Among the many German musicians who in the 1970s "traveled" (in person or just spiritually) to India and the Far East and absorbed Eastern spirituality in the format of western music, Florian Fricke is likely to be the greatest. His work has been a constant exploration of the same theme: how to express the most personal, profound, austere spirituality by the means of western classical music, western sacred music and profane rock music. It was a marriage of East and West, and a marriage of past and present, made on Earth. In fact, it was made in Germany, and it bears the stigmata of German history. Almost inevitably, Fricke ended up denying the fundamental tenet of German music of his age: electronics. The humble, peaceful tones of acoustic instruments served his purpose better than the majestic complexity of synthesizers and sequencers.
In 1972 Fricke converted to both Christianity and Hinduism, and decided to move even further away from electronic instruments, preferring the most humble acoustic instruments over high-tech devices. A new line-up, centered around the angelic wails of Korean soprano Djong Yun, recorded Hosianna Mantra (Pilz, january 1973) in a Buddhist meditative tone, showing a solemn and elegant way to bridge the Western mass and Eastern meditation. Fricke on keyboards, Amon Duul II's guitarist Conny Veit, Between's Robert Eliscu on oboe, Fritz Sonnleitner on violino, Klaus Wiese on tambouras build up ascetic atmospheres that catapult the listener into Tibetan or Gregorian monasteries. Most of the interplay is between the piano (tenderly caressed by Fricke) and the guitar (whose phrasing simulates the Indian mantras). The other instruments add evocative power to the music, rarely altering the flow, in a manner similar to renaissance music. The key difference between this music and classical or rock music is the repudiation of rhythm: Tangerine Dream was removing rhythm (i.e., Time) from its cosmic soundpainting, and Popol Vuh removed rhythm (i.e., Time) from its spiritual soundpainting.