Sahara

Previously known as Subject Esq., it seems they changed name to Sahara to get out of a redundant contract with CBS. Personnel wise, the only difference in Sahara was a new keyboardist (Hennes Hering from Out Of Focus), and a full-time lead guitarist. With a proliferation of multi-instrumentalists, a mass of keyboards and various wind instruments, it was no surprise that the album SUNRISE should be quite different. In fact, it's an odd album! Two of the tracks on side 1 do develop the Subject Esq. sound on a more progressive and classical rock spiced front (they sandwich a duff country number, that's best forgotten). But it's the instrumental 27 minute "Sunrise" suite that's the most extraordinary, a winding excursion that ranges from Camel to The Cosmic Jokers, from Pink Floyd to Pulsar, from... you get the idea?! It's a cosmic fan's nirvana.

Over a year and a half on, a few minor personnel changes, including Holger Brandt from Missing Link, and a much more distinctive sound developed. As witnessed on FOR ALL THE CLOWNS, really it was back to Subject Esq., with an overdose of progressive influences, notably Focus, Caravan and Yes, and a potpourri of other styles. The results were a very complex and sophisticated progressive, and an album that is still very fresh and surprising. It's a shame that after this Sahara disbanded.

 

Hennes Hering (keyboards), Michael Hofmann (woodwinds, Moog, Mellotron, vocals), Alex Pittwohn (harmonica, tenor sax, vocals), Harry Rosenkind (drums, percussion), Stefan Wissnet (bass, vocals), Nick Woodland (guitars)

SUNRISE (1973)

LP Pan 87.306-IT (1974), Dawn DNLS 3068 (UK, 1975) CD Ohrwaschl OW 022 (1993)

 

Holger Brandt (drums, percussion), Hennes Hering (organ, piano, synthesizer), Michael Hofmann (Moog, string synthesizer, guitars, flute, vocals), GŁnther Moll (lead guitar, vocals), Stefan Wissnet (bass, acoustic guitar, lead vocals), Alex Pittwohn (co-ordinator), + Nick Woodland (12-string guitar), Meryl Creser (narration)

FOR ALL THE CLOWNS

LP Ariola 89377 OT (1 976)  CD Ohrwaschl OW 021 (1993)