Listening Log – [Pt. IV]- Kraftwerk- Spacelab (1978) from the album ‘die Mensch maschine’.

Kraftwerk- Spacelab


Kraftwerk- Spacelab (1978) from the album ‘die Mensch maschine’.

Listening Log – [Pt. IV]- Kraftwerk- Spacelab. (1978) from the album ‘die Mensch maschine’. Throughout March- April 2020 Listened (download) to digital audio CD box set 2009: ‘The Man Machine. Remastered Edition’. (2009) On: EMI. Performer: Kraftwerk.

Another pop song which uses the whole-tone scale is Kraftwerk’s Spacelab. Spacelab opens with a repeated whole-tone series, played on a synth sound, oscillating over and over again until it becomes just a resonating pulse. After the intro the keyboard plays long held notes and chords which eventually reverts into another oscillating monophonic melody line. At this point a drum machine is added. After the first harmonic progression returns a new melody line enters on a ‘theremin’ sounding keyboard. A spoken word vocoder is heard. After this mini climax we get a breakdown where the rhythm drops out and we only hear chords. Eventually both the beats and the pulse come back in and there’s another build until the vocoder line returns. These sections are then repeated several times over. Here is a good example of how the whole tone scale has been used by an electronic band to create an otherworldly atmosphere in one of their tracks, thus creating a piece of classic electronic pop music which has reached a near legendary status within the genre.

Kraftwerk- Spacelab
From the album die Mensch maschine from 1978.
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