Krautrock - The Rebirth of Germany
November 14, 2009 1:37 PM   Subscribe

Krautrock - the movie

Documentary which looks at how a radical generation of musicians created a new German musical identity out of the cultural ruins of war.

(download info in some of the comments)
posted by philip-random (19 comments total) 25 users marked this as a favorite
Click through to the vimeo account, and you'll find some more BBC music documentaries. Click through from there to the poster's blog, and it's far from obvious that he has the rights to this material...
posted by effbot at 1:54 PM on November 14, 2009

Nobody knows if it really happened.
posted by anazgnos at 2:25 PM on November 14, 2009 [2 favorites]

You just made my night. You have no idea. Thanks!
posted by Betty Tyranny at 4:43 PM on November 14, 2009

Tremendously great documentary. Love the bits with Renate of Amon Düül II talking about trying to rid their apartment of Baader-Meinholf members, Faust's junk pile of sound effects and Iggy eating a melon with a power drill.
posted by quartzcity at 5:24 PM on November 14, 2009

-"...and we made all of these things, music... we wore elegant suits which were made for us you know." [Autobahn plays. Wolfgang Flür exits left.]
-"The big one for me was Radioactivity. I would go to sleep at night listening to a Geiger Counter..." [cutaway to Iggy Pop caressing a palm tree, blabbers nonsensically about buying asparagus]
-"When do you think there will be electricity flowing through your veins instead of blood?"

The editing is weird, but this documentary is really good. Thanks for posting this.
posted by at the crossroads at 5:51 PM on November 14, 2009

> the movie

The hour-long BBC television documentary.

A great bit of television, though. Thanks for posting.
posted by ardgedee at 5:54 PM on November 14, 2009

> the movie

The hour-long BBC television documentary.

It's composed of pictures that move. I call that a movie.
posted by philip-random at 6:12 PM on November 14, 2009


I understand the Eno + Bowie tie-in, but when every other car commercial has "The Passenger" or "Lust for Life" as the soundtrack, I just couldn't understand why Iggy Pop is included in this documentary, sitting there shirtless outside the cabana on his paradise island making masturbation gestures and mimicking radiation detectors while talking about shopping for asparagus with Florian Schneider... ?! (interrobang)

Then comes the kicker:

"Krautrock may be over but theirs is not an unhappy ending. Today, these artists remain as gloriously uncompromising as they ever were. Unlike many of their Anglo American peers, they have refused to be drawn into becoming establishment figures. There are no knights of the realm here. Just happy experimental musicians."
posted by at the crossroads at 6:53 PM on November 14, 2009

The synth pop documentary is even more awesome (and much longer). I was blown away by all the personal accounts of the initial struggle and the quick fall of the movement. After 80 minutes of synth, I did feel the sound is a little dated and tiresome and felt relieved when pet shop boys and new order, who representing the new direction, came in.
posted by najja at 7:46 PM on November 14, 2009

Another brilliant quote:

"Released in 77, 'Heroes' was a real hit for David Bowie. But the real heroes were the Krautrockers."
posted by larva at 8:31 PM on November 14, 2009

Thank you. Thank you. I had no idea how many of my electronic music heroes are still alive and vital.
posted by dylanjames at 10:04 PM on November 14, 2009

Since I'm still so excited by Can having finally gotten round to trying them, I have to give this a look.
posted by opsin at 1:08 AM on November 15, 2009

A link to Julian Cope's legendary review of the background, culture and music, Krautrocksampler. It's out of print at the moment and is the only way to read it without spending a fortune on ebay. I recommend that anyone interested in this buying it as soon as it comes back into print.

The BBC Krautrock documentary is great. Some great footage of Germany in the late 60s and early 70s. Faust seem particularly strange.
posted by ClanvidHorse at 3:06 AM on November 15, 2009 [3 favorites]

Very Nice   Thanks.
Btw, this is not only watchable at Vimeo but also a downloadable file. Very useful.
posted by krilli at 4:17 AM on November 15, 2009

posted by wundermint at 7:49 AM on November 15, 2009

Thanks for posting this. I've been listening to a lot of Popol Vuh lately- they made some of the most beautiful music I've ever heard.

I just couldn't understand why Iggy Pop is included in this documentary

Kraftwerk: The Followers

From station to station back to Dusseldorf City, meet Iggy Pop and David Bowie

(I'm also thinking Bowie and Eno were unavailable for comment.)
posted by Dr-Baa at 8:42 AM on November 15, 2009

Speaking of CAN, I was sorry to see that Irmin Schmidt wasn't featured in the doc. I hope he's doing okay. In the CAN BOX dvd that came out a few years back, he came across as a genuinely funny man with a unique story to tell.

Simply put: earnest and naive and young SERIOUS music student goes on a mid-60s trip to New York City (for some academic reason) and ends up falling in with Andy Warhol and his crowd for a while, gets seriously subverted (and perhaps perverted) and, shall we say, nothing is ever the same.

The CAN BOOK is also worth digging into.
posted by philip-random at 10:10 AM on November 15, 2009 [1 favorite]

That is one of the better, most even-handed and human experimental music documentaries I've seen ... done with warm respect and allowing authentic artists' insights into an era of sweeping changes. These gents (like those in Standing in the Shadows of Motown) seem genuinely pleased to be getting some overdue attention.

BTW many of these artists tracks are sprinkled through the shows of the early years of Hearts of Space ... which has streaming online archives.

Now: what are those cryptic remarks at the end about Bowie's "Heroes" album all about?
posted by Twang at 2:31 AM on November 16, 2009

Original link is now no more.

Vimeo Link for Krautrock - The Rebirth of Germany.
posted by philip-random at 3:47 PM on December 1, 2009

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