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Cologne, Germany (1968 – 1979)

Can was an group founded in Cologne, Germany in 1968. Describing themselves as an “anarchist community”, they constructed their music largely through improvisation and editing, in a way similar to several composers of the time. They had only occasional commercial success, but exerted a huge influence on subsequent and music. They are generally held to be one of the finest of the original bands, and are among the most important artists in recent music history.
A lot of their initial popularity came from positive press in the UK (when many other Krautrock bands were shunned by UK media such as NME) and airplay on John Peel’s BBC radio programmes, which led to extensive touring in the UK. They also gained exposure in Germany by doing soundtrack work for German filmmakers.

Keyboardist Irmin Schmidt and bassist/producer Holger Czukay had studied electronic music together under Karlheinz Stockhausen circa 1966. Schmidt was inspired to start the group following a trip to New York where he was “corrupted’ by Andy Warhol and The Velvet Underground. As well as Schmidt and Czukay, the initial lineup included guitarist Michael Karoli, a former pupil of Czukay; and drummer Jaki Liebezeit.

Their first vocalist was an American sculptor, Malcolm Mooney, who joined them living in an old castle with their own music studio, Inner Space. Mooney added a sort of “outsider artist” approach to his improvised vocals, but the chaotic lifestyle was damaging to his mental health and he eventually fled back to the USA on advice of a psychiatrist. He later contributed to the ‘reunion’ album Rite Time in the mid ’80s.

Mooney was replaced by Kenji “Damo” Suzuki, found busking outside a café in Munich.


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  • thebobx

    i think can and the velvet underground are both great bands, neither are bland or overrated

    23 Jul 2:32pm Reply
  • Paper_Okami

    Can destroys the incredibly overrated and bland Velvet Underground. They may be important, but they haven't held up at all.

    10 Jul 2:13am Reply
  • avantish

    v The VU influence is quite obvious on Delay 68 and the first half of Monster Movie.

    1 Jun 2:49pm Reply
  • NathelieJulienn

    They have NOTHING TO DO WITH THE VELVET UNDERGROUND. I'm tired of seeing all of those comparisons.

    1 Jun 12:57am Reply
  • boogiedroid

    coolest shit ever

    8 May 7:47am Reply
  • Actopus

    Группа, к которой всегда возвращаешься

    3 May 4:32pm Reply
  • Filthatmand

    Jaki Liebezeit is by far my favourite drummer of all drummers. Those grooves are amazing!

    1 May 12:21pm Reply
  • RussellChap

    The kind of band you can never get tired of, each listen is like the first, you notice stuff you hadn't heard before. Fresh each time.

    16 Apr 10:29am Reply
  • DissecteDnigger

    @HaHaHaYoureDead, к сожалению, после ухода Дамо эпичен только один альбом - Soon Over Babaluma, Landed просто очень хороший, а дальше ничего стоящего не было.

    15 Apr 9:17pm Reply
  • DissecteDnigger

    Malcolm Mooney > Damo Suzuki. And don't even try to convince me otherwise. But this is only singers, right? CAN has always been a band of four people: Jaki Liebezeit, Holger Czukay, Michael Karoli and Irmin Schmidt.

    15 Apr 9:11pm Reply
  • HaHaHaYoureDead

    кстати, альбомы после ухода Дамо Сузуки, кто бы что ни говорил. эпичны весьма, как минимум первые два-три.

    15 Apr 5:37am Reply
  • crystalizzed


    10 Apr 2:31pm Reply
  • naotas_forehead

    Fucking. Can. man.

    4 Apr 4:36pm Reply
  • RomanyDagger

    Possibly the greasiest sonsabitches I've ever seen in my life.

    27 Mar 7:12am Reply
  • M0r3No1s3Pl3as3

    Put Bel Air on repeat, lounge back and fall asleep. Enjoy the greatest dreams of your life.

    22 Mar 7:57pm Reply
  • LedDivision

    Peut être le groupe le plus influent de l'histoire.

    18 Mar 2:45pm Reply
  • Pavski188

    Can is the best band ever and jaki liebezeit is the best drummer ever and that's all you need to know about music right now

    13 Mar 9:21pm Reply
  • Echos_Myron

    Can is one of the few bands I just can't get bored of.

    11 Mar 1:41pm Reply
  • Mr_TagoMago

    Greatest fucking band ever!

    9 Mar 5:16am Reply
  • Larutanfladle

    Beste deutsche Band aller Zeiten. Keine Widerrede.

    7 Mar 5:54pm Reply
  • All 1964 shouts