It’s late morning on a baking hot Saturday in July. Four tall, well-dressed men are standing in front of the Federal Chancellery of the Republic of Austria, their small van is parked around the corner. They are Kreisky, Austria’s loudest, most urgent, and many say angriest rock band. Kreisky are named after the country’s most famous politician: Bruno Kreisky, Federal Chancellor of Austria from 1970 to 1983, a charismatic, visionary, and at times witty Social Democrat. His former office – which he described with little affection as a dark “Zigarrenkistl” (a small cigar box) – is now known as Kreisky-Zimmer and mainly but not exclusively used for representational purposes. This is – you may have guessed it – where we head as soon as the gates of the Chancellery open. Paneled with dark wood the room indeed has an impressive aura that is heavy with meaning. Drummer Klaus Mitter sets up his kit behind Kreisky’s desk and in front of the Austrian flag, while guitarists Gregor Tischberger and Martin Max Offenhuber pick up their guitars just in front of him. Singer Franz Adrian Wenzl naturally takes over the frontman duties. And then it gets loud! Kreisky take off with an intense version of “Bitte bitte” from last year’s album “Trouble” and afterwards play two brandnew songs, written exclusively for this special occasion: “Feeling” and “Wir machen uns Sorgen um dich”. Sharp guitar riffs, powerfully reverbing drums and Wenzl’s urgent singing, that frequently turns into screaming, resound from the old walls and ensure that nobody will be able to work in the Chancellery on this Saturday.
What is now called Kreisky-Zimmer was the principal office of the Austria Federal Chancellor from after the Second World War up until 2000. It is located on the first floor of the 18th-century building on Ballhausplatz 2, that houses the Federal Chancellery of Austria. Eight chancellors worked in the Kreisky-Zimmer which was designed by the renowned architect Oswald Haerdtl. According to Leopold Figl’s wishes – he was the first Austrian Chancellor after the war – the room was paneled with dark wood all over the walls, which made Bruno Kreisky (Chancellor for thirteen years in the 1970s and 1980s) compare the office to a small „cigar box“. Nevertheless it was named after him. Today the historic office is equipped with its original 1950s-furniture and serves mainly as a meeting room and for representational purposes. Yet, as the band Kreisky demonstrates, you can also play loud rock concerts there.