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Vinyl LP £23.49 LPS136

Remastered LP on Wah Wah.

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Elektron Kukeso by Hans Edler
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9/10 Mike 01 August 2014

When I think of the electronic avant garde from the late '60s and early '70s I tend to think of dry, studious and methodical sound experiments and impenetrable tuneless noise games. However this freshly reissued LP by Hans Edler turns that on its head by mixing that hard-nosed experimentalism with a naive and charming tunefulness. I really like the cover photo of Edler looking super-proud of the big fancy synth console he's operating.

According to the liner notes this is considered to be "the world's first computer-programmed rock album" which is quite an accolade (although my favourite bit is where they describe the record as being "like Stockhausen on acid going berserk on Carnaby Street"). It has quite a thrown-together, hesitant feel in places almost like he's making it up as he goes along, but there's a lasting beauty to his childlike melodies and faltering synthetic textures, often offering a flickering, droning ambience more than contributing to the songs' melodic structures, and elsewhere playing simple one-finger melodies, sometimes in unison with the understated vocals. This still sounds weird and appealing nearly half a century on. Thumbs up.


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