A new documentary about Berlin’s celebrated Hansa Studios is set for broadcast next month. Directed by filmmaker Mike Christie, Hansa Studios: By The Wall 1976 – 90 focusses on the history and cultural significance of the studios and will be aired on Sky Arts on January 10.
A press release from the filmmakers reads: “The iconic Hansa Studio is situated in Berlin’s Potsdamer Platz – virtually alone in a wasteland in West Berlin during the 1970s and 80s, mere metres from where the Berlin Wall once stood and at the very edge of the western world.
“Within its walls, David Bowie created his timeless 1977 albums Low and Heroes – records made in collaboration with Brian Eno. It was during this Hansa period that the phrase was coined, ‘There's Old Wave. There's New Wave. And there's David Bowie.’”
Some of the most important and vital albums ever recorded for posterity have been made at Hansa Studios. David Bowie produced Iggy Pop’s influential 1977 debut solo album, The Idiot, there, and the record acted as a dry run for Bowie’s own Low.
The majority of Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds’ 80s album were recorded at the studios while the band lived in Berlin. The studios also acted as a catalyst for Irish superstars U2 after they fell down an Americana wormhole at the tail end of the 80s. The result was their still stunning 1991 album, Achtung Baby.
The clip from the filmmakers certainly makes for appetising viewing. In addition to interviews with REM’s Michael Stipe, Depeche Mode’s Martin Gore, Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds’ Barry Adamson and Mute Records boss Daniel Miller, there’s a tantalising clip of Hunt and Tony Sales – Iggy Pop’s powerhouse rhythm section from the time – giving it a hefty blast of the coruscating ‘Lust For Life’.
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