Exposé Online banner

Ax Genrich — Wave Cut
(ATM 3813 AH, 1995, CD)

by Mike McLatchey, 1997-02-01:

Wave Cut Cover art

Everybody should be on to this by now, one of the most impressive comebacks in psychedelic acid rock ever. Guru Guru's most cathartic and inventive guitarist released Psychedelic Guitar in 1994 to some critical acclaim, yet that was only a taste to the madness on this follow up. Genrich has successfully taken his roots in the "power trio" hysteria of early psychotropic Guru and updated them to now, none for the worse. His unique playing is all over this, squealing, fluttering, ripping, and roaring over a new rhythm section that seems more than capable of wringing every last ounce of energy from him. This is about 25 years since the classic Guru years but except for the modern production you can barely tell this from an album like Känguru or Hinten. The songs have enough variety for what is often for a trio a limited conception, and the excitement level is way up here. A truly fantastic album, unbelievably so — can you name a more successful comeback than this? Not in my book.


by Steve Robey, 1997-02-01:

As guitarist for the German psych / prog band Guru Guru, Ax Genrich combined crunchy power chords, woozy wah-wah effects, and groaning slide work. Fortunately for all of us, Genrich has not mellowed with age. His latest work, Wave Cut, sounds very much as if the early 70s never ended. With the exception of a loud booming drum sound, this album bears many of the trademarks of classic Guru Guru. Boasting a fierce and uninhibited power-trio format, the emphasis is on long, crazed guitar jams. The opening track, "Come Back," offers the only hint of restraint on this otherwise improvisational album. Carried by an assertive riff and double tracked vocals, it resembles Hawkwind in some ways. Genrich was only part of what made Guru Guru so enticing, however, and an entire album of his guitar freakouts can be pretty exhausting by the end. It's one of those albums that sounds amazing for the first 15 minutes, but by the end of its 50-plus minute length, you may find yourself asking, "Is he still going? Yow." It just doesn't let up. I find it hard to sit through the whole thing without adequate mental preparation (you know what I mean). Highly recommended, albeit in controlled doses.


by Mike Ezzo, 1997-02-01:

Hey, anyone in the mood for a cheery toe-tapping experience courtesy of the pleasantries of MIDI sequencers, drum machines, and other groovy techno devices? False alarm! You won't find it here. For his recent outing, ex-Guru Guru "Ax"-man Genrich has gone back to the basics of rock music making: bass, drums, and guitar. And that's it. Ironically, what he has done with this format is anything but basic. With no fancy frills or spills, and absolute disregard for current trends in recording, Genrich and company offer us an incendiary slab of improvisational rock with the attitude of jazz, while touching on many different musical aesthetics. It sounds as if the album was recorded live in one take.

Wave Cut commences with a seven-minute Hendrix-of-the-90s track that will convince anyone that these guys can cook! (But Ax, please go a bit softer on that wah-wah pedal next time.) "Go Lemgo" mixes things up nicely between heavy rock riffing and free-form jazz explorations, without wearing out its welcome. Genrich coaxes every possible sound out of his six strings and drummer Walt Bender shoots for the stratosphere. Bassist Mario Fadani is supportive rather than taking the lead. He stays out of the way of the other two, and probably for good reason. "Fundador" starts as an Irish folk dance, meanders and loses its way, but then settles into some sensitive interplay between guitar and drums in a softer groove that is splendid. Later, shift into overdrive on "The Rebel" as the guitar practically singes a hole in the CD player. Like a warped country boogie from hell.

Most of the songs are credited to Genrich and two other composers who don't appear on this album. So I assume that Bender and Fadani are not his usual sparring partners. But they more than fulfill the job requirements. This is music making in the time-honored tradition. Genrich's playing is out and out frightening, and it's unbelievable why this man is not more famous than he is. If he were British or American he'd be on the cover of every guitar magazine this side of the Greenwich Meridian. Of course for that though, he'd have to hire David Lee Roth on vocals to assure FM radio airplay...


Filed under: New releases , Issue 11 , 1995 releases

Related artist(s): Ax Genrich

More info

Latest news

2019-11-07
Glenn Smith RIP – Glenn Smith, founder, mandolinist, and primary composer of the DeLand, Florida based prog / fusion band Magnatar, passed away on October 18th 2019 at the age of 68, after a brief illness.  » Read more

2019-11-04
Dino Brassea RIP – Word reaches us of the passing of Dino Brassea, who sang and played flute in Cast for many years. By our count, Brassea appeared on 11 Cast albums between 1994 and 2002. He also released music as a solo artist. » Read more

2019-10-06
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Waldteufel - Sanguis – Waldteufel is the German duo of Markus Wolff (primarily vocals, drums, and percussion) and Tyrsson Sinclair (other instruments, vocals, etc.) and this is their fourth full-length release. Their music...  (2008) » Read more

Symphorce - Godspeed – Both symphonic and forceful, Symphorce is a German power metal quintet with double guitar, bass, drums, and a singer. Their compositions follow a fairly typical verse-chorus structure, and stay...  (2006) » Read more

Platurno - Núcleos – Platurno is a young Chilean progressive rock trio of guitars, keyboards, and drums. Núcleos is their 2006 debut release of 11 mostly instrumental songs. Each song is different, but has a similar...  (2009) » Read more

Cairo - Cairo – Having heard the Frog Pest sampler tape, I was expecting quite a bit, as Cairo's long 20 minute cut (that appears here as well) was very promising. The track was a cross between complex keyboard...  (1995) » Read more

JPP, Troka, Loituma & Frifot - History, Smash, In the Moonlight & SummerSong – Here we have new releases by some of the more traditional of NorthSide’s Scandinavian artists, three from Finland and one from Sweden. You’ll find no electronic textures on these discs,...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover

Exclusive Premier of a New Cheer-Accident Track

Cheer-Accident adSKiN GRAFT Records’ Mark Fischer states that “The Chicago vs New York compilation is an album in its own right… and not just some sort of a label sampler. Most of the songs on the compilation are exclusive to it." Thymme Jones of Cheer-Accident says of "War Is a Warrior," " It’s definitely not going to be on the next Cheerax album.”

We'll have a review of Chicago vs New York in the coming weeks, so keep your eyes out for that.



Print issues