Ash Ra Tempel's fourth LP marked something of a pause, a recap, especially after the surprising Seven Up (which featured Timothy Leary as a guest). The temporary return of Klaus Schulze also greatly contributes to this feeling of summation. The album features two side-long pieces that represent literally two sides of the band, the Krautrock and space music incarnations. "Freak 'n' Roll" is a 19-minute hard-hitting jam, with Schulze bashing away behind the drums and Manuel Göttsching churning some mean guitar riffs while Harmut Enke ploughs heavy basslines. The track is actually an excerpt from a longer improvisation and begins with a fade in that throws the listener in the middle of an already heated session. Long but hardly long-winded, this track deserves a place alongside Can's "You Do Right" and Faust's "Krautrock": it has the drive, the psychedelic appeal, and the creativity of what epitomized the Krautrock style in the minds of young Englishmen and Americans for a while. The 24-minute "Jenseits" sees Schulze at the Synthi A and the organ, weaving dreamy drones and uplifting chords for Göttsching to doodle over. Enke's lines are not always as relevant as one would wish, and Rosi Mueller's soft-spoken narration seems to get in the way during the first few minutes -- in short, this is not Ash Ra Tempel at their ethereal best, but it's still a fine exercise in late-night musical dreaming that will appeal to fans of Phaedra-era Tangerine Dream while not misrepresenting that aspect of the group's work. And put together, those two pieces make a very fine introduction to the first few years of Ash Ra Tempel.
AllMusic Review by François Couture