Kraftwerk Roskilde Festival Orange Stage (Last show) July 2013

German precision, but little passion, from festival’s closing act

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Electronic pioneers Kraftwerk offered a 3D spectacle, but Roskilde’s decision to have them close the Orange Stage was nothing short of bizarre
Cyborgs in a computer world: The Kraftwerk quartet before a sea of festival goers clad in 3D glasses (Katrine Emilie Andersen/Scanpix)

July 7 at Roskilde Festival, Orange Stage

To say that electronic music pioneers Kraftwerk are a band whose influence on modern music has been tremendous would be a gross understatement. The German quartet have inspired acts such as Blondie, Joy Division and Depeche Mode in a 40-plus year career that has seen them carve a name for themselves in the annals of electronic music.  They had the honour and challenge of being the last act to grace the Orange Stage at Roskilde this year.

Kraftwerk stepped onto Orange for what would be an engaging two hours through some of their best known content. Cementing their unique form of musical artistry, their live show was aided by free 3D glasses that were worn by most of the 60,000 or so revellers who showed up for the festival’s final big show in a scene that resembled a cult gathering of anonymous cyborgs gathered before the four stage silhouettes of the Kraftwerk quartet. The show began in a modest manner as a series of robotic tracks performed in the backdrop of a bewildering 3D show that added a creative interactive element to the performance.

As things progressed and the sky turned dark, Kraftwerk stepped up their game and delved deeper into their repertoire of driven, repetitive tunes, all the while backed by 3D visuals that contained numerous references to European culture and history, such as the Cold War conflict. A welcome break to the generally monotonic drone of beat sequences and synthesiser stabs came in the form of a lengthy performance of their ‘Tour de France’ track, which was flanked by excellent visuals that highlighted the cultural symbolism of the annual cycling event.  Lighter, more ephemeral beat foundations ousted the heavy, structural patterns that punctuated the better part of the show. This was a short-lived occurrence, however, as the robotic, alienated structuralist beat patterns returned all too quickly. In fact, whilst the show did indeed play on the themes of human alienation through technology, it appeared that Kraftwerk themselves seemed too alienated from the audience during their performance.

A lack of footage of the musicians in action behind their instrument panels was partially to blame for what seemed to be an unfortunate lack of interaction between the artists of stage and the crowd. Similarly, Roskilde’s bizarre decision to choose Kraftwerk as their closing act must be queried. Having seen the likes of Coldplay and Björk do their bit in the past to leave Roskilde Festival attendees with an emotional overload of epic, memorable moments, It was something of a disappointment to leave the Orange Stage after a performance that left many in search of the essential elements expected of a closing act.

Roskilde Picks: Day 4

With a schedule full of acts, it can be difficult to make choices. Our music writers give you their picks for the must-see concerts of the festival’s final day.
Original article:
Although the energy may be running low by the last day, Roskilde fans always rally for a strong finish (Torkil Adsersen/Scanpix)
Although it is known as much for the camping, the partying and the “orange feeling”, believe it or not, for some people the Roskilde Festival is still all about the music.
With a full schedule across the festival’s seven stages, it can sometimes be hard to know when to go where. The Copenhagen Post offers our picks for each day’s best concerts, but any Roskilde veteran would caution against planning your schedule too carefully. Part of the beauty of the festival is stumbling across new acts and stepping outside of your musical comfort zones.
But if you are unfamiliar with some of the names on the schedule and want to know a little more, here are our picks for Sunday, the final day of the 2013 Roskilde Festival:
12:30, Odeon
Pick up your swords and shields, and get ready for Ensiferum! The folk-based quintet Ensiferum is as melodic as it is heavy. The Finns have always been known to produce some of the best melodic metal, and this folk/Viking metal outfit are no exception. Their songs are folksy in the most crucial of terms, get ready to dance and sing your hearts out with these patrons of Viking lore.  Michalis Nielsen
Dub step's reluctant poster boy delivered a memorable Roskilde performance in 2011Dub step’s reluctant poster boy delivered a memorable Roskilde performance in 2011

