Tag: Presence Of Mind

2016 End Of Year Review

What In the World…

tec2016review-mopho2016 will forever be remembered as the year when a significant number of cultural icons and popular musical figures left us; DAVID BOWIE, PRINCE, TOMITA, PETE BURNS, COLIN VERNCOMBE, KEITH EMERSON, DON BUCHLA and LEONARD COHEN were just some of the names who sadly departed.

But despite sadness that loomed, the year did produce some good music, particularly in the second half of the year.

GARY NUMAN launched an ambitious Pledge Music campaign and released some excellent collaborations with JOHN FOXX & THE MATHS, JEAN-MICHEL JARRE and TITÁN. But with his retrospective tour of material from his three most popular albums taking up much of his year, his new crowdfunded album did not meet its planned October release deadline.

jarreyello2016Meanwhile JEAN-MICHEL JARRE had an excess of material and issued the second volume of his ‘Electronica’ project which also featured YELLO and PET SHOP BOYS, plus a third instalment to his classic opus ‘Oxygène’.

YELLO and PET SHOP BOYS also released new albums to a positive reception, proving again that partnerships featuring personnel over the age of 60 can still create music that is fresh and relevant.

Incidentally, one of YELLO’s young vocalists FIFI RONG continued to maintain her artistic profile with successful campaigns for her releases ‘Forbidden Desires’ and ‘Alone’.

Hannah-Peel-2016-042016 saw two concept albums emerge in ‘The Ship’ from BRIAN ENO, a solemn art piece with poignant anti-war messages and ‘Awake But Always Dreaming’, a very personal musical statement by HANNAH PEEL on the traumas of dementia. It was a busy year for Miss Peel with her also contributing her voice to BEYOND THE WIZARDS SLEEVE and JOHN FOXX & THE MATHS, as well as showcasing her own MARY CASIO side project.

WRANGLER released a new album ‘White Glue’ which exuded a less rigid format compared to its predecessor ‘LA Spark’ and collaborated with JOHN GRANT at the Rough Trade 40 live celebrations, while the prolific Neil Arthur issued another new BLANCMANGE album in ‘Commuter 23’ while also launching a new side project NEAR FUTURE with BERNHOLZ.

midgerusty-2012The Manchester veteran ERIC RANDOM issued ‘Words Made Flesh’, the second album of his recent return to the music while RUSTY EGAN finally presented ‘Welcome To The Dancefloor’ which despite its title, was actually a collection of classic styled synthpop. After many years of trials and tribulations for the co-founder of VISAGE, the long player featuring MIDGE URE, TONY HADLEY and CHRIS PAYNE who co-wrote ‘Fade to Grey’ exceeded expectations.

Space travel and synths were just made to go together, so JØTA and VANGELIS conceived projects covering The Cold War space race and the more recent Rosetta probe respectively. Meanwhile, WHITE LIES again showed they are as synthy as they are guitary on their ‘Friends’ album, and even started to sound like A-HA!

Fellow blog Cold War Night Life released ‘Heresy: A Tribute to RATIONAL YOUTH’ which featured PSYCHE and MACHINISTA as well as the Canadian trailblazers themselves. Meanwhile Ireland staked its claim as a new territory for synthpop talent; CIRCUIT3 ‘siliconchipsuperstar’, TINY MAGNETIC PETS ‘The NATO Alphabet’ and EMBRACE THE CRISIS ‘Black Heart’ were good examples of what was on offer from the Emerald Isle.

Over in the UK, VILE ELECTRODES, SPRAY and ANALOG ANGEL all released new albums. There were long awaited long players too from SHELTER and SINESTAR, but these suffered when compared to respective acts from Sweden, JOHAN BAECKSTRÖM and PRESENCE OF MIND.

So again, Sweden still proved it was special with SILENT WAVE and MY GOD DAMN TERRITORY exhibiting varying degrees of potential. But it was REIN in particular who was causing a stir within the ranks of EBM, while the country’s best kept secret KITE toured North America and Asia. However, neither of these two latter artists figured in the line-up of Gothenburg’s Electronic Summer 2016 festival.

