Günter Schickert - Samtvogel
Günter Schickert is a German musician born on the 25th of April, 1949. He learned to play trumpet in 1962 but taught himself guitar in 1967 and made that his main instrument. In 1971 he started playing free jazz and in 1973 made his first solo echo-guitar sessions. In 1976 he formed the group GAM with Axel Struk and Michael Leske.
There are records that come from the soul. No matter how primitive the recording techniques the musician has access to may be, the soul gets its way to the heart and mind of the listener. Samtvogel is one of those records. Günter Schickert recorded that amazing piece of human greatness in 1974, using the media he had at the time, putting his brain at work to find the best way of taping everything he had to say.
Thanks to these three months of work, between June and September of 1974, Samtvogel was privately issued that same year. It would later be reissued on the Brain label, with a small change in the artwork - titles added to the front cover, which weren't on the original private pressing. Brain also reissued it on the label's Rock On Brain LP series, this time with a completely different sleeve. The album contained two tracks on side A and just one on side B, and its sound has often been compared to the most exploratory works of Syd Barret. However, it must be pointed out that Schickert did not need any mind spreading substances to allow his sounds to float out of his mind & soul; they just came out in the most natural way. It will also appeal to fans of the echoed atmospheric guitar work of other Krautrock innovators such as Ash Ra Temple, Manuel Götsching or A.R. & The Machines, and some may find on the vocal passages certain resemblances to Damo Suzuki on Can's Tago Mago era.
'When I was recording Samtvogel in 1974 I had only 2 tape recorders. I played one track and while listening I added the second one. And so on. Four times. When I mixed all together I borrowed a 3rd tape recorder. And still added the last track to the master. I had a small mixer with 2 stereo and 1 mono but it was possible to pan tracks. No equalization. It all came out of my still living G2000 Dynacord guitar amplifier, of course valve, with no master, even the voice recorded through it. If I made a mistake in 1 track I had to repeat it from the beginning. And if while mixing I was not fast enough in changing the tape I had to start again. So it took me more than 3 months to get ready." ~ Günter Schickert
1. Apricot Brandy
2. Kriegsmaschinen, Fahrt Zur Holle
"Important Records has issued many great albums over the years, but it just occurred to me today that they have quietly become one of the best-curated reissue labels around. Case in point: this visionary 1974 suite of hermetic, hallucinatory solo guitar compositions." ~ Brainwashed
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