Engineer & Execute presents INTERFACE/INTERCHANGE @ SKYYBAR, 7 December 2002

It’s good to notice that the media at large and now the public in general are starting to embrace uniquely South African dance music production. It’s even better to announce that the second Engineer & Execute event, taking place at SKYYBAR on 7 December 2002, will give Durban audiences the opportunity to sample some of the most cutting edge digital and analogue vibrations in the country. With Cape Town’s Roger Goode, Ryan Dent and Felix Laband (also an ex-KZN boy) enjoying unprecedented media coverage, its now appropriate that the Durban talent got to spend more time in their 300 annual days of sun.

Although the entire night will feature and focus solely on South African dance electronica, the night is not just about the beats – it’s about the listener and their experience. Taking references from the current vogue of retro re-fitting and recycling all that is 1980s from fashion to music (think George Michael’s ‘Shoot the Dog’), the evening’s conceptual theme is that tenuous shift from analogue to digital interfaces and sound architecture. Expect to discover a series of installations where psychedelic poetry, PACMAN and ‘bad hair’ music videos collide - all combined with a healthy dose of satire and fun.

Orchestrators of the event, the 4-man Engineer & Execute team (Kliktrak, Valve and DJ Toine), will appear alongside special guests: ex-THC band members, The Joynd Sons and the mysterious Jacques Haumeau, an old ‘Surf City’ boy whose been in Nigeria and Paris for too long but not long enough to celebrate his tenth year of live electronica in one of his home towns.

Along with Jacques, Richard Smith (a.k.a. Kliktrak), will be the other performer on the night to create and perform dance music LIVE, using a setup of analogue and digital instrumentation (keyboards, synthesizers, drum machines and sequencers) without resorting to playback from DAT or deejaying from CD or vinyl. Kliktrak has created his own original brand of electronic dance music since 1989, the result being an energizing mix of quality, innovative and progressive electronic dance music which envelopes the audience in lush, sculptured, synthesized aural embraces and truly wicked original beats.

Valve is a collaborative studio project produced by Durban architect Don Albert (co-designer of Durban's Millennium Tower and the Barrows factory), and involves the collaborative talents of DJs, composers and singers over the years. Recent developments in music recording software have freed Valve from the labyrinthine collections of retro synthesizer gear and now enables the composition of cutting edge music with all the retro twists imaginable, from the comfort of a laptop in any location. Inspired by Kraftwerk, Coldcut and Slam, and with healthy borrowing from early '80's synth-pop pioneers, Valve's laptop live-set will include live augmentation and the DJ skills of ex-Crash resident Meanboy Roy, taking you backwards and forwards simultaneously.

Another Valve collaborative project on the night will involve the unearthing of the psychedelic poetry of Burgurt Roberts in a unique installation space. For 30 years the reel-based recordings of Robert’s American perceptions at the end of the 1960s during the height of the space race has remained untouched until its interface with the blended paranoid atmospherics created by Valve.

DJ Toine Scholtz began working with computer-based music production in 1984 before studying for an honours degree in Music Technology at the University of Natal’s Music School. He has worked on a range of music for radio, TV and film, including the South African production of Sesame Street for radio entitled “Takalani Sesame” and music for the most recent Leon Schuster film release, “Mr. Bones”. Opting to DJ with a bit of live effects this time, the crowd can expect snippets from his large body of original dance music, as well as examples of his numerous collaborative projects, including remix work of music by local kwaito artists TKZee and Mandoza, material by Cape Town-based group Mood Phase 5ive, Durban group THC, and Durban artist Syd Kitchen.

If this sounds all too highbrow, we won’t be held responsible for your reaction when you hear the likes of a Talking Heads sample carefully woven into an intricate breakbeat bassline. And if that’s techno-gibberish to you as well, then why not come and experience what you’ve been missing. It’s a guarantee that everyone will take a little new something home with them.

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