Laurel Halo, Steve Summers, Ulla Anona, Spa Moans | Laura | Dance | Chicago Reader
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click to enlarge Laurel Halo

Laurel Halo

Courtesy Surefire Agency

Laurel Halo, Steve Summers, Ulla Anona, Spa Moans 

When: Sat., Oct. 8, 10 p.m. 2016
Price: $10
Berlin-based Michigan native Laurel Halo is a solo electronic artist who crafts music both transcendent and immediate. By working within two textural extremes, she forges a sound that’s a refreshing addition to modern experimental techno: At times her deep, washed-out bass is so expansive and melodic it creates a harmonic foundation in a way that mids and highs just couldn’t, while her floating synth hits provide more of a driving rhythm rather than anything hummable. But at other times she deploys the tight, punctuated bass that drives her music aggressively forward, providing clubgoers at Berlin’s Berghain with the out-of-body sonic experience for which they wait in line hours to experience. Laurel Halo wants to make intelligent music that’s danceable but also decidedly free of the constraints of hypermasculine club music. Her use of bass is matched only by producer Blawan, though his pounds furiously like a war drum, while Laurel Halo measures hers in thunderous booms—she gives it a spotlight on “Drift,” from her recent In Situ. She’s in some great company as a signee of Hyperdub, and her 2012 debut album, Quarantine, was named best album of that year by experimental-music bible the Wire. A bit elusive, she rarely tours, which should up the anticipation for tonight’s performance.
— Meagan Fredette



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