Sunday, October 07, 2018

Drexciya live for one night only, Liberal Arts Gallery, Detroit (2001)

'This Drexciya performance did happen at the Liberal Arts Gallery on Gratiot. We organized it under Fulcrum Innovations (now Pi Gao Movement) and performed together. It was the first “after party” we put on for DEMF at that time. Adam X, Heather Hart played and James and Gerald performed as Drexciya and their presence was most definitely known because the line to see them was over a block long. The police showed up but we were enforcing a strict no drug policy and they didn’t shut us down. Imagine that, an awesome party with true fans and no drugs. It was the most memorable times here in Detroit.'
This statement was posted by Ultradyne in response to a recent post on DRL's Facebook about a show they promoted on 27th May 2001 during the Detroit Electronic Music Festival. Dopplereffekt, Ultradyne, Tangible and Shadowpusher had been advertised as playing along with DJs at Detroit's Liberal Arts Gallery. Perhaps this latter act was a Drexciya alias but I just can't find anything else about them anywhere. To my knowledge, the first that I or most people knew about this show was in 2017 when it was mentioned in an extensive piece about Drexciya by Mike Rubin, Infinite Journey to Inner Space: The Legacy of Drexciya, for RBMA (see text below, link in comments).
'The group apparently recorded their music live, but never played an actual concert, though there were plans for a Drexciya gig (on a bill along with Dopplereffekt and Ultradyne) during the 2001 Detroit Electronic Music Festival weekend. “I know they had rented a hall on Gratiot,” says Mike Banks (UR). “It was shaping up to be the after-party of the year, but they pulled no permits and the cops showed up. That’s about as close to a Drexciya live show that ever happened.”'
It's quite amazing to think that this admittedly low-key and one-off concert has somehow stayed a 'secret' or was just plain unknown outside of those who witnessed it for 17 years! Even close associates like Mike Banks were unaware it had happened. There are now many questions about this show (what did they play!) but for now it's just great to know that James Stinson did get his wish to play live as Drexciya, just over a year before he died as it would turn out.
When speaking with Derek Beere for Future BPM sometime in early 2002, James had said this on the subject, "We’ll pop up somewhere, unannounced, you will never see it coming and then we're gone. You know sometimes how they do underground parties, where they tell you like a day before or only a couple of hours before the party goes on they’ll tell you where it's at? We'll probably do that. It'll be like 20 minutes before a show. Drexciya live, in Japan somewhere, down in a sea-port or submarine park downtown that's how it would be.”
The mystery and surprises continue.

2024 EDIT: I did find a review of this show from World Techno Nation (but it doesn't mention Drexciya). 


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember seeing a photo of this event on, Ultradyne performing on a table with the red hammer and sickle flag draped across it.

5:53 AM  

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