East London is preparing for Alpha-ville, the electronic music festival that leaps into the post-digital era to explore, discover and most importantly, dance.
With most of the British broadsheets rushing to proclaim the imminent death of UK music festivals, a more sober eye would hint at a possible escape from their financially driven downturn: they need to start doing things in a different way.
Alpha-ville is one of those festivals that are already doing just that. Created out of genuine passion for electronic music, the necessary dedication to build solid foundations for a project that can thrive and the resilience to not just exist, but also expand in musically congested London, the festival is preparing for its third edition, running from September 22-25 in various venues across east London.
This year, the creation of Carmen Salas and Estela Oliva boasts live performances, screenings, lectures, a symposium, workshops and installations, in an all-encompassing effort to grasp the ‘post-digital’. By using this concept as the main theme of the festival, the two organisers are instigating a musical, visual and verbal conversation about how digital is transforming the core of our existence and everyday life.
An investigating spirit is evident not just in Alpha-ville’s structure but also in its music programme that constitutes its core, examining electronic music from the outskirts of experimentation to the familiar grounds of dancefloor beats.
The headliners Pantha Du Prince, Matthew Dear or Jennifer Cardini may be known to many as dancefloor-fillers but artists like Manchester-bred Illum Sphere or German Anstam are gems waiting to be discovered. While Illum Sphere has been heralded by Ikonika as “one of the most unique artists to come out of the UK”, Anstam enjoys the admiration of many of his bass-addicted cohorts, like wild-boys Modeselektor.
Bristolian duo Emptyset will drill into our subconscious with their dub-noise-techno chimera and Andy Stott will ease the pain with his mesmerizing house. Max Cooper, who also headlined the pre-Alpha-ville party in July, will be returning to prove himself as the one of the most refreshingly new producers by established Cologne-based label Traum Schallplatten.
Pantha Du Prince and Matthew Dear, the most popular names of the line-up, are both examples of how the world of techno can reach out to soul, funk or even classical music lovers. Both artists are mapping new territories in electronic music, bringing together audiences who share one common trait: they are looking for and can appreciate the different. That’s why Alpha-ville should surely feel like home.
Alphaville takes place on September 22-25 in Netil House (E8 3RL), XOYO (EC2A 4AP), Hearn Street Warehouse (EC2A 3NF), Rich Mix (E1 6LA), Whitechapel Gallery (E1 7QX), The Vortex (N16 8AZ) and Space Studios (E8 3HR).
Click here for more information and to buy tickets.