KRAFTWERK Tour De France Soundtracks (Kling Klang/EMI) Rating: NNN
Maybe if Kraftwerk had released their big comeback record in time for the 100th instalment of Le Tour, Tour De France Soundtracks would have made more sense. Hunkered down in their Düsseldorf bunker for the past 17 years, Ralf Hütter and Florian Schneider have been passed by the electronic world like a Lance Armstrong-led peloton. Having created a handful of genres, Kraftwerk are now borrowing back. Tour De France Soundtracks drifts from delicate trance to elegant techno and back again, offering up robotic celebrations of titanium frames, vitamin intakes and the glorious Elektro Kardiogramm. As the new version of the classic title track suggests, Hütter and Schneider seem more interested these days in putting together the cycling tribute booklet than in breaking any new ground.