Kedama Releases '70s Prog-Rock Nugget 'Hwrklnzg': Premiere

Winifried Krucker


Switzerland's Kedama has a fairly short and somewhat mysterious history. But the progressive rock trio has dipped into its archives for the upcoming The Complete Collection, a three-disc set whose track "Hwrklnzg" is premiering exclusively below.

The first two discs of The Complete Collection, due out Feb. 14 on Castle Face Records, were previously released during the '70s from live performances at Sunrise Studios. The third disc features eight previously unreleased tracks from the sessions, and drummer Peter Suter says he's enjoyed taking a trip through the old material.

"I must say I'm positively surprised at how good it was," Suter tells Billboard. "At the time you think about the shortcomings -- you hear every mistake you make and you want to try to improve yourself. But looking back I must say I’m very pleased with what we could do live."

Kedama was formed during 1971 by guitarist-keyboardist Christian Linder and keyboardist Richard Rothenberger, with Suter joining the following year. The group, whose heavily improvised instrumentals were often compared to prog peers such as King Crimson and Gentle Giant, broke up during 1978. Linder and Rothenberger reunited during the early '80s as New Kedama, releasing music digitally until 2010 but not performing live. Suter and Rothenberger still live in Switzerland, while Linder recently moved to the Philippines. "We're all really retired now," Suter says, "but we're all excited about (The Complete Collection). We are just amazed that there are still so many people who like this music; We had a lot of fans at the time, but the Swedish market was never really a big market, and America for Swiss groups was not so great at the time.

"But all these people reached out to us later, saying they were interested and liked our music, and we were really amazed. Even from the United States people know us and are interested in it. Apparently there is still enough interest to allow us to put this music out, so I feel very happy about it."


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