Kraftwerk will perform eight of their albums for Sydney’s Vivid Live in May.
Each performance at the Sydney Opera House shows will be a different album from start to finish.
Kraftwerk formed in Germany in 1970. The current line-up includes Ralf Hütter, Fritz Hilpert, Henning Schmitz and Falk Grieffenhagen. Ralf is the founding member of the band. Fritz joined Kraftwerk in 1987. Henning, their former sound engineer, has been a touring member since 1991.
The Vivid Live shows are:
KRAFTWERK – THE CATALOGUE 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House
Friday 24 – Monday 27 May, 2013
24 May, 7pm – AUTOBAHN (1974)
The perfect soundtrack for the ultimate roadmovie and the beginning of electropop. This pioneering album is a picturesque journey through musical landscapes and sound paintings. The synthetik symphony features a mesmerising motorik rhythm around a collage of car horns, engine noise, radio static and floating melodies. Kraftwerk’s modern pop legacy starts here and Autobahn, in its edited form becomes a revolutionary hit single around the world. Kraftwerk compose cinema for the ears.
24 May, 9.30pm – RADIO-ACTIVITY (1975)
A highly innovative science fiction movie soundtrack about radio-activity and the activity of the radio. This all-electronic concept album explores the themes of broadcast communications and nuclear radiation. Surfing on sine waves and scanning the stratosphere for stray radio signals, Kraftwerk plug themselves into a buzzing grid of energy and radio signals. Radio-activity marks the move to more pop-structured songs.
25 May, 7pm – TRANS EUROPE EXPRESS (1977)
Kraftwerk celebrate Europe’s romantic past and shimmering future with a glistening panorama of travel and technology, elegance and decadence. The streamlined locomotive sequencer rhythms of ‘Trans Europe Express’ with its pneumatic, piston-pumping beats of ‘ Metal On Metal ‘ are in contrast to the beautiful melody. New York DJ Afrika Bambaataa would re-construct this song five years later for his own seminal ‘Planet Rock’. This Kraftwerk album is a milestone in avant-pop modernism and later becomes a crucial influence on the early pioneers of hip-hop and sampling, electro and industrial music.
25 May, 9.30pm – THE MAN MACHINE (1978)
Over processed robotik rhythms which predate the rise of European techno and trance, Kraftwerk address automation and alienation, space travel and engineering, the seductive allure of urban landscapes and the vacant glamour of celebrity. ‘The Robots’ adds another dimension to Kraftwerk’s ultra-dry sense of humour and behind its intoxicating melodic pulse, ‘The Model’ is a highly prophetic satire on the beauty industry. ‘Neon Lights’ is Kraftwerk’s most achingly romantic song to date, a sci-fi lullaby for cities at twilight.
26 May, 7pm – COMPUTER WORLD (1981)
Kraftwerk beam themselves into the future by writing about home computers, online dating and globalised electronic surveillance years before these phenomena truly come into being. A vision of bright hopes and dark fears of the booming microchip revolution, ‘Computer World’ is a serenely beautiful and almost seamless collage of sensual melodies and liquid beatscapes. Tracks like ‘Numbers’ and ‘Pocket Calculator, with their weightless bleeps and elastic beats, and their cyberfunk, predict the silky rhythms of Chicago house and inspire a generation of Detroit techno artists.
26 May, 9.30pm – TECHNO POP (1986)
From the block-rocking beats and synthetik language of ‘Boing Boom Tschack’ to the processed vocal chants of MTV-age anthem ‘Musique Non Stop, Kraftwerk’s first excursion into digital recording finds both beauty and unease in a world of permanent media overload. The ‘Techno Pop’ album, first released under the name ‘Electric Café’ but now restored to its originally intended title, provides a 360-degree overview of a multi-lingual, multi-channel, musically diverse global village.
27 May, 7pm – THE MIX (1991)
Kraftwerk confirm clubland credentials with their Kling Klang Studio live mixing techniques and a return to live concert activities. They rework 11 of their best-loved tunes for a new generation. Original sounds are reconstructed from their archives and sound library at Kling Klang and sequenced for these new versions that now feature more machine -like rhythms and cleaned-up, liquid-crystal sounds. ‘The Mix’ is a career-spanning collection of legendary electro anthems and a strong statement of the two-way traffic between Kraftwerk and electro club culture.
27 May, 9.30pm – TOUR DE FRANCE (2003)
The year 2003 marked the centenary of the Tour de France and the conceptual starting line for Kraftwerk’s global touring activities….Minimum-Maximum. The album features an immaculate new version of their legendary 20-year-old former single, the exquisitely graceful ‘Tour de France’ and the album is a film script that takes the listener through the hills and valleys of the cycling circuit. From the chunky electro-funk of ‘Vitamin’ to the restless metallic shimmers of ‘Aero Dynamik’, this is emphatically the sound of 21st century techno visionaries…..Men and their Machines.