The Nordic region saw the welcome return of VILLA NAH with the album ‘Ultima’ after a five year absence, while TRENTEMØLLER made the case again as to why he is still the perfect producer for DEPECHE MODE with his new long player ‘Fixion’.

However, Norwegian acts APOPTYGMA BERZERK and ELECTRO SPECTRE ensured the Swedes, Finns and Danes did not have it all their own way.

Greece was still the word with LIEBE, KID MOXIE and MARSHEAUX all presenting brand new releases, while SARAH P. maintained her profile with a series of inventive promo videos highlighting the ongoing issues of equality for women within the music industry. Embracing the same issue on the other side of the Atlantic, I AM SNOW ANGEL immersed herself in setting up the FEMALE FREQUENCY collective while also releasing her own music.

2016 was a good year for female acts with EMIKA, KALEIDA, ANI GLASS, THE HEARING, KITE BASE, KATJA VON KASSEL, HOLOGRAM TEEN and VOI VANG among those making a positive impression. There was also ‘SVIIB’, the final album from SCHOOL OF SEVEN BELLS and the emergence of CHRISTINE & THE QUEENS, while LADYHAWKE remembered what a good album sounded like with ‘Wild Things’.

night-club-requiem-for-romance-2016Over in LA, NIGHT CLUB developed on the promise of their EP trilogy and got a bit heavier on their debut long player ‘Requiem For Romance’, ending up sounding not unlike Britney fronting NINE INCH NAILS in the process!

After gestation periods of nearly six years, both EKKOES and THE MYSTIC UNDERGROUND finally released their debut albums.

Meanwhile the instrumental front, Texan couple HYPERBUBBLE provided some ‘Music To Color By’, Brussels duo METROLAND touchingly paid tribute to their late friend Louis Zachert with ‘Things Will Never Sound The Same Again’ and ULRICH SCHNAUSS went ‘No Further Ahead Than Today’. And MOBY offered a gift to profound relaxation with his free ‘Long Ambients 1: Calm. Sleep.’ download package.

PERTURBATOR James Kent - Photo David FittPERTURBATOR’s ‘The Uncanny Valley’ became a flag bearer for the synth wave movement, along with the acclaimed soundtrack by SURVIVE members Kyle Dixon and Michael Stein for the absorbing Netflix drama ‘Stranger Things’.

Less well-received though was ‘2Square’ by VINCE CLARKE & PAUL HARTNOLL with its banal experiments in electro swing.

This was a supposed new dance sub-genre that in reality was just computerised jazz… nice! But one artist who did manage to pull off fusing synthpop and jazz successfully was DISQO VOLANTE.

New material from veterans MESH, AESTHETIC PERFECTION, ASSEMBLAGE 23, DE/VISION, IAMX, COVENANT and ROTERSAND kept the black clad European audiences happy, while MARI KATTMAN and BLACK NEEDLE NOISE added some trip-hop and rock edges respectively to their already dark templates. Expressing slightly less intensity were two surprise packages in Germany’s DAS BLAUE PALAIS with ‘Welt Am Draht’ and Canada’s DELERIUM with ‘Mythologie’.

marc-almond-blueBut totally unexpected was ‘Silver City Ride’, a full length electro album from MARC ALMOND in collaboration with STARCLUSTER featuring his most synth laden body of work since SOFT CELL.

The biggest surprise of 2016 was ‘Fly’ the soundtrack souvenir to ‘Eddie The Eagle’, the light hearted biopic of the bespectacled Olympic ski jumper; featuring new material by members of FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD, SOFT CELL, SPANDAU BALLET, ULTRAVOX, ERASURE and OMD in collaboration with TAKE THAT’s Gary Barlow, this looked like a terrible idea on paper.

But it was brilliantly executed and the resultant album was a largely enjoyable collection of retro flavoured pop.

