Saturday, July 25, 2009

Agitation Free "Second" 1973

Second (Vertigo 1973)
Genre: Krautrock
Album Legnth: 41.31
Best Song: In the Silence of the Morning Sunrise

1. First Communication 8.10
2. Dialogue and Random 1.51
3. Laila, Pt. 1 1.41
4. Laila, Pt. 2 6.47
5. In the Silence of the Morning Sunrise 6.33
6. Quiet Walk 9.15
7. Haunted Island 7.11

From beginning to end, this is an album of infinite beauty, soft and subtle; the music, at times, has a meditative quality. The ethnic flavor from the group's first outing is gone, replaced here by a mature rock sound of a higher order. Beginning with a wash of white noise, 'First Communication' builds up with a slow, melodic, somewhat psychedelic guitar sound quite similar to that of mid-period Popol Vuh. This track ends with odd electronic effects which lead into a Michael Hoenig electronic piece consisting of harsh 'academic' electronic sounds strung together to form a melody. The two-part 'Laila' uses the Vuhish guitar sound from track one, but this time the music, driven by a tight bass and drum rhythm, is much heavier. Slowing down again, 'In The Silence Of The Morning Sunrise' consists of a jazzy guitar and organ melody line overtop a steady guitar arpeggio sequence. 'A Quiet Walk' builds slowly as it relies on the resonant quality of various sounds before erupting into another pre-mid period Vuhish 'Brudder Des Schattens'-like meditative sound. Finally, 'Haunted Island' finishes the album in dramatic fashion utilizing an atmospheric mellotron and the Edgar Allen Poe poem 'Dreamland', before ending with a wash of white noise that creates a loop if the album is played in repeat mode.
[4/5 Doug]

Lutz Ulbrich - Guitar, Bouzouki
Michael Gunther - Bass
Michael Hoenig - Synthesizer, Keyboard
Burghard Rausch - Percussion, Drums, Keyboards, Mellotron
Stefan Diez - Guitar
Frank Diez - Vocals
Jackie Diez - Vocals

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