Michael Rother - Sterntaler LP
Release Date: June 21st, 2019
We'd assume that the majority of Stranded regulars are largely familiar with at least one of Michael Rother's projects. Whether it be his work with Kraftwerk, Neu!, Cluster, or Harmonia, Rother's contributions to the last 30 plus years of music are innumerable. Still, his solo work has been conspicuously absent from most write-ups and record shelves. Perhaps that's because the early '80s saw Rother in a bit of transition period from his kosmische glory days to a point where he embraced New Age with arms wide open.
Sterntaler is from 1977 and is Rother's second solo work recorded by Conny Plank and featuring Can's Jaki Liebezeit on drums. Similar in scope and feel to Cluster's more pastoral efforts, namely Sowiesoso, Rother's signature gliding guitar playing is recognizable throughout. Think Neu! light. And that's not a diss. Put in the context that Rother's first solo album Flammende Herzen sold more than all Neu! records combined, we might understand why Rother would pursue this more New Age-ish direction. Sterntaler definitely reaches to the heights of late-period krautrock a la Cluster and for curious fans is very worthy of your time. Lovely and recommended.