April 11, 2012
California table wine
Natural fruit flavors
The label read “Chateau Diana—Pinot Grigio California”, but it didn’t smell and taste like wine at all. V2 Schneider had to spit it out back into his glass. A bad aftertaste remained.
To get rid of it, he walked down Grand Street deeper into Chinatown to find fresh deep-sea scallops. But what he brought back was much more:
2 lbs. of scallops
3 bottles of Arneis
5 cloves of garlic
3 cloves of ginger
4 kasha knishes
1 bundle of coriander
2 bundles of red hot chili peppers
1 loaf of bread
1 bottle of olive oil extra vergine d.o.c.
1 package of sea salt
3 packages of DeCecco penne rigate no. 41
3 packages of DeCecco spaghetti no. 12
18 cans of Stella Artois
Later that afternoon, Schneider finally received the text message he’d been waiting for: confirmation of his accreditation for Kraftwerk’s second show, Radioactivity. The procedure was ridiculous, to say the least: He had to arrive two hours in advance at the MoMA restaurant to sweet-talk the PR representatives and small-talk various assorted gonzo journalists going through that same procedure, all the while filling up on Japanese/Portuguese/Italian/Korean fusion fingerfood and warm white Chilean wine. From there he had to pass the photo ID counter, get fingerprinted and sign a form stating that he wouldn’t tell anybody anything he’d see or hear backstage. He was then escorted by a middle-aged woman wearing a deep-blue Moschino skirt, elegant black Prada shoes and a matching Costume National jacket to the atrium in the second floor of the MoMA—now familiar to Schneider—to attend the concert.
Like the day before, Kraftwerk opened up with a powerful version of ‘Robots’. Hearing it live for the second time, Schneider began to understand the patterns and the grids that formed the foundation of the band’s musical architecture. Ralf Hütter and the new members Henning Schmitz, Fritz Hilpert and Stefan Pfaffe upgrade and update the music they revisit in the very moment they perform it. For example, Schneider noticed that Hütter always played the melodies from his console with a minimal delay, thus creating a brilliantly laid back narrative guide and, like every exceptional band leader, confidently relying on his uniformed sidemen to keep things unwaveringly steady. Instead of playing instrumental solos, the four musicians tweaked and positioned the individual sounds in the sonic spectrum with a wide variety of dubby delays, reverbs and filters. Scheider realized, that listening to Kraftwerk live challenged his listening habits. Unlike in jazz or rock, the improvisation had very little to do with soloing and everything to do with the abstract space of three-dimensional sound. He asked himself: Were Kraftwerk offering a vision of the future—again? Will 2012 be the birthyear of widespread non-linear listening habits?
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Durch stetigen Zerfall
Entstehen radioaktive Strahlen aus dem Urankristall