Ashra — Sunrain - The Virgin Years
(Caroline CAROL 1109-2, 1980/1996, CD)
by Dane Carlson, Published 1998-02-01
And what great years they were. Never heard any Ashra? Buy this! Sorry, I am biased, this is great stuff. If you don't know, Ash Ra is Manuel Göttsching, a phenomenal guitar player and master of electronic music in general as this 13-track collection demonstrates. You get three from New Age of Earth (1977) — on this one Manuel is into prime German electronic music, lots delicious little analog synth lines on this one, ah bliss! You also get three from Blackouts (1978), five from Correlations (1979) and two from Belle Alliance (1980). These three albums, each one successively more rhythmic, focus more on his guitar playing. Be it a fast lead or a simple bouncing melody, Manuel's precise playing is all backed by a spacy or bouncy rhythm track. I guess it's the clean simplicity of it that I love. I consider all of these albums worth owning and fortunately Ash Ra's Virgin material is still all available. As with any collection, it lacks a song or two I love, but if you want a fantastic CD of instrumental spacerock or want to check out this premier German band, this a great buy.
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