09 April 2010

Review: Kunst Rock

Kunst Rock: Die Roten Punkte
Full Tilt and Button Eye Productions
8 April 2010
Fairfax Studio, the Arts Centre

It was almost too perfect to see Die Roten Punkte's  Kunst Rock on the same day that Malcolm McLaren left us to manage a great gig in the sky and have a quiet shandy with Sid and Nancy.

It's been said that punk is attitude, not art, but don't say that to McLaren fans and certainly not to fans of the greatest post-punk punk rock group from Berlin, M-Elbourne: Die Roten Punkte, who are back in "the artiest city in the world" with their new kunsty album and show.

One always asks why when brothers and sisters form a band, but Astrid and Otto Rot are no Karen and Richard. Their relationship is as co-dependant and dubious as a young Donnie and Marie, but their TV series song would be "I'm a little bit vegan, I'm a little bit drunken slut" and they sell albums to more than pre-teen girls (yes, I watched the D&M show) and post-senile nannas. And a lot of questions get answered about the Rot siblings upbringing in their 13-minute mini-rock opera.  If we could have live flames in the theatre, we would have been waving our cigarette lighters.

Like Hedwig and Spinal Tap, the creators behind the characters are invisible, as this rock prince and princess are too real to ever be doubted. They re-invent rock cliches so they almost feel new and play a night of parody so perfect that it's nearly impossible to not buy a banana house or a t-shirt in the foyer and slip your underwear to whichever member of the duo you fancy.

With their new ninja roadie and the most-awesome-ever inflatable,  Die Roten Punkte have moved from intimate venues to the artiness of the Arts Centre (thank you Full Tilt) and if they keep on like this, we may soon be resenting them for playing a sports arena.

Kunst Rock is for anyone with a punk soul or a hidden collection of Donnie and Marie albums... and Malcolm would have loved them.

This review appears on AussieTheatre.com.


  1. What was the crowd like? Whenever I've seen them (in Melbourne or Adelaide) there's always been a small though enthusiastic audience. However they seem to go gangbusters in North America and the UK. They even got a recent promo from Neil Gaiman on Twitter! That's true stardom, ladies and gentlemen. Especially if you're a big nerd like me.

    And look, they've performed with Amanda Palmer in Edinburgh! That's totally cool. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9s7fiBiELnA


  2. Once upon a time artists were impressed with a fine critique in The Age, now all they want is Neil Gaiman to mention us on Twitter.
    How excellent is that!
    I trust Neil completely and love that he and I love the same stuff.

    The appreciative arty farty theatre crowd were in that night, which made it more of a "show" rather than an interactive love fest. But there were also a lot of their young fans, who weren't 100% sure about their idols being in an "arts" centre.