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Deluxe [European Import]

12 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (1 Oct. 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Universal Music
  • ASIN: B00061I0XC
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 99,276 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By M. Knox on 29 Mar. 2006
Format: Audio CD
The frantic period of creativity that produced so much startlingly daring music from Germany between the late sixties and mid-'70s was beginning to come to an end by 1975, but there were still a few truly great albums yet to appear. One of these is most definitely Harmonia's Deluxe. That Michael Rother was to appear on both this and NEU!'s excellent NEU! 1975 probably won't come as much of a surprise to anyone that is aware of his omnipresence on the Krautrock scene from the early part of the decade onwards.
Harmonia's superb 1974 debut Musik Von Harmonia had set a high standard for the group to follow with any subsequent work, and, as it had been such a boldly adventurous outing in the first place it might have seemed they would have difficulty in showing any kind of musical progress on the album that followed. That they did indeed attempt to build on the work of their first album - and the work done by Hans-Joachim Roedelius and Dieter Moebius in Cluster - says much for the talent and audacity of the three men involved.
What we have here is an album made by three people very much at the top of their collective game. Much like Musik Von Harmonia, this album blends Moebius and Roedelius' pretty and adventurous synthesiser work with Rother's carefully created guitar lines. The title track unfolds over nearly ten minutes of throbbing electronic melodies, using slabs of Rother's treated guitar to emphasise - and contrast with - melodic progressions. However, unlike on the previous album, there are vocals here, a mantra-like repetition of "immer wieder rauf und runter / einmal drauf und einmal drunter / immer wieder hin und her / kreuz und quer, mal leicht mal schwer", seeming to reiterate the almost childlike simplicity of the supporting keyboard melody.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mr. G. Morgan on 27 Sept. 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I am new to the Cluster/Harmonia boys, but as soon as I heard it once I thought, "So that's where the New Romantic movement got its basic sound." It is also where you get that attenuated thunderousness of some of Bowie's 'Heroes', especially 'Moss Garden".... Well Eno loves them; here it is what his was a homage to. The key precursor track would be the very motoric 'Hallogallo' off 'Neu!' and this zippy, cheery disc is very definitely from the Kraftwerk/Neu! end of things, with beats and a propulsive movement to much of the record, although guitar is reserved until the third track, some way in, though it is quieter initially.... where the sound is therefore more 'motorik.' Not surprising, since Rother had climbed on board thus adding this to his Neu! roster' (at no point is his guitar dominant in the Heavy Rock sense nor would one expect it to be). There's none of the brain-jangling impro. of Can or crash-bang-wallop/melody you get with Faust nor the rolling Acidy movements/solos of Amon Duul 2...what there is, is jaunty, jolly and with light melodies to usher one sedately down the Autobahn (at 200 KPH obviously). There is the rare experience of hearing what may be a direct British influence on the final track, 'Seske' which reminds me of 'The Soft Weed Factor' from 'Soft Machine 4', a sort of even drone, slightly varied, gently insistent If all this sounds like faint praise, it is not: I have belatedly found what the other, lighter side of Krautrock is like and very pleased I am too. I await delivery of Musik Von Harmonium with baited teeth. Put it another way, not like any other disc I have bought this year. In a good way. It does not exactly do for the countryside what Kraftwerk did for the motorway, but it's the sort of thing for a dash across the A272, something I shall try asap.. Something breezy about this sucker; I too could listen to much of it all day.....and I mean just continuously; I ain't joking either.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Rooksby on 26 Jan. 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Praise be to Our Lord Julian Cope & his hallowed Krautsampler tome, for, prior to that, & despite what revisionist geeks might state in their own Amazon reviews, German rock had been entirely written off as bloated, corpulent & fundamentally uncool. Without Cope's (erm) "retrospective precognition", it's more than likely that this often sublime music might have been lost forever, so God knows what everybody would be listening to nowadays (The Eagles, again, probably?).

Contrary to many other reviewers on here, I have to admit that I much prefer Deluxe to Musik Von Harmonia... though, naturally, I adore them both. As fine an album as Musik Von... is, it largely evokes the kosmische Kraut sounds that Tangerine Dream, Neu!, & Kraftwerk had nailed a year or 2 previously. Deluxe, however, is much more subtle & contemplative - Rother's guitar plays a far more prominent role this time 'round, & the addition of sporadic live percussion (rather than bargain basement rhythm box) means that these sessions pulse & undulate beautifully.

3 important things that define this LP: (i) it does for the Germany countryside what Kraftwerk's Autobahn did for it's road network; (ii) it's better than any Eno LP &, in all fairness, Eno would almost certainly agree, & (iii) "Monza" essentially IS Bowie's "Red Sails".

In all seriousness, Deluxe is one of the finest electronic albums of the last 40 years.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Bob Isaaks on 30 May 2005
Format: Audio CD
Pure delight from Michael Rother and Cluster,
melodic, hypnotic, rocking, tranquil - released in '75
when most classic german acts except Kraftwerk had their best
works behind them - a small masterpiece and highly
recommended!
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