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The Man Machine

Kraftwerk

1978

The Man Machine
Album Summary

The Man-Machine (German: Die Mensch-Maschine) is the seventh studio album by German electronic music band Kraftwerk. It was released on 19 May 1978 by Kling Klang in Germany and by Capitol Records elsewhere. A further refinement of their mechanical style, the album saw the group incorporate more danceable rhythms. It includes the singles "The Model" and "The Robots". Although the album was initially unsuccessful on the UK Albums Chart, it reached a new peak position of number nine in February 1982, becoming the band's second highest-peaking album in the United Kingdom after Autobahn (1974).

Wikipedia

Rating

3.34

Votes

11295
Genres
Electronica

Reviews

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Sat Aug 28 2021
5

The way they take bleeps and bloops and infuse them with warmth and emotion is something else. Neon Lights is one of the most beautiful pieces of music.

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Tue Apr 12 2022
5

Music made by men pretending to be robots for people who are pretending not to be robots. Overall my favourite Kraftwerk album

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Fri Dec 04 2020
3

It must have been wild to discover this album in 1978 - a bunch of German weirdos singing in robot voices about space lasers. Still listenable today. Best track: The Model

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Wed Feb 10 2021
5

Great album. Still sounds surprisingly fresh and modern, highlighting how far ahead of their time kraftwerk were at the time of release.

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Thu May 06 2021
4

When this first appeared it must have sounded like the most mental thing ever. The meticulous technical effort seems normal now, but still feels exciting.

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Wed Mar 10 2021
5

Love. This one is genuinely life changing for music.

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Sun Aug 29 2021
4

I, for one, welcome our robotic overlords. Best Tracks: The Robots; Metropolis; The Model

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Mon Sep 06 2021
3

Kraftwerk = les Daft punk du pauvre mais vous savez comme moi qu'il serait idiot de m'étaler sur cet album sans évoquer les événements récents. Comme vous le savez, la rivalité entre mon compagnon d'écoute elchavez et moi dépasse très largement le cadre de la musique. Celle-ci a connu un point de non-retour il y a quelques semaines. Vous savez probablement que je prends depuis plusieurs années un malin plaisir à sortir avec les conquêtes dudit elchavez. Le but poursuivi est le suivant : le mettre hors d'état de nuire. Alors que je rentrais justement d'un bar du centre-ville en compagnie de l'une de ses anciennes fréquentations, nous nous assîmes soudain sur les marches de la Poste Meriadeck. Cette dernière déclara d'une voix blafarde : "Robcremière, je dois t'avouer quelque chose : j'adore les Crusaders ainsi que Hugh Masekela." Pas besoin d'en rajouter, nos langues s'entremêlaient bientôt dans un tourbillon inarrêtable. Après une vingtaine de minutes, celle-ci m'annonça soudain : "Robcremière, tu embrasses beaucoup mieux qu'elchavez. De plus, ta connaissance de la musique lui est nettement supérieure." J'acquiesçai brièvement et nous nous galochâmes ensuite avec encore plus de vigueur. Dans le même temps, on pouvait entendre les encouragements de certains passants : "Bien fait pour elchavez !", "Il l'a bien mérité !", "À mort elchavez, l'homme qui ne donne jamais plus de 4 !", etc... Le lendemain, j'envoyai une lettre recommandée à ce dernier dans laquelle je lui exposais les faits dans leur intégralité. Une bataille de plus remportée par Robcremière.

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Thu Jan 21 2021
5

Amazing. I can hear all of New Wave and Techno in their trailblazing synthesisers.

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Thu Mar 25 2021
5

More pop-oriented than any of their previous work, the sound of The Man-Machine -- in particular among Kraftwerk's oeuvre -- had a tremendous impact on the cold, robotic synth pop of artists like Gary Numan, as well as Britain's later new romantic movement.

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Wed Oct 13 2021
5

It hurts my head to imagine how alien this must have sounded in 1978. Like Arnie turning up naked and nicking a motorcycle, it must have been like the future had arrived.

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Mon Jan 17 2022
5

An excellent album, which still sounds like the future, despite being released over 40 years ago. Standout track is Neon Lights - it’s almost-waltz like time signature somehow only serves to make it sound even more futuristic. Everyone should own this album.

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Fri May 21 2021
4

Very unique. It blows my mind that such a refined and crisp electronic, synthy sound was possible in 1978.

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Tue Jul 06 2021
2

"She's a model and she's looking good. I'd like to take her home it's understood". SMSLGIL2THHIU. That's the new password for this group. Memorize it.

