Autobahn

~ Release group by Kraftwerk

Album

ReleaseFormatTracksCountry/DateLabelCatalog#Barcode
Official
Autobahn12" Vinyl5
Philips6305 231 D
Autobahn12" Vinyl5
Philips6305 231 B[none]
Autobahn12" Vinyl5
Philips9294 806[none]
Autobahn12" Vinyl5
Vertigo (British rock label)6360 620[none]
Autobahn12" Vinyl5
Vertigo (British rock label)6360 620[none]
Autobahn12" Vinyl5
Vertigo (British rock label)VEL-2003[none]
Autobahn12" Vinyl5
Mercury Records (or just “Mercury”. A UMG imprint, do not use it for ©/℗ credits)SRM-1-3704
Autobahn (made in West Germany)CD5
EMI Electrola GmbH (not for release label use! DE subsidiary of EMI Records from 1972–2002)CDP 564-7 46153 25099974615322
AutobahnCassette5
Warner Bros. Records (1958–2019; “WB” logo, with or without “records” beneath or on banner across)9 25326-407599253264
AutobahnCD5
  • DE1986-02-14
Kling Klang, EMI Electrola GmbH (not for release label use! DE subsidiary of EMI Records from 1972–2002)CDP 564 7 46153 20777746153276
AutobahnCD5
  • GB1987-06-22
Kling KlangCDP 7 46153 25099974615322
AutobahnCD5
  • US1992-08-27
Elektra (1950–1989, revived 2009–06-01; read annotations before use)9 25326-2075596079723
AutobahnCD5
  • XE1996-02-15
EMI Electrola GmbH (not for release label use! DE subsidiary of EMI Records from 1972–2002), Kling KlangCDP 564 - 7 46153 2077774615327
AutobahnCD5
  • JP1998-05-27
EMI (EMI Records, since 1972)TOCP-505784988006752115
AutobahnCD5
  • DE2009-10-09
Kling Klang50999 6 99586 2 55099969958625
AutobahnCD5
  • XE2009-10-12
Kling Klang, Mute50999 9 66014 2 6, CDSTUMM 3035099996601426
Autobahn (remastered)CD5
  • CA2009-10-13
Kling Klang50999308300285099930830028
Autobahn12" Vinyl5
  • XE2009-11-16
Kling Klang, Mute5099996601419, STUMM 3035099996601419
AutobahnCD5
Kling Klang, Parlophone (aka Parlophone UK)791408-2603497914081
(unknown)
Autobahn12" Vinyl5
  • -2009-11-16
Kling Klang, Mute5099996601419, STUMM 3035099996601419
AutobahnCD5Parlophone (aka Parlophone UK)50999 9 66014 2 65099996601426

Relationships

Discogs:https://www.discogs.com/master/2994 [info]
lyrics page:https://genius.com/albums/Kraftwerk/Autobahn [info]
reviews:https://www.bbc.co.uk/music/reviews/jzj9 [info]
other databases:https://rateyourmusic.com/release/album/kraftwerk/autobahn/ [info]
https://www.musik-sammler.de/album/22794/ [info]
Allmusic:https://www.allmusic.com/album/mw0000195085 [info]
Wikidata:Q544099 [info]

CritiqueBrainz Reviews

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Most Recent

Autobahn is an iconic record made up of several essential elements: the graphic motorway symbol on the cover, the slamming of a car door and starting of an engine that precede the music, the rasping vocals and the whoosh that imitates the approach and passing of cars. It's a 22-minute synthetic symphony to the possibilities of road travel that combines seemingly innocent enthusiasm with a note of deep caution.

Its melodic progress and the sheer pleasure taken in exploring the sonic possibilities of the newly available synthesizer make it as accessible to an eight-year-old as the most wizened critic. Although the lyrics of the title track hint briefly at the presence of nature in the sun's glittering rays and the green edge of the motorway, it's roundly addressed by the suite on the original b side of the record. Although less familiar, the four instrumentals represent a counterbalance to the harsh industrial daylight of Autobahn. They trace a journey that takes in night-time comets, an eerie midnight and ends with a morning walk serenaded by flutes and acoustic piano.

The motorway is an all-too-familiar presence in our lives, but listen to parts of the title track - for example, the passage that begins 10 minutes in - and it's clear that Kraftwerk are holding up a mirror to the world to reveal its strangeness. Although the group have occasionally been chastised for failing to present a more critical perspective, Autobahn's deliberate ambiguity is an essential aspect of art and has ensured its longevity 35 years after its original release.

Autobahn is the first of eight albums that Kraftwerk have chosen to re-master and re-release. Although a controversial decision in some quarters, its predecessors Kraftwerk 1 and 2 are lesser works that lack the thematic unity and musical distinction of the rest of the group's oeuvre. As with the other reissues, much effort has clearly been devoted to the remastering and presentation of the work and the uniting of Emil Schult's illustrations with the UK motorway symbol is particularly satisfying. Absolutely essential.