Keine Ahnung was a quartet from Wörth am Rhein, Germany formed in 1980. The original line up was Rolf Schmuck, Franz H. Rodenkirchen, Elke Fuchs and Olaf Schumacher. Hermann Kopp from Stuttgart, a friend of the band, contributed a composition on their first LP and became a full member in 1985. Taking cues from Conrad Schnitzler, Tuxedomoon and Dome, the band members shared a common interest in industrial, pop, avant garde literature and cinema.
Their controversial name translates to “Don’t know” or “Haven’t got a clue” in German.
The quartet would record three LPs in 6 years, two of which remain unreleased. In March 1983, Keine Ahnung recorded their self-produced and financed debut LP in two days in a small studio in Stuttgart (12 hours total). The mixing was done in one day in a studio in Karlsruhe, April 1983. The self-titled LP was released later that summer on their own PASSIV label in an edition of 1000 copies.
This record obtained recognition far beyond the German borders. Keine Ahnung in the studio and live were completely different. Studio time was expensive in these days, so the music was minimal electronic pop, expertly crafted and razor sharp man machine music.
The live sound utilized more complex synthesizers, tapes, guitars, metal percussion and custom built electronics. The beats and bass lines came from the Roland 606/303 duo triggering a KORG MS-20 for the bass drum. The track “Funkbild DPA” is a spontaneous “live in the studio” recording, that gives a hint of what the live sound was like. All four members would take turns singing and playing the instruments.
The original master tape was transferred by Frieder Butzmann in Berlin.
All songs have been remastered by George Horn at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley, CA. The vinyl is housed in an exact replica jacket designed by Rolf Schmuck, featuring black and white texture and cartoon drawings the band members. Each copy includes a double sided insert featuring lyrics, notes and photos of the band.
Plastik (C’est Chic)
Format: 12-inch Vinyl LP
Label: Dark Entries Records
Released: September 2017
Genre: Electronic / Wave / Post-Punk