16.8.2009

Halb Wesen und halb Ding

Olimme nauttimassa kokonaisvaltaisesta audiovisuaalisesta musiikkielämyksestä Helsingin Suvilahdessa Flow-festivaaleilla. Kirjoitin Kraftwerk-konsertista kuvauksen englanniksi.

Tekstin lomassa olevat pienet kuvat voit katsoa Flickristä kokonaisuutena. Suosittelen valitsemaan Slideshow-vaihtoehdon. :>

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You can see the pictures larger on Flickr. I recommend watching them one after the other as a set. Please click the Slideshow-icon there.
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Kraftwerk played live @ Flow Festival, Helsinki, Finland 13th August. The concert took place outdoors on calm, great weather and the lightning was just right for it. So was the environment; old power plant (literally Kraftwerk!) in Suvilahti, nowadays used as an area for culture.


Suvilahti illalla

The Finnish warm-up bands were Aavikko and Jori Hulkkonen’s Acid Symphony Orchestra, both of them naturally played electronic music.

  Aavikko Aavikko

KRAFTWERK

37 minutes before the show began curtains were open and the word “Human” was reflected to the big silver screen. It was a test picture, the adjusting of video projectors was going on.

Human adjusting

They closed the curtains and adjusted the spot lights, many different light colors were visible and so were the stands for the laptops as silhouettes.

There are going to be laptops

After a while a yellow-black picture with Japanese symbols (Dentaku) was reflected on curtains.

Bokuva ongakuka, dentaku katateni!

The Dentaku picture disappeared and there was some good-sounding electric noise for several minutes, like tuning the audience into right frequency… ;)

Kraftwerk’s row of musicians consisted of Ralf Hütter, Henning Schmitz, Fritz Hilpert and Stefan Pfaffe.

They started their introduction 21:57, totally in schedule. The whole concert last one hour and 45 minutes.


[Vocoder speech] Meine Damen und Herren... Ladies and Gentlemen... Heute Abend... Die Mensch-Maschine Kraftwerk.

01. THE MAN-MACHINE

Silhouettes

The silhouette of the band appeared with four red spotlights on closed curtains, then curtains opened showing Kraftwerk wearing shiny, black suits with zippers. The crowd went ablaze! Sung in German/English.

Die Mensch-Maschine!

02. EXPO 2000 (UNDERGROUND RESISTANCE REMIX)

21st Century contains green and black

Some say it was Expo 2000 (Underground Resistance Remix), it was very much like Planet of Visions. Great video with feeling of 3D, even with no special glasses.

03. IT’S MORE FUN TO COMPUTE

Very pixelated and colourful background video. Sung in English and changed seamlessly into the next song.


04. HEIMCOMPUTER

"Am Heimcomputer sitz' ich hier und programmier' die Zukunft mir."

The same video continues. Sung in German.

05. TOUR DE FRANCE

The “fanfares” in the beginning of the song were played with no lights on, very mystique! Those legendary Tour de France graphics appeared exactly then, when the beat started.

Some problems with the sound appeared in the beginning of the vocal parts, but it all was fixed quickly.

Cycling

The sound of the free-rolling bicycle chain was surrounding all over the place! What an effect!

"Tour de France, Tour de France."

06. TOUR DE FRANCE 2003

In the video there was first blue, then red spectrum going on with the rhythm.


07. VITAMIN

Men with vitamins

Great video with lyrics, smoothly falling vitamin pills, four effervescent tablets dropped into glasses in a perfect rhythm and so on.

08. AUTOBAHN

"Wir fahr'n fahr'n fahr'n auf der Autobahn..."

The starting sound of Volkswagen curved from the back of the audience and then went to the stage. Very powerful bass.

09. COMPUTER LOVE

Computerlove

There was lyrics and green spectrum in the video. Sung in English.

10. DAS MODELL

On start they counted eins, zwei, drei, vier. Sung in German.

11. NEON LIGHTS

"Neon lights, shimmering neon lights..."
 
The video had the same neon light signs than the original music video. Sung in English.

12. SCHAUFENSTERPUPPEN

"Wir bewegen uns und wir brechen das Glas..."

Unbelievable breaking glass effect in the video, which had same elements with the original music video. Sung in German.

13. TRANS-EUROPE EXPRESS

Trans-Europe Express

The video contained smaller videos based on TEE-trains, all three different were visible in a row at the same time. Sung in English.

Curtains closed and on the curtains there was reflected the Kling Klang Musik Video sign.

The sounds of beginning of The Robots and other electric sounds appeared in variable orders, in purpose of course.

14. THE ROBOTS

Four white spotlights were flashing synchronized to the music behind the curtains showing the silhouettes of the robots. Curtains opened and the white flashing continued on black background. The foot of the screen changed to red and from time to time back to black, with the flashing white light. There was no video.

We are the Robots – ti-ti-didi!

Curtains closed and soon Kraftwerk became unveiled wearing the grid suits.

15. NUMBERS

1234

16. COMPUTER WORLD

"Interpol and Deutsche Bank, FBI and Scotland Yard."

Spectacular video with lyrics. Sung in English.


17. RADIOACTIVITY


Touching intro video with vocoder spoken enlightenment about the harms of radioactivity. In the beginning of the main video Ralf Hütter says slowly “radioactivity” to the microphone, then the hypnotic Morse code begins.

"Radioactivity is in the air for you and me"
Sung in English, with modern lyrics.


18. AÉRO DYNAMIK

"Perfection, Mekanik, Aéro Dynamik."

Video went very well together with grid suits.

19. MUSIQUE NON STOP

"Music Non Stop, Techno Pop..."

And this video went even better, if possible.

In the end the notes were flying around the screen and one by one musicians walked away from their laptops, bowed and then went off the stage.

Auf Wiedersehen!

Ralf Hütter was last to go, he stayed alone finalizing the concert behind his laptop moving to the music more than earlier. He
said good night & Auf Wiedersehen, then walked to the other side of the stage and bowed. Musique Non Stop was left playing and the 3D faces from the original music video were visible.

The ensemble was unique and totally fantastic. By the way, they didn’t play Dentaku even though its graphics were visible before the show. But they served us a great collection of best electronic music ever made. I totally loved every minute.