The nearest you will get to Memory Lane with this avant-garde “Robot Pop” outfit would only be with your own personal recollections of them from years gone by. But for those of us who know better, Dusseldorf's finest, and specifically their shows, are very much about setting the trend with electronical, futuristic music and staying ahead of their time. This they accomplished as seen and heard by an eager, sell-out crowd of all ages on this Wednesday night in Budapest.

What also made this a compelling live show was that it was hosted in 3D. Special glasses were issued to all present, immersing them in the “spectacle” as much technical imagery and special effects portraying everyday life and beyond, swirled around the stage and came at the bespectacled audience. For two hours the synth legends really took us on a non-rock 'n' roll journey where no other musical entity has been before, other than to the next generational phase.

Although 3D is nothing new, in this case either you were at the show or not. This particular extravaganza could have been an overly contrived event with many high-flying "distractions" eclipsing the main, essential musical entity. But this was not so, as "the visuals" although powerful and predominant throughout were light, obvious, minimal and easy to follow. They captured the mood and entwined with the music, the very minimal lyrics and the general atmosphere, all equally rounded off with much applause. This impressional band always carry an additional, creative imprint that is visually clear and assimilable. So much so that they left me wondering how Kraftwerk, whose name translates as “Power Station”, will top this when it comes to next time?


It's also remarkable to note that this band, who are as old as I am, came into provenance a short while after the Beatles. But this very singular group, formed by Ralf Hutter and Florian Schneider, made their way into the highly contrasting 1970s musical scene with critical acclaim for “Trans-Europe-Express”, “Robots”, “Man Machine” and “Autobahn”, which not only artistically clash with the likes of Abba and “Saturday Night Fever”, but clearly sound like entities from far later. Finally they hit the musical mainstream in 1982 with a number 1 single called “The Model”, and have been a constant relevance to modern-day music ever since, with the likes of Depeche Mode and The Prodigy offering tribute to Kraftwerk as pioneers of all electronic music today.

On a reflective note, much of the Kraftwerk repertoire captures modern urban life with a certain sense of isolation alongside the highs of modern technology. Which probably is how they are when at home, as compared to their higher profile for fast forwarding the times.

Almost 50 years later these musical masterminds have set their sights, accomplished their ambitions and will no doubt continue to do so, as they have survived the obvious test of time with minimal nostalgia. Their music and originality still remain powerful and relevant, as well as tuneful. Even with their "older hits" they still sounded as unique, masterful and futuristic as ever before.

This was a fantastic and illuminating show that captured the spirit of the band. It was an event worth waiting for because, after all, Kraftwerk must have been waiting for us to arrive at this particular juncture, as they were here in 2018 long before any of us were.

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