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Kollektiv (1973)


Niemiecki kwartet Kollektiv powstał ostatecznie po wielu personalnych roszadach w 1970 roku. Zespół w ostatecznym składzie tworzył eksperymentalny krautrock w najlepszym wydaniu z dużą dawką jazz-rockowej improwizacji. W 1973 roku wydali pierwszy album, jak się później okazało jedyny materiał wypuszczony na rynek w latach 70-tych, reszta twórczości z kilku sesji live nagrana w tamtym okresie ukazała się dopiero po 2000 roku pod tytułem SWF-Sessions Volume 5 oraz Live 1973.

Debiutancka płyta Kollektiv składa się głównie z luźno brzmiących i długich improwizacji zawierających duże ilości znakomitych partii solowych zagranych na flecie, saksofonie oraz gitarze. Instrumenty te tworzą integralną i zrównoważoną całość uzupełnioną świetnie brzmiącą w tle sekcją rytmiczną, po prostu kreatywna współpraca muzyczna na najwyższym poziomie.

Klaus Dapper - flute,saxophone
Jürgen Havix - guitar, zither
Jürgen Karpenkiel - bass
Waldemar Karpenkiel - drums

This group from Germany played an innovative blend of jazz-rock in the early 1970s. Their one eponymous album is often compared with very early Kraftwerk and Organisation, and their links with Kraftwerk go back to the late 1960s.

Kollektiv's roots begin in the mid-60s when Jogi and Waldemar Karpenkiel, twin brothers, and Jurgen Havix formed the trio The Generals to play pop songs. The group broke up and the three musicians went on to several other bands. Jogi Karpenkiel spent some time in the Phantoms, which later changed their name to Bluesology and which also contained future Kraftwerk co-leader Ralf Hutter, and the jazz saxophonist Klaus Dapper. In 1968 Jogi departed Bluesology (which then became the proto-Kraftwerk band Organisation) and rejoined his brother Waldemar and Havix in the Generals. Bored with Beat music, their influences now ranged from early Zappa and King Crimson to jazz, and they soon coaxed Dapper into the group to help them in these directions. In 1970 the quartet became Kollektiv, with a much stronger emphasis on experimentation and improvisation. By 1971 they were ready to tour and with their first gig 250 miles away, they bought an old VW bus the day before. The next several years the group played many nightclubs and festivals throughout Germany.

In March of 1973 Kollektiv traveled to Hamburg to record their self-titled album with Conny Plank as the engineer, and the record was released on the legendary Brain label. A few months later some material was recorded and aired at the Sudwestfunk Radio Studio. Two years later Jogi Karpenkiel left the band to join Guru Guru for a few years and Havix went on to pursue a solo career. With new guitarist Jochen Schrumpf and bassist Detlef Wiederhoft, Kollektiv slogged along for a few years before disbanding in 1978.

In 1987 Waldemar Karpenkel, Dapper, and Schrumpf reformed the group with famed Swedish bassist Jonas Hellborg and keyboardist Thomas Bettermann and released the album Kollektiv Featuring Jonas Hellborg the next year, though not much has happened since then with the group.

Kollektiv had connections with the much better known Kraftwerk, and its self-titled album sounds a bit like early Kraftwerk, back in that group's jazzier days before it invented techno-pop. Kollektiv's album fuses free-form jazz and rock in typical underground Krautrock fashion, with long, loose improvisations and plenty of solos on guitar, flute, and sax. The music is entirely instrumental except for some weird spoken word on the shortest track, "Forsterlied." "Rambo Zambo" begins the album with some heavily processed flute soloing before jumping into high-energy avant funk with more flute. "Baldrian" is slightly more tame, but on the three-part "Gageg," which dominates side two, Kollektiv turns the energy up even more. Like "Rambo Zambo," this one begins slowly before building into another intense avant jazz-funk workout with the tight rhythm section, and in the last section, "Pressluft," some blistering electric guitar riffing. (Rolf Semprebon)

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