Xhol - Motherf*ckers GMBH & Co KG. 1972 Germany

Xhol - Motherf*ckers GMBH & Co KG. 1972 Ohr. Recorded in 1970

CD reissues: 1996 Spalax (France); 1999 Zyx

LP reissue: 2008 Wah Wah (Spain)

One year after Electrip, the band changed their name to simply Xhol to avoid confusion with the more famous British band. Their followup, Motherf*ckers GMBH & Co. KG, demonstrates the band's total defiance towards anything resembling standard convention. The album was shelved and not released until 1972 (by the legendary underground Ohr label), hence the "2 Years Old" written across the cover. Immediately the listener will note that Xhol had clearly moved away from their fusion roots to a more challenging avant-garde electronic approach. The highlight for me is the haunting 16 1/2 minute combined compositions of 'Orgel Solo' & 'Side 1 First Day', which could've just as easily been on Tangerine Dream's groundbreaking "Electronic Meditation" album. In fact, much of this album has the feel of the true Krautrock underground, one that successfully mixes avant-garde electronic structures with the psychedelic rock sounds and energy of the era. The primary instruments here are flute and organ, with plenty of hand percussion thrown in. Overall, it's a psychedelic feast! The odd tune out is the 13 minute insane version of 'Love Potion 25', not exactly what one would call a cover tune of the old classic!

Unlike the other two studio Xhol (Caravan) albums, Motherf*ckers GMBH & Co KG has only been nominally served by the CD market. Spalax, while certainly a fine and legitimate label, did little to enhance their reissues beyond a straight copy of the music. Zyx is even more basic, not even replicating Spalax's digi-pak. For LP collectors, there's also the high quality Wah Wah reissue, and if convenience is not of concern, this would most certainly have to be considered the best reissue on the market - CD or LP. I do hope that Garden of Delights, who have managed to release just about everything the band did including hours of archival tapes, will eventually reissue this one on CD as well.

Last update: August 12, 2016

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