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Thu Apr 15 2021
2

Another album where I appreciate the historical value. A lot of the songs I appreciate, but the repetitive nature of it does get on my nerves after a little while. Little no variation in the lyrics (mostly the title of the song on repeat.) Perhaps it speaks more of my modern failing attention span, an ailment of the 21st century. It really struggles to hold my interest. Not something I would listen to on my own I don't think. It's nice to have given it a proper listen so I understand the historical context of electronic music a bit better.

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Mon Nov 23 2020
5

a la Tron Legacy electro-techno

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Thu Oct 01 2020
5

Connor: I loved this album! It's catchy, danceable, and yet certain songs - especially The Model - seem to have a dark, cold undercurrent that make me feel lonely

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Tue Feb 15 2022
5

OH YESSSS it's a wall to wall banger situation :) I love this album. It is so interesting, unusual, influential, beautiful, relaxing yet exciting, experimental, German, sexy, somehow still futuristic even though it's already very old! The model is a TUNE and it's one I often whip out on an open mic night with guitar cajon and vocals haha! I recently used The Robots in a school assembly (I'm a teacher) and can confirm the kids of today LOVE it, not a soul was sitting still. I love that it's not loads of songs! I just wonder what the price was when they released it in 1978 when people couldn't stream online, did they account for the short length by making it cheaper? I'm actually in love with Neon Lights. It's put me in a great mood despite a stressful day at work, that's a marker for 5 star perfection in my book.

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Mon Jan 15 2024
5

A classic which basically started electronic music. It sounds so futuristic and so hard to believe it’s from 1978

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Tue Jan 16 2024
5

Jaa, Kraftwerk. Die wahren Elektropioniere. Natürlich habe ich mir das bahnbrechende Album im deutschen Original angehört. Und daher gibt es auch einen deutschen Komentar. Großartig.

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Sun Jan 31 2021
3

Exceptionally weird. Exceptionally cool.

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Wed Aug 30 2023
3

It’s ok, a little outdated but I can tell that it was groundbreaking at the time Fav song: the man-machine

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Mon Sep 06 2021
2

Les sonorités de cet album me sont apparues fort désagréables. Où sont passés la rigueur et le pragmatisme allemand au moment de concevoir ce navet de musique electronique? Je me souviens d'un temps où les studios allemands étaient un exemple d'organisation, les micros étant bien alignés, les tables de mix en ordre de marche, on ne décelait aucun bruit parasite, seule la voix de l'ingénieur son rythmant ce balais de production sonore. Ce temps semble désormais bien loin, il serait bon de redonner à l'Allemagne sa gloire d'antan.

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Tue May 23 2023
1

Was waiting for it to finish from the first track

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Wed Jul 14 2021
5

"Die Mensch-Maschine": a perfect distillation of the record. So much of the future is in these songs, especially the future of electronic music. Yet there's physicality, even humanity, in every beat. It's the soundtrack of a cyberpunk world we never got. That might be good, of course: The music is more challenging than the titular phrase, and that lost future has problems we moderns don't have to face. Practically, moving to these rhythms works, but feels less than freeing. For other electronic music, that might be a flaw. Here, though, it feels like The Point.

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Thu Oct 01 2020
5

Classic album that flows seamlessly. Robots love it!

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Wed Jan 27 2021
5

Surprisingly good. I’m a new fan!

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Mon Feb 01 2021
5

Really unique and cool use of synthesizers for it's age

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Fri Apr 23 2021
5

TITÁNICO, GIGANTE, TRASCENDETAL, FUTURISTA.

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Wed Apr 21 2021
5

One of my all time favorites.

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Fri May 07 2021
5

I can hear where Daft punk and a lot of other electronic artists were influenced by these dudes.

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Thu Jun 10 2021
5

Delightful synth with the origins of dance music felt. Even though a little repetitive, never felt to be irritating.

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Thu Jun 17 2021
5

Innovative and paved the way for electronic music.

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Thu Jun 17 2021
5

1978. 6 songs, most over 5 minutes. It's a very even and smooth album. Obviously a bit groundbreaking and influential for the time. The Model has lyrics. I consider this to be an essential album, but not sure how often I would put this on.

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Fri Jul 23 2021
5

Great album. I really liked it.

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Sun Aug 22 2021
5

Really loved this synth pop pre new wave album. Got me moving with a driving rhythm and great electronic beats.

