Future Days, Can

The latest episode of BBC Radio 3’s Free Thinking arts programme features a showcase of Can’s third album, Future Days. The programme is an enjoyable (and informative), presenting Can’s album in the context of post-Sixties Germany and of the original line-up of the band.

I’m not sure why the programme chose Can’s third album rather than the more directly groundbreaking Tago Mago (or even all first three). In the programme, host Matthew Sweet describes Future Days as “ambient” and different from the preceding and susequent albums. Singer Damo Sazuki left the band after the album’s release in 1973 and his recent death might have contributed to the album choice. Future Days has certainly risen in the estimation of the critics over the last 50 years (Wow! It’s over fifty years old!). There’s a good write-up about the album from 2005 on Pop Matters (from which I learned that the album was recorded straight onto a 2-track machine).

The radio programme prompted me to listen to Future Days again and I’m struck by its gentleness and optimism – as well as how short the album is: four tracks of around 40 minutes in total (Side A has three tracks; Side B is a meandering single track of nearly 20 minutes. It is a pretty uplifting, joyful record which the Free Thinking programme explores excellently.

Can – Future Days (the Radio 3 show) can be listened to HERE.