80sObscurities presents: Keine Ahnung - 'Plastik'

Posted on 12/02/13

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80sObscurities presents: Keine Ahnung - 'Plastik'

This 80sObscurities was founded by DJ Rexx Arkana to showcase old, often unknown or forgotten acts and tracks from the decade when electronic music was truly the new wave. Rexx Arkana has been a club/radio DJ and promoter since the mid-80s and headlined festivals on several continents and currently holds a residency at DEFCON, NYC's current longest-running weekly scene party. He is also the founder and lyricist of Brudershaft and one half of harsh electro act FGFC820.

Today’s 80sObscurities selection is another critical cut from the Neue Deutsche Welle, or New German Wave. It’s an under-appreciated gem from the band known as Keine Ahnung, which in English translates roughly to "No Clue.” The name caused some commotion and confusion in their time, but it served as a tongue-in-cheek reference to the band’s common interest in exploring the exciting possibilities of electronic music at the time without any preconceived notions as to where their journey might lead them. In total, the band consisted of Rolf Schmuck, Franz Rodenkirchen, Olaf Schumacher, Elke Fuchs and, eventually, Hermann Kopp.

In 1983, they recorded their first self-titled album in just two days. Self-released in limited quantities, it quickly sold out and went out of print. Not surprisingly, those copies still circulating on Ebay and the like today tend to fetch top dollar from collectors. This record garnered the band recognition beyond German borders, attracting the attention of British label East West Trading Company, a subsidiary of Cherry Red Records. East West pressed a 12” reissue of today’s track, “Plastik”, which included versions of the lyrics in both their native language and in English. A second album, “Falsche Zeit Falscher Ort”, was recorded in 1985 and a third, “Europa”, three years later, but neither record was ever released, to the chagrin of the band’s fans.

The group dissolved quietly, only to later be resurrected by original member Rolf Schmuck as more or less a one man project that continues (in theory) to exist to this day. The last official material to emerge from Keine Ahnung, however, was 1995’s “Rekonstruction” album, a re-interpretation of the band’s debut packaged alongside a handful of new tracks. Guttural, unadulterated electronic experimentalism for you on this fine Tuesday morning, courtesy of 80sObs.

If you've got a favorite musical memory from the 80s that you'd like to share, email Rexx your requests at rexxarkana@gmail.com . Rexx Arkana's 80sObscurities previous playlists are also available on Facebook and YouTube.

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