Favourite (official) Kraftwerk Studio Album

Fave Official Kraftwerk album...?


  • Total voters
    95

polystyle

Well-known member
Ongaku

Hard to choose just one .
Voting on emotion , I go with The Man Machine as 'Fav official'.
Having songs like The Model and title track during that time was priceless , formative.
Computer World wins for sheer playability.
Works in the morning , while working ( on computer ), at night.
Computer Love again and again.
All the albums had their moments ,
and it was great seeing / hearing / living the 20th Century through these cats.
Live they rocked it too
 

francesco

Minerva Estassi
Almost impossible to choose for me, it's like to choose the best Beatles or the best Black Sabbath album... it's easy to choose the worst anyway: Electric Cafè. Not absolutely bad at all EC is a big comedown from the perfection and artistry of all the previous records and the first time they were trying to imitate a sound instead of creating it. I'll choose Radioactivity because it have the BEST INTRO ever!
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
Oooh, we should have a poll for this!

I think I'd have to say...'The Best Of The Beatles'.

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swears

preppy-kei
Almost impossible to choose for me, it's like to choose the best Beatles or the best Black Sabbath album... it's easy to choose the worst anyway: Electric Cafè. Not absolutely bad at all EC is a big comedown from the perfection and artistry of all the previous records and the first time they were trying to imitate a sound instead of creating it. I'll choose Radioactivity because it have the BEST INTRO ever!

Hmmm... I dunno. I sort of like Electric Cafe. They had fallen behind some of the people they'd influenced, but it still has some great tracks on it. The main weakness for me is that the previous two or three albums were sort of funky by accident: like they were going for a minimalist, trance-state feel and ended up making killer dancefloor jams. By EC, seems like they're thinking too hard about that. I don't think they jumped the shark until they just started remixing their old stuff and nothing else. Either quit, or do some new material.
 

petergunn

plywood violin
i guess i'd have to a give a tie to the two albums i listen to the most:

trans-europe express and either the first or the 2nd one... i have a 2 LP reissue comp... whatever that crazy motorik jam with the flute is, that's my track! (can't remember if it's on 1 or 2 (green or red?)) while this is not particularly giving them their full due as pioneers of electronic music, such is life...

EDIT: dug the album out, it's Ruck Zuck, from the first LP that's my jam...
 
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Anderai

Active member
I've gone for Radio-Activity mainly because it was the first album I ever bought (along with Streetsounds Electro 7!). I've listened to it twice in the last week....favourite track is probably Airwaves or Antenna.
 
the results are starting to get interesting.

i figured most votes would be clustered around TEE/Man Machine/Computer World, but assumed i'd be in the minority with radio-Activity - how wrong!

surprised that autobahn hasn't had a single vote yet - it's a lovely record!

no surprises on electric cafe though. i was blown away by it when i bought it around the time it was released, but it doesn't have the timeless appeal of the earlier albums. they were chasing the trends rather than creating them. mind you, i always thought some of the man machine tracks sounded like they were trying to sound a bit like Moroder (I Feel Love came out a year earlier).

50% of The Mix sounds horrible now - another 'trendy' record that fails to pass the test of time. i like the autobahn refix though, esp. the harmonised robo-acapella.

Krafterk became rythmically uninventive after Karl Bartos left. discuss...
 

polystyle

Well-known member
For my money, they did lose something when Bartos left.
What were the circumstances of him 'leaving' tho ?
Dunno know those details ...
 

michael

Bring out the vacuum
polystyle desu said:
For my money, they did lose something when Bartos left.
What were the circumstances of him 'leaving' tho ?

Yeah, the carry-on around Flür's Kraftwerk: I Was A Robot, with Ralf & Florian taking legal action to get all kinds of stuff chopped out (and Wolfgang subsequently documenting that action in the revised edition!) suggest that they're probably pretty ... intense folks to be around. I do wonder what happened.

Nick Gutterbreakz said:
i figured most votes would be clustered around TEE/Man Machine/Computer World, but assumed i'd be in the minority with radio-Activity - how wrong!

