Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Adventures of Moebius -- Part III: Trading Places
















As you know, Moebius and Roedelius were the dynamic duo of the glimmerlight. They protected us from the progbarian hordes, but mostly just dwelled peacefully amongst the crystal streams and blue fjords.

Each had his own style: Moebius was the skronk genius, just skronking endlessly around the block on his lightcycle. Roedelius, on the other hand, was the melodic one, creating his beautiful Farfisa melodies deep in the glimmerlight near the Ash Ra Temple. Consider them the glimmerlight's Lennon and McCartney.

In 1983, inspired by the American comedy Trading Places, they decided to do just that. Aided by the mechanical genius Klaus Schulze, they would swap subroutines. Moebius would then produce his melodic masterpices, while Roedelius would do the skronky chicken. And they did just that; Moebius invented the wonderfully melodic Tonspuren, while Roedelius skronked it up with Offene Türen. Today, I give you a slice of Moebius' (modified with Roedelius subroutines) work. This beautiful track (click on the title of this post) is called "Contramio." 

The next post will feature part II of this interesting experiment, and a skronky cut from Roedelius' (modified with Moebius subroutines) Offene Türen. So stay tuned for more adventures from these electrobolical androids.

Rauf und runter!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut--Part XXXII: Robots of Leisure






















In our continuing look at the glimmerlight's last days we move on to the saga of Ralf Tohde. Tohde was another of the later models signed to Sky Records in the mid-80s. The advent of the yellow crystals brought about a time of great relaxation. It was not uncommon to find the 'droids taking naps, or watching a football match on a Saturday afternoon, sipping on an ice cold beer.

As the yellow crystals began to be the driving force behind these later models (we called them "chicken jobs"), the music they created became less icy, more soaring, but ultimately no less beautiful. Check out Tohde's "Hour of Leisure" from his LP Silent Departure by clicking on the title of this post. The LP is another classic from the late-glimmerlight era. This tune makes me feel like I'm flying through the clouds, or driving my light cycle convertible, with the hood up, through the forest of yellow crystals back to the Ash Ra Temple.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut--Part XXXI: Last Glimmers of the Glimmerlight


















No empire ever lasts in perpetuity, and it was the same for the glimmerlight. The next couple posts will focus on the final days of the glimmerlight, and the synthesists of the time. While I remember the musik of the later years fondly, I can't help but shed a few tears for the passing of that deep blue era, when we rode on our light cycles, the wind blowing in our hair, and jogged between the jagged crystals beneath Düsseldorf, near the Ash Ra Temple.

As the glimmerlight drew to a close, new androids were still being constructed. One such, was the musical group Intence. Like many of our young synthesists of the time, they were insantly signed to Hamburg's Sky Records: The Official Label of the glimmerlight.

Intence was comprised of brothers Rüdiger and Clemens Glaser, and Helmut Brunner. Little did we know at the time that these three, along with synthesists who came after them, portended the end of the glimmerlight. Why, you ask? Because they were powered by the yellow crystals, rather than the blue, like Harald, Klaus, Flammende Herzen, and the rest of us.

Click of the title of this post to hear Intence's ode to the yellow crystals, "Yellow Below." It's from their album Triade. To my ears, it is reminiscent of Kraftwerk's "Computer Liebe," but you be the judge.

Also, to my knowledge, neither this song nor any other song by Intence has EVER been posted to the internets in Mp3 form. If there is enough demand, I may post the whole album (my bröselmaschine is working again). I'm curious as to why these three fellows don't get mentioned in the same breath as such heavyweights as Deutsche Wertarbeit and Wolfgang Riechmann! Their music is just as cold and robotic. Maybe it's because they heralded the end of an era, or the beginning of a new one.

This has all happened before, will it happen again?

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut--Part XXX: The First Synth Duo


















While the true origin of the Moon Birds is unknown, everyone in the glimmerlight considered them to be the original, first synth duo; the progenitors of such acts as Yaz, OMD, and Soft Cell. 

As a matter of fact, there was a time in the early-80s when young synthesists could not even become a synth duo unless they passed the Moon Bird "test." The test involved walking under the stern gaze of the Moon Birds. If you were zapped by their Five Mega-Watt laser eyes, you were incinerated and failed the test. However, if you made it through without feeling the lasers' scorching glare, you passed the test and received your Official Synth Duo Certificate, signed by each of the Moon Birds.

Just ask Erasure or The Pet Shop Boys and they'll tell you about their harrowing journey deep into the glimmerlight to face the Moon Birds' test. They all hail the Moon Birds as the Godfathers of Synth-Duoism, and hang their certificates on their bedroom walls with pride. 

Check out some of that Moon Bird five mega-watt magic by clicking on the title of this post. 
 

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut--Part XXIX: Klaus Dinger und Richard Simmons






















At the end of the '70s, Klaus Dinger tired of making music in groups. He longed to go solo, and try new things. He decided to take a trip out of the glimmerlight and see the world beyond our pale blue borders.

Klaus travelled the world for 6 months, from Finland to Hollywood and back again. Upon his return he was all amped up. Inspired by a television program he had seen, The Richard Simmons Show, Klaus wanted to bring personal fitness to all the androids in the glimmerlight. He took himself into his workroom, modified many of his subroutines and personal apparatus, and emerged as Néondian, the glimmerlight's own fitness guru. Néondian led us in all sorts of movements and exercises that we all found quite foreign. We would rather have been drinking the blue liquid from our frisbees, taking a resurrection bath, or riding around in our light cycles.

However, the music he made for his exercise sessions was quite profound, and many of us showed up to do the crunches just so we could hear his new tunes. Click on the title of this post to hear "Mon Amour" -- one of my favorite Dinger tracks, it played during the opening credits of The Néondian Exercise Hour. 

Remember to do your stretches before listening to this track, because it will make you move.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut--Part XXVIII: Ralf und Florian's Secret Sister





















Ralf Hütter and Florian Schneider were constructed in a factory deep within La Düsseldorf's glimmerlight one frigid February evening. They went on to form one of the most well known musical organizations in android history: Kraftwerk.

The secret that many do not know is that the same fateful evening, another synthesist was constructed. She was manufactured to roam the glimmerlight with her brothers Ralf und Florian. But, before she could actualize her destiny, she was kidnapped by Klaus Schulze who had his own designs for her. 

Her name was Ami Marie, and had she remained with Ralf und Florian, her name would be well known to all of you. However, that was not in her cards. Luckily for us, she did utilize her musical subroutines, creating one of the classic LPs of the glimmerlight era: Verrückt Nach Glück. On this LP, you can hear her common heritage with Ralf und Florian, and one can only imagine what sort of magic all three would have created together. Check out one of the LP's highlights by clicking on the title of this post.

Ami, if you're out there, Ralf und Florian are still looking for you, and we all hope you reunite one day as the crystals intended.

Rauf und runter!

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut--Part XXVII: Frédéric Mercier is Coming!















As we have noted in the past, there were not too many "real" droids living beyond the pale of the glimmerlight, just wannabes who painted their skin in metallic shade and moved like old men of yore (i.e. Gary Numan). However, there were a few synthesists beyond the German borders who had achieved true synthesis with their mechanized parts; one such was Frédéric Mercier. 

For the first couple of weeks we actually thought this Frenchman was German, manufactured deep within the glimmerlight's crystals, close to Bernd Scholl's mechanical womb at the Ash Ra Temple. But no, he was basically our Alsatian cousin. and we loved him. Just listen to any of his LPs to find out why. No non-German got us moving like Mercier. 

As some of you may know, there will be a reunion in the glimmerlight soon, and Mercier will be there. He penned an anthem for the festivities (to get everyone in the "Spirit") which you can hear by clicking on the title of this post.

Immer wieder!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut--Part XXVI: Das Geheime Leben























This week we are examining the secret lives of the glimmerlight. I'm hesitant to jump on the whole "secret life of" bandwagon because I think it's such bullsh•t; the secret life of bees, the secret life of lobster, give me a break. But really though, I'm just translating the title of my brother Reinhard Lakomy's LP. Reinhard was one of the hardest androids in the glimmerlight. Made out of pure Titanium alloy, he could stop a Tyndall moving at full speed. He also made glittering musik that moved us all as we sipped blue water by the deep blue pools.

Check out his track "Begierde Und Hoffnung" by clicking on the title of this post.

So say we all.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut--Part XXV: More Robotic Gender Bending




















As we have seen so far in our examination of the glimmerlight and all who dwelled there, many of my cybernetic brethren liked to bend the rules of physics and nature. Von Deyen & Schütz melded their subroutines to become one, Rother created the Dynamotron, and who can forget Baumann's transformation into an Elvish warlord.

However, the synthesists liked nothing better than playing with gender roles. You may recall Klaus' brother Thomas! Anyway, another such gender bender was Clara Mondshine (aka Walter Bachauer). He spent his days as Walter, zooming around the glimmerlight in his Lightcycle, afterwards transforming into Clara at night, composing sweet synthesist sounds and bathing in all sorts of fragrant oils in her Cylon resurrection bath.

Check out his/her track "Memorymetropolis" by clicking on the title of this post.

Rauf und runter!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut--Part XXIV: Highway to Heaven




























The Von Deyen & Schütz juggernaut was something to behold! Once they fully melded they soared away from the glimmerlight and wreaked havoc on the universe; conquering offworld-colonies right and left with their David Hasselhoff-ian good looks and Oberheim magic. 

Indeed, many wonder why David Hasselhoff is so popular in Germany, they need look no further than the glimmerlight's totalitarian regime of the Von Deyen/Schütz synthesis/synthesists. They were a strange combination of Michael Landon Highway to Heaven otherworldliness traveling at the speed of a Baywatch lifeguard to the rescue through the universe. And all the droids loved their every move. Check out their track "Speed For You" by clicking on the title of this post. Another one of their masterful sonic concoctions. 

Monday, August 24, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XXIII: How New Age Killed the Glimmerlight























The onslaught of New Age caught us all by surprise. Imagine, The Nothing which destroyed fantasia despite Atreyu's best efforts. Well, they had told us this had all happened before, and that it would all happen again, but we didn't believe them. We lounged by the deep blue pools in the glimmerlight, or drove our Light Cycles around on lazy Sunday afternoons, never knowing the darkness that was coming.

When, in the mid-80s, Sky Records began to advertise our musik as New Age, we knew this was the beginning of the end. Android synthesists were actually passing the Voight-Kampff test, leaving the glimmerlight, and touring with Yanni! Former replicants such as Ralf Tohde, Bernd Scholl and, to our great dismay, Dieter Schütz, were leaving us. The musik was still ghostly, mechanized, and blue, but it was packaged in a manner that we knew would dry up all the electric streams within the decade.

No one grieved the destruction more than Roedelius. He brought his synth down to the river and wrote the great lament of the glimmerlight, "Schöner Abend." This track reflected on the evening of the glimmerlight; the beautiful evening.

Soon, we would all depart for Silberland, where we would recreate the glimmerlight with the aid of Wolfgang's ghost. But Roedelius' melody is a testament to those Düsseldorf nights. Check it out by clicking on the title of this post.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XXII: Schulze Scores a Porno!



















Klaus was always trying to get into film musik. He got his chance in '74 when he was approached to create the soundtrack for the android film, Blackdance. Known throughout the glimmerlight as the first porn-film made by robots.

Check out one of the LPs highlights, "Some Velvet Phasing", by clicking on the title of this post.

Klaus would go on to score many more films, and make many more albums, but this one has a special place in our memory.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Eberhard und Die Polizei


















As you can see from this photo I took back in the glimmerlight, Eberhard Schoener was one of the more serious synthetic synthesists. As such, he adored the dour melodies of British rockers, The Police. Indeed, Eberhard thought of himself as a kind of German King of Pain. He often sent coded messages in bottles across the neon blue pools of our ancestral homeland. Furthermore, Eberhard immersed himself in Jungian concepts such a synchronicity.

Little did Eberhard know that, Andy Summers, Stuart Copeland and Sting were also influenced by his early recording Meditation. Hence, it was to Eberhard's great surprise and delight when the three lads showed up in the glimmerlight in '77 to petition Eberhard to make a record. They ended up making a few, including '77's Trance-Formation and '81's Video Magic. The glimmerlight had never rocked so hard, and many of us were quite disturbed by all the commotion. Was Eberhard drifting too far toward the Progbarian way of life? Would he have to be expelled from from the blue crystal spires deep in the heart of Düsseldorf?

But Eberhard was out brother, and ultimately the council voted to allow him to remain amongst his android brethren despite his dalliances with those who pass the Voight-Kampff beyond the blue event horizon. Check out some "Video-MAgic" by clicking on the title of this post.

Talk 'hard!

The Adventures of Moebius -- Part II: The Hopeless Love of Moebius and Birgit






















Moebius soon grew weary of the Rasta lifestyle, and was soon searching for new avenues to express himself. So Moebius was very pleased when German film director Karsten Wichniarz asked him to score the soundtrack to his 1986 film Blue Moon.

Moebius was also secretly happy because Blue Moon starred Birgit Anders, whom he had adored from afar for quite some time. Sadly, Birgit did not like "Toasters", as she derogatively referred to those of us who dwelt in the glimmerlight.

Although he was crushed by her rejection, Moebius completed the Blue Moon soundtrack. It was a skronk masterpiece, and we all loved it. Check out one of the skronkiest tunes by clicking on the title of this post.

As a sad epilogue, Birgit took the Voight-Kampff test many years later and it was determined that she herself was an android. Once she learned this, she always regretted rejecting Moebius. But, by that time he had moved on to an off-world colony to make sonic magic with his synths and crystals.

Monday, August 10, 2009

The Adventures of Moebius -- Part I: Rasta Android



















As the 70s wore down, Moebius tired of the glimmerlight. As a member of both Cluster and Harmonia, he had helped vanquish the evil hippie progbarian hordes who tried to conquer the glimmerlight again and again in the 70s.

However, as the 70s turned to the 80s, Moebius longed for a more sedate lifestyle. He was tired of being a super-hero. So he called up Roedelius, quit Cluster, and went for a trip to Jamaica. There, he smoked some bomb ganj' and met a bunch of reggae musicians. Moebius immersed himself in Rasta culture and music. 

When he returned to the glimmerlight, Moebius called up fellow android Conny Plank and asked him if he wanted to make a reggae record. Conny agreed, and thus was born android reggae, and a new dynamic duo that would protect us from the long-hairs; they called it Rastakraut Pasta. As for the musik, the rest of us in the glimmerlight didn't know what to think. Where was the motorik beat? How could we dance to these skronky rhythms? Eventually we accessed some of Moebius' sub-protocols and learned how to dance to this strange new music, and we were happier for it in the long run. Check out some sweet android Rasta magic by clicking on the title of this post. Also, stay tuned for more Moebius adventures!

Rauf und runter!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XXI: Zabba Lindner























Rother and (especially) Dinger were always making fun of Adelbert because he couldn't capture that motorik beat. As a disciple of Schulze, Adelbert favored, long, drawn out drones with assorted bleeps, created by his Arp Odyssey and Farfisa Organ VIP 233. 

However, as time wore on, Adelbert grew weary of Rother and Dinger's cruel barbs. He built a timemaschine to go back into Germany's Teutonic past where he recruited Wolfgang Zabba Lindner, a military drummer, from the Prussian regime.

Adelbert brought Zabba back to the glimmerlight and they made 1980's Atmosphere LP. Finally, on the track "Timemachine", Adelbert, with Zabba's aid, was able to capture that elusive motorik sound. Hear it by clicking on the title of this post. In triumph, Adelbert brought a test pressing of "Timemachine" over to Rother and Dinger's crystal spire. They were impressed, but they didn't let Adelbert know this. To this day, Rother and Dinger tell Adelbert he's got no sense of rhythm. And Adelbert, sadly, has abandoned the motorik sound. But, for that brief, glorious moment in time, Adelbert and Zabba rocked the glimmerlight.

Immer wieder!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XX: Studium an Der Ash Ra Tempel


















When Bernd arrived amongst us, he told tales of the mystic Ash Ra Tempel, far in the recesses of the glimmerlight, near its mystic core. There, he studied under the tutelage of Manuel Göttsching, another character from our makers' bedtime fairy-tales. 

Supposedly the original Ash Ra Tempel was on the colony of Kobol, built by the Centurions at the dawn of the glimmerlight. Göttsching travelled to Earth from Kobol as an emissary, to found a cybernetic race of synthesists here on our planet. He brought the crystals from distant Kobol, through the Sunrain to Earth, to the area now known as Germany. There, he constructed a replica of the Ash Ra Tempel at the glimmerlight's heart, and the first factories that churned out krautrock's greatest heroes.

When Bernd emerged from the crystal core, he came equipped with 8-Tracks that bore sonic messages from our distant forefather. One track I remember clearly, was an ode to his journey through the Sunrain. You can hear it by clicking on the title of this post. 

Rauf und runter!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XIX: Das Tief Mysterien von Bernd Scholl





















Perhaps no synthesist dwelt deeper in the glimmerlight than Bernd Scholl, where he weaved tales of fantasy amongst the ancient crystals of our makers.

For quite a while, we all thought Bernd was just a myth. His was the tale told to young androids before they went to sleep; the benevolent cyborg who would protect us as we dreamt of electric sheep.

Of course, Schulze claimed he'd actually met Bernd. But, by that time, we'd grown weary of his tall tales of mystic orgies in the crystal fields. 

Turns out we were mistaken. I still remember the first time I heard Bernd Scholl's Tales of Fantasy beaming from the deep recesses of the glimmerlight. We sat in awed silence by the blue pools. Check out the title track by clicking on the title of this post.

Also sagen wir alle!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XVIII: Tyndall























In the late 70s, West Berlin had a major transit problem. The city enlisted my synthesist brethren to construct a modern transit system that could transport the people to and fro. 

The first passenger car to emerge from the glimmerlight was called the Tyndall. It rode through the Berlin skies like a flaming light. Like all of us, it was a thinking maschine. Like the cars and automobiles of PKD, it could converse with its passengers, sometimes reprimanding them if they did not pay their fares.

This train could also make some sweet music. My favorite Tyndall record was Reflexionen. Chock full of amazing songs, including an ode to the West Berlin transit system of which it was an integral part, called "Transit West Berlin." Check it out by clicking on the title of this post.

Immer wieder! 

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Die Klapper-Schlange

























As I've mentioned in earlier posts, we had many guests in the glimmerlight; non-android life forms who'd visit us to glean our ways. They hoped that some of the magic would wear off on them, as if they were bathing in a Cylon resurrection bath.

One such guest was American movie-maker/composer John Carpenter. In '76, he visited with his bodyguard Die Klapper-Schlange. We all thought Klapper-Schlange was the toughest thing to hit the glimmerlight since Moebius. He'd lost an eye battling the Hydrogen Breathers in the outer-colonies, carried a big gun, and said vaguely Amerikansk things like, "Who's the Duke?"

We were all very sad when John and Klapper-Schlange left. However, they had to save the president. They did send us some sweet synthesist sounds that we enjoyed deep in the glimmerlight. Check out "The Duke Arrives/Barricade" by clicking on the title of this post.

Rauf und runter!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Dynamotron: Android Pain Medicine, or The Missing Defender of The Universe?





























As the 80s wore on, Rother visited us in the glimmerlight less and less. He spent more time on Glitzerglanz with his maschines. He began to abandon his analog synths, becoming more digital in the process. This gave his old android synthesist creations from the glimmerlight great pain, so Rother attempted to create a kind of android pain medicine. He called it "Dynamotron" (from the album Lust), and you can hear it by clicking on the title of this post.

We heard "Dynamotron" beamed down  to us via Rother's bröselmaschine. We never knew if it was some new cybernetic creation that would defend our universe from the hydrogen breathing races, or if it was, indeed, simply a pain medication for Rother's army of mechanized synthesists, depressed over his digital excursions.

Either way, these were some of the last sweet sounds he created, before we lost all contact.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XVII: Deutschland's Simon & Garfünkel
















Back in the day, it was always the Berlin scene vs. la Düsseldorf scene. Rarely did anyone speak of the Steinbergkirche scene. But Steinbergkirche had its very own Cluster in Von Deyen and Schütz; Von Deyen playing Moebius to Schütz's Roedelius.

They teamed up for 1983's Inventions; one of the most profound LPs to emerge from the glimmerlight. Indeed, Von Deyen and Schütz were the glimmerlight's own Simon & Garfünkel.

Not many people know that soon after Von Deyen and Schütz met, they attempted to program themselves into one solitary unit; one being following the same sub-routines and protocols, masters of both the Roland Jupiter 4 (Schütz) and the Arp 2600 (Von Deyen). 

As you can see from the album cover, the two came close to succeeding. Indeed, they became sort of cybernetic twins, Leoben's if you will, philosophizing synthesists in the deep blue pools of the glimmerlight.

Anyway, we spent many nights drinking Grape Juice Plus to the sounds of Inventions, especially the track "Farland", which you can hear by clicking on the title of this post.

This has all happened before. Will it happen again?

Monday, July 6, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XVI: Danz Die Sternzeit























As I mentioned earlier, Adelbert Von Deyen also travelled the sternzeit before joining us in the glimmerlight. 

Some claim that Adelbert actually wanted to be Klaus Schulze, but he messed up the programming. They've got it all wrong! They were never there with us, basking in the blue depths of the inner-hinterhüffer. Just click on the title of this post to hear what I'm talking about. Adelbert wrote this track, "Mars," as an homage to the planet he visited in late-79. I'm afraid that Klaus could probably never come up with such a funky synth masterpiece. Immer wieder!

Indeed, Adelbert had spent much of '79 touring the planets of the galaxy, and the trip formed the basis of his masterpiece LP -- Planetary. An album that takes me right back to the glimmerlights of my youth.

Adelbert would soon team up with Dieter Schütz to form one of the most underrated krautrock duos of all time. Tune in tomorrow for that tale...

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XV: Dieter Schütz in Miracle World














Dieter Schütz was born hundreds of years ago, on the planet Aries near Mount Eternal. After Dieter trained in the Shellcore technique (the use of which enables one to shatter rocks with his bare fists), Janken the Great captured Prince Egle, and his fiancée Princess Lora.

Dieter spent many years battling Janken, and came close to death many times. Like Luke Skywalker, and his father before him, Dieter became more than human along the way. Missing limbs replaced with mechanical parts, such that when he arrived in Düsseldorf in the late 70s,  you could not tell what was man, and what was machine.

Dieter took up residence in the glimmerlight, and studied the Oberheim technique with Schulze and the others. Only then was he able to vanquish Janken. Check out Dieter Schütz's "Spacelab" by clicking on the title of this post.

Dieter left the glimmerlight too soon. He took off with Adelbert Von Deyen, presumably to return to Aries. In the mid-80s, a Japanese video game company, Sega, based its video game Alex Kidd in Miracle World on the life and times of Dieter Schütz (he was big in Japan). If you're out there my brother, we miss you.

Rauf und runter!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XIV: The Ivory Tower
















Then there were those days when we jumped on our Luck Dragons, departed the glimmerlight, and headed south to the Ivory Tower, the home of Giorgio Moroder. 

Giorgio lived at the pinnacle of the tower, his epic Moustache dripping sweat as pounded away on his Oberheim Four-Voice. We'd sit at his feet, basking in the glow of his other-worldly sounds, while the Luck Dragons would hunt for squirrels in the forest below. He'd give us cassettes of his newest compositions so we could listen to them on our Walkmans during the long flight home.

One Giorgio's best tracks was an ode to his mystic palace, "The Ivory Tower." Click on the title of this post, and hear what we heard in our headphones, as we flew, via The Southern Oracle, back to the glimmerlight.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XIII: The Durutti Column



















Vini Reilly also had a thing for the glimmerlight. As a teenager he ran away from Manchester for a time to dwell among the androids. While he could never be one of us (not German), he spent the rest of his life building a monument to Schulze, Grosskopf, Rother & Roedelius. He called it-- The Durutti Column. 

Vini has spent the last 30 years trying to perfect this memorial to the glimmerlight, and those who dwelled in its blue cadences. The Durutti Column, this monument to machines, has been ignored far too long. I feel the need to give a shout out to its latest development, a sonic masterpiece called Love in the Time of Recession; just released. Why these sounds aren't garnering massive media coverage (other than mine) borders on criminal neglect.

I feel duty bound to hold up he who has held me and my cybernetic brethren up for so long!

Praise The Durutti Column! Praise thy hat!

Check out one of Recession's sickest tracks by clicking on the title of this post. And support Vini and his creation by checking out the rest of the Column's oeuvre.

Droids in the Glimmerlight


















Occasionally foreigners would join us in the glimmerlight, Bowie, Eno & Iggy being some of our more well known guests. They would plug in, and we would take it from there. What many boxers may not know is that we had some French guests in the heyday as well; a sweet group of guys who loved chocolate and wanted to be machines. They called themselves Droids, and in '78, on Riechmann's offworld colony, they made an album called Star Peace

The album has some sick Oberheim, and consistently wunderbar songs. It really brings it all back home. Check out my favorite track, "(Do You Have) The Force -- Part I"  by clicking on the title of this post.

Do you have the force?

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XII: The Unicorn's Prophecy



















... And then there were those rare weekends when we left the glimmerlights and headed for the country, the Black Forest to be specific. Roedelius and Rother would head off to Forst with Moebius, but the rest of us would journey deep into the forest's dark heart.

One weekend, late in the Spring of '76, Peter Baumann decided to stay behind with the Elves. He had fallen in love with one in particular, Silvara. While she knew he was an android, and that his servosytem would corrode long before she entered the Halls of Mandos, she fell in love with him as well. Indeed, the Unicorn's prophecy had told of the union of an Elven woman and synthetic man. So, Peter lived out his days in the trees with his Elven bride and his Oberheim Matrix-12. We sadly left him behind, but he would bring us joy every couple of years or so by releasing his synthesist sounds. 

Romance '76 is the soundtrack to his love affair. More "earthy" than some of the sounds abounding in the glimmerlight, but no less enchanting. Click on the title of this post to hear one of my favorite tracks.

We visited Peter late in '76 and were shocked by his transformation. His severe, cybernetic appearance had softened, his metallic appearance had taken on a more golden, less silvery, hue. His once sharply styled euro-hair had become flowing locks, that flew behind him as he ran though the forest with his loyal Brownies. He runs in the Black Forest still, our android cousin amongst the Elves, singing in the Elven tongue -- "Cormamin lindua ele lle!"

On a side note, in the early-80s Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman would loosely base the Dragonlance character Gilthanas on Peter Baumann.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Transmissions From Glizterglanz: Süssherz Und Tiefenschärfe
















Recently, I've been listening to the sounds of Michael Rother's early to mid 80s work. His final masterpieces before leaving for Glitzerglanz. There would be more Rother releases, but they would be pale copies of his former work, created by mindless androids he left behind to do his bidding.

His final masterwork was Süssherz Und Tiefenschärfe. The LP boasted one of the worst, yet most strangely compelling covers of the krautrock era. I found this photo of it on a shag carpet with my bröselmaschine. To get a better look you'll have to find your own copy, or come dwell with me in Blaues Licht.

On Süssherz, Rother created his own language with which to communicate with his minions. For example, he would play the song "Rapido" when he wanted his servants to hurry the frak up. You can hear it by clicking on the title of this post.

Why do I love this song so much? Maybe because it came out in the 80s, yet hearkened back to an earlier time, when Kraftwerk were still among us. It seems to be a loving farewell to all he had created. 

Despite its cover, this LP is super rad, and should not be neglected. It is one of the hidden masterpieces of the krautrock era. 

Rauf und runter!

Do Cylons Dream of Electric Sheep?




















Today I'd like to send some love out to Battlestar Galactica (the new one). The greatest T.V. show to ever grace the airwaves. 

Other than Tron, nothing captures the glimmerlights better than the corridors of a Cylon Baseship.

Also, no show is more heavily indebted to the genius of PKD. I was watching the extras on the Razor movie where Galactica producer David Eick stated that a major motivation behind the show, its tone and emotional content, was Blade Runner. But, even more than that, no show better captures the Dickian conundrum that makes one ask: "What the frak is going on?"

I am super sad that this show is no longer around. So are my Synthesist brethren.

So say we all!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Dimitri Endorphin: The Return



























Rumors are abounding in the glimmerlight that Dimitri Endorphin is retuning to the studio. Some of you synthesists out there may remember his self-titled debut from back in 2002. It debuted in Paris, and made its way back to the streets of Berlin via Patrick Brunken.

Well Patrick, I spoke with Dimitri yesterday and he sends his regards. It was a faint connection as he has spent these past years on Rother's offworld colony, Glitzerglanz.

More on Endorphin and Glitzerglanz in upcoming posts.

Rauf und runter!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XI: Metropolis


























For the most part, my Synthesist brethren were self-aware that they were androids. However, long ago, Klaus built a cyborg that did not know its own nature. Like some of  Battlestar Galactica's Cylons, Edgar Froese grew up playing in the Black Forest, believing he was the same as all the other kinder in their Lederhosen. 

Then, one evening while we were all dancing in the glimmerlights, Klaus pulled out a shining object and turned a switch. A few days later, Edgar showed up in Düsseldorf with an ARP 2600 and everything changed. Klaus had a new sidekick, and we all had some new sounds to groove to.

Klaus and Edgar dreamt of greater things though, and would soon construct, and emigrate to their own offworld-colony, Metropolis -- its anthem can be accessed by clicking on the title of this post.

Immer wieder rauf und runter!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part XI: Die Justiz-League


















In the Autumn of '74 the barbarian hordes of Amon Duul the 2nd and Ash Ra Tempel were quickly approaching the high iron gates of Wolfgang Riechmann's Silberland

Silberland was the dreamy enclave that Riechmann founded as a kind of home away from home for cyborgs who spent their energy in the glimmerlights. You may remember that scene from Tron where the three dudes sip from the electronic pond with their frisbees. Well that was basically what Silberland was like; a bunch of androids lounging by a neon blue pool. But our peaceful haven was now being threatened by the prog-krautrockian tribes led by Amon Duul II. Wolfgang decided we needed a special force to protect us, so he called upon Moebius, Roedelius, and Rother to be the heroes that would defend our electronic sanctuary.

They christened themselves Harmonia. They were the first krautrock supergroup, our very own Justice League. And they promptly drove the progbarian hordes from our gates with their ghostly bröselmaschine sounds. Rother would eventually don the mantle of Flaming Hawk when he went solo and got his own series, but his powers arguably never equaled the heights he achieved in this group of heroes.  Check out one of their most potent powers by clicking on the title of this post.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part X: DDR Android














The Puhdys were built in a factory in what was the East Germany, or DDR. As they grew older, they began to encounter the music of their android brethren on the other side of the wall. They longed to join their cybernetic cousins, but human politics kept them apart. Many times they attached burrows to their arms in vain attempts to dig their way to the West, but every time they were thwarted.

Finally, they decided just to take up synthesizers against their opressors. Eventually, their ghost in the machine sounds reached Klaus, Edgar, Harald and the rest of us, and so we set up a signal to let them know that we knew that they knew we were all in the same gang.

After the wall fell in '89 we all met up in the Berlin glimmerlights and danced until the sun came up. Check out on of The Puhdy's shining moments by clicking on the title of this post.

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part IX: The Cross-Dressing Android



















Thomas Dinger is one of the more unheralded cogs in the Krautrock bröselmaschine. He rocked the drums on Neu! 75 and continued on the trommel duties for La Düsseldorf, the band he formed from the ashes of Neu! with his brother Klaus.
Thomas was the rare Krautrocker who went through two transformations. His transition to android was more permanent. But when he ventured into the glimmerlights, Thomas liked to dress as a woman. Hence, he became the first recorded cross-dressing android.
After La Düsseldorf's demise, Thomas went on to create a Krautrock masterpiece in Für Mich. One of its best tracks is available by clicking on the title of this post.
So plug yourself in, put on some lipstick and enjoy!

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part VIII: Wannabe Android





























Before Michael Rother became the Blazing Heartbreaker, he was a member of Krautrock legends Neu! Along with Klaus Dinger (the Godfather of Punk & New Wave) and Thomas Dinger (the Cross-Dressing Android), Michael created a sound truly unique to man and robot-kind; music that never made the mainstream here on Planet Earth, but that consistently tops the charts on the Offworld Colony.

Neu did have significant influence outside of Germany. Indeed, OMD tried to emulate their sound and even composed a B-side called "4-Neu." However, what OMD does not understand is that they are not German! They are just two wannabe synthesists from The Wirral! Only Germans can truly become one with the cyborg and create the ghost in the machine! Sting tried it and failed miserably. OMD tried it and came close, but they are British! I had to remind them over and over again, "you are not German!!! You can never truly become a bröselmaschine! No matter how many wires you stick in yourself, or how much make-up you put on your face!"

!

They just didn't understand that to create such a sound one had to truly become a robot, something an English lad playing a Casiotone on the banks of the Mersey simply cannot accomplish.

Anyway, for one of my favorite Neu songs, click on the title of this post. The track is called "Seeland." As fate would have it, OMD composed a song called "Sealand" on their seminal Architecture & Morality. Similar title, similar sound.

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part VII: Deutsche Wertarbeit




















Dorothea Raukes was Krautrock's Stevie Nicks. Kind of always at zie parties, dansing in zie glimmerlight. As was mentioned earlier, she dated such luminaries as Wolfgang Riechmann and Michael Rother. After Rother she moved on to resident Synthesist, Harald Grosskopf.
But as the 70s transitioned into the 80s, Dorothea grew weary of robot love. Nearly every "man" she had been with in the past decade was at least partially cybernetik. The Germans have a saying that goes "wenn Sie nicht gewinnen könned, mit ihnen." Roughly translated, that means- if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. And that is exactly what Dorothea did. One night in the glimmerlight she sidled up to Klaus Schulze and asked him to take her back to his bröselmaschine laboratory. 

The next day she emerged as a new music making maschine- "Deutsche Wertarbeit," or German Craftsmanship. The music she created now was that of the synthesist, containing the ghost of her human past; the kind of sound Vangelis and other wannabe androids would try to create for years to come, but never succeed. Check out a slice of this German Craftsmanship by clicking on the title of this post.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part VI: Das Zen Meister


















Hans-Joachim Roedelius was the spiritual leader of the Krautrock movement. Some say he was the first to discover the ghost in ze bröselmaschine. Forced in to the Nazi-youth as a child, escaping from Communist East Germany after the war, and joining the electronic underground, Roedelius led perhaps the most fascinating life of any of those who dwelled in the glimmerlights.

He was the other half of Cluster (the other being Moebius), a member of Harmonia (along with Krautrock heartthrob Michael Rother), and a completely astounding solo-künstler in his own right.

Roedelius' experiences also led him to develop his own philosophy. He believed the secret of the universe was contained in the foot. Consequently, feet figured prominently on his album covers. The music he created was also good for philosophizing, or for just drinking coffee and staring out the window on rainy Stuttgart days.

In the future, I plan on doing a whole series of posts on the life and times of Roedelius. But for now, tippen Sie auf die Füße to the sounds of my favorite Roedelius track by clicking on the title of this post. It's title, "Alle Jahr Wieder," means "every year again." Rumor has it he wrote it for a never-realized German film adaptation of PKD's Now Wait For Last Year. Sadly, that never came about. 

Genießen!

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part V: Das Böse Zwillinge





















One night after an early 70s Tangerine Dream show in Zürich, Klaus Schulze, Edgar, and I were walking the pre-dawn streets, tripping on JJ-180. As the sun rose, two little Kinder ran up to us, offering to shine our boots, and begging for money. Klaus stopped in his tracks and asked the two little ones why they were up so early? Where were their parents? As it so happened, the two children were orphans, twins in fact. 

Klaus, claiming he had seen a vision of the future, decided he would take the two children back to Berlin, which he promptly did after adopting them. He named the boy Phaedra Jumbotron (or P.J. for short) and the girl, Stella (after his beloved Großmutter). 

P.J. and Stella were raised during the electronic revolution, by the Godfather of the scene. He loved them very much. However, as the twins reached their teenage years they grew disenchanted with Klaus' electronic meanderings. They longed for a more structured sound. So in 1980, they ran away to Düsseldorf, where they recorded their own album, Psychotron, with Thomas Dinger. They called themselves Schaltkreis Wasserman.

Klaus never forgave P.J. and Stella for their poppier sounds, and has since referred to them as the "Das Böse Zwillinge," or "the Evil Twins" in English. They became the German Electric Underground scene's Tomax and Xamot. However. Psychotron was a true masterpiece and foresaw the direction electronic music was heading in the 80s and beyond. My favorite track on the album is "Zeit Un Raum" which means "Pass the chilie." Check it out by clicking on the title of this post. You can actually hear how Schulze did exert some residual influence on the sound. It's sad he couldn't see beyond his own wounded pride. This was a sound that was still pushing the boundaries in its own way. Such a tragic tale, such a fine piece of glimmerlight musik.

Pass die Bohnen!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part IV: Beschmutzen






















Peter Backhausen was kind of the old crusty hippy of the Krautrock scene. Everyone called him "Beschmutzen" which translates to janker in English, and a truer janker there never was. Peter always wanted to hang out with the androids in the glimmerlights, but with his long hair and tattered jeans he never looked the part. Also, the music he made tended to lean more in the prog direction, he could never really shake that Emerson, Lake and Palmer vibe, that Klaus, Wolfgang, and Harald found very uncool.

That was until Peter made his seminal LP, Planet Show. I remember he showed up at a party one night in Cologne with a test 8-Track of the record. Something was different about him; his pants were tighter, his walk -- just a tad stiffer, and there seemed to be a metallic sheen in his eyes. He would have failed The Voight-Kampff test that night for sure. Indeed, Planet Show was going to be Beschmutzen's entree into the Society of Synthesists. He played everyone the track "Phoenix II."  The title was apt, as this music could have been the soundtrack for one of the films then in vogue on Harald's Offworld Colony. Peter was now part of the gang!

"Phoenix II" is actually my favorite track of the whole Krautrock era, the finest morsel of sonic sauerkraut around. This track is where you will truly find the ghost in the machine, and when Peter's vocoder kicks in 2/3's of the way through, you too can soar with the silver phoenix. Check out the otherworldly magic by clicking on the title of this post.

As far as I know, Planet Show, in its entirety, is completely unavailable in MP3 format. Klaus, Harald and the others heard the other songs and kicked Beschmutzen right out of the gang, and he's completely banned from the Offworld Colony.  

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part III: Synthesist























By the late 70s, many in our circle of friends actually believed Harald Grosskopf was an android. At that juncture, this Krautrock veteran had been a member of Ash Ra Tempel, The Cosmic Jokers and Wallenstein. He'd also played with Klaus Schulze, and some say their late night sessions making music machines led them to attempt mechanizing themselves.

Either way, by 1979, Harald's skin had taken on a metallic hue, his eyes sparkled like glittery diamonds, and his voice sounded like something out of an 8-bit Sega game. He'd also shifted from being mainly a drummer, to playing the synthesizer. Indeed, rumors abounded that he'd programmed himself to be a walking, talking, synthesist. 

During this transmigration of Harald Grosskopf, he/it also created one of the most stellar albums in the galaxy: fittingly titled Synthesist. Released on Sky Records, this LP is full of the warmest robot sounds around. Indeed, Vangelis took notice and used many of Grosskopf's themes for his Blade Runner soundtrack. Track 2, "B.Aldrian" sounds as if it had a significant influence on Vangelis' score.

But my favorite track on the album would have to be the 3rd, "Emphasis." Check it out by clicking on the title of this post. 

As for The Synthesist, he's still out there making music. Word has it he's just returned from his offworld colony to tour Japan with a reformed Ash Ra Tempel. Like many of his colleagues, Harald is big in Japan.

Hagel aus der welt kolonie!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part II: Himmelblau


















Wolfgang Riechmann was originally a member of Streetmark, as I mentioned yesterday, they were Germany's Fleetwood Mac (or Go-Betweens, who were Australia's Fleetwood Mac). Anyway, while the resident synthesist in Streetmark, Wolfgang fell for lead singer Dorothea Raukes. When Dorothea left Wolfgang for Michael Rother, Riechmann left Streetmark and went solo. Inspired by fellow synthesists Kraftwerk, he took to wearing make-up and emulating a PKD android, although his color-palette reflected the state of his heart. Ridley Scott took notice, and modeled much of the Blade Runner aesthetic on Riechmann's image.

Riechmann also made a Krautrock classic Wunderbar. And the record really lives up to its name; kind of a lost classic of the genre.

Sadly, just before the LP came out in 1978, Riechmann was murdered in a Düsseldorf dive bar by two sailors. "Himmelblau" (Sky Blue) is one of the highlights of Riechmann's lone solo LP. Click on the title to enjoy this small slice of heaven. 

Dieser ist für Sie Wolfgang! Ich hoffe, Sie sing glücklich dort.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Six Degrees of Sauerkraut -- Part I: Flammende Herzen



















This is the first post in a series that will document the life and times of many of your favorite Krautrock stars. Those days and nights in Düsseldorf, and beyond, were full of fun and drama, and I thought it might be nice to share some of my memories. Many of these damen und herren were interconnected in many ways, and I hope to document some of that during the Six Degrees of Sauerkraut saga.

I thought I'd begin with Michael Rother, or as he liked to think of himself "Flammende Herzen." In English that means "Blazing Heart." As you may have guessed, Michael was Krautrock's ladies man. He thought quite highly of himself, as did the ladies (and a number of men as fate would have it). Indeed, I remember one night in 1977; we were all out, dancing in the glimmerlight of a club on Düsseldorf's eastside. That night, Michael basically stole Dorothea Raukes from Wolfgang Riechmann. Dorothea and Wolfgang were members of Streetmark, West Germany's Fleetwood Mac. Plenty of interband hook-ups and what not. Anyway, Dorothea took one look at Blazing Heart and that was the end of her and Wolfgang. 

Wolfgang took to wearing icy makeup, dressing in tight suits, and acting like he was a robot. Indeed, Blade Runner was influenced by this new style Wolfgang developed in response to his heartbreak over losing Dorothea. This would happen to Dorothea as well when she and Blazing Heart broke up, and she subsequently formed the legendary Krautrock band, Deutsche Wertarbeit. But, these are tales for another time.

Anyway, Rother made my favorite music of the whole Krautrock era. Excellent for experimenting with JJ-180, Can-D and what have you. And it is always easier to commune with the Vast Active Living Intelligence System ("Valis") while listening to Rother's Katzenmusik, which every true Krautrocker should own.

Try some Blazing Heart for yourself, Rother's "KM 12" from Katzenmusikby clicking on the title of this post! This song quite literally took me to the stars one night. 

Krautrock für immer!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

More Crack Please!































The first time I read The Crack in Space, I thought that it was where Planet of The Apes got its source material. But to my chagrin, PKD more likely got a major subplot of his 1966 novel from Pierre Boulle's 1963 novel: a planet far away in time and space populated by intelligent pre-humans.

Having now read both books a couple of times, and watching the original movies in an attic in Seattle, the two tales are indeed strikingly similar in some respects and it's always interesting to ponder who and what influenced Dick.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The Crack in Space: PKD on Race and Politics




























Given the events of the past six months (market crash, presidential election) I thought it would be appropriate to reread PKD's 1966 novel The Crack in Space. Currently, no other PKD novel better captures the current times; a horrible economy, an unpopular outgoing President, and the election of the first Black President. All of this and more in Dick's underrated Crack. 

From the Ace 2nd Edition blurb: 

"Every crisis that had been building through the 20th century came to a head in the year 2080. And it was an election year.

There were tens on millions of people in deep-freeze waiting for better times--and the pressure was on to wake them up or throw them away. Unemployment had reached an all-time high -- and the people were demanding jobs.

The jiffi-scuttlers which made space travel possible were breaking down and someone had to find out why fast.

The racial problem had become dangerous -- and one of the candidates for President was Black.

But most important of all, scientists had broken into another dimension and found another world -- and a long forgotten ancestral race."

Aside from a few minor details PKD seems to have predicted the future quite admirably. However, Ace probably probably made a printing error and it should have read 2008 rather than 2080. Either way, this is one of PKD's better efforts.


Sunday, February 22, 2009

Fingers Let Go: Price Pearlman Releases New LP
















Today Price Pearlman releases his new LP, "Fingers Let Go." Recorded over the last year in studios in Brooklyn and Minneapolis, it's a record in two parts; Side A is called "The BQE" and Side B is called "I-90 West." Each side covers the process of holding on, and letting go.

The LP was mostly produced by Andrew Totolos (of Giraffes fame) and Price Pearlman. Totolos also provided drum and bass, and Ryan Maresco rocked the lead guitar. 

Minneapolis' favorite son G. Luke recorded one track at his Minneapolis studio, with the Wentworth String Octet. Other guest musicians include The Clinton Avenue Gospel Choir (feat. Chava Mirel), Byron Kalet, and Kristen Cappadona. Penny Yarborough and Joachim Lustwandel guest on Banjo and Pedal Steel respectively. And Dimitri Endorphin returns to Planet Earth to play some synthesizers and sample some classic rock.

 Look for it in your mailbox soon!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Galactic Pot-Healer





























Joe Fernwright fixes ceramic pots in a future Cleveland. Since most of the world uses plastic, Joe doesn't have much work. He's kind of desperate, so when he gets a job offer plopped in his
toilet bowl, not only de we know we're in PKD novel, but he's ready to accept right away. The job offer comes from this Jabba The Hut like alien ("The Glimmung") from another galaxy. After Joe accepts the job (raising a cathdral from the bottom of another planet's ocean) the Glimmung transports Joe to Plowman's Planet where he's supposed to get to work.

Galactic Pot-Healer is probably in the top 5 strangest PKD novels. Sometimes it is completely random. However, in my humble opinion it is Dick's funniest novel. Healer was written in 1969 (PKD's late-60s novels are my favorites). However, it can probably be most closely aligned to Dick's Maze of Death published in 1970. Both novels are overtly religious, and also have a theme of migration to a new planet to begin a new endeavor.

Rumor has it that there will be a 3rd Library of America volume and it will include: Maze of Death, Valis, The Divine Invasion, and The Transmigration of Timothy Archer. While all of these novels display PKD ruminating on religion, I'm a tad aggrieved that Galactic Pot-Healer will not be included. If you're looking for some deep thoughts, and some good laughs, check it out.





Thursday, January 22, 2009

sauerkraut!























Back in the world of PKD and reading The World Jones Made. Like all of his novels, this one concerns precognition, or a dude who lives his life one year in the future. Basically he lives his life twice so he always has a sense of Deja Vu. PKD makes this kind of precognition out to be a blessing, but mostly a curse.

Another person who can be considered to have lived in the future is Klaus Dinger. Dinger, along with Michael Rother, was an original member of German electronic pioneers Kraftwerk. However, Dinger and Rother left Kraftwerk because they didn't think the band was pushing the boundaries enough. They went on to form Neu! After Neu disbanded, Klaus went on to form La Düsseldorf with, among others, his brother Thomas. 

Both Neu and La Düsseldorf were well ahead of their time. Indeed, David Bowie once said that La Düsseldorf was the sound of the 80's, even though their seminal LPs were released in '76 and '78. They did make one more record in 1980. I can safely assure you that Neu/La Düsseldorf/Klaus Dinger influenced everyone from the Sex Pistols to Joy Division. OMD even had a b-side called 4 Neu; one of my favorite OMD tracks of all time.

After Neu, Michael Rother went on to make some solo LPs that I'm quite fond of, including: Flammende Herzen and Sterntaler. These records, too, evoked the sound of the 80's well before the decade rolled around. Sometimes I wonder if they too, were living their lives more than once.

I've been digging a lot of this krautrock lately as a matter of fact. Thomas Dinger went on to record some swell solo LPs, including one of my favorite krautrock records, Für Mich. Other current favorites include: Wolfgang Reichmann, Hans-Joachim Roedelius, Emtidi, Peter Baumann, and Robert Schroeder. 

As you can imagine, this forward looking music makes the perfect soundtrack for The World Jones Made, and certainly for any other PKD novel you may have lying around. Check out one of my favorite Klaus Dinger/La Düsseldorf songs, "Geld", by clicking on the title of this post.