James Blake

14:30, Orange
The dub-step producer made a name for himself as he sauntered off the beaten track jigsawing together an eclectic blend of sombre dub-step, electro and Thom Yorke-inspired elements in the mid-‘00s, leading to his place as the poster boy for dub-step’s new generation. Although Blake is hardly comfortable in the limelight, he has perhaps unknowingly matured into one of the figureheads of the current renaissance of electronic music alongside the likes of Nicolas Jaar, Jamie Woon and Four Tet. His status has only gained greater momentum following the release of his new album Overgrown (2013), which further blurs the boundaries between dubstep and electronica further with light piano loops, gospel-folk choir sections and emotionally taxing lyrical themes. Daniel van der Noon
Azealia Banks is one of the hottest things in rap todayAzealia Banks is one of the hottest things in rap today

Azealia Banks

16:00, Cosmopol
Promoting herself through the internet, this Harlem rapper was discovered at the age of 17. The now only 22-year-old has just one way ahead of her: success and fame. She is best known for her coarse and unpolished language on tracks like ‘212’ from 2011. Azealia Banks claimed the third spot in BBC’s ‘Sound of 2012’ and released the album Broke With Expensive Taste in April, making her name smoking hot, especially for the hip-hop happy festival guests. Sigrid Neergaard
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
16:45, Orange
The San Francisco garage band have distinguished themselves from their contemporaries with an edgy style of neo-psychedelia. Taking inspiration from the likes of The Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine, and The Stone Roses, the trio pride themselves on an equal balance of long, drawn out distorted instrumental sections, thoroughbred rock ‘n’ roll lyrics and a nostalgic New York Dolls goth image. Daniel van der Noon
They may call themselves Queens, but they are the kings of coolThey may call themselves Queens, but they are the kings of cool

Queens of the Stone Age

19:00, Orange
Even before the release of the band’s sixth album, … Like Clockwork, in June, this was one of the most promising picks of the 2013 Roskilde Festival. But with a month for an album that is arguably the band’s best since 2002’s Songs for the Deaf to grow on fans, the anticipation for this show has been upped substantially. With consomate cool dude Josh Homme at the forefront, QOTSA will be looking to put a strong end to the Orange Stage’s rock offerings for this year. Teamed up with the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club show before it, the festival’s main stage is going to be rocker paradise on the last day. One can only hope that when we hear ‘My God is the Sun’, we are actually bathed in the sunlight that was promised but has been slow to come. Justin Cremer
If a concert comes with 3D glasses, it's got to be a memorable performance, right?If a concert comes with 3D glasses, it’s got to be a memorable performance, right?


22:00, Orange

Kraftwerk first started making music in the 70s, and the Germans are considered to be one of the most influential musicians in modern music, with an impact on the global scene that is close to that of The Beatles. Musicians the world over have been inspired by Kraftwerk’s music, style and image, which has garnered praise from the likes of Depeche Mode, Afrika Bambataa and even David Bowie. Featuring a highly revered 3-D show, Kraftwerk are more of an experience than a band. Roskilde’s decision to slot them as the final act on the Orange Stage will surely leave many revelers with a positive aftertaste of the festival that will help tide them over until next year. Allan Mutuku-Kortbæk

Dubioza Kolektiv
24:00, Arena
Dubioza Kolektiv are a band of crazy Bosnians known for their energetic amalgamation of Balkan rhythms, reggae, rock and dub. Their musical backdrop is brassy and euphoric, yet their lyrics contain political undertones of anti-nationalism, making them spokespeople for unity and peace in the Balkans. They will be performing their Balkan frenzy at this year’s final party. Catch them at the large Arena stage alongside Californian ska-champs Voodoo Glow Skulls.  Michalis Nielsen