Electronic acts actually got to headline the Glastonbury Festival in 2016, albeit on The Other Stage as opposed the main event; NEW ORDER and CHVRCHES wowed the crowds when they shared the bill on the Saturday night. There were rumours that KRAFTWERK and DEPECHE MODE might feature in 2017 but this was not to be, although both acts sent social media into overdrive when they announced major tours.

Among those accorded career spanning multi-disc boxed sets were ERASURE, MARC ALMOND, DEAD OR ALIVE and THE HUMAN LEAGUE. Somehow though, SIMPLE MINDS managed to milk a six disc variant of ‘New Gold Dream’ in the third of their classic album deluxe box editions; it was an amazing feat seeing as only ten songs were completed during the original sessions! The collection boasted no less than twelve takes of the aptly titled ‘Promised You A Miracle’; but the latest incarnation of the Glaswegians combo’ first big hit with KT TUNSTALL for their ‘Acoustic’ album proved to be one version too many.

Associates-dempsey-mackenzie-rankine-getty2Much better value for the money for the discerning music fan were the four ASSOCIATES double CD reissues, supervised by Alan Rankine and Michael Dempsey.

Based around their first three albums and a ‘Very Best Of’ compilation, each additionally featured a plethora of rare and previously unreleased songs; they were a fitting tribute to the late Billy MacKenzie.

Nostalgia was very much a part of 2016, with HEAVEN 17, OMD and PETER HOOK & THE LIGHT all touring popular albums. And following the success in recent years of retro festivals such as ‘Rewind’ and the strangely named ‘Let’s Rock’, classic synthpop finally found itself part of the holiday camp circuit.

Part of the Butlins Music Weekender series, ‘Electric Dreams’ featuring OMD, MARC ALMOND, HEAVEN 17, BLANCMANGE and HOLLY JOHNSON almost went badly off-piste with the addition of GO WEST and THE ZOMBIES (!?!) to the programme. But the organisers pulled an unexpected surprise and booked modern synth acts like MARSHEAUX and AVEC SANS to support the bill.

avec-sansHardened retro festival goers are notorious for not embracing new music, but this ethos has to be welcomed and could provide an interesting new model for the future of event based entertainment. However, based on photographic evidence, the presence of inflatable pink flamingos and coloured wigs indicated the crowd atmosphere might have been no different to any of the usual nostalgia outings, but with a roof and central heating added!

Elsewhere, the second ELECTRI-CITY CONFERENCE in Düsseldorf boasted yet another impressive line-up that read like a ‘Who’s Who?’ of electronic music with JOHN FOXX, DANIEL MILLER and MARK REEDER among those taking part in talks. One of the highlights of the weekend came with Mr Foxx chatting about working with the legendary Conny Plank.

And while MARSHEAUX, KID KASIO and RODNEY CROMWELL in Norwich was not in the same league, it was a fine showcase for the best in independent synthpop.

Both events proved again that the best electronic music events are those actually curated by electronic music enthusiasts, something that is not the case with several other events.

In all, 2016 was not a vintage year for electronic pop. If there was a lesson this year, it’s been to cherish and appreciate great life’s moments where possible, especially with the number of music figures that have been lost in the last 12 months.

Things cannot go on forever sadly…


ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK Contributor Listings 2016

PAUL BODDY

Best Album: PERTURBATOR The Uncanny Valley
Best Song: SOULWAX Transient Program for Drums & Machinery
Best Gig: JEAN-MICHEL JARRE at London O2 Arena
Best Video: BATTLE TAPES featuring PARTY NAILS Solid Gold
Most Promising New Act: VOX LOW


IAN FERGUSON

Best Album: VILE ELECTRODES In The Shadows Of Monuments
Best Song: ASSEMBLAGE 23 Barren
Best Gig: ASSEMBLAGE 23 at Denver Oriental Theatre
Best Video: I AM SNOW ANGEL Losing Face
Most Promising New Act: VOX LOW