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Wed Sep 22 2021
5

The title track is the best Kraftwerk song hands down. Classic/10

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Sat Oct 02 2021
5

This is a great album, perfect from front to back. I love all of Kraftwerk’s albums, but this one is to my mind a perfectly executed album, probably the best introduction to the band for a new listener. The songs flow beautifully into each other and tonally they all work well together. It’s such a smooth listen. Half these songs clock in over 6 minutes and you don't even feel it really. There isn’t a bad song here as far as I’m concerned. I also feel like over time this album has really aged well. Back then, it was highly futuristic. Now it’s simply a classic, a necessary touchpoint for anyone with an interest in electronic music. The compositions are tight, crisp, melodic and spare. The vocals are limited, either sung directly by Ralf Hütter, or vocalizations processed through machines. I know not everyone is a fan of the songs with vocals, but I happen to like them a lot and I think they’re central to the whole “Man Machine” concept in Kraftwerk’s music. When you hear a song like “The Model” or “Neon Lights,” it’s Hütter’s vocals that provide that surprising warmth and pathos. Without it, all you have is the machine. It’s an idea both in music and in life that’s still pretty timely when you think about it. Fave Songs: Neon Lights (it’s so very good, possibly their best song ever), The Robots, The Model. I mean really, all of them.

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Wed Oct 13 2021
5

Now this is an album that I think would really pique the interest of both Jude and Iris Law. 🍤 Pretty revolutionary, wasn't it? The past masters of the future. Haunting and echoing, the album glides effortlessly into the future that has now long since arrived. Yeah Again, Thomas Tuchel would be tops off on the u bahn with a traffic cone up his ass. Speaking of The Man Machine... and cones up the ass, I wonder when SHACK will ever do a review again.

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Thu Oct 28 2021
5

Classique. L'un des meilleurs albums d'électro

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Thu Nov 04 2021
5

Never realized how much of a foundation Kraftwerk laid for electronic music and robot pop.

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Sat Nov 13 2021
5

Very cool. They made a splash with their electronics in the late 70s! Many are influenced by Kraftwerk and don't even know it! Definitely a cool listen. I may revisit a few tracks for some of my electronic playlists. Rating 5 for importance to modern Electronica!

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Mon Nov 15 2021
5

не ну это ш крафтверк, чо тут можно ваще говорить, давно уже всё сказано

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Mon Nov 15 2021
5

I love zeez goddamn krazy Germans and zere krafty trailblazing of genrez various. Amazingly accessible avant garde krauty goodness, totally futuristic, forward thinking, look into the krystal ball, pioneering goodness. YA

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Mon Dec 06 2021
5

This one is a real jam. And trailblazer

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Sat Dec 18 2021
5

Drugi kraftwerkowy material na liscie, tym razem najbardziej popularny albumik, wiec the man machine z 78, bedacy siodmym studyjnym nagraniem w dorobku bandy, jak to w przypadku elektroniki tworzonej przy pomocy poteznych synthow czlowiek nie wie jakie dzwieki go atakauja, tak w tym wypadku atak byl tak minimalistyczny, ze wrecz nieodczuwalny, nie jest to brzmienie krautowe jak w poprzednim autobahnie, a cos bardziej konwencjonalnego w normach synthowego popu, bo jest to material popowy, co wlasnie kupilo mnie o wiele bardziej niz eksperymentalna autostrada, popowe brzmienie elektro polaczone z luznym konceptem, ktory jednym slowem mozna podsumowac jako futuryzm, tworzy dobre kombo, material niby z lat 70, a sluchajac mam wrazenie, ze znam te brzmienia z vaporowowych trakow, wiec juz wiadomo czym tworcy tego renesansowego zrywu artystycznego sie mogli inspirowac, kolejna sprawa sa wykorzystane wokale, w wiekszej czesci sa one mocno przepuszczone przez modulatory w celu uzyskania brzmienia pokroju mister robato arigato, ale na najbardziej popowym utworze plyty, otwierajacego druga strone the model, utrzymanej w sarkastycznym tonie historii pieknej kobiety i jej roli we wspolczesnym spoleczenstwie, nie mozna sie przyczepic do jakosci anglinskich wojsow, a przeciez banda niemiecka i sa nawet wersje dojczowe, ktorych nie sprawdzalem, bo angielskie brzmia na tyle dobrze, ze nie widze sensu szukac czegos lepszego, jak zazwyczaj ciezko mi sie slucha elektronicznych pickow, tak the man machine skatowalem juz chyba z piec razy, bo samo nagranie ma 36 minut i zawiera 6 dosc rowno podzielonych czasowo trakow, na plejke rokowa leci the model, ktory ma w sobie cos co kojarzy mi sie z tworczoscia residentow, a na guti szitowa otwierajacy the robots, ale rowno dobrze moglby to byc kazdy inny utwor, bo plyta jest rowna i ciezko znalezc momenty nudne badz niepotrzebne, calosc wiec laduje w biblioteczce spotifajowej zasluzonych krazkow

