Faust - Punkt LP
Label: Bureau B
After the overwhelming success of the 1971-1974 box set release, containing the first four studio albums and for the first time ever this lost "last" album recording, Punkt gets a deserved and necessary standalone release.
"The band called it 5½, fans referred to it as the 'Munich album' and for almost fifty years it's been the missing chapter in Faustian mythology. Now for the first time, the German iconoclasts' previously unreleased fifth album sees the light of day as Punkt... Punkt is Faust at their most unhindered, untethered and unstoppable. Returning to Germany after a loss-making U.K. tour and after their manager Uwe Nettelbeck had split with them, the group dusted themselves down and planned their next project, what would have been their second for Richard Branson's Virgin. Joined as always by their engineering genius Kurt Graupner, the band took residence in the Arabella High Rise Building, the luxury hotel which housed Giorgio Moroder's Musicland Studio in its basement...
"Faust spent their nights below ground, creating the sublime cacophony which courses through these seven tracks. Driven by Diermaier's primitive repetition and Péron's rabid low-end growl, 'Morning Land' stomps its way through almost ten minutes of heavy psychedelia... A Luciferian spirit courses through the beatless 'Crapolino', a tumult of scorched guitar chords, strident FXs and disembodied vocals which bares all the hallmarks of a black mass. And just like that, the group summon some demonic hunting party for 'Knochentanz' (bone dance), arguably their most immersive creation... The storm clears for a second to allow a celestial chord progression to emerge from the darkness before the heavens open and Sosna's snarling, sawing guitar rains down from above, carrying 'Knochentanz' through its final iteration, a collision of muscular fretwork, percussion freakout and bleeping organ which completes the most psychedelic recording you've never heard. The frazzled optimism of 'Fernlicht' buzzes away like an acid Beethoven bathed in neons, before the breathless 'Juggernaut' stretches the definition of blues rock to its limit as squirming sine waves, clattering cymbals and corrosive guitars pan, reverse and overlap, each following its own unhinged rhythm. Then for a time the sound and the fury abate, making space for the frankly sublime 'Schön Rund', a piano-led diversion into the soul-swelling realms of ECM jazz and fin de siècle impressionism, which rivals anything else in their catalogue for pure beauty. And in case you thought they'd gone soft, Faust sign off with the guttural groans and course drones of 'Prends Ton Temps'..." - Patrick Ryder