Florian Schneider, Kraftwerk Co-Founder & Electronic Music Visionary, Dead at 73


Florian Schneider, the co-founder of Kraftwerk, died today. He was 73. The cause of his death is not yet known.

Schneider was a towering figure in electronic music. He was intimately involved in the genre from its nascent days in the 1960s through his departure from the iconic German group in November 2008. During his tenure in Kraftwerk, he was involved in the recording of ten albums that influenced hip-hop, electro, techno and countless other musical genres.

Before the pandemic, Kraftwerk was scheduled to embark on a summer tour of North America to commemorate the group’s 50th anniversary with a show including 3-D visuals. The tour was subsequently canceled.

Talking to legendary rock journalist Lester Bangs in a 1975 interview in Creem magazine, he explained to the scribe how they used technology to make music: “We don’t need a choir. We just turn this key, and there’s the choir.”

Kraftwerk Retrospective at MoMA Spawns Limited Edition Box Set

Tomorrow a retrospective paying homage to Kraftwerk and its 40-year career opens at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MoMA) in New York City. Tickets for the eight-day Kraftwerk–Retrospective 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 series at MoMA were impossible difficult to get, but fans of the pioneering German electronic group now have another chance to celebrate the outfit’s history with The Catalogue (Retrospective Edition), a limited edition version of the 2009 digital box set The Catalogue, released via Astralwerks on April 10. The collection retails for $159.95.

From the press release:

Originally released to celebrate the 35th anniversary of their landmark 1974 hit “Autobahn” and the long-awaited digitally remastered versions of their eight classic albums, the CD Boxset contains eight remastered CDs in ‘mini-vinyl’ card wallet packaging, plus individual large format booklets. However, this time, the set will come packaged in a black box and will be made available as an individually numbered, worldwide limited edition of 2,000 copies.

If you’re lucky enough to have a ticket for one of this week’s shows (we officially hate you, by the way), albums will be performed in chronological order: Autobahn (1974), Radio-Activity (1975), Trans Europe Express (1977), The Man-Machine (1978), Computer World (1981), Techno Pop (1986), The Mix (1991), and Tour de France (2003).