SIMON HELM

Best Album: ERIC RANDOM Words Made Flesh
Best Song: RATIONAL YOUTH This Side Of The Border
Best Gig: Troika! featuring KITE BASE, HANNAH PEEL + I SPEAK MACHINE at Shacklewell Arms
Best Video: I AM SNOW ANGEL Losing Face
Most Promising New Act: ZANIAS


CHI MING LAI

Best Album: VILLA NAH Ultima
Best Song: VILE ELECTRODES The Vanished Past
Best Gig: JEAN-MICHEL JARRE at London O2 Arena
Best Video: BEYOND THE WIZARD’S SLEEVE Diagram Girl
Most Promising New Act: ANI GLASS


STEPHEN ROPER

Best Album: MARSHEAUX Ath.Lon
Best Song: RODNEY CROMWELL Baby Robot
Best Gig: GARY NUMAN at Norwich UEA
Best Video: MARSHEAUX Like A Movie
Most Promising New Act: DISQO VOLANTE


MONIKA IZABELA TRIGWELL

Best Album: APOPTYGMA BERZERK Exit Popularity Contest
Best Song: KID KASIO Full Moon Blue
Best Gig: SPEAK & SPELL at Islington Academy
Best Video: BLACK NEEDLE NOISE featuring JENNIE VEE Heaven
Most Promising New Act: JOHAN BAECKSTRÖM


Text by Chi Ming Lai
17th December 2016

PRESENCE OF MIND Pure

presence-of-mind-pure-artworkAlthough PRESENCE OF MIND released recordings as early as 1995, the Swedish trio only released their full length debut album ‘Interpersonal’ in the summer of 2014.

Their first songs borrowed from the Vince Clarke school of synth programming.

But today, as exemplified by the album’s stand-out song ‘Queen Of Redemption’, PRESENCE OF MIND are a much darker proposition with MESH, DE/VISION and DEPECHE MODE being key elements to their industrial pop sound.

Thankfully, Christoffer Lundström, Johannes Ambros and Anders Wallroth have taken far less time to produce their follow-up album ‘Pure’ which develops on the dark, but danceable electronic soundtrack of its predecessor.

The band say it is “about how small events in our surroundings affects our emotions and our vision of how life should be, or could be, depending on whether we just thought a little bit longer before making a decision”.

The thrusting electro Schaffel of ‘It’s Too Quiet’ opens the album in a characteristically MESH-like fashion. But the most striking aspect of ‘Pure’ that emerges is its use of dubstep elements on several songs. ‘What’s In It for You?’ is a melodic treat and dressed with wobbling synth motifs, while the vibrant ‘Help Me Help You’ places some wonderfully meaty Doepfer bass noises within a hybrid techno backbone. And on ‘Brittle Bones’, a sparse musical framework is taken into some unusual territory for the industrial pop genre.

Lundström is a charismatic frontman with a great voice and on ‘I Am Demon’, he even comes over like a Futurepop Sinatra. The trio lock together well on with driving electronic numbers like ‘You Behave Sometimes’ and ‘Black Angel’, while the widescreen drama of ‘Chasing Waterfalls’ adds a further dimension. Unfortunately, ‘Welcome Home’ plods, but ‘Interstate’ follows a more classic synthpop vein despite the noisy infiltration of sub-bass.

Two very DEPECHE MODE influenced numbers end ‘Pure’ with ‘Slowly’ certainly exerting more passion than most of what ‘Delta Machine’ managed.

presence-of-mind-16However ‘Show Me’ is less successful and on occasions, sounds slightly strained. But it is still better than much of the opposition operating in the same theatre.

PRESENCE OF MIND have certainly taken a few risks sonically on ‘Pure’ and that is commendable. Add in some quality production from Wallroth and Ambros, ‘Pure’ comes over as a much more accomplished long player than comparable works like SINESTAR’s ‘Evolve’ which came out earlier in the year.


