Sónar was ace. Some people I’ll probably look out for (or avoid…):
A lovely vocalist in the Red Bull room. No idea who she is. She used one of those delay loop pedal thingies to sing with herself.
Les Anciens: experimental baldy blokes with very tight and clever percussion, bass, random sounding, jazzy but not with the right kind of chords to be jazz if you get what I mean.
Littleprettyautomatique: nice dubby trendy housey DJ set.
Kazumasa Hashimoto: LOVELY. live piano and piano style playing of electronica sounds with live drums.
FM3 with the Buddha machine: BIZARRE wee machines each of which plays 9 loops. There’s a button on the side to decide which loop plays. The performance looked like two people playing a game, moving the machines around, stacking them, knocking them over, sounds picked up with microphones. Looked impressive but we couldn’t really hear what was going on!
Piana: BEAUTIFUL Japanese Sigur Rós-like sounds.
FM3 feat. Blixa Bargeld: WEIRD. Yer man from Einstürzende Neubauten. Lots of delay-loop pedal madness with instrument after instrument fed into it all. Blixa’s voice was put through some kind of scary harmonising layered thing which made him sound like Satan.
Beastie Boys: after the initial “WOO it’s the Beastie Boys!” effect had worn off I just thought, whatever :-). Nothing particularly memorable happened.
Nettle: KINDA COOL! electronic drumming action with live Arabic instrumentation.
Black Affair: vocals, drum machine and sequencer, and bass. Dull to watch but sounded like a male-led Ladytron.
Clark: looked like the drummer fell out with the electronic dude at one point. Looked boring but sounded KINDA COOL. Big fat electronica with huge drumming.
Richie Hawtin: bopped away to him for a while! Very serious—wish it had been less gurny!
[Um, some other bands and DJs whose names I’m not quite sure of. I was just kinda wandering around!]
Wolf Eyes: crap, loud, noisy, angry. People with fingers in ears for this, my shorts were flapping with the bass.
Andy Stott: I like his stuff a lot. After Burbuja, though, I really wasn’t impressed by people just nodding behind a laptop—and that’s all he did.
Mira Calix: more nodding. I like her music but visually it was totally boring.
Blackout Concert: this was KINDA FUNKY, down at the Centre d’Art Santa Mónica. Gist: they dumped us all in the basement of an art gallery and turned off everything that makes any noise (water heating, air conditioning, whatever else there is in a building), step-by-step, then the lights, bolted all the doors shut. The silence interrupted only by a bloke issuing orders on a walkie talkie, “Step 1… *tissssst* turn the air conditioning to level… 2 *tissssst*” (presumably—was in Spanish).
Christian Vogel: AMAZING. Up until this bloke’s set I’d decided that techno was no longer worth the misery. Bleepy jerky techno DJ set. The Burbuja crew [I’m not obsessed, honest, I didn’t even mention that I noticed one of the Burbuja dancer people in the Blackout Concert…] were merrily bopping away! Vogel looks a bit like a PhD student trying and failing to explain something mathsy at an undergrad seminar. He sort of stumbled around behind the decks, half-jerking, but still managed to mix seamlessly.
Mogwai: alright, but, MEH!, by this point I was all technoed up so ventured across to another room.
Black Devil Disco Club: AMAZING–just what I needed. Sort of Donna Summery style basslines, bongos, random singing, bloke with long hair and beard. Bouncy discotek, I guess. Audience was a happy audience—much bopping.
Milky Globe: AMAZING—still Lo Recordings. More bouncy happy stuff.
Cursor Miner: AMAZING. I think I like Lo Recordings (also home of The Chap whom I love). “There’s a battle there’s a war / Killing used to be a chore / Now there’s just a switch to flick / Oh so easy oh so quick.” This dude was wearing a ski mask, had flashing lights on his head, wearing a fluroscent vest and Y-fronts. Loved it. Mostly banging trance-techno but I’m sure I heard him sing sonething about philosophical theories of free will.
Altern8: FANTASTIC! They played a DJ set featuring rave classics and the likes of Voodoo Ray, Inner City—hmmm what’s it called—you know that Detroit tune with the vocals.
Much fun had.