Review of So Far

Steve Peacock

Sounds, Jul 1972

from the cover of The Faust Tapes

In the search for a new approach to music, a new concept or at least a different eye on things, it seems to me people have been clutching rather wildly at straws.

It's entirely understandable that, with the British music scene seemingly obsessed with its own and other peoples' past, with the vast explosion of the nouveau cliche, and very few people coming up with anything approaching originality of thought in their music, the seemingly rootless and unaccustomed sound of music Faust circa 1972: Jochen, Zappi, Rudolf, Jean, Guntherfrom other European countries should be hailed as What we All Need. But personally, with the possible exception of some of the things Can have produced and the odd flashes from a couple of Danish bands, I haven't heard anything from the Eurorock tribe that has really satisfied me. Cautiously then, I'll say that what I've heard from the German band Faust makes me think that here at last is a band I can not only appreciate for their ideas, but also sit back and enjoy. Their first album was confusing when I first heard it, but side two which was recorded 'live' - that is, with no overdubbing - flows in a way that is more immediately obvious. My main reservation about the whole album is that the ideas haven't been translated into the technology as successfully as they could have been, and - in a way like Roxy Music - Faust don't have that intuitive feel that you get from musicians who've grown through a few bands, with some years on the road behind them.

Their second album, So Far, seems to have allayed both those reservations. But what really marks them out for me is their rare ability to be serious without being over-earnest - not a sense of humour exactly, but a sense of proportion.

So far they haven't done any live gigs and they won't until they're absolutely sure they can make it work in concert the way it works in a studio. It's not so much perfectionism, as a feeling that there's no point in going out and playing something that isn't what they envisaged.

Steve Peacock, "Review of So Far", Sounds 1972