Kraftwerk - Radio-Activity (Vinyl) Spezial Coloured Edition

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Radio-Activity (German title: Radio-Aktivität) is the fifth studio album by German electronic band Kraftwerk, released in October 1975. The band's first entirely electronic album, it is a concept album organized around the themes of radioactive decay and radio communication.

The album was accompanied by a single release of the title track, which was successful in France. To cater to the band's international audience[citation needed], all releases of the album were bilingual, with lyrics in both English and German.

The hyphenated album title displays Kraftwerk's typical deadpan humour, being a pun on the twin themes of the songs, half being about radioactivity and the other half about activity on the radio. More word plays are evident in the track listing: "Radio Stars", which as a title could refer to pop stars, but upon listening is revealed to be about quasars and pulsars.

This was the first Kraftwerk album to be entirely self-produced by Ralf Hütter and Schneider in their Kling Klang studio, and the first one to be performed by the "classic" Hütter, Florian Schneider, Karl Bartos and Wolfgang Flür line-up. All the music was written by Hütter and Schneider, with Emil Schult collaborating on lyrics. Schult also designed the artwork – a modified illustration of a late-1930s 'Deutscher Kleinempfänger' radio.

It was the first Kraftwerk album to feature use of the distinctive Vako Orchestron keyboard (choir, string and organ sounds), which the group had purchased on their recent US Autobahn tour and the Moog Micromoog which was used extensively on this album. Notably, it provided the harsh sounds on the track "Antenna". The band's custom-built electronic percussion also featured heavily in the sound, and extensive use was made of the vocoder. The usual synthesizers were present (including Minimoog and ARP Odyssey), and Hütter's Farfisa electronic piano made a return on "Transistor". For the first time the group did not use flute, violin or guitars.


First off, Radio Activity Seems as a very very hard album to grasp and digest in moments, at first I had no real clue on how to rate it.. But it seems to me, this album comes of as one of my favourites so far, surely some tracks seem strangely balanced in the middle, the electronic nodding is everywhere with radio signals deep based mumbling, on tracks that at first glance seem really off balance such as Intermission News and Radio stars but on another level this album comes of as the perfect bridge between two sides of Kraftwerk, we have the awkwardly balanced exploring tones, of the songs above mentioned above, which in some senses hawk back to the strange, yet fascinating offbeat adventures of the first album, and we also have the perfectly arranged sythnpop swingers, that sway along in perfect melodic manner with the twist beat driven Airwaves, being the ultimate highlight, we have other mildly swinging circling swayers along with the ride that mixes the albums two approaches at the same time, especially, and most perfectly reached on the marvellous Radio Land that rises sways and overleaps many stages, while still staying in the groove
To me this album seems, although its in places very very odd, the most diverse, album that kraftwerk has put out so far, and there for, even how strange this will sound, its the off balanced tracks together with the more melodic ones that really makes this album a perfectly balanced one in the end. as it turns out having a bit of everything in it.

Even the smallest things, such as the electronic pick around count in off greiger counter that opens the album, or the robotic messages of The Voice of Energy and Uranium with its underlying swaying fascinate to great extent at the right places´.
and open up and frame in, the, longer more melodic pieces such as _transistor_ & Antenna_ And the sombre clever neatly swinging melodic _Ohm Sweet ohm_, that picks up in tempo and overrides in fascination and flow on various levels.
Antenna is the perfect space boogie groove, that is another essential highlight of the record that wins because of its steady delivery and neat beat, combined with the spaced out sounds that surround it.

Man Machine may be the groups undeniable classic, but Radio Activity, successfully manages to capture more things on more levels, where else , man machine, despite all its brilliance on the majority off tracks, still in places turn out a bit stiff.

Radio Activity may be a stranger composed album, but it does always have a move that flows throughout the album on every level there is, on every wave length, thus the strange under or slightly over 1 minute sound odysseys, never really draws the album down in the dirt.
At first glance one might think they do, but when it really comes to the fascination these short, yet awkward parts, work as the perfect interludes to the more structured songs, meaning that they open up the album more, in terms of diversity, and flow, even though some of the track might seem to lack flow, this is certainly not the case.


By: JanFreidrich




A1 Geiger Counter 1:07
A2 Radioactivity 6:42
A3 Radioland 5:52
A4 Airwaves 4:40
A5 Intermission 0:39
A6 News 1:17
B1 The Voice Of Energy 0:55
B2 Antenna 3:42
B3 Radio Stars 3:34
B4 Uranium 1:27
B5 Transistor 2:14
B6 Ohm Sweet Ohm 5:38




 

Artwork – Emil Schult
Artwork [Kling Klang Original Artwork - Reconstruction] – Johann Zambryski, Ralf Hütter
Concept By, Producer – Florian Schneider, Ralf Hütter
Electronic Drums – Karl Bartos, Wolfgang Flür
Mixed By – Walter Quintus
Music By – Schneider*, Hütter*
Photography By – Robert Franck
Recorded By – Peter Bollig
Voice, Synthesizer, Keyboards [Orchestron], Drum Programming [Drum Machine], Electronics – Ralf Hütter
Voice, Vocoder, Vocoder [Votrax], Synthesizer, Electronics – Florian Schneider
Words By – Schult*, Schneider*, Hütter*


Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Limited Edition, Reissue, Remastered, Repress, Special Edition, Stereo, Yellow Translucent, 180g