I'm pleasantly surprised by the love for 'Radioactivity' - I voted for it, but had nothing to add that I felt would justify a comment... I guess I'd say that while I think 'Computer World' is probably their greatest achievement on its own terms, I don't like those terms so much.
 
For my money, they did lose something when Bartos left.
What were the circumstances of him 'leaving' tho ?
Dunno know those details ...

My understanding is that he and Flur chose to leave because they were bored. This was during the period when there was a lot of laborious work involving transfering the old analogue sounds/tapes into digital for The Mix project, which was more an engineer's job than a musician's. Flur left first and Bartos left midway through recording The Mix.

There's a Sound On Sound inteview with bartos where he talks about that period a bit
http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/mar98/articles/electric.html

I think maybe Hutter & schneider needed that extra creative input. bartos and lyricist/conceptualist Emil schult had a big input on all the classic albums, and before that Conny Plank played a big (though largely unacknowledged) part in the first 4 albums. I remember reading somewhere how he used to coax them along during some rather aimless recording sessions, trying to bring some creative focus.
 

ML2008

New member
50% of The Mix sounds horrible now - another 'trendy' record that fails to pass the test of time.

It was horrible on release wasn't it?

Funny (or tragic?) how little of value Bartos has released since leaving the group. Apparently he's now touring small clubs playing his own live version of the old tracks and using a small scale multi media set up. Anyone seen it?
 

noel emits

a wonderful wooden reason
I like Bartos' remix of Anthony Rother's Little Computer People.

Saw him do his multi-media thing at the London IMAX a couple of years ago I think. Was good - he's definitely got the technical chops. But it is so much like he's carrying on from where classic era Kraftwerk stopped that it mostly comes across as a bit shaky, thematically unfocussed. Not that that's necessarily bad but in contrast, you know. Funny though, and he certainly has a right - I think him and Flur probably did play bigger roles than are usually acknowledged, especially by R&F.

What about the album Wolfgang Flur did with the guys from Mouse On Mars (which they now dissown)? There's actually a couple of really good moments on there but the lyrics are really quite cringe-inducing at times. :eek:
 

polystyle

Well-known member
I bet they were bored ...
DId met Ralf and Florian once and it was well, not exciting, stilted ,
but that might have just been me - in some awe.

Emil and Conny - yes , undersung heroes of the tale !
Maybe Karl needs better collaborators ...
 

DJ PIMP

Well-known member
and it was great seeing / hearing / living the 20th Century through these cats.
that's what CW is like for me... this prism through which I can view everything that came before and after. an ode to the past, a eulogy for the future and vice versa. the definition of motorik elegance. beautiful visionary art.

then man machine is a bit less sugary...

i can't get over the sound of their newer stuff like expo2000, aerodynamik and the tour de france soundtracks. the engineering is so pristine and three dimensional; some of those filtered synth sounds come swooshing in and my mind simply empties and turns to goo. on 'tape 2' they really capture that feeling of elation and man-machine harmony as you sweep round a corner at speed on a bicycle; the clarity and silence, even the hi-hats have that sizzling quality of a well maintained chain etc.
 

X-101

Member
Computer world > trans europe > tour de france, i must be one of the few people who thinks man machine is there weakest ? i mean the models great and all but the rest is forgetable to me then again its prob been 10 years since ive listened to it
 

polystyle

Well-known member
The Man Machine

The Robots
Spacelab
Metropolis
The Model
Neon Lights
The Man Machine

If the 'rest' is forgettable to you X -101
and it's been 10 years since you listened ,
maybe give the album a listen.
Remember what the rest of the music world was doing in 1978
And here came this album ...

I love all the albums ,
Computer World's on repeat almost weekly in our house ,
as Dj Pimp said , the crisp Expo 2000 and Tour De France Soundtracks just bust out of proper speakers.
Building their own speaker cabs, working with engineers to make their own synth modules,
creating those covers all made a complete package.
 
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