SCHLAGSTROM BERLIN 2006 - Maschinenhaus - Kreuzberg \ Berlin (Germany), 19/08/06
Text by Gilly (Sephira) - Pics by Drex
Like in occasion of a concert hosting more artists, Mr Delay enjoyed the company making us loose the first performances by ZX81 , Mooodepathologie , IO e Exil. We rely for this on the words of SepticMesh, a fellow that run fast to get the t-shirt at the entrance. (Pic by Septic)
I didn't know him... heard quickly something from Myspace.
uh, I didn't imagine such a devastating set
bringing his laptop and a series of effects he has literally made the Maschinenhaus floor trembling.... I mean he had to keep steady his notebook 'cos it was moving on the desk!!!!!!
from electro rhythms to heavy breaks, from a gloomy background to thumping storm... it's clear he's comrade in arms of the italian troop guided by Bahntier, Sandblasting e Balli.
Cesare (that's his name) has opened the festival ... but literally .. demolished I say! ... "
Devastating... couldn't beleive it!... in my opinion the revelation in the Schlagstrom Haus...
industrial pulsation like dark matter waves....
I've nearly spent all the set in front of the speakers... I wouldn't have lost even a half frequence from those sounds... I couldn't
...She, Ash, has been perfect, a gentle voice and versatile, on countermelody to the filtered and distorted voice from his friend's megaphone... Zeitschnitt, the musician, has offer the worst that the human psyche can bear... a raving lunatic able to "play" a pedal as a monokey keyboard....
a really dense set... rich of contents in more senses, from musical saturation to the visuals, to... say that they got a score of 23 with honors... got it?"
Meanwhile it's time for our Drexmobile to cross the threshold of Friedrichshain ready to shore in Kreuzberg and go across Berlin's roads 'till the enigmatic Dudenstrasse, which seemed to do everything to hide Maschinenhaus entrance, therefore Schlagstrom Festival. Drex's sharp look saved the situation seeing a sign against a road post, guiding us into a little dark street which seemed part of a park. Our minds started to deduct that Schlagstrom was out of door, we had to change idea admiring the wonderful festival location: an abandoned factory, in which you could even find a big wheel, similar to one present in the Deutsch Technikmuseum visited a couple of days before.
Which more proper place to be the host of an event where the protagonist is a fusion among elektro, industrial and noise?
The first performance we can assist to is Klangstabil's work; they are characterized by a great versatility of sound, rhythm and atmosphere. A very melodic elektro-synthpop accompanied by an acid-timbred voice and alternated by noise tracks like interludes among the songs, too short and with no structure; the danger is bordom and to weigh down a performance that ought to have another nature. Curious instead is the use of a Game Boy, characteristic instrument of Micromusic [about micromusic you can read these reports: Micromilano, Lyon, Basel].
People could profit by gaps between two performances to peer among the delicacies proposed by some labels present at the festival. It was impossible staying there and buy nothing when in front of us there were: Ant-zen, Ad Noiseam, Rustblade and Hands and for once our wallet left us with no remorse.
Mental process sounds like: ButifIdon'tbuyitnowIwon'tfinditanywhereelse .
Music merchandising isn't the only attraction of the night, cuz ears could be pleased in the annexed room where we found a strange machine, I'd venture to say sharp. This was Dr. Nexus and Greta's work [www.the-script.de] made up of vinyl, pieces assembled together, rotating backwards, throwing up industrial, whiny and distorted sounds which stayed in loop for few minutes and then changed without stopping.
Before Punch Inc performance, audience has been attracted by a human hangin up exibition. A folsky see-saw which held a man having fun, who, with this behaviour, mucked up all the interesting things that should have such a performance. I felt no kind of emotion, I consider this a banal and off colour interlude compared to, for example, the Freaks Bloody Tricks' performances, during The Posthuman happening near Milan. The only positive factor was the incidental music - present between a group and anotha of course - put on by Butz, Salt [Ant-zen], Rx [Banthier] e Agent Provocateur.
The stage finally began to pulse again leaving space to two real captains of a ship sailing the frequencies: Punch Inc.. Four hands able to trap the audience as if they were insects in a spider-web; but it's so pleasant stay there, in front of loudspeakers, making us inundate by dirty and powerful sonorities which hypnotize our brain. Industrial sounds and elevated bpm velocity convinced me about the fact that this was the most proper group for this location.
That's Monolith turn. He proposed slower and calmer techno-rave sonorities than the previous artists with more experimental tendences, but he's been able to keep all the people glued on the speakers. Rave wall of sound would have been better for these last two performances, cuz they're based on the frequencies, not on the volume; in clubs they are usually not good balanced and high and bass could bother.
Last performance seemed to last more than the others put together. Alec Empire is beyond doubt one of the main figure in this music scene, not only for his new gold curls and the surfer square-jawed.
He started his work with the maximum charge in order to fill the audience with no after dinner drink. Different sounds, intricated tracks, changes in rhythm even into a single minute; a material made up of electro and dirty-noise wooves, like a torn fabric. All was going in a good direction till his definitive fall, from an aggressive timbre, to a monotone and flat loop, like a lullaby that made me fall asleep for real.
All performances were accompanied by art and visual realized by: Exil [Sound Movie], Zeitschnitt & DarkLab Visuals [Visuals Film] and Tina Cassati.
Once the Festival had shown nearly everything that there were to show (sorry Dr. Nexus, see ya next time) and the weariness had won the curiosity to see the factory under the sun rays, we were ready to go towards our Drexmobile that would have brought us in direction of the bedroom. Pity for the next dj sets.