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Electri_City: The Düsseldorf School of Electronic Music

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Just like Memphis for Rock'n'Roll, Dusseldorf is regarded as the Mecca for electronic music. The capital of North Rhine-Westphalia became the centre of an analog electronic movement which changed the course of all popular music to come. Electri_City is the oral account of the city's most influential bands, including Kraftwerk, NEU!, DAF, Die Krupps and many more. This histo Just like Memphis for Rock'n'Roll, Dusseldorf is regarded as the Mecca for electronic music. The capital of North Rhine-Westphalia became the centre of an analog electronic movement which changed the course of all popular music to come. Electri_City is the oral account of the city's most influential bands, including Kraftwerk, NEU!, DAF, Die Krupps and many more. This history uncovers the myths and reality of the bands emerging from the artistic backdrop of a wealthy, modern, post-WWII German city; the conditions that fostered such a creative explosion. Interviews include Daniel Miller (Mute Records), Paul Humphreys and Andy McCluskey (OMD), Martyn Ware (Human League), Glenn Gregory (Heaven 17), Rusty Egan (Visage) Ryuichi Sakamoto and producer, Giorgio Moroder.


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Just like Memphis for Rock'n'Roll, Dusseldorf is regarded as the Mecca for electronic music. The capital of North Rhine-Westphalia became the centre of an analog electronic movement which changed the course of all popular music to come. Electri_City is the oral account of the city's most influential bands, including Kraftwerk, NEU!, DAF, Die Krupps and many more. This histo Just like Memphis for Rock'n'Roll, Dusseldorf is regarded as the Mecca for electronic music. The capital of North Rhine-Westphalia became the centre of an analog electronic movement which changed the course of all popular music to come. Electri_City is the oral account of the city's most influential bands, including Kraftwerk, NEU!, DAF, Die Krupps and many more. This history uncovers the myths and reality of the bands emerging from the artistic backdrop of a wealthy, modern, post-WWII German city; the conditions that fostered such a creative explosion. Interviews include Daniel Miller (Mute Records), Paul Humphreys and Andy McCluskey (OMD), Martyn Ware (Human League), Glenn Gregory (Heaven 17), Rusty Egan (Visage) Ryuichi Sakamoto and producer, Giorgio Moroder.

30 review for Electri_City: The Düsseldorf School of Electronic Music

  1. 5 out of 5

    Adam Williams

    An absolutely fascinating oral history of Düsseldorf electronic music across the seventies and eighties, that tells stories both well known and more obscure, and joins the dots in a number of ways I did not know before. An absolutely essential read to understand the influence of this early stage of electronic music, that went on to influence so much.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Stephen Hayes

    Interesting back story to the development of electronic music and krautrock in 70s-80s Duesseldorf + insights on Bowie, Eno ,English New-Wave etc. It may be a bit specific and long winded for general readers unfortunately.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ray

    Great oral history of the Dusseldorf Germany music and art scene of the 70's/ 80's. Kraftwerk is the best known of the music groups and even with all this detail about their processes, their mystery is still intact! Lots of detail about how Kraftwerk and Neu! developed. I'm happy that the author had access to interviews with long departed figures such as Neu!'s Klaus Dinger. Bowie's interaction with this scene is chronicled here. Moving forward there's great info about the Neue Deutsche Welle ba Great oral history of the Dusseldorf Germany music and art scene of the 70's/ 80's. Kraftwerk is the best known of the music groups and even with all this detail about their processes, their mystery is still intact! Lots of detail about how Kraftwerk and Neu! developed. I'm happy that the author had access to interviews with long departed figures such as Neu!'s Klaus Dinger. Bowie's interaction with this scene is chronicled here. Moving forward there's great info about the Neue Deutsche Welle bands like DAF, Der Plan, Abwarts and the interaction with record labels like Mute and Virgin in the UK. As an oral history it is candid. A number of people interviewed still certainly have a lot of spark!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Nate Stevens

    A very good history of Dusseldorf itself as a cultural center; I bought this after Florian's passing and expected a lot of Kraftwerk focus, but what I learned was perhaps what I should have expected in the year 2020, that Kraftwerk were privileged White outsiders who were undoubtedly talented but capitalized on the more extreme scene figures surrounding them in the town and cultural mecca that was (is?) Dusseldorf. An interesting read, but one that does require a bit of knowledge beforehand on k A very good history of Dusseldorf itself as a cultural center; I bought this after Florian's passing and expected a lot of Kraftwerk focus, but what I learned was perhaps what I should have expected in the year 2020, that Kraftwerk were privileged White outsiders who were undoubtedly talented but capitalized on the more extreme scene figures surrounding them in the town and cultural mecca that was (is?) Dusseldorf. An interesting read, but one that does require a bit of knowledge beforehand on key industry voices that I had very little idea about. (Because of that, it feels less introductory and more involved of a read, which I truly appreciated.)

  5. 4 out of 5

    jm

    Great selection of people they got together there, and interesting to see what Düsseldorf (a rather more boring place now) was like. But it feels written for people who were there: if you don't know who people are, you'll either have a lot of page-flipping to do or will just have to read the segments anonymously. Cutting the interviews to reassemble them in connected parts makes for some repetition too. Great selection of people they got together there, and interesting to see what Düsseldorf (a rather more boring place now) was like. But it feels written for people who were there: if you don't know who people are, you'll either have a lot of page-flipping to do or will just have to read the segments anonymously. Cutting the interviews to reassemble them in connected parts makes for some repetition too.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Joris Telgen

    With almost 450 pages, this book is very detailed. It's probably a bit much unless you've got a special interest. For me it was exactly what I was looking for. Great book on a very interesting time period in music! With almost 450 pages, this book is very detailed. It's probably a bit much unless you've got a special interest. For me it was exactly what I was looking for. Great book on a very interesting time period in music!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Rob

    A hardcore fans oriented book, it is fun to read and know about this period in Germany but you have to have a very good knowledge of groups career to understand mostly.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jan

    fantastic reading

  9. 4 out of 5

    Cooper Renner

    I’m generally not a fan of oral,histories, but Esch has done a fine job weaving these interviews together—and where else could I have learned so much about Neu! and La Düsseldorf?

  10. 5 out of 5

    Stuart

    The Düsseldorf scene Covers 1970-1986 of the electronic music scene in Düsseldorf so Kraftwerk, Neu!, La Düsseldorf and Harmonia and then into the 80's with various New Wave, noise and Industrial bands. At first I was put off by the threading together of interviews rather than one narrative but after a time I liked it quite well. The Düsseldorf scene Covers 1970-1986 of the electronic music scene in Düsseldorf so Kraftwerk, Neu!, La Düsseldorf and Harmonia and then into the 80's with various New Wave, noise and Industrial bands. At first I was put off by the threading together of interviews rather than one narrative but after a time I liked it quite well.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    Some interesting interviews, although limited to a few bands. Sad to see what happened to the people in the book.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Eric Vincent

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ryan Liberty

  14. 4 out of 5

    Alejo

  15. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Anderson

  16. 4 out of 5

    Dave Lusby

  17. 5 out of 5

    Ricardo Talhas

  18. 5 out of 5

    Stephen Gow

  19. 4 out of 5

    gina

  20. 4 out of 5

    Paul Chester

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jon Allen

  22. 4 out of 5

    Warner

  23. 4 out of 5

    Ulf

  24. 4 out of 5

    LF

  25. 5 out of 5

    Tim

  26. 5 out of 5

    michael

  27. 5 out of 5

    Alejandro Elizondo

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jesse Weilburg

  29. 5 out of 5

    Spiceee

  30. 4 out of 5

    Amelia Halverson

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