Area – Arbeit Macht Frei. 1973 Italy

Area – Arbeit Macht Frei. 1973 Cramps

CD reissues: 1989 Cramps; 1998 EMI; 2002 Akarma; 2007 Strange Days/Universal (Japan mini-LP); 2009 Cramps; 2011 Belle Antique (Japan mini-LP).

LP reissues: 2000 Get Back; 2011 Akarma

Packaging details: The 2011 Japan mini-LP truly replicates the original gatefold and includes the cardboard gun. I have a Cramps original on LP, but like most copies, it does not include the gun. Otherwise, this album is easily obtainable and various CD issues go back to 1989 on the Cramps label itself. I had that version until I upgraded to the mini-LP. Unfortunately, there are no specialist label reissues with liner notes, bonus tracks, etc... so this is your best bet.

Notes: Very well known album that needs no introduction. For my tastes, this is my favorite Area album, closely followed by "Crac!". I'm not a huge Area fanboy as many of my friends and peers are, as I tend to shiver at Area's more avant garde and free-jazz moments. Thankfully those are kept at a minimum on their debut album, where the tight unison ensemble work allows Stratos to showcase his unconventional vocal style, which I do enjoy when not done to excess.


  1. From your description I'd say this is an exact replica of the CD I have on the Cramps label from a few years ago (can't find a date on it, but RYM and the seller I bought it from have it as a 2009 issue). It has the gun and also a little round "International popular group" pin. I think you can still find copies on the net, which are probably a bit cheaper than the Japanese ones.

    Cheers, Bas

  2. Thanks Bas for your comments here and on Ramses!


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