07 December 2012 (gig)
09 December 2012
If Stella Polaris, self-proclaimed organisers of the world’s largest electronica festival, wanted the world to know about their event at Tate Britain they were not doing a good job. My friend and I had to enquire at the reception where it was being held. There were no banners outside; no emanating waves of cool electronica floating through the nearby halls. This was an event you had to seek out; only those in the know would be in attendance.
Held in the Pre-Raphaelite art gallery section of the building, the main hall served as a hub containing hobnobbing folk and an interesting art installation. Miharayasuhiro’s ‘Ophelia Has A Dream’ consisted of throwing electronic petals and butterflies at a downed lady in a forest. The forest depicted was hypnotic and was unfortunately overshadowed by the gimmicky interactive aspect in my opinion. A very serene canvas to look at and coupled with the music wafting nearby a relaxing way to pass five minutes.
In another room were the Etsy craft fair and a small food stall selling overpriced beer and snacks. Etsy is like Ebay without the evil bid-snipers. You can find all sorts of creative endeavours there; I bought myself a replica watch of the type Nathan Drake wears in Uncharted 3. Unfortunately nothing that geeky was on show tonight.
And finally the music itself. Held in a room much too small, however intimate the mood was. There were a handful of not quite hygienic looking beanbags spread around with squatters making a home for themselves. In residence providing the laid back and chill music were Mads Björn, and DJ Løwenstein, and founders of Stella Polaris themselves, Kalle B and Nicka Kirstejn.
From the trippy beats crossing a line between minimal tech and compilation CD chill out, you could envision a cool concept at play, but the execution was lacking. I’d very much like to experience a Stella Polaris festival, but here’s hoping they can pull out the stops in the future when experimenting like tonight.