"I got into Can via their "classic" albums Tago Mago thru Soon Over Babaluma, but I have to say that this effort is my favourite so far. It's not as strange or eclectic as their earlier releases, but it's much more accessible and has far superior sound quality to the preceding albums, which sound rather primitive in comparison- even the remasters (I think this is because Can recorded on two-track up until Landed, 1975). There is a subtle reggae influence, and the album as a whole is languid, melodic and often playful. Jaki Liebzeit's drumming is less prominent than on previous efforts, indeed it is Michael Karoli who is the star of the album- his playing is superb throughout.
The opener, I Want More, seems like a tongue-in-cheek effort- its catchy, but by no means lightweight. It kicks off with a great feedback-soaked disco riff, with playful vocals, before an eastern-tinged keyboard riff comes in at the "chorus." Cascade Waltz and Laugh Tlll You Cry... have lilting reggae rhythms, with some nice guitar work and violin accompaniment. And More is a vamp, a reprise of the opening track, while Babylonian Pearl is my favourite- Irmin Schmidt provides the breathy vocal, Liebzeit and Czukay put out a minimal but watertight rhythm, while Karoli adds beautiful multi-tracked guitar accompaniment.
The album closes strongly- Smoke is one of Can's Ethnological Forgery series; a dark, tribal rhythm accompanied by the djiin and other atmospherics. Given that Karoli shines on this album, it is fitting that the closing title track is a showcase for his guitar improvisation. A lengthy, 10 minute piece, the other musicians almost take a back-seat to Karoli's soloing- great stuff.
I'd heartily recommend this album. It's probably a good place to start before working your way back to the more avant-garde stuff of Can's classic period."
Robin Shrestha | USA | 07/29/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"'Flow Motion' has faced harsh criticisms and I can understand why. This album sounds like Can trying to be commercially accessible. But Holger's repeatedly mentioned in his interview that it was due to the band's interest in reggae music at that time. This album still retains some of Can's whimsical/weird attributes but at the same time the music has a wider appeal. I am a huge fan of reggae as well, so I personally enjoyed this CD(even the almost dance groove of 'I want more'). Just don't expect this to resemble Tago Mago or any of their old Albums. And by the way, one of the reviewers Dean Taylor, claimed that David Gilmour co-wrote 'I Want More'; it was 'Peter Gilmour'."
My favorite Can album yet
Elyse Callahan | boston ma | 02/15/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is one amazing album from start to finish.First, my Can exposure. I started with Ege,,then Tago,followed by Future days,babalomia and Soundtracks.All great albums,,Soon over Babalonia is still growing on me and Tago Mago has great tunes, but the experimental stuff is a little too much sometimes. Flowmotion starts off strong and ends strong and every thing in between is supurb, including "And more" which I know is an extension of "I want more " but is different enough to make it good.I recommend you listen to this on good headphones to apprecieate every note.this is a great place to start if new to Can.I have yet to hear thier older stuff like Delay,monster movies, etc."
Can - 'Flow Motion' (Mute)
Mike Reed | USA | 03/26/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Originally released in 1976, as this is probably the Can effort that I favor the least. However, it's reportedly to have been their most commercially successfully album ever. Even had the disco-like opening track "I Want More" made the charts in the UK. Go figure. The reggae-ish "Laugh 'Til You Cry" most certainly caught me off guard. The only cut here I actually liked is the ten minute title track "Flow Motion" (which is 'almost' worth the admission price, I guess). Now THAT'S the old Can that I know. See how you like this catalog title."