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德国前卫摇滚 Krautrock

Krautrock为一英国乐评人发明的专有名词,泛指七十年从德国蹦出来,有别於英美风格的前卫摇滚乐团。他们就像当年的嘻皮一样,偏爱迷幻奇想、没事就来个十几二十分落落长的即兴,特别是在摇滚乐中加入革命性的电声实验,营造太空冥想氛围。至於为什么叫Krautrock我也不知道,Kraut本意为德国酸泡菜,也是对德国人的鄙称,也有人说Kraut和英文的herb一样有大麻的意思,指这些玩psychedelic的大麻味很重,还有人说是从 Faust IV这张专辑的第一首歌名「Krautrock」来的,反正众说纷纭,只好随便听听。

  七十年代的德国年轻人吸收了来自大西洋两岸的摇滚乐文化,例如:爱玩火的Jimi Hendrix鬼魅般的吉他演奏,The Velvet Underground的地下实验精神,Pink Floyd充满的诗意的概念专辑,还有开始玩迷幻的B头四(著名的「胡椒军槽寂寞芳心俱乐部乐队」)。他们并非一成不变的把别人的东西抠过来,而是在摇滚乐中融合了极微主义的编曲概念,延续前辈Karlheinz Stockhausen的电声实验,大量地使用电子合成乐器,唱起了摇滚四件式的挽歌(如果没有他们,Roland、Korg等做电子乐器的老板可能要来台湾摆地摊了)。这些Krautrock先驱们,把高高在上的现代音乐理论拖进摇滚乐这滩混水,发挥科学家般的实验精神,改革传统摇滚乐架构,吉他拿来做噪音,主唱用ㄍㄞ的,鼓手不打4/4拍了,甚至完全就改用才刚开始起步的电子乐器,每个乐团都创造出自己独特的音乐风格,Krautrock可以说是最具「前卫」感的摇滚乐。

  krautrock乐团皆发迹於德国的大城市,不约而同地带起了这股潮流,经由英国乐评人的推波助澜,Can、Faust、Kraftwerk、 Tangerine Dream…等一个个变成了经典传奇团,甚至连摇滚变色龙David Bowie、不太会弹keybaord的环境音乐大师Brian Eno等人还跨海到德国去向这些人取经(不过这股Krautrock风潮只是发生在英国乐评人的笔下,当时德国本土并没有引起很大的回应,而现今对 Krautrock最著迷的除了英国外,排第二的就是日本了吧)。

  严格说起来,Krautrcok只是一个统称,绝对不是一种单纯的音乐类型。背负著Krautrock之名的几个乐团其实在音乐本质上有很大的不同: Amon Düül把progressive rock玩的更酸、更涩。Ash Ra Temple主打漫无边际、天马行空的吉他solo。Guru Guru在把玩instrumental rock之余,也会来段长篇迷幻奇想。Neu!则完全是Stereolab早期学习模仿的对象。Faust被誉为德国的The Velvet Underground,又麻又辣的droning嗡嗡噪音,总是会让人沉迷在那种神秘性的节奏中。而Krautrock中团员年龄最老却最funky的 Can,在现场即兴时,经常激发出惊人爆发力。Kraftwerk完全舍弃了传统摇滚乐器,利用电子合成乐器演奏出流行的曲调,专辑概念充满冷酷的机器人、电脑、现代化大都市。Cluster的电子乐则做出一片Ambient太空音效。Klaus Schulze、Tangerine Dream在实验电子一途外另辟New Age大道。另外,融合印度、中南美原住民的音乐元素的Popol Vuh,则充满神秘主义味道,追求原始宗教般的古老仪式。

  总而言之,Krautrock在七十年代大放异彩,现在这些团现在散的散,单飞的单飞,重组的重组,做出来的东西也都没有早年来的有原创性了。虽然 Krautrock还没被诊断为性无能,却在最近兴起的Post Rock中找到了第二春。Stereolab、Tortoise等后摇滚名团抓著Krautrock尾巴,重现Analogue乐器的风采。许多Post Rock乐团重复性的极微编曲概念、加入的电子音效,主唱不唱歌制造气氛,都可看出是从Krautrock的实验报告那抄来的。而其他Space Rock、Noise Pop、Ambient…等也同样受到Krautrock深远的影响。Sonic Youth的Lee Ranaldo曾预言Krautrock会再度兴起,前几年Faust复出、Kraftwerk登上Spin史上最伟大的50个乐团、Julian Cope写了本Krautrocksampler、Krautrock的早年经典唱片一再复刻、致敬专辑一堆…。

"Krautrock" is a term coined by the British music press, and is generally used to refer to the progressive and experimental groups of late 1960s and early 1970s Germany.

These groups combined a variety of influences and styles, including British and American Psychedelic Rock groups, the Free Jazz of Ornette Coleman and Albert Ayler, and experimental classical composers (most notably Karlheinz Stockhausen as well as the minimalists Terry Riley and Steve Reich). The desire to eschew conventional song structure and melody also led to some groups developing a more mechanical sound and feel for their compositions, which also often made use of early synthesizers and other electronic instrumentation.

Although they all differed in their approach to their music, the underlying link between all the krautrock groups was the attempt to take the rhythm ("motorik" was the name given to the steady 4/4 beat used by many groups) and energy of American rock music and disassociate it as much as possible from its Rhythm & Blues roots, instead drawing inspiration from other sources.

Kraftwerk are far and away the most commercially successful of all the krautrock groups, finding major commercial success when they developed their sound into a pioneering form of Synth Pop combining catchy synthesizer melodies with the motorik rhythm. Critically, however, many krautrock groups are held in high esteem by the vast majority of commentators. Albums by groups such as Amon Düül II, Can, Faust, NEU!, Popol Vuh and Tangerine Dream are regarded as classics in the Experimental Rock and Progressive Rock canon.

It should be noted that, although "krautrock" has come to be accepted as the general term for the music of this style, it was (and is) perceived by some as a xenophobic or derogatory term, since "kraut" is an ethnic slur against Germans. As a result, some of the so-called krautrock groups have distanced themselves from the term, instead referring to their music as "German progressive rock" or "Kosmische Musik".



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