Well even with a basic grasp of German you should know what an Autobahn is and with Kometbahn it’s not difficult to guess we are heading to space along with the comet’s path. Then there is the name of the band, one could say sounds a bit Kraut and that would not actually be rude as there is such a form of widely accepted music known as Krautrock. Worked it out yet? Well probably not quite, as although I had arrived at the style of music correctly I would not have guessed that it was being done by a bunch of crazy Finns from their “deep space agency.” That is exactly what we have here though and amongst these mad boffins of technological sound exploration we have members united to the cause such as Kimi Kärki of Reverend Bizarre and Lord Vicar teamed up with others from musical backgrounds as disparate as punk, folk-prog and even techno house and ambient acts.
Musically if you are into instrumental music and lots of synthesizers playing sci-fi enhanced music that takes you into the stars, country of origin is inconsequential. It is quickly obvious that this lot hit the nail on the head with their retro futurist (yeah a paradoxical but apt description) music.
‘Prolog In Himmel’ does actually start with some vocorder voices that sound like they are transmitted from a far off planet, possibly one now rendered extinct due to the time they have taken to beam down to earth. It sets the mood up nicely for ‘Nachgeist’ ebbing in with cold pulses escaping from the frigid landscape of Carpenter’s Thing and swooshing with slow and quiet pulses and meandering guitar work. As the guitar sound builds I am waiting for the unmistakable voice of Dave Brock to join in as it sounds very much like the ghost of Huw Lloyd-Langton at work here. Melody is quite mournful here, I am drawn back to thinking of a deceased civilisation and this their lament; geist meaning ghost makes this all the more apt. I am waiting for something a bit more lively though and ‘Durch Den Komischen Dunst’ starts to beam a more tune orientated melody out. I am again reminded of various soundtracks, masters of which were obviously Tangerine Dream and this could easily be a piece of theirs. The long 11 minute track goes into very ambient territories allowing you to float off with it coming back into life as the peak of the keyboards rise through the fog like the light of the sun turning a long night on a frozen planet to day
I am no expert on the likes of Amon Duul but am sure that the chances are others who have reviewed this have stroked beards and name checked them. All I can surmise is that the band here have replicated sounds that many an acid casualty of the 70s grew up on and will love hearing it redone in the modern age. I guess this would be an ideal album to pick up on vinyl if it were available and if you are actually in Finland they are playing at an electronic night at the Sibelius Museum, which will surely be a good as place as any to leave the cosmos during.
On the whole the album is quite chilled and not one to go into expecting lots of fast lively parts to. I would term it 6AM come down music essentially and the ambient structures of numbers like ‘Mythos’ should not be heard when operating heavy machinery. Parting piece ‘Sonnenaufgang’ is a little bit on the Kraftwerk meets Jean Michel Jarre side and finishes the album on a bit more of a boisterous note and on the whole this has been a very interesting trip well worth looking into.
(7/10 Pete Woods)