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About Missus Beastly

Missus Beastly were a very early Krautrock group with a rather confusing history due to another group assuming their name, and their own constant lineup changes. The group formed in 1968 in Herford, northern Germany under the name "Psychotic Reaction," taken from the Count Five song, before changing their name to Missus Beastly (named after a doll on a children's television show). The original group consisted of Lutz Oldemeier on drums, Reinhard "Atzen" Wehmeyer on guitar and vocals, Wolfgang Nickel on keys, and Petja Hofman on vocals and bass. Though from the northern part of the country, they got most of their gigs much further south through a friend, Gunter Scheding, who had moved from Herford to Mainz, near Munich. They gained some renown from their live outings at this time, which resembled ritualistic psychedelic jams, as the group would improvise for two or three hours without set list or compositions.

Missus Beastly recorded their first LP in very early 1970 at the CPM Studio, with some help from Xhol Caravan flautist Hansi Fischer, as well as members of Amon Duul II, who were hanging out in the studio at the time. The self-titled record was also released by CPM with a limited run of 1000 copies. Soon after that, Henry Fromm, posing as the group's manager, flautist, and drummer, though no one in the band had ever met him, had a bootleg of the record re-pressed from one of the original LPs and released with a different cover and title: Nara Asst Incense, as well as a disordered track listing. Fromm would continue to ride Missus Beastly's modest fame with two more LPs under their name, Volksmusik in 1972 and Im Garten Des Schweigens in 1973, as well as the singles, "Fuck You Free" and "Jawa Masa." These later records consisted of Fromm and several other musicians who had nothing to do with the original Missus Beastly.

Meanwhile, the original band was having other problems with constant lineup changes. Soon after the first album came out, Paul Vincent on guitar and Michael Scholz on keyboards joined and the group became a sextet. By the summer of 1970, though, Vincent was replaced by Roman Bunka; sax and flute player Jergen Benz also joined the group. By the end of the year, both Wehmeyer and Nickel departed.

Having trouble finding gigs, and even having to sell their van and PA, the group finally disbanded by the end of 1971. Hofman took off for India, while the most of the others joined more successful bands like Bunka, Embryo, Benz, Erna Schmidt, Oldemeier, and Checkpoint Charlie.

In the summer of 1973, after Fromm's ersatz Missus Beastly had disbanded, Oldemeier and Benz, along with three more musicians, re-formed the group as a world-jazz-oriented instrumental group. By early 1974, this group had released another self-titled record on the Nova label. With more lineup changes, two more LPs followed, Dr Aftershave and the Mixed-Pickles in 1976 and Space Guerilla in 1978. This group also played several live gigs during this time, though by end of the '70s, with no original members left, they, too, called it quits. ~ Rolf Semprebon

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