Quality: 4.5 out of 5
Trip-O-Meter: 4.5 out of 5
Poor Agitation Free, having their members continually poached by better known krautrockers like Tangerine Dream and Guru Guru - and all before their debut album! Fortunately some travels through Egypt helped them get it together, and this album is pretty sweet. Featuring echoes of Middle Eastern music along with touches of the glacial sounds of Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schultze and some prog rock grooving, Malesch makes for a fine 40 minutes. The drumming here is well played and recorded, and the organ riffs sometimes recall something Terry Riley would target.
With a touch of early sampling, "You Play For Us Today" does a fine job setting the gliding groove that the album pretty much sticks to. "Sahara City" serves up a full blast of the Middle Eastern sounds before turning into a full-fledged freak out. Then it all comes together for the album's best track, "Ala Tul." That one makes me picture a wild solar medina (Arabic marketplace) orbiting Neptune. It's even a little groovier than the Star Wars cantina - at least in my head. The rest of the album is no slouch. The title track is only a shade under "Ala Tul" while striking a similar vibe, and "Rucksturz" sends us off with a final though of glammy, acid guitar.
While there are plenty of elements on this disc that some of the other 70's German musicians pulled off even better, Agitation Free hits their marks well and the Egyptian sounds help set this one apart. With clean production and fine playing, this is a necessary listen.