ECR #028: spotlight on Amon Düül II

One of the reigning beasts of 70s Krautrock, treatment ADII has a varied, visit complex and fucked-up discography that’s too confusing for the novice listener. Not everything’s great; in fact, half of it is very hard to get through, although that half is scattered across the entirety of their output, so a guided tour is needed.

I tend to disagree with the majority opinion that the band’s earliest records are the best; my favorite LP of theirs is 1978′s “Only Human”, which presents a disco/flamenco/funk/Carpenters version of the band. Those early 20-minute acid-soaked jams are fun at times, but come nowhere near the fun and the tightness of this particular record.

Track listing:
Eye-Shaking King (“Yeti”, 1970)
Metropolis (“Made In Germany”, 1975)
Deutsch Nepal (“Wolf City”, 1972)
Manana (live, 1973)
The Return of Ruebezhal (“Yeti”, 1970)
You’re (“Hijack”, 1974)
Lemmingmania (“Carnival In Babylon”, 1972)
Ladies Mimikry (“Vive Le Trance”, 1973)
Vortex (“Vortex”, 1981)
Sleepwalker’s Timeless Bridge (“Wolf City”, 1972)
“Only Human” (original 1978 LP version)

Egg City Radio #028: spotlight on Amon Duul II (MP3)

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666 Responses to ECR #028: spotlight on Amon Düül II

  1. Rob says:

    Thanks Man,

    This is just what I need to get me started again. I started exploring ADIIs work, (along with other Krautrock bands), but I got so hooked on Can, I dropped everything and launched into the czukayniverse…

  2. Reuben says:

    I remember hearing Only Human in a friends car and asking if it was ABBA…

  3. Geoff says:

    brilliant. Thanks so much for putting this together. I’d dabbled with ADII but your presentation makes it much more palatable.

    For German-speakers/readers, check out Andreas Neumeister’s Gut Laut for a weird poetic version of/about Krautrock that came out a few years back.

  4. Its always a (rare) pleasure when I see something positive written about the Amon Duul II 1978 ‘only Human’ album which is one of my favourites too. Tracks like Kismet and Spaniards & Spacemen still sound wonderful over 30 years later (not forgetting the exquisite re-edit of Kismet by French god Pilooski).

    Thats not to say I don’t love the earlier albums like Vive La Trance, Wolf City & Hijack but I think we are that similar rare breed who like it kosmische on the dancefloor as well as horizontal on the living room floor!
    Likewise with Can, though Tago Mago is probably overall my favourite album, I really love the two 1978 albums ‘Innerspace (also confusingly called ‘Can’ and ‘Out Of Reach’….in the eyes of diehard ‘krautrockers’ an unpardonable sin.

    Anyway, back to ADII. In 1993 they released a compilation album called ‘Surrounded By The Bars’ (I guess in reference to their ‘Surrounded By The Stars’ track) which was apparently a remix album done by ADII themselves of their earlier tracks as well as two new ones. What got my interest was the fact the wonderful ‘Crack In The Cosmic Egg’ write-up of ADII dismissed the two new tracks as their attempt to do “disco”!
    Whats strange is that there is no Discogs entry as far as I can see and it looks like this CD album disappeared down the memory hole. Do you know anything about it? Or know anyone who has heard it? I saw a copy going for $30 but could not find a review anywhere apart from the dismissive one from CITCE.