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Thu Dec 23 2021
5

Can't believe it took me this long to listen to Kraftwerk. Absolutely timeless. Their influence can be heard everywhere. Will probably add a few songs from this album to my running playlist.

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Tue Jan 11 2022
5

MUSKAT NUSS HERR MULLER Prefs: TOUT Moins pref: NADA

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Tue Jan 18 2022
5

Ett banbrytande album. som the wall utan alla tråkiga gitarrer och bögig sång

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Thu Jan 20 2022
5

Stan Kraftwerk. Kraftwerk RULES. I could hear and FEEL the neon lights in "Neonlicht". Ultra beautiful, slick, and futuristic, even 43 years later!!!

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Tue Jan 25 2022
5

There's nothing else to say but *chef's kiss*.

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Mon Jan 31 2022
5

Still sounds like music from another world. My art teacher used to play this over & over at school. I was rubbish at art but it was great to hear this. The Model hasn’t aged, stunning. Neon Lights is something else, warm & emotional. Absolutely ridiculous this is over 40 years old. I’m reading Carl Cox’s autobiography and he dedicates a whole chapter to Kraftwerk. It’s wondrous, magical music. It makes you feel different to any other music, unique in that way.

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Wed Feb 16 2022
5

Another future classic from the 70s. Silky smooth electronica for the autopeople.

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Fri Feb 18 2022
5

What is there left to say about this stunningly influential album?

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Mon Mar 21 2022
5

It took a few listens to feel the vibe again, but certainly when switching to the German version I could confirm this is still a great album.

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Sat Mar 26 2022
5

The Man Machine is just an incredible synth-pop record. It sounds so energetic, creative, ahead of it's time, and each track has a unique contribution to the whole experience. One of my favorite ways to start the day is with a double espresso, waiting for the caffeine to kick in, and getting hours of work done with this piece of brilliance. 5/5.

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Tue Apr 19 2022
5

Gateway drug for Kraftwerk was Africa Bambata, then "Breaking" (the scene where Shrimp dances with a broom, scored to "Tour de France". Nice thing about coming late to the party is that there is so much waiting to be discovered...

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Fri May 13 2022
5

Nothing more to be said other than five stars. My favourite Kraftwerk album.

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Thu May 19 2022
5

Weird early German techno. Oddly fascinating. I listened to Trans-Europe Express and Computer Love after this. It was good rabbit hole to fall into.

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Wed Jun 01 2022
5

Mm- Human music! June 11/ 2022

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Sat Jun 04 2022
5

This is probably my favorite Kraftwerk album, even though it is their most accessible. I just love the simplicity of every song, but somehow it's some of the most enjoyable synthpop I know.

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Tue Jun 21 2022
5

So... you don´t have to say anything about Kraftwerk. But I suggest listen to the german version. Don´t mind the lyrics. They are not important. But I think in the original version they even sound better

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Wed Jun 29 2022
5

Brilliant. Innovative. This one set the stage for the 80s synthpop scene. One of chillest albums ever made. Masterpiece. 9-10/10

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Mon Jul 04 2022
5

One of the best electronic albums of all time

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Fri Jul 08 2022
5

I can't give Kraftwerk anything less than 5 stars for their pioneering contributions to the evolution of electronic music (and music in general). This album seems to have the least amount of overarching concept of the albums in their prime, and is more of a collection of songs - but it definitely has some of their most memorable and catchiest singles. This is where they went from being showroom dummies to full fledged robots, with more danceable rhythms. I like this album because Ralf and Florian finally let Karl Bartos in on the songwriting and rather than too many cooks making it too busy, it actually made them tighten things up and refine their formula. A well oiled machine.

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Fri Jul 08 2022
5

Charming to the last! In concept it seems like this would come off as a more scathing critique of modern life, but the melodies are so alluring, bright and catchy. It's like the robots have realized the true meaning of happiness.

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Mon Jul 11 2022
5

Pioneering high fidelity electronic.

