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La Düsseldorf - La Düsseldorf CD (album) cover

LA DÜSSELDORF

La Düsseldorf

 

Krautrock

3.92 | 45 ratings

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Syzygy
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars 4.5 stars really. Following the demise of Neu! in 1975, Michael Rother opted for a solo career while Klaus Dinger formed La Dusseldorf with the two guest musicians - Thomas Dinger and Hans Lampe - who had appeared on side 2 of Neu! 75. This fine album was their debut, and it sees them picking up where Neu! left off.

The album opens with the lengthy title track. It starts with the sound of an aeroplane landing before the familiar motorik beat kicks in, with a simple guitar motif and a Kraftwerk like synth melody woven around it. The sound is at once familiar and new; the pulsing rhythm is pure Neu!, but the multi layered vocals and the melodic twists and turns are developments that had only been hinted at on Neu! 75. It's as though we're driving through Dusseldorf on an empty autobahn in a brand new Mercedes, with the neon lights gleaming in the darkness, and it's as catchy as Kraftwerk at their best. Where Neu! would have kept to the same achingly minimal groove for the duration of the piece, La Dusseldorf speed up, slow down, play around with the melody and generally sound like they're having huge amounts of fun. Dusseldorf, the second track, has something of the punky energy that was heard on Neu! 75's Hero. It opens with a chant by the local football supporters before leading into a raw, 2 chord trawl through the sleazy underbelly of the gleaming metropolis portrayed in the first track; ' And so many Daimlers/And so many gangsters'. Silver Cloud is an instrumental that has the kind of glacial beauty more usually associated with Dinger's former bandmate Michael Rother and which showcases his keyboard skills (Klaus Dinger played all the keyboards for La Dusseldorf, but for some reason they were credited to Nicholas Van Rhein). The closing track, Time, features more multi lingual lyrics and builds up slowly on pounding drums and fat organ chords to bring the album to a fitting climax.

La Dusseldorf effectively reconciles the 2 sides of Neu! 75 and adds several new ingredients to the recipe. It's a highly effective and enjoyable album with a smoother sound than might be expected. The pared down minimalism of Neu! has been updated and infused with some downright dirty rock guitar and joyful vocals, and for the most part it works out brilliantly. Not quite a masterpiece, but strongly recommended.

Syzygy | 4/5 |

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