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Popol Vuh

Popol Vuh

Popol Vuh was a German electronic avant-garde band founded by pianist and keyboardist Florian Fricke in 1969 together with Holger Trülzsch (percussion) and Frank Fiedler (recording engineer and technical assistance). Other important members during the next two decades included Djong Yun, Conny Veit, Daniel Fichelscher, Klaus Wiese and Robert Eliscu. The band took its name from the Popol Vuh, a manuscript containing the mythology of the Post-Classic Quiché Maya people of highland Guatemala and south east Mexico; the name translates roughly as "meeting place". In the Quiché language Popol Vuh translates as: "Book of the Community", "Book of Counsel", or more literally as "Book of the People".HistoryThe first album, Affenstunde, released in 1970, can be regarded as one of the earliest space music works, featuring the then new sounds of the Moog synthesizer together with ethnic percussion. This continued for only one more album, In den Gärten Pharaos, and material later to be released on the soundtrack to "Aguirre", before Fricke largely abandoned electronic instruments in favor of piano-led compositions from 1972's Hosianna Mantra forward. This album also marked the start of exploring overtly religious themes rather than a more generally spiritual feeling within the music. The group evolved to include all kinds of instruments: wind and strings, electric and acoustic alike, combined to convey a mystical aura that made their music spiritual and introspective.Popol Vuh influenced many other bands from Europe with their uniquely soft but elaborate instrumentation, that took inspiration from Tibet, Africa, and pre-Columbian America. They created dream-like soundscapes along with psychedelic walls of sound, and are regarded as precursors of contemporary world music, as well of new age music and ambient music.The band contributed soundtracks to the films of Werner Herzog, including Aguirre, the Wrath of God, Nosferatu, Fitzcarraldo, Cobra Verde, Heart of Glass and The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser, in which Fricke appeared.Florian Fricke died in Munich on 29 December 2001 and the group disbanded.In October 2003 Klaus Schulze wrote:


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