From the YouTube Music Video Archives: Die Mensch Ma(s)chine by Kraftwerk

If you’re able to make it past the two-minute mark, I have a couple of questions for you. One, why is “Machine” sometimes spelled with an “s” before the the “c”? Why do those people clapping hands refuse to follow the (painfully simple) rythym of the electronic drum machine? Are they picking up on microrythms (or whatever it is they’re called) of the keyboards? Are they just high? Is it possible that Ralf, Henning, Fritz and Stefan don’t understand how creepy red, white and black shapes consisting of 90° angles is extremely creepy, especially as it accompanies German spoken before an audience of thousands, mesmerized into a state of trance? And what exactly does “über ding” mean?

These guys are getting old. Older than me. But if that isn’t enough Kraftwerk for you, here’s Elektro Kardiogramm:

So much more healthy.


  1. Maschine is the German spelling. However, when they start stacking the word diagonally with each repetition, they wouldn’t be able to do that with the s in there and still match the repetitions in the music.

    Or at least that’s one theory.

  2. Quin Finnegan says

    Thanks, Theocoid! I wish I knew more German. Which is to say *some* German. I recently finished all 15 and 1/2 hours of “Berlin Alexanderplatz” and hardly understood a single thing. Maybe knowing German would have helped.

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