Lysergically fueled preparation for setting peculiar things in motorik motion, or a momentary case study in decomposition, from future avatars of Deutsche prog.
A route from free jazz to out-there rock may involve a lot of purposeful experiments yet at the tail end of the ’60s, when the rhythm section of Mani Neumeier and Uli Trepte set up their modal rave and called a few friends over to jam, the goal was simple: get high on acid and record a session with a prospect of measuring the expansion of collective mind. The results turned out to be strangely claustrophobic, though, as these recently discovered tapes demonstrate and, while pointing the way towards Teutonic sort of art-pop music, a five-track run titled “Mescalio” is a disparate ingredients’ layout rather than a palatable bouillabaisse the band would brew soon after.
A sprawling take on “Space Ship” from 1971 that rounds off the archive collection is a live example of how all those bits and pieces could work when attached to each other in a tight-but-loose way, yet on their own sax-smeared skronk and screams and sparse, if sometimes tumultuous, drumming don’t make much creative sense. Still, the stampede of “Pulsing Roots” and tribal clang at the heart of the “B” part of “Mescalio” pave the way to both Krautrock’s streamlined rhythms and Neumeier’s latter-day trips, and the epic soundscape “D” has a wonderful retrofuturistic air to it, as does a ghoulishly hypnotic “UFOlove” that’s a bridge between the session and the band’s 1970 debut. As a prehistoric document, this disc is strictly for connoisseurs, but it’s a relic of a milestone significance nevertheless.