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Feigning normality since 1973

Kraftwerk im Konzert

Filed in: Music.

I totally didn't mean to go so long between posts. Anyway!

So last week I headed up to Auckland (with Jeff, who will no doubt comment on this entry) to see Kraftwerk live in concert at the Auckland town hall. Once we presented our tickets at the door, we were affixed with some sort of tag, which I suspect may have been tracked by satellite, and directed to our seats in the circle. Although it was noted on the tickets to start at 8, it actually took a while possibly because people were still coming in (and continued to come in after Kraftwerk had started).

Finally strange electronic music began to play, the lights dimmed, and then four silhouettes became visible against the drape along the front of the hall. To audience applause, the drapes opened to reveal Kraftwerk playing The Man-Machine. Fantastic!

Behind the band, a video display assaulted us with retro computer graphics (occasionally with seizure-inducing flashing effects) the most sophisticated-looking being a wireframe head during Music Non-Stop. Dead groovy. There was also occasionally live action footage, such as the Tour de France and vintage model clips for the appropriate songs.

Their new songs were, of course, well received. I'm wondering if Showroom Dummies with its talk of breaking glass was possibly inspired by the 1970 Doctor Who story Spearhead from Space.

Two hours after it started, the concert ended, and three days later I'm still humming Kraftwerk tunes. I'ma definitely going to have to buy some more of their albums. A superb concert, and I hope they come back to do another sometime soon.

Posted November 29, 2008 8:01 AM


Kick ass concert. Having Alden along for the ride was great...thanks for accompanying me, pal. Life goal achieved for me. Hard to pick a standout part for me, as the whole thing was frakking brillyunt!! Radio-Activity and Trans Europe Express were completely amazing. The people wandering round in an endless loop between seat-bar-toilet in front of us was maddeningly annoying to the point of violence, but that's just crappy luck for ya. Oddly, the cheap tickets were in the 'mosh pit' on the ground floor, while the expensive ones were seated in the balcony....surely it shoulda been the other way round? I know every one of their songs like old friends, so it was good to hear new versions which prove that they do perform them 'live'. The shattering glass effect in Showroom Dummies was trippy sh*t. And I do believe Spearhead from Space was a influence on that song. The addition of Computerlove, in a beautiful new arrangement, was definitely prompted by the recent Coldplay cover. I could go on for ages...'fantastic' doesn't really cover it, but it'll do. Most non-fans don't really know how to deal with a band that refuses to talk or move or interact with the audience, so the reviews largely fell back on pointing out how the quartet seemed to be emailling one another, and how OLD they are. Throw in a tedious reference to "German efficiency", and your hack review writes itself.

Best concert I've ever been to. Blew the hellish, claustrophobic Big Day Out of January off the radar without trying.

Posted by: Jeff Stone | December 3, 2008 4:35 PM

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