The Great Convergence >
An event held on the Giza Plateau as the clock strikes midnight on December 21′st 2012.
A three day festival to celebrate the dawning of a new era as a 26 thousand year cycle comes to pass.
More awesome sauce from The Do Lab, this time, partnered with TGC and in Egypt!
Pyramids? Oh hell yeah, bitch!
Finally dusting-off show photos, we’re happy to present what we captured at the Lightning in a Bottle Festival this year. We really like how the photos turned out! Big thanks to Erik and Nikki for taking the vast majority of the photos below.
These are the electronic music festivals that are thriving globally. More recently, we’ve seen their explosive popularity in the US. They also rake in a ton of cash. The rise in popularity got them to get noticed by outfits like Rolling Stone this month on the cover of the latest (July 5-19, 2012) issue.
Deaudmau5′s remarks on Madonna in that issue are pretty funny.
He’s still angry at Madonna for her appearance at the Ultra Music Festival in March, where she asked the audience, “How many people in this crowd have seen Molly?” – a barely coded reference to Ecstasy. “You want to be ‘hip’ and ‘cool’ and ‘funky grandma’?,” says Zimmerman. “Fine. It’s not my place to say you’re irrelevant. If you’re gonna come into my world, at least do it with a little more dignity. I understand she has millions more fans, and is way more successful than I’ll ever be. But it’s like talking about slavery at a fucking blues concert. It’s inappropriate.
Oh burn. He burned her! It’s true though, Madonna really does need to just stop. She’s too old to be flashing her nipple at shows and taking ecstasy! Sometimes in life, you gotta know when to fold ‘em gurl. Don’t get us wrong, “Like a Prayer” was the absolute jam when it came out… but oh, right. That was in March 1989. Sad face!
Also, check out Do Lab Photographer Photos:
The Do Lab made two spectacular videos documenting the event this year. Rawwr!
As you might have expected Lightning in a Bottle pulled off another sold out slice of well-rounded/face-melting heaven. With more than the senses could hold scattered throughout the vast Orange County landscape, electronic music peppered with folk and gypsie set the stage for higher thoughts as beauty and bass merged for what many continue to call the happiest place on earth.
Photo Credit: Watchara Phomicinda
May 24, 2012
The 9th annual Decibel International Festival of Electronic Music Performance, Visual Art and New Media has been announced, featuring headliners Kimbra, Carl Craig, Matthew Dear, Fennesz, John Talabot, Ariel Pink, and Actress, Nina Kraviz, and Baths.
In addition to the headlining acts above, the festival will feature such heavy-hitters as Dragonette, Emancipator, and Yppah. Click here for the first 60 musical acts announced.
Following the “artist a day” approach, the rest of the musical lineup (60 more acts out of 120) will be announced on June 27 with the entire program of educational programs, film festival, after-parties and boat-parties announced on July 11th. To reward attendees who purchase passes early, tickets will be discounted by 25% through June 26th.
Please visit The Decibel Festival website for more information and to purchase tickets.
In year nine, The Decibel International Festival of Electronic Music Performance, Visual Art and New Media is quickly becoming the SXSW of the swelling cultural phenomena that is electronic music. The Seattle based festival expects to hit 30k attendees this year with over 170 artists from 19 different countries, plus 72 educational speakers, making Decibel Festival an oracle for the growth of the entire international electronic music scene. The entire festival takes place over a five day period at over 14 venues in Seattle, Washington.
NOTE FROM THE DECIBEL FESTIVAL CURATOR AND CREATIVE DIRECTOR
In 2003, I founded Decibel Festival with the mission to redefine underground electronic music and visual art as a unified performance medium, while establishing the Pacific Northwest as a vital hub for electronic music culture in the United States. At the time, “laptop performance” was still shrouded in mystery and most electronic music performance consisted of turntables, CDJs, and a mixer. Electronic music in America had receded from the rave boom back to small communities of loyalists caring more about the music itself than its potential to generate revenue or fan base. This has been the community that has supported Decibel from day one and I’m thrilled they are still at the heart of Decibel today.
Fast forward to 10 years and electronic music is pervasive in nearly every facet of mainstream American culture and we continue to have mixed emotions regarding this surge. As avid supporters, performers, producers, and fans of electronic music for over 20 years, we can’t help but feel nostalgic for a time when underground warehouse parties and independent record stores were the predominant outlet for electronic music discovery.
As much as the digital age has brought many advantages, it’s important to remember how we got here and what it means. It’s a balance between technology and creativity; innovation and nostalgia; popularity and obscurity. With each year I hope to build a program that encompasses all of these elements while retaining the integrity of a festival known for pushing the boundaries of both art and science.
Looking at our continued growth from our inaugural festival of 2,500 attendees in 2004 to 23,000+ attendees in 2011, I am faced with the challenge of assembling a compelling program that captures our past, present, and future. Although we’re only mid-way through announcing this year’s line-up, I believe that 2012 will be our most ambitious program. Based on the initial list of artists below we already have our most diverse program to date. This includes a strong international presence with 19 countries represented as well as 25% of the line-up featuring female artists, which is a historically high number based on other electronic music festivals. In addition, Decibel is continuing to embrace a wide spectrum of genres, venues, and activities designed to entertain, educate, and inspire attendees regardless of age or background. 2012 festival pass holders will be treated to 34 audio/visual showcases, an outdoor event, a three-day conference, and a film festival. In addition, Decibel will be co-curating and co-producing eight after-parties and five boat-parties, none of which will conflict with the festival schedule. As you begin to look at what we have in store this year, I encourage you all to dig deep into our new website and explore a festival filled with discovery, decadence, beauty, emotion, and unbridled entertainment start to finish.
