Tin Drum — The Edge of Insanity
(Rockwerk Records LC 8248, 1994, CD)
by Henry Schneider, Published 1994-10-01Here we have a limited edition debut CD by an amazing new German band with musical roots tracing back to the halcyon days of Krautrock and Pink Floyd. This foursome of Hotty Melz (lead vocals, guitars, sax), Georg Hullenkremer (guitars, keys, sitar), Dirk Ebert (bass, backing vocals), and Mauricio Jungbauer (drums, vibes) assembled seven melancholic songs covering such topics as frustration with the human condition, unrequited love, and insanity. Despite the depressing nature of the English lyrics, the music is surprisingly upbeat. The first three songs ("States of a Journey," "Dayzes," and "The Cross") are fairly run-of-the-mill rock tunes and you might enjoy this CD better if you program your player to start with track 4, "The Painter and the Moment." At this point The Edge of Insanity begins to flourish with a late 60s psychedelic ambiance permeating the music. "The Painter and the Moment" has a very simple acoustic guitar arrangement combined with some outstanding electric guitar and Mellotron-like strings on the refrain. This song is a perfect vehicle for taking a journey inside your mind. Building on the strength of this song, Tin Drum now presents "Mindslave," a 12-minute dose of laidback Krautrock guitars and drums. The guitar licks are so strong at the end of the song that they compel you to stand up and play a virtuoso "air guitar" solo. And at this point there are still 33 minutes of music left on the disk! Now Tin Drum really kicks out the jams with the 21-minute title track. This trippy opus builds much like The Doors' classic "The End," yet it is unmistakably Tin Drum's vehicle. This song goes through many changes, recalling at times Pink Floyd's "Brain Damage" from Dark Side of the Moon and "Mother" from The Wall without their lush commercial arrangements, Jimi Hendrix's guitar pyrotechnics, and the Victorian feel of Pulsar's Halloween. After this breathtaking performance you welcome the chance to unwind with the 12-minute acoustic ballad "Playing Shakespeare in the Rain." The Edge of Insanity is a highly recommended debut release that is sure to please those of you who yearn for that laid back psychedelic music of yore.
Related artist(s): Tin Drum
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
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
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
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