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2010-07-10

Quart Festival 1995 - a short report on the electronic music there

For nostalgics out there, this is a short unedited report I wrote in 1995 after the Quart Festival in Kristiansand, Norway. I was focusing on the electronic artists, so if that's your thing, read on. And sorry about the lack of pictures, but I hadn't gotten into that habit at that point.

Wednesday 5.7:
Markens:
Kenny Larkin was DJ'ing. Great set, typical Detroit sounds and style all the way through. Lasted until 03.00.

Thursday 6.7:
Vaskeriet:
Coldcut was DJ'ing before Sandals. Apparantly it was just Jonathan and another bloke which I didn't know the name of. The music they played was a mad mixture of own cuts, Ninja cuts, strange cuts and even Bros cuts! Madhatters ruled. Music to go wild to. Then I only caught ten minutes of Sandals before I went to..

Markens:
..where Laurent Garnier was DJ'ing. What a fine set he managed to pull. After the gig I talked a bit with him, and he said that he had played VERY commercial, since he couldn't help notice that the crowd was a bit... what can I say... unscholared? I didn't actually think the music was that commercial, but then again he is more famous than me.
Anyway, an absolute stormer, and later on we tried to get in to an afterparty where he would play, but apparantly nothing much happened, and we didn't get in anyway. (Just a bunch of VIP's and drunk hotel guests and no one dancing. What a waste.) Actually got some sleep that night.

Friday 8.7:
Vaskeriet:
Luke Vibert DJ'ed and pulled a quite jungly and strange set, even for him, with Depth Charge coming on to DJ after him. He played some unbelievable funky stuff, and during the last quarter Tricky came on and MC'ed and got the crowd into gear for Rocker's Hi-Fi, who played well and according to their record. However..

Markens:
..Juan Atkins was DJ'ing, and no one in their right mind wants to miss him, right? Well, turned out that his mixing was pretty bad (a lot of double kicks and out of time hi-hats). The songs were good, but I was just a tad disappointed about the mixing. Just a tad.
I actually heard that they had some trouble finding him on the airport in Italy, where he was supposed to get the airplane to Norway. No wonder: he was in Paris! Too much spliff, I suppose...

Saturday 9.7:
Teltet i Tresse:
Tommy Tee spun the decks for Norwegian rapact Warlocks. Good enough. Mad Professor came on and did his/their thing, which is perhaps a bit too much REAL dub for me. I prefer my dub a bit washed out. (Stonewashed?)
Then House of Pain came on, who were... I guess good enough, but HoP for me is something I put on to hear the ruffness and feel the lyrical flow, which was lacking a bit during the concert. I mean, the same words, but live is never the same as studio, right?
After that people literally threw themselves over each other to catch Tricky. Now this gig was very good. After the concert I felt... kinda weird. I did! Very strange mood over all the songs, and I have to say he was actually better live than on record. (Just to contradict myself re: HoP.)

Caledonien Hall:
Gazz played before Blachman Thomas meets Al Agami & Renee, but I didn't catch this at all.

Markens:
Neither did I see Michael Dog who was DJ'ing. You see, I was at..

Dyreparken:
..with two different scenes:

The Junglecafe:
..starring Little Simon, LTJ Bukem and A Guy Called Gerald who were all DJ'ing. But I wasn't there either! I was at..

Piratscenen:
A tourist attraction with a pirateship. The artists were actually performing on the ship, with us standing around a big swimming pool! Great place to take a swim, right? No. Too much chlorine in the water made that impossible. And if anyone had tried, they would have shut down the whole area. You can imagine the tight security.
Anyway. Earth Nation came on first, and Ralf and the other one (can't remember his name, sorry) performed a lot of new material. Very good. A girl from Eye Q was there too (Pauli), and danced even harder than most of us others! (Ever seen a promotion person dance? I have - now.) Beautiful trance all the way, even some ambient excursions inbetween. Can't wait for that album!

Then came The Aloof, who also did a great set. During 'Religion', Tricky came on and I felt a bit indignant on Aloof's behalf as the crowd started to shriek 'Tricky! Tricky!'. Oh, well. Apparantly, a friend of mine knew a girl who had been hanging out with them all week, since they arrived on Monday and spent the week there. Lucky. And regarding Tricky, he was all over the place. He got himself a new tattoo and people were whispering "Isn't that...?" while pointing at him. Strange. I don't wanna be a star.

Fluke then came on and did a storming set. Absolutely brilliant. The way these men twist their knobs is incredible. I don't think they had any DAT's going, judging from the activity behind the mixer, and if they did, I don't care. The music was salvation enough. Btw, I liked this live appearance much more than Fluke's Peel sessions, which were a bit more mediocre. (Then again, those are recordings from 91-92.)

After some dead air, so to speak, came Global Communication, or more correctly half of them, as only Tom was present. Mark was in the Netherlands (I think?), also performing as GC. How quaint. I say GC, but I probably mean Link or Reload, as the music this evening was quite housy and uptempo. On the vocals were Kirsty Hawkshaw from Opus III, and sometimes Tom would shout into the mike phrases like "isn't she beautiful?", "so lovely!" and "she IS beautiful". (Which she was, of course.) And she has an amazing and unique voice. Also, they had two performers, a man and woman, doing things I really didn't understand. But then again I wasn't supposed to, as they explained to me afterwards.
Most of the songs I had never heard before. They may be on some rare Infonet-12", and if not I hope they get released. Much to splendor over here, I tell you! And Kirsty's voice fit perfectly into the whole picture (or do I mean sound?) Also present was a saxophone-player and another girl on vocals. During the last two songs, the sun started to come up, and the musicians tossed out out little GC boxes with candy in them. I will never forget how I felt facing the sun and listening to the music. I don't think I have ever felt something so powerful and emotive. Just pure and happy bliss.

When it was all definitively over, we took a bus back to the campus, packed our tent and left the city by train - back to Oslo.
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