Kalacakra Their name is Tibetan, and means “wheel of time”, more or less.
It was the name adopted at the start of the 70s by two friends from Duisburg: Claus Rauschenbach, on guitar, congas, mouth-organ and vocals, and Heinz Martin – who was already an experienced live performer – on electric guitar, flute, shawm, violin, ‘cello, piano, vibraphone and synthesiser.
Heinz Martin ran a shop for musical instruments and Indian antiques. He was the creative power in the band, and the Kalacakra project was his idea. His penchant for the oriental in general – and for Tibet and its capital Lhasa in particular – is a thread that runs through the band’s work. They only produced one LP, the cover of which is adorned with a mandala, “the Tibetan wheel of time”. The opening track, “Nearby Shiras”, is particularly bewitching on account of its dark, mysterious mood. It is a striking description of how the plague raged through the town of Shiras, in central Persia.