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Thursday 12th
posted by Morning Star in Arts

GAS Live
Barbican Centre, London EC2

TO THE thrill of all art-techno enthusiasts, electronic producer Wolfgang Voigt returns to perform his seminal GAS project, allegedly inspired by taking LSD in the German forests of Cologne where he grew up.

The work, ambient and immersive, might make sense in more intimate surroundings. But, in the Barbican's main auditorium, one can appreciate the sheer scale of the audiovisual experience that the acoustics of the room do justice to.

Immersive and profound, the music transports you into another world and it very much feels at times that you're wandering through the forests displayed in the sumptuously shot videos plastered across the back of the stage — visual effects that would do the likes of director Terrence Malik proud.

Cryptically, Voigt has stated that the intention of his project is to "bring the forest to the disco or vice-versa" and he certainly achieves something of this, although the work couldn't be further from "disco" if it tried.

The performance is more akin to watching a piece of classical music and Voigt's stage presence, unassuming behind his laptop, appears as if he treats it as such too.

Support is provided by US laptop artist Huerco S, aka Brian Leeds, whose slightly less ambient set mixes in the odd staccato beat and ends as abruptly as it starts with the simple press of a button. He may as well have simply slammed his laptop shut.

Still, inspirational one and all.

Will Stone