Not for profit listing for experimental music improvisation, contemporary composition, sound art, electroacoustic and DIY music in Manchester

Tools For Unknown Futures

FutureEverything is a festival of innovations inquiring into the ideas of digital culture and future technology. Informing transformation and social change through the Arts; to question and reimagine everything from language to structures and systems. The festival consisted of installations, performances, experiences and exhibitions curated throughout Manchester’s NOMA district, centered around City Fictions; a pop-up city of the future.
The music of FutureEverything integrated the idea of tools for unknown futures, in addition to appropriating the context of performance. In partnership with the Royal Northern College of Music, FutureEverything hosted a series of experimental electronic music performances at various venues across the city. Disconcert Manchester were fortunate enough to see a few of these shows including Robert Henke’s Lumière, The Space Lady, as well as a night of Faktion and Evian Christ presents…
Robert Henke delivered an outstanding audiovisual performance of Lumière at the RNCM: a mesmerising display of austere sonics and delineated synchronicity that has been commended for it’s visionary virtuosity. Using a triad of high-powered lasers, Henke etched out an intensity of geometric motions that worked through the spatial dimensions detailing spiralling harmonographs. Recognised for his work with Monolake, Robert Henke has been instrumental in the development of the minimal techno scene alongside contemporaries Basic Channel. The sonic element of Lumière preserved the minimal techno aesthetic whilst developing a more refined sound, honing in on cold-cut productions with a brute, rollage of kicks and a focus to metallic noise works.
Beaming forth to alight the FutureEverything festival, Manchester Art Gallery invited the Space Lady to perform, staged in front of the epic tragedy of The Sirens and Ulysses. The luring song of the sea nymphs framed the whimsical vocals of the Space Lady and lo-fi pop enchantress, Meddicine. Supporting the show with her dark, affecting requiems of chrysalis dreams, Meddicine wrung out dismal dirges and loaded, minimal-retro tracks strewed with scathing echoes and languid vocals. Her avant/après pop recalled the likes of the Not Not Fun gang sprawling in the shadows of fallen hollows.
The Space Lady received a heartwarming welcoming as she landed her first show outside the US, touched and in awe of all the kindred spirits. Having lived the nomadic life of a street performer, the Space Lady played on the beat-trip streets of San Francisco in the 1980s, later being celebrated as an outsider artist. Coaxed in mythological obscurity, she was exposed to a wider audience late last year thanks to a release on Night School of her Greatest Hits recordings from the 1990s. On her voyage of peace and love, with her kaleidoscopic mind and dime-store Casio, she channels a magnificent performance of galaxy trails and tales of astral space, pastiche pop covers and cosmic songs for lovers.
More detailed reviews of the Faktion and Evian Christ shows can be found on the Disconcert Manchester website.