“I don’t particularly want to pick up an instrument,” said Alex Paterson, founder of the ambient house pioneering entity, the Orb, “I want to pick all these sounds and make musical notes of these sounds.”
As a music festival, Moogfest’s technology and futurism side are unique in comparison to others (maybe with the exception of SXSW), as festivalgoers take part in various digital installations like Microsoft’s Kinect tent featuring Grimes, in sound building workshops and sessions on the future of digital music, or Hacking Sound (Systems), including The Exchange: Switchboard Synthesizers featuring Antenes. Meanwhile, Moogfest’s back-of-house operation team will be collecting, tracking and analyzing it’s own data pool of what’s taking place behind the scenes.
Aside from Microsoft’s past sins with its browser, various operating systems, and the UVO software that has NEVER worked properly in my Kia Soul, the tech company’s creative and effective side is appearing through its Music x Tech program that supports and integrates with music, art and culture. At Moogfest, Microsoft will tap its Kinect motion sensing technology to activate a unique experience for festivalgoers, where they can make their own remixes of Grimes’ single, "REALiti" on the fly.
The iconic storyteller, songwriter, performer, purveyor of voice-altering mechanics, and first ever artist-in-residence at NASA, Laurie Anderson will take Moogfest-goers on one of her explorations, this time into the world of humanistic communication and information, one that crosses physical planes and unconscious realms of reality.
“There’s just something that really appeals to me about the musician as the operator or the technician,” said NYC-based DJ, producer, and switchboard synthesizer performer, Antenes (Lori Napoleon), in the modular synthesizer documentary, "I Dream Of Wires.” Drawn to the world of this vintage telephone communications equipment, whose history dates back to the day when women operators played the part of communications maestros, Antenes has given dusty, forgotten machinery new life.
Earlier this week North Carolina’s legislature and Gov. Pat McCrory took society backwards in time when they passed House Bill 2, the Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act, that flushed anti-discrimination protections for all lesbians, gays and bisexuals down the toilette while also barring transgender people from using bathrooms that do not match the gender on their birth certificate.