Kraftwerk, the OG pioneers of EDM culture, launched their LA residency this week at The Walt Disney Concert Hall. For those of you, like us, who didn't get a chance to experience this visual spectacle, Randall Roberts' picturesque review in the LA Times has got you covered.
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Judging by the pictures, watching the new Kraftwerk show is like taking a step into a future - 20 years from now -where a similar electronic orchestra performance like this will seem normal and passable. We also wonder how long will it be before KrafTWRK - the currently hypothetical electronic 8-bit trap supergroup - come out with their debut album.
We decided to put together our own little visual diary of old Kraftwerk videos to aid excerpts from Roberts' article too-
"Kraftwerk presented two separate, oft-astounding shows on Tuesday to showcase its landmark electronic pop albums. In its first set, Kraftwerk offered in its entirety the majestic 1974 release "Autobahn," its official debut album, as well as a selection of its celebrated electronic pop music that followed."
"At 10:30 p.m., the unit took the stage again to perform its second album, the grim, foreboding "Radio-Activity" from 1975, followed by a similar selection of its classic works.
During the entirety of both shows, members of the quartet remained nearly motionless except for their hands, which worked their instruments and triggered tones that at the best moments sounded like a soul struggling to articulate its first thoughts."
"Concertgoers wore 3-D glasses and nodded their heads in metronomic rhythm to "The Robots," from "The Man Machine" (1978), while a surround-sound set-up spun glistening beats and synthetic swooshes in and around Frank Gehry's grand hall. The skittering, percussive high-hat bounced through the space like precisely programmed android crickets.
"Among the highlights were the clean lines and tones of "Autobahn," a meandering celebration of the open road. As Kraftwerk pumped out plasticine rhythms and warm, humming tones, the 3-D screen above took to the open road, and we virtually rode down the Autobahn as imagined on the album's iconic cover."
"Though created an ocean away in a chillier climate, "Autobahn" as presented had the feel of Ed Ruscha's version of California: idealized, perfectly artificial snapshot environments. And in honoring the industrial open road with an ode to music and postwar mobility, it presented the motorway like the Beach Boys did the surf: as something to ride, something to get lost on."
"For the group's work on "Computer Love," numbers and symbols moved in waves of PC green -- that glowing tone only seen outside of nature.
"By the end of the evening, Kraftwerk's members had fully explored a future where meat and metal intertwine. At the same time, they wondered on this progress, wondering on an evolution as dangerous and unpredictable as it is inevitable."
Buy the Kraftwerk Discography on iTunes