Exposé Online banner

Eiliff — Eiliff
(World Wide SPM-WWR-CD-0067, 1971/1994, CD)

by Mike McLatchey, 1996-08-01:

Eiliff Cover art

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.


Filed under: Reissues , 1994 releases, 1971 releases

Related artist(s): Eiliff

More info

Latest news

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more

2020-05-14
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santan, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more

2020-05-06
Florian Schneider RIP – Florian Schneider, one of the founders of the pioneering electronic group Kraftwerk, has died at the age of 73. Co-founder Ralf Hütter announced that his bandmate had passed away from cancer after a brief illness. » Read more

2020-04-23
Shindig Festival Goes Lock-Down – Here's what they're saying: It's A Happening Thing! The Shindig! Magazine Lockdown Festival. In our days of no large gatherings of people, maybe it's still possible to have a music festival. Shindig! Magazine is giving it a go with a multi-artist streaming extravaganza on Saturday April 25. » Read more

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Haco + Sakamoto Hiromichi - Ash in the Rainbow – Haco was the singer for After Dinner, while Sakamoto Hiromichi has played in a Pascal Comelade cover group and Lars Hollmer’s SOLA. On Ash in the Rainbow, they combine her voice, sometimes...  (2005) » Read more

Colour Haze - Tempel – While there are numerous bands out there breaking new ground and never looking back, there are just as many others breathing new life into tried and true styles of decades long gone. For vintage...  (2007) » Read more

Redjy Emond - Sphere – Sphere is a complete one-man show by a keyboardist whose primary style is drawn from a very watered down Emerson (e.g. Keith on the last ELP: injured and should have waited) or Yanni on .5mg of speed....  (1997) » Read more

Ashra - Sunrain - The Virgin Years – And what great years they were. Never heard any Ashra? Buy this! Sorry, I am biased, this is great stuff. If you don't know, Ash Ra is Manuel Göttsching, a phenomenal guitar player and master...  (1998) » Read more

Elton Dean / Paul Dunmall - If Dubois Only Knew – Two seasoned British sax players: just them, no keyboard, guitar, bass, or drums for accompaniment. Uh-oh! Eight songs of duets and free jazz performance? God, I need some Tylenol, just thinking about...  (1998) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues