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Germany’s Max Clouth Clan Are Now Ragawerk

The band has released their new krautrock/jazz-fusion track ‘Face In The Sky’

Anurag Tagat Aug 04, 2020

German band Ragawerk's Max Clouth and Martin Standke (from left). Photo: Robert Zolles

In December 2019, German guitarist-composer Max Clouth and his band, Max Clouth Clan, were in India to record as well as perform across a handful of cities. Including studio time in Kolkata and in Gurugram at Ferris Wheel Studios, a few things have changed along the way for Clouth. He and drummer Martin Standke have now renamed the group to Ragawerk and released a heady krautrock/jazz-fusion song called “Face In The Sky.”

Clouth, who is trained in Indian classical, aptly lays over fretwork that oscillates between sitar-like melodies and jazz progressions on a double-neck guitar. Listeners are introduced to the song with a quote about divinity from Paramahansa Yogananda, one of India’s most prominent yogis in the Western world for his books. The other major Indian contribution comes courtesy of Kolkata artist Abhisek Mallick, who has played sitar on the track.

The band poses the question in a press statement, “Why move in just one world when you can be at home in many?” Clouth explains that while some may spot an obvious homage in their new moniker to German electronic music pioneers Kraftwerk, the name change was prompted to “put more focus on us as a band.” He adds, “Plus the name mirrors our musical influences from Germany and India. Indian raagas and the German word ‘werk’ meaning work, or factory.”

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The accompanying music video for “Face In The Sky,” shot by Frankfurt filmmaker Niklas Doka, shows a Ragawerk performance as well as footage from their 2019 tour in India. While the coronavirus pandemic may have stalled gigs in most parts of the world, Germany is an exception. Clouth notes that concerts have already resumed, coinciding with summer time. “Also, indoor concerts are possible again, but with strict control and a limited amount of people. But we are really thankful to play,” he says.

Watch the video for “Face In The Sky” below.