A formidable, diverse line-up of musical performers at this year's edition of Moogfest – which took place in the "Research Triangle" of Durham, North Carolina, over three days from May 19th through 21st – was nothing to scoff at, as it explored a nexus of adventurous sounds and accessible ideas. As Chris Weingarten notes in his recap, the most "now" music at the fest was the "digital-based, sculptural, sound-stretching mutant techno of Rabit, Tim Hecker, Ben Frost and Oneohtrix Point Never. Also, performances by Grimes, GZA, Laurie Anderson, Gary Numan, Blood Orange were also highlights. As Weingarten notes, popular kids show Yo Gabba Gabba! invited "both adults and children to experiment with new sounds," but it was "more like TED Talks Jr. inserted into a cascade of technical nightmares." Check out more exclusive photos of the convergence of musicians, scientists, futurists, relentlessly optimistic tech types that may prognosticate the future of music.
Laurel Halo has worked with artists such as John Cale, Julia Holter, and NH’Koxyen/Terepa – and now hosts a monthly show on Berlin Community Radio – DJ'd on May 19th, 2016.
An immersive all-night show, Robert Rich's concert was a "synthesis of found sound, prepared drones, and live instrumentals at very low volumes, very slowly" that took place from midnight to 8 a.m. the next morning.
"Using Mammal Music, you become a wilderness DJ by combining musical loops, natural sounds and animal calls to make unique musical mixes" was an especially whimsical way of saying: "The museum put some whale sounds into a sequencer."
Hailing from Sapporo, Japan, Qrion is currently preparing to release her first full-length album later this year.
A cyborg musician, Onyx Ashanti's "non-stop experimentation and exploration of sound and form is powered by his 'Exo-voice' sonic prosthesis, an instrument he created that fuses technique and technology into a full-body musical system, playable with hands, arms, mouth and body."
Modular Marketplace art installation
Gary Numan played albums like 1979's The Pleasure Principle and 1980's Telekon in full. As Chris Weingarten explains in his recap: "His synths were full and warm and precise, but the stiff, strutting New Waver android behind hits like "Cars" and "We Are Glass" has been seemingly juiced by the mutual appreciation with tourmates Nine Inch Nails. The 58-year-old bucked and stomped his boots and slammed mike stands. His arrangements of these once synth-heavy and chilly tunes are now chugging with electric guitar, but lose none of their robotic luster. Through a weekend of showcasing new technologies, one of the best performances was also one of the most human."
Nick Sanborn is one-half of Sylvan Esso, and he's now released Penumbra, Sanborn's debut EP under the name Made of Oak.
Blood Orange's Dev Hynes.
Comprised of musicians Nicole Miglis, Trayer Tryon, and Zach Tetreault, Hundred Waters cascades acoustic and electric.
Jona Bechtolt and Claire L. Evans of YACHT.
The morning after of Sleep Concert.
Vocalist/composer Tara Busch and filmmaker Maf Lewis are I Speak Machine. Together they make "brooding soundtracks and horror/sci-fi films, creating audio and visual in unison and giving both elements equal prominence."
GZA had a two-night residency at the fest.
Grimes turned "cutting-edge experimental ideas into a pop spectacle," according to Chris Weingarten. "Between the huge crowd, the massive bass and the dancers, everything about her set looked like a pop show, but the sounds were as out-there as many of the weekend's chillier, more expressionistic acts. You could hear the cold, harp-like, synthetic-sounding synths that power artists like Fatima Al Qadiri and the desiccated Weather Channel music of vaporwave. Grimes turned the distorted, nostalgic noises of the past into an exultant, extroverted pop future."
Harrison Mills (aka CatacombKid) and Clayton Knight (aka BeachesBeaches) record together as Odesza.
A native of Toronto, Tory Lanez brought his hip-hop prowess to the fest.
Bernie Worrell during Day 2 of Moogfest
Popular kids show Yo Gabba Gabba! invited "both adults and children to experiment with new sounds."
From Detroit, Nicola Kuperus and Adam Lee are Adult.
Since she started as a member of Danity Kane, the singer-songwriter has had solo success, releasing her sophomore album, Blackheart, last year.
Mark Mothersbaugh performs during the Yo Gabba Gabba! set at Moogfest.
Dorit Chrysler is one of the few Theremin virtuosos and she joined Mark Mothersbaug DJ Lance Rock for the Yo Gabba Gabba! set at Moogfest.
Gary Numan during Day 3 of Moogfest.
YACHT performing during Day 3 of Moogfest.
Dawn Richard during Day 3 of Moogfest.
Catalan choreographer Moon Ribas is the co-founder of the Cyborg Foundation, an international organization that aims to help people become cyborgs, defend cyborg rights, and promote cyborgism as an artistic and social movement.
Always an innovator, Laurie Anderson spoke with Jana Hunter, from the band Lower Dens, on the final day of Moogfest.