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Can, Tangerine Dream, Amon Düül II, and so many more on ‘The German Rock Night’

In 2006, a six-part Rockpalast documentary on German rock music aired on German TV. It was called “Kraut und Rüben,” a title which literally means “cabbage and beets,” but is idiomatic for “higgledy-piggledy,” “topsy-turvy,” etc. If I could speak German for shit, I might be able to tell whether it was any good. It’s probably incredible—the performance footage is terrific, but unfortunately, it’s all truncated, or talked-over by interviewees. This resulted in an outpouring of viewer interest in seeing the unexpurgated performances:

After the broadcast of “Kraut und Rüben,” the Rockpalast documentary about German rock music, viewers would frequently ask when they would get to see the full-length concerts of which only short snippets had been televised. Before Rockpalast, full-length concerts were shown only in exceptional cases, but we have indeed found so many more or less complete clips that we decided to show the ten hours of footage over two evenings.

They cover the full range of the groups that were introduced in the documentary, from Scorpions to Tangerine Dream, Kraftwerk, Eloy, Ton Steine Scherben, Can, Guru Guru, all the way to Amon Düül II. In addition some rarer clips that could not be incorporated in the doc will be shown. The majority of the material has not been seen since the original telecast. We hope that the umbrella term “Krautrock” can once and for all be buried as useless. At the same time, the two nights provide the beginning of a loose series, in which the lost treasures of German television archives could be made available again.


Amon Düül II

Guru Guru

So, for two consecutive Sunday nights, WDR TV aired historical performance footage of German rock bands pretty much nonstop. Plenty of important Krautrock bands are included (say what you will, Rockpalast, that term simply is not useless), and there are gems from bands purveying more standard-issue rock ’n’ roll fare. In the first night alone, there were four songs from Amon Düül II, five from Can, and a television appearance by Ralf Hütter and Florian Schneider’s pre-Kraftwerk band Organisation. Oh, and the Guru Guru stuff should not be missed.

What follows is only the first night. For the second, see this YouTube playlist. If you carve out enough time to make it all the way through this (and if you’re able to, I think you should, as chances seem really high that you might see something amazing of which you’ve never heard before), I’m certain you’ll get a grin out of the back-to-back juxtaposition in the third video of those binary opposites of German rock, Kraftwerk and Scorpions.

Hours of Krautrock German music after the jump…

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
Everyone loves Faust, Can and Kraftwerk, why so little love for the equally epic Amon Düül II???
08:19 pm


Amon Düül II

Every rock snob loves them their Cans, their Kraftwerks and their Fausts, but what about Amon Düül II? Amon Düül II’s thunderous psychedelic Krautrock sound has influenced bands from The Dead Kennedys to The Fall to the early sound of The Psychedelic Furs. They even lived in a commune together like Gong. What’s not to like?

Fans of acid-drenched hard-rocking underground freakout music, you cannot possibly go wrong with either their 1968 debut album, Phallus Dei (“God’s Cock”) or their sprawling two-record set, Yeti.

Pre-YouTube, I’d have assumed that very little footage of Amon Düül II existed—it certainly wasn’t reaching bootleg stalls in American flea markets—but there’s actually tons of great stuff out there. Jammy, druggy riff-rock and wonderfully anarchic. Listen LOUD.

A massive live jam of their “Between The Eyes” single from 1970:

Much more Amon Düül II after the jump…

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Amon Düül II play ‘Phallus Dei’ live, 1969
11:25 am


Amon Düül II

Rüdiger Nüchtern’s short film Amon Düül II Spielt Phallus Dei dates from 1968 and is a single camera documentation of the Krautrock legends performing the title track from their soon to be released first album. This is the earliest known footage of the band, who perform in a studio in Munich against a wall with psychedelic projections, with shots of a sunrise, sunset, clouds, trees and the German countryside added in.

The personnel here are Christian ‘Shrat’ Thiele (bongos, vocals) Peter Leopold (drums), Dieter Serfas (drums), John Weinzierl (guitar), Falk Rogner (organ), Chris Karrer (violin, guitar) Renate Knaup (vocals) and Dave Anderson (bass).

Although the film, which apparently was shown at the Edinburgh International Film Festival in 1972, is in crappy condition, it’s worth watching (once) if you’re a fan of the band.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment