Faust IV

Released

There is no real analog to Faust in Anglophone circles, except maybe in some work by Zappa or Negativland or maybe even Naked City, played at half-speed. They were writing songs and cutting songs and noises into pieces and dismantling the idea that there was a band inside this band. Depending on which one of the many versions of this album you find, you might hear the Peel session version of “Krautrock,” as demented a swirl of noise and pulsing (no drums) that anyone in this cohort ever made. The eight-minute clomp of “Giggy Smile” is like every style the band was into, jammed piece into piece, a rough cut-up of what was on the charts, with some actual catchy bits. (This band had the best hook writers in Germany, no lie.) As they put it in the manifesto they handed out on their 1973 tour: “Faust have mentioned that working as they do in the space between concept & realisation they are in fact doing nothing. Faust would like to play for you the sound of yourself listening.”

Sasha Frere-Jones

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