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Sun Aug 21 2022
5

This one is a masterpiece - early minimalistic, electronic music with great hooks and rhythm. The Model is perhaps Kraftwerk's most famous song. The Robots has great rhythm and makes for a fantastic opener. And Neon Lights is just beautiful. There is not a weak track to be found. I somewhat prefer the album's German version, but the is a must-hear in any language; certainly one of Kraftwerk's best. 4.5/5

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Wed Aug 24 2022
5

The future has never sounded so interesting, fun, melodic and hypnotic. And ironically, you have to dig way into the past to find a version of it that can fuel your imagination like no other electronic record out there. Maybe because this very album is one of the first to fully go to that direction and never turn back. Beginnings have rarely sounded any better, frankly. Besides, everyone said it, but I'm gonna repeat it now: the influence Kraftwerk had on modern music wasn't circumscribed on this particular electronic genre. The band also gave ideas had to a vast array of other styles, from post-punk to hip hop. But even if you don't give a damn about all that, this particular album stands on its own. Because this here is Kraftwerk's true masterpiece. Earworms after earworms, *The Man Machine* takes you into Metropolis' world, both dystopian and utopian, so cold and robotic, and yet so frail and so human, in a way. Beyond the mechanical rhythms, there's a lot of subtle emotions to be found in those tracks. It's a lesson that the best electronic acts learned from this album. And it's one they should never forget. Number of albums left to review or just listen to: 821 Number of albums from the list I find relevant enough to be mandatory: 97 (including this one) Albums from the list I *might* include in mine later on: 45 Albums from the list I will certainly *not* include in mine (many others are more important): 39

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Fri Aug 26 2022
5

Huge favorite. Used to listen to this one in its entirety with my family. Makes me feel nostalgic, and it’s also incredibly influential.

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Thu Sep 22 2022
5

It's a tough call, but if I were forced to decide, I think this is the pinnacle of Kraftwerk's discography. Despite the digital precision of their instruments, the sounds across these tracks flow smoothly, like a masterfully hewn marble sculpture. And with that work done, the groundwork was laid for numerous groups and genres to come. Groups like Daft Punk and The Orb and genres like ambient, house, and synthwave built upon that ground bringing EDM on the whole solidly into the mainstream. Now the use of computers are ubiquitous in all aspects of making music, so much so that working without them is the exception as opposed to the norm. In that sense, groups like Kraftwerk were pioneering multiple levels and their influence can hardly be overstated.

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Wed Oct 05 2022
5

I can't believe I have never listened to this. Fantastic!

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Wed Oct 05 2022
5

I’m quite unfamiliar with Kraftwerk. My only knowledge really is that every now and then Rachael will just shout “Rah rah rah at the autobahn” at me. That song isn’t on this album, but I’m interested to hear it nonetheless. Songs I already knew: none Favourites after listening: The Robots, Neon Lights I had completely wrong expectations of what Kraftwerk were. For some reason, I always thought they were retro goth rock and I couldn’t have been more wrong - they feel more like they could have been the musical parents of Daft Punk. Each song on this had me tapping my foot away. This might sound a little oxymoronic, but it sounds futuristic in a retro kind of way. Like a soundscape to getting abducted by aliens in a film where they used puppets. I’d definitely recommend to people who enjoy pop and EDM. Maybe less so for goths, but then again it is a pretty great album all round so who knows?

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Fri Oct 14 2022
5

30 seconds into The Robots and I started dancing involuntarily... moving my head around etc. please god let me hear this at the club before i die this absolutely bangs. can't wait to listen to kraftwerk's entire discography.

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Sun Oct 23 2022
5

Even without the context as electronic music trailblazers, this is a great album. Mechanical computer blips and bloops come together to create a very melodic, atmospheric and strangely beautiful and emotive record. Rating: 4.5/5 Playlist track: The Model Date listened: 21/10/22

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Tue Oct 25 2022
5

It might be easy to dismiss this as plinky plonky scifi-ish synth, but it's actually really bloody great. The music has structure and texture. It creates an image, it sets a mood. Sure, it's not Kraftwerk's first stuff, and it expands upon, rather than creates electronica as a genre - but it is cohesive, skilful and really appealing to listen to. Try listening to The Robots on headphones while walking. It's almost impossible not to fall into step with the beat. Great stuff.

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Mon Oct 31 2022
5

In a past life, I would be a Kraftwerk diehard, I think.

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Mon Nov 07 2022
5

Still sounds new 40something years later

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