‘Pure’ is released on CD and download by Cramada on 7th October 2016

https://www.facebook.com/PresenceOfMindSwede

https://twitter.com/POMelectro/


Text by Chi Ming Lai
30th September 2016

Introducing PRESENCE OF MIND

PresenceOfMind by Krichan WihlborgAlthough PRESENCE OF MIND released recordings as early as 1995 on the cult synth compilation ‘Circuit One’, the Swedish trio only released their debut album proper in the summer of 2014.

Their first recordings borrowed from the Vince Clarke school of synth programming but today, PRESENCE OF MIND are a much darker but no less song based proposition.

Influenced by the likes of MESH, DE/VISION and inevitably ‘Violator’-era DEPECHE MODE, childhood friends Christoffer Lundström, Johannes Ambros and Anders Wallroth have taken their time.

But without the pressure of constant touring, they’ve utilised a developing songcraft and life experience to pay dividends on the resultant long player entitled ‘Interpersonal’. Utilising the crisp production ethos of Wallroth and Ambros, ‘One Step I’ takes some killer squelch bass and places it alongside the strong, melodic vocals of Lundström.

Just accorded a new promo video, the track is a great bleep forward from their earlier work and the interim ‘Between Emotions’ EP from 2005. Another good example of their passionate synth rock is ‘Queen Of Redemption’, an obvious second cousin of ‘Enjoy The Silence’ but with a Svenske twist.

PRESENCE OF MIND are an enticing live proposition, as proven by their impressive appearance at the pre-party of Electronic Summer 2015 in Gothenburg. Lundström in particular, is a charismatic and engaging frontman with a lively but controlled stage presence that contrasts the dark, but danceable electronic soundtrack.

With excellent uptempo songs such as ‘Alive’ and sensitive ballads like ‘In My Dreams’ in their repertoire, the threesome from Mariestad are already at work on a second album to maintain their new-found momentum with tracks such as ‘Brittle Bones’ already having received public premieres. PRESENCE OF MIND are now finally knocking on the door of Northern Europe and making a positive impression on its independent electronic pop scene.


‘Interpersonal’ is released as a download and CD via Cramada

https://www.facebook.com/PresenceOfMindSwede

https://twitter.com/POMelectro


Text by Chi Ming Lai
Photos by Krichan Wihlborg
15th September 2015

ELECTRONIC SUMMER 2015 at Gothenburg Brewhouse

Norse Code

ES2015-Marsheaux+TrainToSpainELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK has said many times before: “There are electronic music events… and there are electronic music events…”

And the best sort of electronic music events are those curated by electronic music enthusiasts, people who actually enthuse about the genre, recognise its history and expel a passion to see it continue as a defined artform. Two such people are Henrik Wittgren and Sebastian Hess.

Their organisation Depeche Mode Party Gothenburg has been running successful music events in the Swedish city for several years. Electronic Summer started as a DEPECHE MODE fan event in 2012 with none other than Alan Wilder as guest of honour, while the live headliners were MESH and DE/VISION.

ES2015-Psyche+JenniferSince then, the event has developed with DAF and APOPTYGMA BERZERK headlining in 2013, while the 2014 event featured COVENANT, ASSEMBLAGE 23 and AESTHETIC PERFECTION.

With VNV NATION, SOLAR FAKE, MARSHEAUX, KARIN PARK and PYSCHE featuring in the Electronic Summer 2015 line-up, a sell-out crowd at the Brewhouse Arena was eagerly anticipating a great weekend of music and culture.

Such was the community spirit of the occasion that musicians from local acts such as TRAIN TO SPAIN were also in attendance. To start proceedings, early arrivals were welcomed to an enjoyable pre-party featuring AVANTGARDE, XHILE, PRESENCE OF MIND and DESTIN FRAGILE. Each act had appeared on the cult Swedish synthpop compilation ‘Circuit One’ and gathered to celebrate its 20th anniversary.

