Anyone's Daughter was founded in 1972 in Stuttgart, Germany by Uwe Karpa (guitars) and Matthias Ulmer (keyboards). Like most other bands they covered songs from famous bands like Deep Purple. They even named the band after a Deep Purple-song from Fireball (1971), but soon they started playing progressive rock music similar to other German bands like Eloy and Novalis. From a school band they became a very professional outfit as can be heard on the debut album Adonis (1979). In those days many people compared Adonis to Selling England By The Pound by Genesis. However, when you listen to the album they must have been inspired by Camel either. I recognized this when I listened to the recently released remastered version.
Especially the title track strongly refers to the music of Camel indicating that the musicians must have been familiar with this band. The album opens with an epic piece divided into four parts that all have different moods - from very mellow to up-tempo - with strong and relaxed vocals of bass player Harald Bareth. You can hardly hear any German accent in the English lyrics. Uwe Karpa's guitar playing is also outstanding resembling Andy Latimer' s style. However, you can't call him a copy-cat because he has an explicit style of his own. The music of Anyone's Daughter is also dominated by the keyboards of Matthias Ulmer. His playing on the MiniMoog and the Hammond-organ is magnificent and very innovative. I must also mention drummer Kone Konopik for he never got the credits he deserved. In many respects his style of playing can be compared to the drumming of Camel's Andy Ward.
Beside the title track the album contains three other tracks. Blue House is a strong instrumental piece with the keyboards of Matthias Ulmer in the spotlights. Sally is a rather sober pop rock tune with an additional saxophone solo. The last official album track is named after the band and is again a very strong progressive rock tune with fantastic playing on the keyboards and the electric guitar. This new remastered version of Adonis contains two live tracks recorded in Schorndorf in 1977. You can enjoy fine live versions of The Taker and The Warship. Finally they included a video of Adonis Part I: Come Away that can be watched on a computer. This release comes with a fine illustrated booklet including the history of the band. Even a poster has been included.
After the release of their debut album Adonis (1979) many other albums followed: Anyone's Daughter (1980), Piktors Verwandlungen (1981), In Blau (1982), Neue Sterne (1983) and Live (1984). They broke up in 1986 with the album Last Tracks. Out of the blue the band got back together in 2000 with Uwe Karpa and Matthias Ulmer still being the nucleus of the band. A year later they released Danger World which was in the English language once more. However, the progressive rock elements were not that prominent as in the early days. The songs had become main stream with occasional references to their early work. In 2001 a double-CD containing old material was released as Requested Document Live 1980-1983 followed by Requested Document Live 1980-1983 vol. 2 in 2003. In 2004 Anyone's Daughter recorded the brand-new album Wrong. Finally an impression of the band's tour as a trio was released in 2006 called Trio Tour with Uwe Karpa, Matthias Ulmer and the new singer André Carswell.
Hopefully this release marks the start of several new remastered CD-versions of the band's back catalogue which includes many German progressive rock highlights. Until then this album is highly recommended to people who enjoy krautrock in general and the music of bands as Camel, Genesis and Yes.
**** Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)
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