Operation Algorave: Accomplished

March turned out to be quite the month. After a successful Coded Matter(s) #5: Coding the Club in the Melkweg during 5 Days Off on the 5th, we have to admit were a bit anxious about doing another event straight away, only two weeks later.

Well, turns out there was absolutely no need to worry. In the past weekend we, together with STEIM, had the honour of hosting the very first Algorave on Dutch soil and what a great honour it was! The party itself was preceded by two excellent workshops, which were thoroughly enjoyed both teachers (The Void Pointers & Matt Yee-King) and participants, and followed up by the symposium on Sunday, where Alex McLean and Marcel Wierckx gave us a great in-depth look at the origins, practice and importance of both live coding within and outside of the algorave context. Due to personal circumstances Marije Baalman could regrettably not perform, but Alex McLean gladly took it upon him to demonstrate a bit more of his algoraving skills. Be sure to keep an eye on our sources, as we’ll be adding the talks and some links to software Alex showed us soon.

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Marcel Wierckx
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Alex McLean – performance at symposium

The rave itself was a sight to behold. A great mix of coders, enthusiasts, new music seekers and random punters enjoyed a whirling live coding sets and all the proper elements of a rave like wild dancing, flashing lights, enticing performers and more (we trust there’s no need to name all of the elements) were richly represented. Even those unfamiliar with the concept and whatever code was seen on the screen were gripped and intrigued.

The Void Pointers

As the crowd started coming in, Shelly Knotts eased in the night with some more ambient work. After her (and between the other acts), The Void Pointers did a great job of keeping things moving, churning out varied sets with lots of crazy input devices. By the time Luuma took the stage the OCCII was moving properly to his chopped up alien style and unconventional controllers and feedback system with swirly dots of colour which responded to his music. The following set by Canute (Alex McLean on live code and Matt Yee-King on drums) was a real crowd pleaser and thus very well received (a special mention here for the superhuman Matt, who slept very little, flew in from London, gave a workshop during the day and then sat down to drum for around two hours straight), at the end Shelly even plugged back in for some ‘code2code2drums’ (take that, back2back DJs) and a bit of sweet revanche for the tech problems earlier that evening.

Shelly Knotts & Alex McLean

The evening was properly concluded by the enigmatic Exoterrism, who blew everyone away with a post-everything errorstep work of wizardry, musically possibly the most enticing performance of the evening. We can’t wait for the recording of that one! Everyone who was there will relate the same story: it was a gem.

A great big thanks to everyone who attended, danced and enjoyed this evening. We very much hope to see you at a next algorave, whether we organise it or not.

Now, without further ado, please enjoy the pictures and be sure to check out the video on the right (courtesy of Tijmen Schep) to see for yourself what a proper algorave looks like. Stay tuned for more updates and media coming to you later this week.

Canute (Matt Yee-King)