Klaus Schulze – Irrlicht (1972)

Irrlicht is the first album by Klaus Schulze. Originally released in 1972, in 2006 it was the sixteenth Schulze album reissued by Revisited Records as part of a series of Schulze album reissues. Recorded without a synthesizer, Irrlicht’s set of “early organ drone experiments” is “not exactly the music for which KS got famous”. The album’s complete title is: Irrlicht: Quadrophonische Symphonie für Orchester und E-Maschinen (German: “Will-o’-the-wisp: Quadraphonic Symphony for Orchestra and Electronic Machines”). Its atmospheric drone music tone is similar to Tangerine Dream’s album Zeit (released the same month) as it stemmed from a common idea that Schulze and Froese couldn’t agree on and parted ways over. In 2005, Schulze said, “Irrlicht still has more connections to Musique concrète than with today’s electronics. I still never owned a synthesiser at the time.” Schulze mainly used a broken and modified electric organ, a recording of a classical orchestra rehearsal played backward, and a damaged amplifier to filter and alter sounds that he mixed on tape into a three-movement symphony. Irrlicht, despite its highly unconventional nature, was originally released on the prestigious krautrock label Ohr. Because Schulze was signed to them while a member of Tangerine Dream, the label asserted that his solo album belonged to them too; Schulze’s reaction was, “I was just glad that Irrlicht was released at all. Any other company would have probably turned me away with this record.”







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