ES2015-PresenceOfMindPRESENCE OF MIND were particularly impressive with their brand of dark, but melodic synthrock. Their debut album ‘Interpersonal’ was only released in 2014, but it is a indicator as to why Swedish acts are generally holding their own against competition from around the world.

Meanwhile, DESTIN FRAGILE showcased songs from their ‘Halfway To Nowhere’ album released this year and some observers have considered it one of the best synth flavoured long players of 2015.

Day 1 began in the late afternoon with Nordic friendly blog Cold War Night Life hosting a DJ set in The Outsider bar area. As music fans prepared themselves for a nine hour night, DJ combo Spacelab aka Alexander Hofman and Johan Billing from S.P.O.C.K. continued the electronic soundtrack.

ES2015-PeterSjoholmThroughout the weekend, there were enjoyable DJ sets based around the themes of Mute, DEPECHE MODE, NITZER EBB and ERASURE but there was also just great electronic pop by artists of all generations ranging from KRAFTWERK, SOFT CELL and NEW ORDER to CLUB8, TRUST and SUSANNE SUNDFØR.

The first live act of the day was the milk loving PETER SJÖHOLM who gave his distinctive quirky take on electronic pop.

But that was followed by the unusual sight of Day 2 headliners VNV NATION taking to the stage at 19:00 hours. Performing what was billed as an alternative set, it contained a collection of their lesser played works from their vast catalogue like ‘Kingdom’ and was a suitable dress rehearsal for their headline slot. Following on, NATTSKIFTET and VIRTUAL VOICES kept the crowds warm in preparation for Canadian darkwave trailblazers PSYCHE.

ES2015-PsycheAccompanied by Stefan Rabura, Darrin Huss led a spirited performance that was fittingly poignant following the recent sad passing of his brother and PSYCHE founder member Stephen.

This was particularly evident on ‘The Brain Collapses’ from ‘Insomnia Theatre’, their debut album together. The magnificent ‘The Saint Became A Lush’ from ‘Unveiling The Secret’ was another pivotal moment while that album’s title track and ‘Uncivilized’ were other treats.

Huss recited his synthpop knowledge too, dropping in snatches of EURYTHMICS’ ‘Sweet Dreams’ and YAZOO’s ‘Bring Your Love Down (Didn’t I)’ during the set.

ES2015-KarinPark02KARIN PARK gave another of her towering performances, the aggressive synth glam of ‘Look What You’ve Done’ fully exploiting the presence of her metalhead drummer brother David and lively new keyboardist Kine Sandbæk Jensen aka PIECES OF JUNO.

Meanwhile ‘Stick To The Lie’ and ‘Ashes’ demonstrated that despite her intense stage demeanour, Miss Park does supreme electronic pop. To climax the set, the charismatic Swede led a three way drum barrage to conclude the mighty ‘Thousand Loaded Guns’.

PROJECT PITCHFORK concluded the evening with a suitably Teutonic fist of aggression; their in-yer-face pounding ensured any remaining energy left in the audience after a long day was put to efficient use. If nothing, it ensured a good night’s sleep in preparation for Electronic Summer 2015’s second instalment.

ES2015-HiltipopDay 2 began with HILTIPOP, the solo project of Magnus Johansson from the YAZOO influenced duo ALISON who released their only album ‘Duality’ in 2010.

His promising FAD GADGET meets KRAFTWERK template was an ideal way to ease everyone back into the synthetic groove and many watching including George Geranios of Undo Records and Darrin Huss were impressed. Following on, STURM CAFÉ gave their own localised take on electronic body music. 

With enough flashes of DAF to wake anyone who was still sleepy, the Alte Schule sound was not totally unexpected from a band who soundtracked a movie called ‘Die Zombiejäger’. 

ES2015-MeTheTigerMeanwhile, ME THE TIGER were another highly regarded Swedish band on the second day’s very internationally flavoured bill and notably reflected their country’s solidarity values. 

With their synth assisted new wave songs like ‘Ariana’ and ‘Pocket Sized Edition Ending’, the trio showcased their YEAH YEAH YEAHS influenced pop augmented by punky guitars and lively drums. In Gabriella Åström, ME THE TIGER have a feisty front woman.

