Palais Schaumburg




live review



THE SPACIOUS but generously populated Flora Hall has a balcony-like gantry running the length of one of its walls. It’s up there, over the heads of the assembled, that Blow-aide David Reeves (such a plain name!) assumes the DJ position at the dual turntables.

He operates with assorted drum-beat filled grooves. Spinning them forwards, backwards repeating them, fading the bass drum in and out and projecting muffled booms in the acoustically-poor auditorium.

Kurtis Blow enters and begins his seat Initially compelling, he becomes tedious with alarming rapidity. With just the drum tracks for accompaniment he seems to struggle. He affects various postures and gesticulations but can achieve no more than a sweaty brand of 'showmanship' that is actually closer to worksmanship. Half an hour of toil to keep up the HP payments on the gold chains and the Cadillac.

And audience participation… “Say ho-oo!”


I’d been waiting several long months to see Palais Schaumburg put their theories into action. Readers only acquainted with the first lp and/or the ‘Wir Bauen Eine Neue Stadt’ single could almost be forgiven if they expected a grim-faced display of live experimentia executed with a 'Teutonic efficiency' (racial stereotype copyright John Motson).

The reality was stunning. Palais Schaumburg translate their well-ordered structures and acute processes into an absolute physical exuberance, turning something that is 'interesting' but not necessarily 'entertaining' on record into compulsive viewing.

To continue reading this article and to discover many more (over 140,000 words-worth!), purchase Mick Sinclair’s Adjusting the Stars: Music journalism from post-punk London. 


© mick sinclair

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