Manuel Göttsching Passed Away

The name of his record label, MG.ART, and its logo, a fretboard, was possibly everything one had to know about how Manuel Göttsching, who passed away on December 4th at the age of 70, perceived his music, the most perfect example of Kosmische Musik to emanate out of Germany before the genre became known as Krautrock. For Manuel, playing was all about existing in the moment and looking into the future by way of improvisation, which defined the reason why Göttsching and the recently departed Klaus Schulze gravitated towards each other on earth and, now, at the great gig in the sky.

Together, they created the fantastic ASH RA TEMPEL in 1970, the ensemble that mutated into ASHRA half a decade later, once Manuel decided to go solo while still being possessed by collective spirit but not before the band collaborated with Timothy Leary on the “Seven Up” album in 1973. This sort of experimentation has been driving Göttsching for years and rendered his oeuvre so varied and so arresting. The veteran might have been a reluctant interviewee with whom we never struck a proper dialogue, yet the guitarist personally selected the platters he wanted me to review and supported the shaping of the dedicated page, and of course, he influenced not only listeners but also fellow musicians, the host of followers eager to grasp the tangibility of ethereal sound only Manuel Göttsching could create. He will be sorely missed.

December 13, 2022

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