Full of energy and attitude, this was something that was particularly evident on anthemic numbers like ‘Heartbeats’ and ‘What Promises Are Worth’. Even a broken kick pedal didn’t dampen their enthusiasm and this was promptly repaired without a flutter.

ES2015-Marsheaux02The event maintained its original DEPECHE MODE roots with the presence of Athens based synth maidens MARSHEAUX performing selections from their acclaimed reinterpretation of ‘A Broken Frame’.

The wispy renditions of ‘My Secret Garden’, ‘Monument’ and ‘Leave In Silence’ were particular highlights while there was the surprise inclusion of ‘See You’ B-side ‘Now This Is Fun’. Best of of all though was an angelic rendition of ‘The Sun & The Rainfall’.

But it wasn’t all about Basildon as MARSHEAUX impressed the Devotee dominant crowd with their own cracking tunes like ‘Hanging On’, ‘Dream Of A Disco’, ‘Come On Now’ and ‘Breakthrough’.

ES2015-SolarFakeGerman duo SOLAR FAKE led by Sven Friedrich kept the crowd moving with their Goth infused electro, a tone that was not entirely surprising given Friedrich’s roots in cult alternative band DREADFUL SHADOWS.

‘I Hate You More Than My Life’ was a more than ideal overture while ‘Under Control’ provided a trancey focal point with hints of COVENANT. The remainder of their set was enjoyably accessible dark synthpop that suited the duo’s striking look.

To conclude the weekend, VNV NATION blasted their way through a hits set of their characteristic Futurepop, the duo of Ronan Harris and Mark Jackson certainly providing lashings of “Victory Not Vengeance”.

ES2015-VNV2011’s ‘Space & Time’ and the 1999 vintage of ‘Standing’ were just two of the stomping crowd pleasers while the more epic electro rock inclined ‘Perpetual’ made a fitting set closer.

Throughout the weekend, there was an enormously warm and friendly atmosphere. The event had something for everyone so as different factions of the audience moved between their preferred acts, there was plenty of time for passionate discussion in the various bars.

Despite fierce debate about the merits of synthpop versus industrial, most shared an intense dislike of EDM and agreed that its inane DJ culture was ruining electronic music. However, when there were differences in opinion as the well-known Nordic enjoyment for liquid refreshment kicked in, no-one took it personally. There was plenty of mutual laughter as chat varied from whether ‘MG’ was actually a Eurorack YouTube tutorial put to record, to the use of the word “Marmite” as a descriptive term in music journalism.

ES2015-CWNL+friendsElectronic Summer has developed into a fine annual platform showcasing the best in independent synth driven talent from around the world. The 2015 variant was a truly worldwide event, again proving what can be done when event organisers actually enjoy and understand the music they are dealing in.

It was indeed, a fine benchmark for other event organisers to aspire to.


ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK gives its sincerest thanks to Henrik Wittgren and Sebastian Hess at Depeche Mode Party Gothenburg

ES2015-TeamThanks also to Simon Helm at Cold War Night Life

www.electronicsummer.se

www.anachronsounds.de/

www.solarfake.de/en

www.marsheaux.com/

www.methetiger.com/

ES2015-Spacelabwww.facebook.com/sturmcafe

https://soundcloud.com/sem-hilti-johansson

www.project-pitchfork.eu/

www.karinpark.com/

www.psyche-hq.de/

www.facebook.com/nattskiftetmusik

http://members.tripod.com/~virtual_voices/

www.facebook.com/peter5joholm

www.facebook.com/destin.fragile.pop

www.facebook.com/PresenceOfMindSweden

www.discogs.com/artist/129276-Xhile

www.facebook.com/pages/Avantgarde/


Text by Chi Ming Lai
Photos by Chi Ming Lai, Simon Helm, Jennifer Last and Madeleine Berg
5th September 2015