Touring & Concerts

Kraftwerk and the d&b Soundscape on tour


On Kraftwerk’s 3D tour, the audience was equipped with 3D glasses to experience the immersive visuals on the large, stage-wide LED screen. “A Kraftwerk concert is a total live 3D experience,” says Kraftwerk founder Ralf Hütter, “where the audience is surrounded by a soundscape and 3D visuals.”

Hütter’s vision for this optimum live performance environment made Kraftwerk a fitting partner for the development of the d&b Soundscape.

Taking in over twenty cities in the course of six months throughout 2017, the 3D tour put the real world usability of the d&b Soundscape to the test. The largest show of the tour was for an audience of 15,000 in Düsseldorf’s open-air Ehrenhof. The tour included a hugely successful three night run at London’s Royal Albert Hall.

d&b Soundscape represents a step along the signal chain towards the artist, adding an extra level of creativity. Ralf Zuleeg from d&b’s Sales Services & Application Engineering, explains “The d&b Soundscape works as a two-layered technology. The basic layer is the configuration, the set-up, which you do as normal in ArrayCalc. Then, there is another layer – the creative layer – where you position the sources, the sound of the instruments, the pan, the reverb… And as with any d&b solution, the R1 Remote control software gives you all the control and oversight you need.”

The d&b Soundscape set-up for the Kraftwerk tour used a combination of pre-programmed positions, timecode and live control of sound effects. Reactions to the listening experience are uniformly enthusiastic. “The sound was amazing,” says Gräfe, who after long years mixing at FOH is well qualified to recognise the difference. “You really feel part of it,” he added.

Project highlights

  • Twenty dates across Europe on the tour

  • Serge Gräfe, Kraftwerk’s live sound engineer, confirmed the system was easy to use and flexible. At one venue they needed to reduce the weight, and he was able to create a new setup in 10 minutes.

  • The d&b Soundscape set-up used a combination of pre-programmed positions, timecode and live control of sound effects, and allowed the FOH team to ‘set and forget’.

  • Reactions to the d&b Soundscape listening experience were consistently enthusiastic. Serge Gräfe commented “The sound was amazing”.
It was easy to use. We rolled everything in, fixed it on the rig, did system checks and got it up to the roof. And it was very flexible. At one venue we had to reduce weight, so we just rigged six pairs of V-Subs and three arrays. I did a new setup in 10 minutes - that was it.Kraftwerk’s live sound engineer, Serge Gräfe