Mythos was a German band in the Seventies that helped to explore the Krautrock sound.
MYTHOS: Quasar (CD on Sireena Records)
Originally released on Sky Records in 1980, this album has been reissued on CD in 2012 and features bonus material, bringing the total to 44 minutes of dark electronic rock music.
At this point in history, Mythos' line-up boiled down to Stephan Kaske (on vocals, flute, synthesizer, sequencer, vocoder, mellotron, computer drums and guitar). Joining him on several tracks is Markus Worbs (on drums).
This release fuses electronics and krautrock into a mode that is often a precursor to a techno pop sound, although the music's dire temperament distinctly undermines any celebratory dancefloor ethic.
Electronics dominate the tuneage, unfurling gritty passages brimming with a guttural luster. Even when the electronics adopt a shriller, airier tone, the general mood is an eerie one, as if the music has ushered the listener into the depths of a haunted house.
Grinding guitar and durable drums attempt to inject a rock sentiment into the music, but their presence is often superfluous (despite the prominence of these instruments in songs), while the overall synthesizer thematic tend to emerge victorious.
While not as prevalent as in other Mythos releases, the flute maintains a strong demeanor, flavoring the dark tuneage with a counterpoint of sober frivolity.
Vocals are present in a few songs, usually styled with a supernatural timbre. In one instance they are heavily treated to produce an otherworldly impression.
These compositions provide a tangible link between Mythos' krautrock origins and the purely electronic music the band evolved into producing during the Eighties and beyond. While the music tends to be dark with frequent dips into ominous terrain, a certain bounciness comes through, rendering the tunes with a particular charisma.
The bonus track features 10 minutes of music composed for film, television and radio. Instead of being primarily electronic, this piece utilizes a full range of instruments, with dynamic drums propelling the shimmering keyboard passages. While portions still exhibit a scary undertone, a sense of grandeur flavors enough of the flow to dispel any disquiet.
The package includes a 16 page booklet with pictures and text outlining the band's evolution from Krautrock to contemporary electronics.
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