With the 11th edition coming to a close, we are particularly proud of how the festival was received this year. All told, MUTEK 2010 tick-tocked through its five days as cleanly as a Swiss watch, with a revolving line-up of high-calibre international talent filling diverse and quality showcases attended by consistently attentive and enthusiastic audiences.
From our vantage point, after last year's landmark 10th anniversary, going into an 11th edition was a bit of a risk in how to move forward. So we're incredibly satisfied to see that MUTEK 2010 will be remembered most as a theatre of superb musical discoveries. That's how the festival started many years ago, and those are the principles for success that we still abide by today.
Among the many surprises that played the stages this year were German live-electronics trio BRANDT BRAUER FRICK, who delivered a blistering Sunday night set that managed to rekindle the energy levels of every one in the room; GUILLAUME COUTU DUMONT & THE SIDE EFFECTS, who set the Metropolis on fire during Saturday's jam-packed all-nighter; and young newcomers like the charming NICOLAS JAAR, the melancholic, surreal JON HOPKINS, and Savoy room discoveries like WOO + INCREDIBLE BOB and CHRIS HRENO.
Meanwhile MORITZ VON OSWALD, NURSE WITH WOUND, MINILOGUE and MOVE D stood out brightest amidst a strong showing by veteran artists, delivering sets that managed to put their long and illustrious careers into new perspective. For sheet amiability, MATMOS ravished the festival with an opening night performance that was at once refreshing and inspiring. TIM HECKER and BEN FROST showed that noise and experimental rock were by no means incompatible bedfellows, while KING MIDAS SOUND, DEMDIKE STARE and IKONIKA demonstrated the many faces and facets of bass music to completely captivated audiences. Sunday's Piknic, moved to the Metropolis on account of rain, saw PÉPÉ BRADOCK erase the memories of everyone there and hypnotize audiences into forgetting where they were for three hours straight.
The 2010 edition featured a particularly impressive showing by local Canadian artists. Stephen Beaupré's GEMMIFORM, THIERRY GAUTHIER's NORD/SUD and AUN's BLACK PYRAMID, all world premieres, stood out for their stunning visuals and haunting soundtracks. Equally inspiring was NICOLAS BERNIER and MARTIN MESSIER's LA CHAMBRE DES MACHINES. The sheer energy and physicality of their performance on custom-made sound boxes set the festival's A/Visions series to a blistering start. Late-night Ectoplasmes3 performances by Montrealers HERMAN KOLGEN and JEAN-PIERRE AUBÉ stood on par with ELEH's explorations of composition and sound, while the Metropolis' Savoy room was bursting at the seams from memorable sets by BOWLY, KRESSEL, SNORK, XAVIER LEBUIS and SPOOLOOPS. The artistic success and large following of the Expérience and Ectoplasmes series, as well as the positive echoes surrounding performances by locals throughout the five days, enriched the festival and confirmed its place as a leader in promoting Canadian talent and artists working on the cutting edge of exploration and creativity.
Despite a capricious weather forecast, MUTEK's first major outdoor concert was an undeniable success, attracting a wide-ranging 10,000 spectators to the Place des Festivals in the heart of the Quartier des Spectacles. Everyone there agreed: the performance by SEÑOR COCONUT & HIS ORCHESTRA, featuring the suave vocals of Argenis Brito, was a stellar first volley in planting MUTEK's flag right in the center of the city for all to see. Special mentions go out to LE GOLDEN for the assured performance that opened the night. Meanwhile, the EXTRA_MUROS program of outdoor media art and installations by PHILIPP GEIST, MELISSA MONGIAT and MOUNA ANDRAOS was frequented by more than 40,000 people. With all its different initiatives in outdoor programming, MUTEK demonstrated that it could leave its special fingerprint on the Quartier des Spectacles by putting digital creativity on the centre stage.
We would like to thank all of the artists, partners, volunteers and friends that supported this 11th edition. Above all, the MUTEK team thanks its core public, who have invited the festival into their way of life and who adhere and trust the vision of its programmers. A standing ovation for MUTEK 2010's public!
While the MUTEK staff has its definite favourites of 2010, we would love to hear what performances made your top five list for this 11th edition. Follow this link to vote!Results in the next newsletter.
MUTEK 2010 PHOTOS, REVIEWS AND MORE
Don't forget to check our photo gallery, on the 2010 festival homepage, for a stream of festival moments and memories.
You'll also notice that we've been tagging reviews and articles about the festival all week long; these are available on the festival homepage as well. For a complete day-by day review, don't miss the URB MUTEK coverage. Headphone Commute offers a quick weekend roundup, while the Andy Battaglia provides a thoughtful piece on the many moods of MUTEK on Artforum.
Finally, don't forget to check out a series of MUTEK 2010 videos recorded by our MUTEK.MX team, as well as the video clips captured by our MUTEK.AR guests!