Exposé Online banner

Magma — Mekanïk Zeuhl Wortz
(KISS 30, 1976/1994, 2CD)

by Rob Walker, 1995-11-01:

Mekanïk Zeuhl Wortz Cover art

A two CD set, this contains the second half of the concert begun on Theusz Hamtaahk. The first disc features a stunning and powerful rendition of "Mekanïk Destruktïw Kommandöh," which unfortunately fades out several minutes before the end of the piece is reached. Still, this is in the running for the best version ever released. Paganotti's heavy bass gives the piece a relentless momentum, and his overwhelming solo continues for more than 11 minutes before giving way to Didier Lockwood's violin. The second disc contains lengthy versions of "De Futura Hiroshima," a Jannik Top piece to appear on Üdü Wüdü, and "Ëmëhntëht-Ptâh," an extended Christian Vander drum solo. While 25 minutes of drum soloing may get a bit tiresome, this is a welcome inclusion as the only Vander drum feature ever released. The sound quality on both Theusz Hamtaahk and Mekanïk Zeuhl Wortz is quite good, especially considering the age and the source of the recordings.


by Peter Thelen, 1994-08-01:

Here's one of those unbelievably powerful Magma concerts that's been circulating on cassette for years, finally cleaned up and transferred to CD. Hallelujah! This is one of the best live shows around, recorded March 2, 1976 at the Opera, Reims, France. In addition to Zebehn Strain De Geustaah (Christian) and Tauhd Zaia (Stella), the lineup at that point in time included Klotsz (Klaus Blasquiz) on vocals, Didier Lockwood on violin, the dual keyboards of Benoit Widemann and Patrick Gauthier, Gabriel Federow on guitar, and bass-monster Bernard Paganotti who stole the show on almost every track that night. This is a 2CD set, the first disc containing a 42 minute (and unfortunately prematurely truncated) version of "Mekanïk Destruktïw Kommandöh." This is perhaps one of the most gripping versions of this track I've heard, at least equal to the version on the Retrospektiw 1 & 2 album; Wurd (Paganotti) begins showing off his chops about halfway through in an apocalyptic duel with Federow, gradually increasing the speed and tension in a fight to the finish that ends in pure chaotic madness. The track fades at 42:00, a couple minutes short of the applause, presumably because the tape ran out. Still, this one's a stunner. Those who enjoyed "De Futura" on Üdü Wüdü, but wished for more - well, here's the more: disc two opens with "De Futura Hiroshima," a full twenty-five minutes of it, this time with Paganotti instead of Janik Top. Needless to say this one is a smoker as well, as one might well imagine - more of the Paganotti-Vander-Federow rave-ups, and plenty of support from the others. Disc two closes with "Ëmëhntëht - Ptâh" which, after the short intro, turns into a legthy 20+ minute drum solo by Zebehn himself, and I believe the first time the whole thing has been captured on record or CD. If you enjoy a great drum solo you’re bound to enjoy this; if not, consider it a bonus track, as the other two alone are certainly worth the cost of this set. A must have for all Magma fans.


Filed under: New releases , Issue 4 , 1994 releases, 1976 releases

Related artist(s): Magma, Stella Vander, Christian Vander / Offering, Patrick Gauthier, Bernard Paganotti, Didier Lockwood

More info

Latest news

2018-06-05
Koenjihyakkei Seeks Funding for New Album – It's been quite a few years since the last new studio album by the amazing Koenjihyakkei. Now they are preparing Dhormimviskha for worldwide release, and they're asking fans to pre-order via a Kickstarter campaign to help it happen. » Read more

2018-05-14
Glenn Branca RIP – Experimental guitarist and composer Glenn Branca has died at the age of 69. He was known for compositions featuring large ensembles of guitars, and for the use of feedback. He founded his band Theoretical Girls in the mid-70s as an art-punk answer to what he saw as the increasing commercialization of punk music. His compositions were highly influential, with such figures as David Bowie, Thurston Moore, and John Lurie among his fans. » Read more

2018-04-05
OBEY Convention XI Set for May 24-28 in Halifax – As the 2018 festival season rapidly approaches, we’d like you to be aware of a real treasure of diverse and creative music that’s going to take place in Halifax, Nova Scotia, next month. The OBEY Convention is on its 11th outing, and features a wide range of artists from around the world. From avant-industrial noise to experimental takes on Classical Chinese music, from chamber jazz to doom metal, from ambient soundscapes to Canadian First Nations drumming, you’d be hard pressed to find a festival with more variety in sound anywhere in the world. » Read more

2018-04-04
Close to the Rain Festival in Bergen Announces Lineup – Now in its second year, the Close to the Rain Festival of progressive music is scheduled to take place in Bergen, Norway, on June 7 - 9. They've got an amazing slate of bands lined up, including such powerhouses as Anekdoten, Major Parkinson, Arabs in Aspic, Tusmørke, and many more. » Read more

2018-03-01
Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington and Oregon. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Iona - The Book of Kells – Imagine the best elements of Enya/Clannad blended with the folk-rock presence of Fairport Convention with Sandy Denny, make it a bit more progressive and powerful, and top it off with a Christian...  (1994) » Read more

Aka Moon - Invisible Sun – Invisible Sun is the tenth release by Aka Moon whose name derives from the band members’ experience with the Aka pygmies of central Africa. Invisible Sun is a part of Aka Moon’s musical triptych...  (2001) » Read more

Dragon - Scented Gardens for the Blind – This reissue is probably shaky in the legitimacy area, getting hard to find, and has a "Japanese" price tag on it. It is also transcribed from vinyl but it's a good job and chances are...  (1995) » Read more

Adrian Belew - Belewprints: The Acoustic Adrian Belew Volume Two – The second volume of acoustic performances by King Crimson lead vocalist Adrian Belew is a different reading than Volume One from a few years ago. No bones about it, Belew is a gifted composer; his...  (1999) » Read more

Jon Rose - The Hyperstring Project (New Dynamic of Rogue Counterpoint) – I’m not even going to try to explain how this music was made – check out the web site for details. Just take it as given that Jon Rose has created a monster with violin ancestry, and...  (2001) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues