Jul 10, 2006

Kraftwerk Inspiration

Ola Pehrson - Desktop (1999)
Ola Pehrson's "Desktop" is actually a 10:1 scale model of a Windows 95 interface that is videotaped and presented in real time on a computer screen across the room that you can see here.

When a computer guru / music buff buddy of mine asserted that he hadn't listened to much Kraftwerk, I was inspired to take a stroll around the blogosphere and see what musical remnants I could conjure. Streaming as an apt digital testament to the pervasive lingering inspiration of this 1970's German soundmachine, Kraftwerk remixes and mashups are being created, hosted, and enjoyed on the internet as we speak. Here are a few intergenerational pieces I found strewn about:

The original "We Are the Robots" video (via YouTube) establishes the unique Kraftwerk message and style. Only missing are the characteristic laptops, though one can visualize their presence suprisingly easily with the whole dogma being chillingly ahead of its time (while I believe the literally flashy ties are the same design the band still wears on tour). The UK tasteblog Headphone Sex has a remix of one of my favourite Kraftwerk songs "Radioactivity" (mp3).

Mashups are inevitable and with Kraftwerk's timelessly simple elegance, they are fairly successful. Soulwax has an impressively cohesive mix of Kraftwerk's "Numbers" with The Beatles' "Eleanor Riby" (mp3). One of the best and most prolific mashup artists is a guy named Party Ben and his "Computer Love" (mp3), the artificially-inseminated love child of Kraftwerk's "Computer World" and Coldplay's "Talk", gives Kraftwerk the appropriate headnod it deserves for more-than-inspiring the popular single. With the same playful hope of those applications that age your face twenty years or visualize the amalgamation of your future kids with Angelina Jolie, laying female vocals over Kraftwerk beats outputs a pleasant depth. Listen to experiments with dream front women Whitney Houston (mp3 via Overstated) or Everything But The Girl's Tracey Thorn (mp3 via Beatmixed). I also found a dancy mashup of Kraftwerk's "We Are the Robots" with Gwen Stephani's "Hollaback Girl" (mp3) at an NYU Communications Lab page, if you secretly love that Gwen song as much as I do.

Modern indie bands even bow in patronage including Canasta, performing an intruigingly original acoustic cover of Kraftwerk's originally uber electronic "The Model" (mp3) (via the ever-exciting Skatterbrain).

For those keeping score... that's a video, a remix, five mashups, and an indie cover. *Whew*

6 comments

At Monday, July 10, 2006, Blogger Jenny said...

Love the Gwen Stefani mashup. I was trying to explain the concept of the mashup to my boss on Friday via the listening experience of "the night of miss kitten's messy dream." I found myself saying, "no, no, it's NOT merely a remix."

 
At Monday, July 10, 2006, Blogger Jenny said...

Why are you never online when I am??? And by "when I am," I mean when I want you to be as in 6:05pm, or .....right now, 10:47pm. If you had a phone......... I would call you. But alas.

 
At Tuesday, July 11, 2006, Blogger Kyle said...

The mashup is a delicate flower... I'm off to DC for the week!

 
At Wednesday, July 12, 2006, Blogger Jenny said...

There was just a spider crawling across my screen. I smooshed it with my finger and the screen did that melting thing it does when you touch it. ANYWAY, check your email and call that woman about that job! I know you can't stay away from your blog for long.

 
At Thursday, July 27, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why?

 
At Sunday, December 03, 2006, Blogger Music and Fashion Network said...

December 2 2006 COMMODORE 64 ORCHESTRA Playlist

ROB HUBBARD- ONE MAN AND HIS DROID TITLE THEME (1985)

PETER CLARKE- THEME FROM BUBBLE BOBBLE (1987)

MARTIN GALWAY- THEME FROM ARKANOID (1987)

PETER LIEPA- BOULDER DASH (R) II- ROCKFORD'S REVENGE

JEROEN TEL- ALLOY RUN MAIN THEME (1988)

COMMODORE 64 ORCHESTRA - COMMODORE 64 (1982)

JEROEN TEL- THEME FROM KINETIX (1988)

PETER LIEPA- BOULDER DASH (R) (1984)

BEN DAGLISH- THE LAST NINJA WILDERNESS IN-GAME (1986)

MARTIN GALWAY- MAGNETIC FIELDS IV (AS USED IN YIE AR KUNG-FU) (1985)

OUTRO- CONTAINS ELEMENTS FROM JEROEN TEL- MUSIC FROM TURBO OUTRUN (2000)

JEROEN TEL- MUSIC FROM TURBO OUTRUN (1989)

NICO DEMONTE - MAX HEADROOM (1988)

ROB HUBBARD- CRAZY COMETS MAIN THEME (1985)

CHRIS HUELSBECK- FINAL THEME FROM THE BABY OF CAN GURU (1987)

 

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