Exposé Online banner

Eiliff — Eiliff
(World Wide SPM-WWR-CD-0067, 1971/1994, CD)

by Mike McLatchey, 1996-08-01:

Eiliff Cover art

It's amazing how many great albums are still being reissued from Germany from the early 70s. It seems at times that there is no end to the wealth from that period. Eiliff was another gem of a group, very much in the early German rock style like Satin Whale, Frame, Ikarus, Virus, Orange Peel etc. Taking their cue from both fusion and early British progressive rock like Van der Graaf Generator, East of Eden, Gnidrolog, or Marsupilami, Eiliff created two great albums of organ/electric piano (by future ECM and Jan Garbarek sidesman Rainer Bruninghaus) led experimental rock with lots of staggered rhythms. With guitar and sax as lead instruments, Eiliff was quite a debut. Featuring choppy rhythms played with jazz rock intensity and lots of unusual dissonances and transitions, the music held its connections to the psychedelic side of Kraut Rock while retaining the musicianship of the jazz scene. The results, while dated are quite stimulating especially when they break out into longer jams. Girlrls, the more modest follow-up seems more focused; the tracks are generally shorter and they don't really give into the excesses that made the debut so unique. The electric piano seems more in front here, the songs are more uniform in length and the results are more jazzy and spacy. Both are quite excellent, especially if you like the early 70s sound, and come definitely recommended. Nice job on the sound too.


by Mike McLatchey, 2016-02-04:

McLatchey's Second Tier

One of the impressions I came away with after the Deutscherock nights aired hours of prime 70s German video material was that even though the early 70s was an incredibly inventive period for German rock, this was often done without a lot of the musicians having any true formal skills. I remember seeing clips from both Amon Düül II and Can that looked like train wrecks at the time (although to be fair both went the other way too) and I wasn't sure if I could attribute these to accident, indulgence or something else. Eiliff were a completely different breed, this was highly, even jazz-level competent rock at a very early year in German music history. They're somewhat known for being the birthplace of later ECM keyboard player Rainer Bruninghaus as well as having the very talented Houschang Nejadepour on guitar who would later show up on Guru Guru's Dance of the Flames for perhaps the last of their great 70s albums. Their debut is a masterpiece of German rock with these two talented players in the fold and their music featured some long pieces with very strange titles. These were originally reissued on the SPM label back a decade or so but have long disappeared from the market, giving way to a 2-on-1 bootleg. One does wonder if such a deep piece could ever afford a second reissue as a result. But I'd consider this on par with all the best German albums of the era.


Filed under: Reissues , 1994 releases, 1971 releases

Related artist(s): Eiliff

More info

Latest news

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the ago of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Zao - Osiris – Zao's second album was recorded in 1974, and originally released on Richard Pinhas' startup Disjuncta label. Despite the minimal resources available to Pinhas, Osiris fared well, surpassing sales of...  (1995) » Read more

Sincronia - Odisea del Tiempo Eterno – I'm not much for programmed synths and drums in a classical rock/symphonic format, and there seems to be a lot of these coming out. Our dear Editor requested that I review this album with full...  (1995) » Read more

Soft Machine - Grides – The translation of Grides means “To cut with a grating sound; to penetrate or pierce harshly.” That’s exactly what this classic fusion quartet was doing on the live stage at the time...  (2007) » Read more

Klaus Schulze - Timewind – Next in the Revisited reissue series after Blackdance is Timewind, Klaus’ fifth release, the one he considers his breakout album and the one that brought him worldwide success. Timewind is also...  (2008) » Read more

Trace - Birds – Often unjustly dismissed as "Rick van der Linden's post-Ekseption band" or "Ian Mosley's pre-Marillion band," Trace certainly deserve to be remembered for what they...  (1997) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues