The Flinger Straße in Düsseldorfs Old Town, © Düsseldorf Tourismus GmbH

Wolfgang Riech­mann/Tatort Flinger Str.

tra­gic and wun­derbar

Through the Mertensgasse, further on through the Kapuzinergasse and Mittelstrasse, you reach the Carlsplatz. On the way, where you can’t fail to see two large bronze figures - the Thin and the Fat - you’ll find the location of the big pop music “What would have happened if...” story in Düsseldorf. Here, without any provocation, the Düsseldorf musician Wolfgang Riechmann was stabbed in 1978 by a drunk man. Riechmann, who died a few days later from his injuries, had worked in the middle of the Düsseldorf scene in the early 1970s with Michael Rother and Wolfgang Flür in the bands Spirits of Sound and Phönix, and was on the way to starting a solo career. This murder on an open street was a shock for the entire Düsseldorf scene. The feeling intensified when a few weeks later, the solo album “Wunderbar” could be seen in the record stores, with a pale cover and celestial, emotive synthesizer sounds that taught machines how to express longing. The question still remains unanswered as to how the Düsseldorf pop scene might have developed if Riechmann were still alive. “Wunderbar” is on the same level as the electronic pop masterworks of the time, and is influential far beyond musical boundaries. For example, Rusty Egan was inspired by Riechmann, together with Midge Ure, to write “Fade to Grey” under the alias Visage. If you listen to the song “Himmelblau”, the horizon opens up to include all the New Romantic bands of the 1980s.

Further Information:
Mittelstr. 30, 40213 Düsseldorf