Mekanïk Destruktïw Kommandöh

Artist: Magma
Label: A&M Records
Catalog#: SP-4397
Format: Vinyl
Country: United States
Released: 1973-12
A1 Hortz Fur Dëhn Stekëhn West 9:36
A2 Ïma Sürï Dondaï 4:30
A3 Kobaïa Is De Hündïn 3:34
B1 Da Zeuhl Wortz Mekanïk 7:48
B2 Nebëhr Gudahtt 6:02
B3 Mekanïk Kommandöh 4:10
B4 Kreühn Köhrmahn Iss De Hündïn 3:13

Bass - Jannick Top
Brass, Flute - Teddy Lasry
Choir - Doris Reinhardt
Choir - Evelyne Razymovski
Choir - Michèle Saulnier
Choir - Muriel Streisfeld
Choir - Stella Vander
Clarinet [Bass], Vocals - René Garber
Drums, Vocals, Organ, Percussion, Written-By - Christian Vander
Engineer - Ed Sprigg
Engineer - Gilbert
Engineer - Gilles Salle
Engineer - Simon Heyworth
Engineer - Steve Michell
Engineer - Tom Rabstener
Guitar - Claude Olmos
Other [Stage Manager] - Loulou Sarkissian
Piano, Organ - Jean-Luc Manderlier
Producer - Giorgio Gomelsky
Vocals, Percussion - Klaus Blasquiz


Recorded at the Manor Studios, England and at Aquarium Studios, Paris.
Third movement of Theusz Hamtaahk.
Gatefold sleeve.

Strawberry Bricks Entry: 
Armed with a two-album deal from A&M Records (and reportedly signed by Herb Alpert) it was at manager Giorgio Gomelsky's request that Christian Vander firmly took the reins of Magma to realize his epic work, Mekanïk Destrukïw Kommandöh. It tells the story of Nebëhr Gudahtt, a sort of apocalyptic prophet from the planet Kobaia—Book of Revelations-type stuff, really. Recorded versions existed as early as January and the piece was performed in New York in July (with a horn section that included the Brecker Brothers); the album, however, is the grandest of presentations. If there is a musical reference, it wouldn't be Vander's fondness for John Coltrane or Ornette Coleman, but rather choral works, such as Igor Stravinsky's Les Noces or Carl Orff's Carmina Burana. Throughout the piece, Vander's modus operandi is this "force rythmique," a combination of his deft drumming, Jannick Top's bass supreme and keyboardist Jean-Luc Manderlier's swirling electric piano; static and relentless, it's a kind of musical intercourse, always teasing towards the edge of climax. Vander is also joined on choral acrobatics by Klaus Blasquiz, his wife Stella Vander and others, while stalwarts René Garber and Teddy Lasry provide the brass. Like a storm front on the horizon, the heavy rhythm of "Hortz Fur Dëhn Stekënhn West" wraps the chorus in a circular motion, teetering on the edge of furious cacophony. "Ïma sürï Dondaï" offers a brief respite before the tempestuous choral and horn arrangements again storm in. By the second side's "Nebëhr Gudahtt," with Vander and Blasquiz's falsettos approaching hysteria, the listening gets difficult; still, the Top/Vander rhythm section grinds through "Mekanïk Kommandöh" before the epic work reaches its final, glorious climax. Regardless of the pretension, Magma remains one of the most original groups of the progressive era, and MDK is their masterwork: "Zeuhl" starts here.
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