Some times, a future-Montreal appears out of the regular Montreal. If you were in the right place last night, you had a conveyor belt that made music from coloured blocks, four giant faux-alphenhorns that played themselves, an LED and fountain show, and giant projections on the UQAM building. Welcome to Day 2 of MUTEK.
Metametric and Maotik started, playing what may as well become known as MUTEK music – sleek, post-everything beats/glitch/dub/techno music – in this case combined with excellent monochrome visuals.
Downstairs, Jonas Reinhardt was working through his synth freakout, with huge, psyschdelic projections behind him. I can’t state how important the two aesthetic halves of 2001: A Space Odyssey are to this festival: the ‘ultimate trip’ visuals and the ultra-clean lines of Kubrick’s world outside of the Stargate. This show was well on the ‘ultimate trip’ side of things, in both music and visuals
On the other hand, Matthew Biederman was upstairs combining Cocoon-style techno with ultra-clean visuals. He was followed by the back-to-nature projections of Dinos Chapman, which matched a set that went from pastoral techno to hellscape electro.
After that, Shackleton. I’ve seen the man from Skull Disco play before – on the night that Canada won gold in Vancouver no less – and this set was at least as good. I recall that I said that time that he combined UK techno and UK dub in a way that no other human did.
He still does that. But he’s added another string to his bow: trance. Or maybe rave? But huge synths at very fast tempos were a large factor in this show. If the drums had been less masterful or the tempos less frenetic, it would have bordered on cheese. As it was, it was fantastic.