Ash Ra Tempel

Inventions for Electric Guitar

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This album is sometimes credited to Ash Ra Tempel, but the music was composed and performed by Manuel Göttsching alone. All sounds were created with guitar, but Göttsching's use of echo, delay, and assorted treatments give these pieces the flavor of sequenced synthesizer music, occasionally reminiscent of Tangerine Dream's work from the period. The opening "Echo Waves" is a trance-inducing space guitar masterpiece, with repeating rhythm figures and gradual phase shifts creating a warped sense of time. The first 14 minutes of the track consist of short, subtly changing melodic phrases, until Göttsching questionably chooses to close with a searing, acid-fried guitar solo. "Quasarsphere" is much more contemplative, with Göttsching processing his guitar to sound like a synthesizer in the vein of Robert Fripp. The closing "Pluralis" consists of endless variations constructed around a simple guitar sequence; it possesses a structure similar to "Echo Waves" (down to the late-breaking blast of psychedelic soloing) with a bit more space and a slower tempo. In some respects a precursor to the groundbreaking proto-techno of E2-E4, Inventions for Electric Guitar is an essential document for space rock enthusiasts.

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