Kraftwerk – “The Catalogue” (2009)

November 4, 2009 at 12:19 am (Kraftwerk, Krautrock, Music, Reviews & Articles)

A review of the new box set of 8 of Kraftwerk’s proto-techno pop classics, all remastered by Ralf Hutter himself. There are some mixed reviews on this reissue series, partly due to the mixes themselves, but also 2 of the albums being renamed and with different covers than on some of the originals.
This is taken from
The Quietus, Oct. 13, 2009 and was written by Jude Rogers… 


The first time I heard Kraftwerk it was like a scorch of hot metal, a bolt of white light to the mind. I was 16, an indie girl from an industrial town, an unlikely target for machine music made by four men from Düsseldorf. Chris, my best friend and partner-in-crime in small-town escapism, had come round as usual on a damp Friday night, with four cans of Fosters that would go straight to our heads, and some dusty CDs he had bought with his pocket money. Usually we’d listen to Teenage Fanclub, Blur, or some dull, cut-price grunge, but this album looked different. An indigo-blue and luminous yellow cover; a monochrome robot with wild, widening eyes; a title, The Mix, set in Ceefax-style building blocks. I was scared of it, somehow, genuinely puzzled by its strangeness. And then its first track whirred, sputtered, shot into life, filling the corners of my mum’s old front room – a dark hole full of bibles and commemorative plates to old collieries – with something bright, clear, and incredibly modern. It sharpened the room’s old-fashioned edges; it set my synapses alight. And slowly but surely, Kraftwerk became mine.

In the years that followed, my obsession kept building, like a line of charge on a battery. I scoured old second-hand shops for their LPs on cassette – the correct medium of the future for them, I thought geekily – and wrote essays about them in my media studies class. In 1997, I joined a gang of pilled-up halfwits on a coach to Tribal Gathering, keeping myself cleanly awake with strong coffee and egg butties not to miss the band I loved live. I still remember going in their tent with good old Chris at my side two hours early, joined only by a few, anoraked middle-aged Germans. But Christ, it was worth it. That gig remains the greatest thing I have ever seen – a life-changing explosion of neon lights and numbers, colours and sounds, feelings and sensations. Read the rest of this entry »

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