certainly a must have for those who heard the first Neu! album and liked "Hallogallo" better than "Negitivland."

1 comment:

  1. "This is certainly a must have for those who heard the first Neu! album and liked "Hallogallo" better than "Negitivland"."

    You're exactly right, and while I do prefer the more experimental Neu! tracks, La Dusseldorf was a worthy successor. Their next album VIVA! was pretty good as well.