I might have to put this at album #2 right behind New Age of Earth. Unfortunately, I don’t have an original pressing, but the 180g re-press sounds great.
Cluster (then Kluster) was formed by Dieter Moebius, Hans-Joachim Roedelius, and Conrad Schnitzler in 1969. Schnitzler had recorded Tangerine Dream’s debut Electronic Meditation just two months before Kluster’s debut Klopfzeichen.
After Schnitzler’s departure three albums later, Moebius and Roedelius renamed the group Cluster and continued recording starting with Cluster (aka Cluster ’71), and following that Cluster II.
A year before Zuckerzeit, Moebius and Roedelius joined up with Michael Rother of NEU! and released two albums under the name Harmonia (which I will be posting very soon). After Rother left Harmonia, Moebius and Roedelius went back in the studio to record Zuckerzeit, and if you listen to Cluster’s previous releases, you can hear Rother’s influence practically bleeding through the tracks. Mmm!
Zuckerzeit has a very interesting structure. Each track was written solely by either Moebius or Roedelius and, except one track, cycles between the two. It gives a very interesting mixture of light and fluffy to a much more experimental noise-centric sound. I tend to like Roedelius’s tracks much more, but “Caramel” is the exception.
Cluster – Hollywood (1974)[audio:cluster-hollywood.mp3]