Neu! – Neu! ’75 (1975)
Good first impressions never hurt and that was the case here: minimalist yet descriptive album cover, album name & artist name.
Neu! ’75 is also an album that works best in the side one/side two formats.
I quite enjoyed the instrumental side one. I wouldn’t be surprised if the pleasant opener, Isi, inspired Coldplay to open Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends with the equally uplifiting Life in Technicolor. Seeland is my favourite of the set, settling into a nice groove not unlike The Hip’s The Last of the Unplucked Gems.
Side two reminded me of how I feel about Modest Mouse, one of the finest groups of the 21st Century thus far. Lead vocalist Isaac Brock walks a very fine line between effective & annoying with his vocals. Usually he’s able to stay on the former side but every so often it crosses the line and the song’s impact is diminished. The second side opener, Hero, is probably the best example here where the vocals are precariously close to or slightly over the edge throughout.
I appreciate that sides one and two of Neu! reveal different sides of the group but for the most part, I much preferred the instrumental ambient version of the group. Kudos are in order though for recruiting two drummers to play simultaneously on the more aggressive side two.
Most importantly, this album inspired me to create a ‘Top 5 Instrumentals’ list – anytime an album inspires a Top 5, I can’t complain!
That’s all for Punctuation Appreciation September.
Coming up in October – inspired by fellow bloggers that immerse themselves in an artist, each post will look at 2 albums by the same artist. Tentatively titled 2 for 1 October or 2Pac October – artist/theme/theme title suggestions are of course always welcomed!