Exposé Online banner

Hattler — Velocity
(Bassball CD 36080, 2018, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2018-11-14

Velocity Cover art

Though most will know Hellmut Hattler as a founding member and bassist of Kraan, many are not aware of his works outside of that band, which probably began in 1977 with his solo album Bassball and several collaborations following that with Joo Kraus, Torsten De Winkel and others. The band Hattler (as opposed to his solo albums) began around 2000 woth No Eats Yes and has been a going concern ever since, Velocity being the latest of about 14 releases, including three live albums. As opposed to Kraan, which has an expected primarily instrumental free-wheeling funky jazz-rock sound, the band that bears Hattler’s name can go anywhere, in any direction, and do it competently and comfortably. On this one, HH writes or co-writes most of the material, and still plays a mean bass. Also on board are Joo Kraus (trumpet), Martin Kasper (keyboards, Mellotron, piano, electronics), Juergen Schlachter (drums, percussion), Ali Neander (guitar), and singer Fola Dada on many of the vocal cuts, plus plenty of other folks as needed on various tracks. “Anthem for Approaching Starships” opens the album (and a shorter reprise of it closes the disc), an instrumental with a grand powerful melody that is simply unforgettable, featuring a full horn section, xylophone, Mellotron and much more. Fola Dada is introduced on the second track “Teaser,” which features a more funky bottom end and radio friendly approach as opposed to the more symphonic opener. She’s featured on four of the 11 cuts, but perhaps the most memorable of all is “Mayday in Paradise,” where she turns in a truly beautiful and sensitive vocal performance over a combination of drums and electronic beats with Kraus’ trumpet lighting the pathway, one of those songs that just grabs you and doesn’t let go. The title track features a stripped down lineup of Kraus, Hattler on bass and effected vocals, and electronics (beats and sounds) by Peter Musebrink for a laid-back almost trancey yet stunningly melodic romp. Hattler and Musebrink feature again on “Delhi Mail,” along with Torsten De Winkel playing electric sitar, a lot of percussives and other synth sounds underpinning a very forward moving groove where bass an sitar paint an unforgettable melody. All taken, there are notable surprises throughout the album at every turn.


Filed under: New releases, 2018 releases

Related artist(s): Hellmut Hattler

Latest news

2021-01-18
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more

2020-12-09
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more

2020-11-20
25 Views of Worthing Finally Gets Released – A while ago, we wrote about the discovery of a "long lost" Canterbury-style gem by a band called 25 Views of Worthing. And now we're pleased to find out that Wind Waker Records has released their music on an LP. » Read more

2020-10-14
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more

2020-10-06
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Church of Hawkwind - Church of Hawkwind – [this was written about the 1994 reissue on Griffin Records - ed.] The 1982 incarnation of Hawkwind that wrote Church of Hawkwind comprised Dave "Baron von" Brock, Harvey Bainbridge, Huw...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues