Faust (band)

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Faust
Faust (band) May2007.jpg
Faust performing in Manchester in 2007
Background information
Origin Wümme, Germany
Genres Krautrock
Years active 1971–75; 1990–present
Labels Art-errorist, Klangbad, Recommended, Virgin, Polydor
Associated acts Slapp Happy, Ulan Bator
Website The Faust Pages
Members Werner "Zappi" Diermaier
Hans Joachim Irmler
Jean-Hervé Péron
Past members Rudolf Sosna
Gunther Wüsthoff
Arnulf Meifert

Faust (German: fist) are a German krautrock band. Formed in 1971 in Wümme, the group was originally composed of Werner "Zappi" Diermaier, Hans Joachim Irmler, Arnulf Meifert, Jean-Hervé Péron, Rudolf Sosna and Gunther Wüsthoff, working with record producer Uwe Nettelbeck and engineer Kurt Graupner.[1]

History[edit]

Faust formed in 1971 in the rural setting of Wümme. They secured a recording contract with Polydor and soon began recording their debut, Faust, which sold poorly but received critical acclaim for its innovative approach and established a devoted fanbase. Faust became one of the premier bands in the international appreciation of the genre that would eventually be known as krautrock.[2]

Faust became one of the first acts to sign to Richard Branson's Virgin Records, who embarked on a marketing campaign somewhat daring for its time, aimed at introducing Faust to British record-buyers. The Faust Tapes was a cut-and-paste album which spliced together a large number of bits and pieces from their extensive collection of private recordings, not originally intended for release. Virgin issued it at the then price of a single, 48 UK pence. The Faust Tapes reportedly sold over 100,000 copies but its low price tag rendered it ineligible for a chart placing.[2]

Faust broke up in 1975 after Virgin rejected its fifth album (some of the recordings later appeared on the "Munich and Elsewhere" album), but reissues of their recordings and various additional material through Chris Cutler's Recommended Records maintained a level of interest.

The original lineup of Faust in the early 1970s.

Faust experimented with the presentation of some of its records. Their first album was originally on clear vinyl in a clear sleeve with an X-ray of a human fist silkscreened on the outer sleeve ("faust" is German for "fist"). The second album, So Far made extensive use of black, though inside the sleeve were sheets with one illustration for each song. The Faust Tapes had a visually disturbing op art cover design by Bridget Riley, while that for Faust IV consisted of a series of blank music staves.

After Faust's breakup, the group's whereabouts were unknown; the Recommended Records catalogues talked about the group's "disappearance". The official Web site lists three concerts during the 1980s, and the "Patchwork" album, a compilation of outtakes, feature three snippets that were recorded in the 1980s, but apart from that, the group's activities between 1975 and 1990 remain shrouded in mystery.

In 1990 and 1992, members Irmler, Diermaier and Péron reunited for performances.[2] In 1994, Faust toured the United States for the first time, with Péron and Diermaier assisted by Steven Wray Lobdell and with members of Sonic Youth as an opening act. Irmler did not participate in the 1994 US tour, but took a more active role after that, producing the groups' records and releasing them on his Klangbad label. He also compiled and edited the "Patchwork" remix album in 2002. Sosna's chronic alcoholism ended a brief reunion with Faust "after four or five exhausting days",[3] and he died on 10 November 1996.[4] Gunter Wüsthoff has not taken part in any of the reunions. They have continued to perform in various combinations and with various additional musicians ever since, with Diermaier always behind the drum kit.

In 1996, Diermaier and Péron met Olivier Manchion and Amaury Cambuzat from French group Ulan Bator. They performed for the first time together as "Collectif Met(z)" in November 1996 (this quartet became the basis of a later Faust line-up and this concert was part of a 2005 release). A few days after, Faust performed at the Garage in London and at the Transmusicales de Rennes, featuring Chris Cutler.

After two studio albums, Péron left the group in June 1997. From mid-1997 to 2004, Faust toured as Zappi W. Diermaier, Hans Joachim Irmler, Steven Wray Lobdell, Lars Paukstat and Michael Stoll, releasing many more studio and live albums.

Diermaier and "art-errorist" Péron reunited in 2005, when Zappi proposed that they start a "new" Faust together with Olivier Manchion and Amaury Cambuzat from Ulan Bator. Faust now exists in two completely different incarnations, both active and each reflecting different aspects of the original group. Uwe Nettelbeck died on 17 January 2007.[5]

Diermaier/Péron's new Faust made their debut at the 2005 Art-Errorist Avant Garde festival in Schiphorst, Germany, where they also presented a new release entitled Collectif Met(z), a collection including concerts from 1996 and 2005 and unreleased solo songs. They also recorded Trial and Error, released on DVD in 2007 by the Fuenfundvierzig Label. This incarnation of the group has been extremely active, releasing several CD-Rs and DVD-Rs and touring extensively, including a very successful autumn 2005 UK tour, released in 2007 as ... In Autumn by Dirter. This release also features ex Henry Cow saxophonist/flautist Geoff Leigh, vocalist Lucianne Lassalle, poet Zoë Skoulding and the members of the Welsh group Ectogram. The trio of Diermaier, Péron and Cambuzat performed at a Rock in Opposition festival in France in April 2007.[6] This trio lineup also recorded a new album entitled Disconnected which was mixed by Steven Stapleton and Colin Potter of Nurse with Wound. It was released to tie in with the 2007 Schiphorst Avant Garde festival in July 2007. C'est com... com... compliqué, the second album from these sessions was released in February 2009 on the Bureau B label. In 2011, Jean-Hervé Péron and Zappi W. Diermaier and the British artists Geraldine Swayne and James Johnston recorded a new Faust studio album, Something Dirty.

