Essential Kraftwerk – machinemusik

kraftwerk
Share This:

Kraftwerk are widely considered as one of the great pioneers of electronic music, laying the groundwork (groundwerk?) for the electronica that we know and love today. In this post we’ll be exploring some of Kraftwerk’s key repertoire to understand why they are so important to electronic music.

The Beginnings of Kraftwerk

Kraftwerk was formed by Ralf Hütter and Florian Schneider who met while studying at Düsseldorf Conservatory.

Here’s a live performance of Ruck Zuck from their first album in 1970.

Major Kraftwerk Albums

Autobahn (1974)

Kraftwerk’s first three albums showed how the band progressed from a live band with progressive and electronic elements to a duo with an electronic focus. Autobahn is where Kraftwerk really established itself as a serious electronic act (although they made good use of guitar and flute, as you can hear below), and set the tone for their future releases.

The title track is an epic track occupying the first side of the original LP. Here it is for you… “Wir fahren, fahren, fahren auf der autobahn”…

Trans Europe Express (1977)

Some say Trans Europe Express (1977) was their finest album. It’s certainly stood the test of time and inspired countless others, and has been sampled plenty. Check out the title track and Europe Endless below…

The Man Machine (1978)

The Man Machine was the album that confirmed Kraftwerk as pop songwriters as well as leaders in the electronic music scene. Tracks such as The Model and The Robots brought their music to a wider audience across the world…

Computer World (1981)

Computer World came as Kraftwerk were at the peak of their creative power, with each song being about computers, from Computer Love and Home Computer, to It’s More Fun To Compute. Here’s the brilliant Computer Love…

Kraftwerk’s Influence on Other Musicians…

Trans Europe Express, sampled here on Afrika Bambaataa‘s Planet Rock…

The KLF sampled Computer Love on What Time is love…

Talk, by Coldplay, used the main melody for Computer Love as the inspiration for their track…

Even Neil Young was influenced by Kraftwerk and produced this in the 1980s…

See Also…

Can

Faust

Neu!

Share This:

About Matt

Hello. If you want me I'll be here.

View all posts by Matt →