Wolfgang Flür – Live Review – Leeds Brudenell Social Club
By Victoria Holdsworth & Russel Gaunt, May 2018
At the start of the evening there were quite a few teething problems over some sound issues. However, despite having many feedback problems, the opening act Xam Duo & Virginia Wing got the evening off to a great start with their synth-pop, free-jazz fusion. This was all part of creating some sort of artistic masterpiece, and had been put together to excite all the senses – it was almost like a musical art installation.
A confident performance from Peter Dugall, who hails from Hebden Bridge, followed. His set was filled with many different visuals, but the highlight for me was the song ‘Birmingham’, which features Propaganda’s very own Claudia Brucken, and Peter Hook of New Order and Joy Division.
It was abundantly clear from the crowd, that the opening acts had done their jobs, the plan had all come together, and they were revved up to the hilt and eager to see one of Deutschland’s very own fab four up close and personal. No, not one of the Beatles, but Kraftwerk. In what was almost a secret gig with seemingly little promotion, it doesn’t surprise me that it is a full house tonight – and everyone here is for one man.
Wolfgang Flür, is one of the original electronic music pioneers, and was the percussionist with Kraftwerk from 1974-1987, through what is considered to be their golden era.
“Lost in the moment”
The man of the hour has made it clear that the theme of the evening is Musik Soldat [Music Soldier], which is fairly apt considering the decades that he and his musical creations have persisted through. He kicks proceedings off with ‘It’s More Fun To Compute’, taken from the 1981 album, Computer World.
Tonight we were treated to some exclusive Kraftwerk visuals, as images of the crowd are beamed into the future (you had to be there to witness the magic!).
The atmospheric visuals continued throughout the set, and these stood out even more alongside ‘Pocket Calculator’ and ‘Neon Lights’, Kraftwerk masterpieces both.
Wolfgang then ramps it up to the next level, and rocks the crowd with his mixing, and his DJ set covers his solo work, featuring ‘Time Pie’ from the 1997 released Yamo album. The maestro’s latest release Eloquence shows that he still has more than one finger on the pulse of his generations, and this is even more evident as he starts clapping along with the crowd, getting completely lost in the moment, as he soaks up every drop of adulation from the bouncing sea of captivated faces in front of him.
Back to the business end of his set, and ‘Cover Girl’, which was a sequel to Kraftwerk’s number one hit ‘The Model’, was exceptional and set the room on fire. He then dons a Kaiser Wilhelm helmet and struts up and down the stage for his final piece, which is an anti-war statement. And just like that, the gig is over.
If he ever passes this way again, go see him. You will be treated to something very special.
Images: Russel Gaunt