Much more to come. Hope to see you in September!
Sean Patrick Horton, -Founder, Curator and Creative Director
The Paramount Theatre : 911 Pine St
Showbox SoDo : 1700 1st Avenue South
Showbox at The Market : 1426 1st Ave
Neumos : 925 E. Pike St
The Nordstrom Recital Hall : 200 University St
The Crocodile : 2202 2nd Ave
Broadway Performance Hall : 1625 Broadway
Melrose Market Studios : 1532 Minor St
The Baltic Room : 1207 Pine St
Re-Bar : 1114 Howell St
The Triple Door : 216 Union St
Barboza : 925 E. Pike St
The Islander Cruise Ship : 1611 Fairview Ave E
+ MORE TO BE ANNOUNCED
Abstract Earth Project
Red Bull Music Academy
The W Seattle (Official Hotel of the Decibel Festival)
+ MORE TO BE ANNOUNCED
El Rey in Los Angeles was packed Saturday night and with good reason given the artist line-up! As you can see from the photos below, there was a spectacle of fashion at the show. That’s usually the case with events by The Do Lab though: lots of unique outfits that you don’t see every day. It was a fun night with great energy throughout.
On the music, we had never heard dubstep made in real-time before, but that’s one thing Eoto brought to the table, alongside other electronic genres. It wasn’t your stereotypical dubstep though. Not really as fast-paced and hyperactive as Skrillex songs tend to be. It’s difficult to describe the music of Eoto, so you might as well listen to their music below to get an idea.
Bluetech had more of an experimental sound, with lots of cool synths, beat programming and percussion samples. Experimental music that has influences including classical, jazz, symphony, hip hop, and the list goes on! The music, as usual, sounded great on a powerful sound system.
Artist Pumpkin had a wide range of music, with everything from abstract hip hop beats to folk sounding instrumentals with female vocalists. The best way to describe Pumpkin’s songs is a mash-up of genres, only the song instrumentals appear to be made from scratch as opposed to being heavily sample-based and mashing five different previously recorded songs into one three to five minute track.
You don’t really need to spend a lot of money on your clothes to impress people at events like these. Wearing something casual and homemade–assuming you know how to sew–would probably go over better than wearing some high fashion outfit by an expensive designer. The majority of the crowd’s attire at the show was flashy and flamboyant. The ambiance is typically affected by how people dress and you feel like you’re surrounded by artists and rock stars at most Do Lab events. At the same time, people aren’t very snobby or exclusive at their shows and everyone is pretty friendly, regardless of whether you’re new or old to the scene/subculture.
There was live painting by Radhika Hersey.
Radhika Hersey grew up in the artist counter culture of Los Angeles. Inspired by her dreams, relationships, spirituality, and travel abroad, she has explored many different aspects of the human psyche in her work. From the depths of the subconscious mind to the infinite and divine, her art speaks to the human experience. Upon graduating with a BFA at California College of the Arts she immersed herself completely in her art, studying with several master painters and showing in numerous galleries. In service to the artist community she has helped organized live painting for several events, including the Do Art Foundation and Lightning in a Paint Can. As assistant curator and events coordinator, Radhika helped run L.A.’s first visionary art gallery, Temple of Visions, bridging the gap between the international visionary art culture and L.A.’s local art scene. Her participation in 16 years of Burning Man projects has inspired her to share her experiences and knowledge by teaching art to children. She is currently a resident artist at The Hive Gallery in Downtown L.A.
Tony Koehl painted live as well.
Tony Koehl has showcased his art throughout Southern California, New York and Japan. Varying from classic art galleries to underground death metal shows, Tony Koehl’s art has been viewed and enjoyed by a large variety of people. Although Tony Koehl’s artistic palate caters to the darker content, his ability to create a diverse range of art has helped him gain a much larger fan base, to which he is truly grateful for.
Lots of legendary performances went down at the turntable.fm SXSW events on 3/10 and 3/15! Not only were the line-ups for the shows spectacular, which is reflected in the media below, there was even a performance by a turntable.fm user–Qbertplaya–who won the turntable.fm Intel DJ Battle, which is what landed her a spot in the show line-up.
The crowds were locked-in while performers used laptops, turntables and USB/MIDI pad controllers to mix and create music. USB pad controllers are pretty fun to watch musicians perform with (see the AraabMuzik vids below). Hearing the beat of a song you love as it’s deftly tapped-out and manipulated right in front of you by a musician is awesome. If you didn’t know, each pad on a USB pad controller can be assigned any sound you want: a snare, a bass drum, samples of a synthesizer melody you created, etc. Even though this method of performance by musicians has been going on for years now, its entertainment value hasn’t depreciated thanks to technology and gadget advancement.
Clearly even turntablism is still going strong, judging by A-Trak’s performance. Ah yes, and the wolf samples in “Big Bad Wolf.” All things wolf-related are cool when it comes to indie hip hop. Artist Machinedrum most probably started that trend.
Party-foul handled quite gentlemanly by ?uestlove as that beach ball hit his turntable. Ironic that one of the biggest names performing at the show would have that happen to him.
On another note, y’all, it’s always nice to see a marriage of technology and old practices. The turntable.fm parties and the events leading up to them are a great example of new meets old. Respect is definitely due to the minds behind turntable.fm and their unique approach to SXSW 2012! Turntable.fm lets people mix and listen to music with friends anywhere there’s an Internet connection, computer and speakers. If you haven’t already, check it out!
And three from the other SXSW Interactive event on 3/10 as well (featuring Flying Lotus and AraabMuzik)
All media courtesy of The Confluence.
Photo Credit: Galen Oakes
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