Richard H. Kirk, founding member of industrial icons Cabaret Voltaire, has died at age 65. His label, Mute Records, wrote in a statement, "It is with great sadness that we confirm our great and dear friend, Richard H Kirk has passed away. Richard was a towering creative genius who led a singular and driven path throughout his life and musical career. We will miss him so much. We ask that his family are given space at this time.”

Formed in Sheffield, England in 1973 by Kirk, Stephen Mallinder and Chris Watson, Cabaret Voltaire used reel-to-reel tape loops and early synthesizers to create a sound as bleak as the crumbling factory buildings in their hometown. Along with their Dada-influenced live performances, Cabaret Voltaire helped create what would become known as industrial music and were and remain hugely influential with classic records like "Nag Nag Nag," Red Mecca, and The Crackdown.

After more than 20 years of inactivity, Kirk reactivated Cabaret Voltaire, as its sole member, in 2009 and released new albums Shadow of Fear in 2020 and Dekadrone this past April.

Rest in peace, Richard. Listen to classic Cabaret Voltaire tracks and read tributes from The Pop Group's Mark Stewart, Scanner, 808 State, the Eccentronic Research Council, and more.


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