Space Kelly is a bit of a phenomenon. Regarded by many as one of the originators of the current boom in German language pop music, Space Kelly had retreated from the genre for nearly nine years. His new album „Bist Du dabei?“ is his first release sung in German since „3 Ecken 1 Elfer“ in 2003.
That does not mean this gifted songwriter, real name Ken Steen, wasn’t productive following his extraordinary success in Japan during the earlier part of the new millennium. With the Torpedo Boyz he turned his love for the funkier side of dance music into a well-respected worldwide club act, released three acclaimed albums and toured Europe, China, North-America and Central Asia. As a recording artist and the original voice behind The Mukketierbande he proved that there is more to children’s pop music than Bob The Builder sounding like a cheap version of Scooter. Last, but not least, as Space Kelly he recorded two volumes of „My Favourite Songbook“, a dedicated selection from his most cherished songwriters, ranging from Jonathan Richman to Todd Rundgren.
While the „My Favourite Songbook“ collection received thumbs up from Space Kelly fans around the world (and was officially released in South-Korea), it still is the German songs they like the most. Messages from Japan kept coming in, so Space Kelly decided to give it a go again. „Bist Du dabei?“, recorded in Berlin where he played most of the instruments himself together with co-producer André Abshagen (PET, Dauerfisch), is a collection of up to date Space Kelly songs sitting in perfect harmony next to compositions which were waiting to be unleashed on a Space Kelly album during the last few years. The album kicks off with the radio singles „Einen Augenblick“ and „Bist Du dabei?“, two perfect examples of rousing, positive pop paying tribute to the golden days of British guitar pop of the late Eighties and early Nineties before the hype set in. Tracks like „Mein kleines Techno Girl“ or „Diese Situation macht mich nicht glücklich“ are the missing links from the classic jangly Space Kelly days to the more sonic and direct sound of today. This is further stressed by album highlights like „Du kannst geh’n“ or „Bitte denk’ an mich“. With his version of Blumfeld’s 1994 classic „Draussen auf Kaution“ Space Kelly pays respect to one of the most influential German bands of the last decades.
„Bist Du dabei?“ is a surprising, but welcome return carrying a natural smartness which is fairly unequalled in the genre. „Bist Du dabei?“ will be first released in Japan on April 18th.