Kunst Rock (Art Rock)
  • By Guy Wah
  • |
  • 24th May 2014
  • |
  • ★★★★★

Musical comedy acts are one of the hardest to master, but Die Roten Punkte, consisting of dysfunctional siblings Astrid and Otto Rot, have got the art (pun intended) down to a tee. They take the audience on an engaging journey through their lives, telling tales of tragic childhood, pregnancy, musical influences, and recording an album - all underlined with a gentle inference of incest.

Kunst Rock (Art Rock) is the perfect musical comedy act and there is something there for everyone – it should not be missed.

The show starts slowly, and although the early songs are entertaining, they’re really just appetisers designed to introduce the fractious relationship of the two characters. The opening track Burger Store Dinosaur is interrupted when Otto hits a bum note and Astrid makes him apologise to the audience. It’s immediately obvious that they are excellent musicians, with a tight musical performance and pitch-perfect vocal harmonies from start to finish. Even this staged mishap is perfectly rehearsed.

There is some audience interaction throughout the set. Astrid picks out a gentleman named Mark on the front row to flirt with, designating him her second best friend, while Otto chooses a lady with a scarf as his subject of interest. It is here that comparisons to The White Stripes originate, with the jealousy of each sibling rising as the other flirts with their chosen audience member. Credit must be given to Die Roten Punkte here, as this inference has the potential to become cringeworthy very quickly. Luckily these two are such great performers that although the inference is always present, it never crosses the line into the obscene or uncomfortable- just amusing.

Though the characters belong in cartoon territory, the quality of acting is such that every emotion can be felt. This is not just two musicians trying their hand at humour. This is a well-oiled, well-written and well-rehearsed performance. While Astrid is the clumsy, fun-loving clown, Otto is the straight-faced art-rocker with a deep and meaningful message in all of his songs - even if that message is only that a banana protector will protect your banana, or that dinosaurs are unhappy flipping burgers.

The show builds to a crescendo with the 12-minute rock opera telling the story of their childhood. As a parody of the genre it’s pure perfection. Starting with fast upbeat tempo, moving through slower, more emotional moments, through changes in timing, beautiful harmonies and a dispute between the siblings as to how their parents died, the song culminates with an anthemic cross-harmony finale.

Finally, the band “return” for their encore (having called for it themselves, obviously) and parody Kraftwerk brilliantly with Ich Bin Nicht Ein Roboter (I Am A Lion). Translation: I Am Not Robot (I Am A Lion). Otto breaks out the keytar and Astrid comes forward to join him for some hilarious choreography on a dimmed stage.

The only disappointment is that the band played to a half-full Spiegeltent. This show is on for another two nights and is deserving of a full house. Kunst Rock (Art Rock) is the perfect musical comedy act and there is something there for everyone – it should not be missed.

Reviews by Guy Wah

Brighton Spiegeltent

Kunst Rock (Art Rock)

★★★★★
Brighton Spiegeltent

Tina C: Where the Hell Were You?

★★★
The Old Courtroom

Bonny Boys are Few

★★★★

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Performances

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The Blurb

Die Roten Punkte is an internationally touring anarchic music comedy duo made up of utterly dysfunctional siblings Otto and Astrid Rot. Imagine part 'Flight of the Conchords', part 'The White Stripes', part 'Ramones'. Their songs are ridiculously infectious and their live show is one of the most irreverent and hilarious gigs you’re ever likely to see. "Excruciatingly funny" (The Age) "Punk rock meets Eurovision!" (Montreal Mirror)

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