Eiliff — Eiliff
(World Wide SPM-WWR-CD-0067, 1971/1994, CD)
by Mike McLatchey, 1996-08-01:
It's amazing how many great albums are still being reissued from Germany from the early 70s. It seems at times that there is no end to the wealth from that period. Eiliff was another gem of a group, very much in the early German rock style like Satin Whale, Frame, Ikarus, Virus, Orange Peel etc. Taking their cue from both fusion and early British progressive rock like Van der Graaf Generator, East of Eden, Gnidrolog, or Marsupilami, Eiliff created two great albums of organ/electric piano (by future ECM and Jan Garbarek sidesman Rainer Bruninghaus) led experimental rock with lots of staggered rhythms. With guitar and sax as lead instruments, Eiliff was quite a debut. Featuring choppy rhythms played with jazz rock intensity and lots of unusual dissonances and transitions, the music held its connections to the psychedelic side of Kraut Rock while retaining the musicianship of the jazz scene. The results, while dated are quite stimulating especially when they break out into longer jams. Girlrls, the more modest follow-up seems more focused; the tracks are generally shorter and they don't really give into the excesses that made the debut so unique. The electric piano seems more in front here, the songs are more uniform in length and the results are more jazzy and spacy. Both are quite excellent, especially if you like the early 70s sound, and come definitely recommended. Nice job on the sound too.
by Mike McLatchey, 2016-02-04:
McLatchey's Second Tier
One of the impressions I came away with after the Deutscherock nights aired hours of prime 70s German video material was that even though the early 70s was an incredibly inventive period for German rock, this was often done without a lot of the musicians having any true formal skills. I remember seeing clips from both Amon Düül II and Can that looked like train wrecks at the time (although to be fair both went the other way too) and I wasn't sure if I could attribute these to accident, indulgence or something else. Eiliff were a completely different breed, this was highly, even jazz-level competent rock at a very early year in German music history. They're somewhat known for being the birthplace of later ECM keyboard player Rainer Bruninghaus as well as having the very talented Houschang Nejadepour on guitar who would later show up on Guru Guru's Dance of the Flames for perhaps the last of their great 70s albums. Their debut is a masterpiece of German rock with these two talented players in the fold and their music featured some long pieces with very strange titles. These were originally reissued on the SPM label back a decade or so but have long disappeared from the market, giving way to a 2-on-1 bootleg. One does wonder if such a deep piece could ever afford a second reissue as a result. But I'd consider this on par with all the best German albums of the era.
Related artist(s): Eiliff
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more
You Can Be Part of an Ambient Electronic Project – The Gesture of History is a new electronic project put together by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Steve Roach, and violist Sam Shadow. The music started as an instrumental track Rosenthal was working on for a Black Tape album, but took on a life of its own and demanded further enhancements. The majority of the funds raised will go to manufacturing costs for LP and CD editions, as well as other items as detailed on the Kickstarter page. » Read more
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more