The second Be With foray into the archives of revered German library institution Selected Sound is one of our favourites, Sound Inventions from Klaus Weiss Rhythm And Sounds, originally released in 1979.
From the notoriously strong mind of Niagara drummer / library-funk overlord Klaus Weiss, Sound Inventions is loaded with tripped out studio funk-freakery, mad samples and swaggering abstract funk grooves. From dramatic deep disco with dark Italo/Moroder leanings to heavy German funk breaks, this is absolutely sensational. Absolute synth-and-string-drenched magic.
Born in 1942 in Gevelsberg, Germany, Klaus Weiss began his career as a jazz drummer at sixteen (with a group called the Jazzopators) before working with the internationally successful 60s groups the Klaus Doldinger Quartet and the Erwin Lehn Big Band. In 1965 he formed his own trio, the first of many groups to bear his name, and as his renown as a bandleader grew over the next decade it naturally lead to working in production music.
About as cult as it gets when it comes to library music legends (German or otherwise), he produced essential records on German library labels Coloursound, Selected Sound and Sonoton, as well as making two essential entries in the Conroy catalogue. Collections of music in the trademark Klaus Weiss sound of electronics unsurprisingly built on top of sometimes funky, sometimes frenetic, but always hard-hitting drums.
Sound Inventions is one of those library records with a hefty track list, 22 in total, but they’re all pretty stunning. That’s not something you can often say and picking out the highlights is almost impossible. If pushed, we’d steer you towards the tough teutonic funk of “Drumcrazy”, the by turns juddering and sweeping majesty of the title track “Sound Inventions”, the aquatic serenity of “Glide”, the elegant strut of “Greenwich Street”, the muted, eerie cosmic-funk of “Air Space”, the squelchy acid-clavs of “Rhythm Function”, the calming, melodic “Waves”, the stuttering proto-Timbaland sensation that is “Rainbows” and the percussive funk-fuelled workout of “A Few Cuts”. Phew. Heavy indeed!
Founded in the late 60s by German composer and musician Klaus Netzle, Selected Sound began as a production music company specialising in jazz, orchestral and electronic recordings. You can’t miss those early LPs in their iconic glossy metallic copper sleeves with minimal German typography. Serious, classy stuff.
This re-issue of Sound Inventions has been mastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis from audio from the original tapes. Richard Robinson has handled reproducing the glossy metallic (iconic) original Selected Sound sleeve. Essential.