I will be honest and admit that I was previously unaware of this fine German band and their past substantial discography. Anyhow, probably because I was fully aware of the impact that the German ‘Dark Metal’ band Bethlehem’ have in the North Rhine region of Westphalia, I was unsure of what to expect from ‘Flying Circus’ a band from the same geographical area. However, from the very first play there was something very warm and familiar about ‘Flying Circus’. Yes, for me, a kind of journey back in time to the wonderful early days of Kraut Rock’ and bands such as ‘Birth Control’ and other cult German progressive rock band from the 1970s. In fact, as I discovered here, ‘Flying Circus ‘comprise an abundance of delightfully melodic musicianship, superb arrangements and fine vocals all produced in ‘Neo Kraut Rock’ style.
Generally, there is so much movement to the music driven by some powerful bass and excellent drumming throughout, especially the composite ‘Latin American’ inflections so cleverly integrated into the scores. But what really sparks the compositional mood to fever pitch and creates an extra special atmosphere to the proceedings, are the numerous, but not nearly enough violin contributions. Particularly noticeable is the huge variety of ideas and different arrangements incorporated throughout the ten tracks without much in the way of repetition. Layers of tasty keyboards comprising classical piano, organ and synthesiser all act together like the glue holding everything in place and rather like an artist’s canvas allow oodles of freedom for the guitar to sing a sway separately in both lead and rhythm capacities.
The lead vocals are commanding and stylish and delivered with much aplomb. Such a range of vocal capabilities is amply demonstrated throughout the entire programme of tracks but more particularly revealed with the more ballad styled track entitled ‘Memphis’. The subtle backing vocals, although not over utilised are, where incorporated, excellent too.
Summary: A superb album from a very talented group of musicians. Beautifully arranged and coordinated instrumentation and excellent vocals throughout. Although with a modern feel the music definitely recreates memories of the golden age of Krautrock and the wonderful German bands of that period. A solid addition to any progressive rock music collection
Rüdiger Blömer (keys/violin)
Michael Dorp (vocals)
Michael Rick (guitar)
Ande Roderigo (drums)
Roger Weitz (bass)
LED ZEPPELIN, RUSH, YES, BLACK SABBATH, KING CRIMSON, DEEP PURPLE THE TEA PARTY, MUSE, PINK FLOYD, THE CULT, GENESIS, QUEEN, GENTLE GIANT, THE BEATLES, SPOCK'S BEARD, THE WHO, MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA