Kraftwerk-aktivitšt in the '90s
January; it is announced that Kraftwerk may play at the 'Tribal Gathering' event in Oxfordshire, UK in May of 1996. A week later it is further reported that they were approached to play but declined the offer.
In the US, a short news snippet mentions that Kraftwerk have signed a deal with a US agent (presumably for promotional/live work), the CAA agency. Their German promoter, Scumek Sabottka of MCT, is attributed with a quote to effect that the band is currently at work on an album and is set to tour at the end of the year to promote it.
March; in the German music magazine 'Keys', an article about the new Doepfer Modular system A-100 is previewed with a short vocoder-poem by Florian Schneider, on the free CD that accompanies the magazine. He also pens a short review of the equipment.
A French language edition of Pascal Bussy's 'Man, Machine and Music' book becomes the latest version, now retitled 'Kraftwerk: Le mystere des HOMMES MACHINES'. This edition comes with yet another cover design and features a number of new photos not seen in the other language editions.
Also on the literary front, a book by David Toop called 'Oceans of Sound' features a reprint of a 1987 interview with Ralf Huetter originally printed in 'The Face' magazine.
Further re-issues on CD from the USA; yet another sleeve redesign and re-issue from Cleopatra, this time for 'Radio-Activity'. Also, re-issues in their 'Price Busters' budget reissue series from Capitol for 'Radio-Activity', 'Trans-Europe Express' and 'The Man Machine'.
Similar budget-price re-issues in Japan as part of the 'Cool Price' series for 'Trans-Europe Express' and 'The Man Machine'. Following on from the Elecktroids release in 1995, more bands showing a Kraftwerk influence; Komputer release their 'Komputer' EP on Mute records in early July, once again original compositions, not cover versions, but with more than a nod and a wink to Kraftwerk - particularly 'Oh Synthesizer', which could be 'Neon Lights' Part 2'!
The US Hypnotic/Cleopatra label also announce plans for a 'Trancewerk Express' Volume 2...
August; The 'Computer World' album is due to re-issued on CD format for the first time in Japan. Announced to contain three extra bonus tracks; 'Dentaku' (the Japanese language version of 'Pocket Calculator') and two mixes of 'Tour De France'. The release of the CD is, however, delayed...
December sees a re-issue in a new sleeve design of the Japanese only 'The Best of Kraftwerk' CD.
The UK TV station the BBC airs a series called 'Dancing In The Street'. The final programme in the series, 'Planet Rock' deals with Kraftwerk and includes a short snippet of the band from 1975 performing 'Autobahn' (as first aired on the 'Rock and Roll Years' and 'Sounds of the 70s' series). The programme is subsequently released commercially on video.
Towards the end of the year, reports in the music press state that Kraftwerk have again been approcahed to perform at the next Tribal Gathering event in England in 1997...
December sees Kraftwerk officially on the Internet, with the launch of their own, official WWW homepages. In typically minimalist fashion, the pages reveal very little detail...
The contributions of Karl Bartos to Electronic can finally be heard in July with the release of the band's 'Forbidden City' single and 'Raise The Pressure' album. Bartos, as well as playing keyboards, also contributed to the compositions on the records. The track 'Imitation Of Life' on the 'Forbidden City' single is apparently one of the Elektric Music tracks performed live in Sweden in 1994, in reworked form. Another non-LP track co-written with Bartos, 'I Feel Alright', also surfaces on the 'For You' single later in the year.
As well as Electronic, this year also sees Bartos collaborate with OMD - with one track on their 'Universal' LP ('The Moon and The Sun') and a non-LP track ('Mathew Street') on their 'Walking on the Milky Way' single.
The October issue of the UK magazine 'Future Music' sees Karl Bartos quoted as saying; "I've just started the next Elektric Music album... I've just written the tracks and it is similar to the stuff that is on the Electronic album: more pop than intelligent overdrive! It feels happy."
Announcement of a single called 'Guiding Ray' from Wolfgang Fluer's Yamo is mooted, but does not appear, though it is clear that Yamo are signed to EMI-Electrola in Germany for their releases. A single by the band Exxcelsior, called 'Waiting', does feature a small contribution from Wolfgang and is released in Germany.
Both Wolfgang and long-time Kraftwerk associate Emil Schult make an appearance at the KLEMDag electronic music event in Holland in September.
Updated: 16 : 5 : 2010