In 2010, Faust with members Hans Joachim Irmler, Steven Wray Lobdell, Lars Paukstat, Michael Stoll and Jan Fride released a new studio album, Faust Is Last.

Collaborations[edit]

During the Wümme years, Diermaier, Péron and Wüsthoff played on Slapp Happy's first two albums, Sort Of (1972) and Acnalbasac Noom (1973) which were also produced by Uwe Nettelbeck. Slapp Happy's Peter Blegvad had played with Faust in Wümme and subsequently toured with them in the UK. That tour also featured Uli Trepte, who had performed with Guru Guru and Neu!.

In contrast with Slapp Happy's song-based music, in 1972 Diermaier, Péron and Sosna also collaborated with the violinist Tony Conrad on Outside the Dream Syndicate; the record was released in 1973 at a low price in the UK and was, at the time, one of the few available examples of drone-based minimalism.[citation needed] A live recording from a 1995 concert, entitled Outside the Dream Syndicate Alive featuring Tony Conrad, Zappi Diermaier & Jean-Hervé Péron of Faust and Jim O'Rourke was released in Autumn 2005.

Faust collaborated with New Jersey avant-garde hip-hop crew Dälek for the album Derbe Respect, Alder in 2004.

Jean-Hervé Péron collaborated with THEME and Zsolt Sores on a MLP called 'Poison Is (Not) The Word' released on the Lumberton Trading Company label in 2012, and in 2013 Faust recorded 'Live at Clouds Hill' with Omar Rodríguez-López.

Gallery[edit]

Faust at a RIO festival in France, April 2007[edit]

JeanHervéPéron April2007.jpg
WernerZappiDiermaier April2007.jpg
AmauryCambuzat April2007.jpg
Jean-Hervé Péron
Werner "Zappi" Diermaier
Amaury Cambuzat

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Collaborations[edit]

Singles[edit]

  • "So Far" (1972) (re-issue in 2010)
  • "Chemical Imbalance" (1990)
  • "Überschall 1996" (1996) – split single with Stereolab and Foetus
  • "Trafics" (1997) – split single with La Kuizine
  • "Wir Brauchen Dich" (2001)

Compilations[edit]

  • Munich and Elsewhere (1986)
  • The Last LP: Faust Party No. 3, 1971–1972 (1988)
  • 71 Minutes of Faust (1988) Compilation of material from the above two
  • Faust/Faust So Far (2000)
  • The Wumme Years: 1970–1973 (2000)
  • BBC Sessions + (2001)

Live albums, and other releases[edit]

  • Faust 5 (1975) – never officially released, it exists only in the form of a Virgin Records promotional cassette
  • Faust Concerts, Volume 1: Live in Hamburg, 1990 (1994)
  • Faust Concerts, Volume 2: Live in London, 1992 (1994)
  • BBC Sessions/Kisses for Pythagoras LP Lmt. Ed. (1996)
  • Untitled (1996) – compilation of live and studio material
  • Edinburgh 1997 [live] (1997)
  • Land of Ukko & Rauni [live] (2000)
  • Freispiel (2002) – remixes of Ravviviando
  • Patchwork 1971–2002 (2002) – compilation of remixed and unreleased material
  • Abzu (2003) – 4 CDs box with interviews and unreleased, live, solo and remixed tracks
  • Collectif Met(z) (2005) – 3 CDs box + video CD
  • Silver Monk Time (2006) – tribute album to The Monks by various artists; Faust contribute one track
  • Live in Krakow 2006 (2007)
  • ... In Autumn (2007) – 3 CDs box + 1 DVD, recorded 2005
  • Od Serca Do Duszy [live] (2007) – 2xCD
  • Kleine Welt [live] (2008) – Hans Joachim Irmler's Faust, recorded 2006
  • Schiphorst 2008 [live] (2009) – recorded at the Schiphorst Festival
  • Clouds Hill Hamburg Studio Sessions 2009 (2009) – CDR of rehearsals, recorded February 2009
  • Live in Oslo (2009) – CDR
  • WFMU Fest in Brooklyn [live] (2010) – recorded 1 October 2009
  • Radical Mix (2012) – CDR, remix

Films[edit]

Further reading[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Allmusic bio". All Media Guide. Retrieved 1 March 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c Strong, Martin C. (2000). The Great Rock Discography (5th ed.). Edinburgh: Mojo Books. p. 342. ISBN 1-84195-017-3. 
  3. ^ Jean-Hervé Péron on Rudolf Sosna, Dec 2004 – faust-pages.com. Retrieved 13 December 2013
  4. ^ Péron statement, The Wümme Years box set booklet
  5. ^ Boyd, J (13 February 2007). "Obituary: Uwe Nettelbeck". Guardian Unlimited (London). Retrieved 27 December 2007. 
  6. ^ "Rock in Opposition: France Event – April 13th, 14th & 15th 2007". RockTime.org. Archived from the original on 5 December 2007. Retrieved 27 December 2007. 

External links[edit]