A night of excitement: Gifgrond #67!

I had such a wonderful time at the last Gifgrond that I intended, that I had simply made everything out of the way to go to the next one. I decided to be fully mentally and physically prepared for it, that’s why I took some weeks off from writing for yeah I know it sucks (in case you had noticed) to pre-drink in a hardcore schedule only comparable to rocky’s training in the rocky movies. When my liver was stronger than ever and my brain ready to party hearty, I headed down to Gifgrond episode 67; the XL edition!

I came in at the appropriate time of 9 o clock and already witnessed the place getting cutely filled up with new and familiar faces. Eventually they would become a blur as it wasn’t taking long for the first performer of the evening to do his thing. This was somebody I had always wanted to see live as he is quite the legend among the blip blob beep world. Goto80! Finally dreams turned reality, I knew it would be great, but it was still surprisingly different than expected, mind you; this was not at all in a negative way!

Goto80 by Frank Janssens

Somehow Goto80 did the remarkable thing to take it slow, build up a sound trip that you could see evolve on a big screen as he programmed it live and on the spot. He himself sat along the crowd at a desk with his keyboard staring at the same screen that the audience got attracted by like moths to a flame. This approach was so unique and friendly, totally unique and exposed; where normally a lot of electronic musicians hide behind their desk, Goto80 showed the polar opposite. He showed the desk, himself, as a man of the people for and with the people; it gave a really friendly and homely atmosphere to this brewing Gifgrond event.

He had nothing to hide, didn’t come out all the way from Sweden to play a game of digital patience or check out his emails; he sincerely laid himself and his music process bare, naked in front of you with astonishing music as a result. To me (as a frequent Gifgrond visitor) I thought that this was the best opener in Gifgrond history, Goto80’s honest approach felt as if you just walked in to a familiar family environment, no star allures, no flashy lights but a stern welcome home for anyone who just walked in to enjoy this multi cultural party. Strangely the coziness that Goto80 created felt at the same time educational, there is simply something truly mesmerizing in getting the option to peek behind the magical kitchen of music makers & that was exactly why Goto80 will always stay on top of respected beep bleep entertainers. He started so nice and mellow but found it’s way to build up into a uplifting orgasm of sound; it truly felt like computerized alchemy at work!

For a more of a free hand job kind of alchemy there was something amazing going on at one special corner of the Gifgrond location. There YoYoYo, a lovely visual artist from Thailand from the legendary tattoo shop YoYo had taken over & showcased her lovely colorful pieces to anyone who liked to see it. Even better; you could also go home with one of these unique drawings, not on a piece of paper but carefully crafted as a tattoo on your very own skin! What could be a better canvas and a way to remember what happened when you wake up sober the next day? Her visual happenings would make everyone happy, but there was more music to explore…

YoYoYo creating art from Gifgrond visitors

Coming from a entire different colorful cultural backdrop is the man behind the Chinabot label, under the name ‘Lafidki’ the from origin Cambodian artist (born in a refugee camp in Thailand) had came down to Gifgrond to bounce his head and create pounding electronics with hard four by four beats and synthetic trips in melodic forms. The atmospheres that he created could be best described as traditional roots music from Asia, with its gamelan-like sounds mixed in a futuristic bliss to form eventually wonderfully done psychedelically peaceful ambiances. The color arrangements of the sounds felt like electrifying rainbows to me, they all had a very positive energy to them, making it a exchange that could be fully felt by the thrilled and engaged audience!

Yoyoyo & Lafidki as photographed by Pisitakun

You could feel his own enthusiasm about everything that he invented, a thing that seemingly happened live on the spot and everything turned to gold! Sparkles flew around while the hero seemed to go into a deep trance by engaging in the act of frequent head banging and music making at the same time; it was a fascinating watch and even better; a intoxication audio happening to hear!

For a quick break (which might be needed to digest the new found bulge of energy), you could still watch Shopyoyo creating more playful art on the most lucky canvasses ever; the gentle Gifgrond visitors! To see this tattooist doing her thing was just as exciting to watch as the music that overwhelmed the sound of the needle plucking the happy flesh. It was simply a case of no escape for exciting inspiration and passion at this Gifgrond episode!

More visual beauty by Yoyoyo

The next performer had already made its remarkable mark on the Gifgrond wall of fame. He must have been summoned come back thanks to the high demand and truly positive reactions of his intriguingly previous show execution! All who had been previously exposed to Hassan K and all who where Hassan K’s virgins would form a pact to be fully entangled by this Persian man his enigmatic persona and his truly passionate music delivery.

Hassan K in action as photographed by Frank Janssens

There are few artists out there who show signs of their inner child popping out at the height of their performances, even fewer ones who channel this exciting attitude all the way from beginning to end; but Hassan K did it & with his excitement he got the Gifgrond crowd hooked on his wild music radiations. He would dance, bump around, jumping joyfully on one leg like a flamingo with electric excitingness going through his body. At every moment It felt as if the artist was surprised by his own sounds, pleasantly shocked by his own ability to rock out these funtastic riffs and deliver his own self made brand of culture to a very appreciative wild going crowd. It was a case of a music maker that wasn’t only a joy to the ears (and the bodies that they are attached too..) but also a feast to the witnessing eyes.

Hassan K ‘feeling it’ (photo by Frank Janssens)

Just like the first act of the evening, Hassan K’s performance felt like a honest exchange from artist to the audience and from audience back to the performer: an ideal environment that maximizes the show to reach almost a sincere feeling of small scale mass enlightenment! His skills to rock out with his strings could be fanatically compared to a Persian Jimmy Hendrix, solidly mixing breaking mashups with solid headbangers! Speaking of headbangers… this Gifgrond XL episode was the one of them that was loaded with head bang shows.

Pisitakun doing his charming thing (photo by Frank Janssens)

From Thailand came the man with the biggest pounding blasts of them all; Pisitakun! This was the last live performer of the night & with this in mind it was as if the gods had given him permission to smash the crowd in a loud trance. He remarkably used a Thai folk instrument (might it be a Aerophone
?) and molded it into a frantic cold induced industrialism that made me think of a warm hearted but still angry sounding Asian brother of Converter. The stale base kicks and acidic underlying bubbles felt very European, yet the things that he gained it from was clearly from his homeground; the result was a refreshing hardcore mix of ear deafening industrial music with a warrior kind of vibe woven into it. Ideally the sound of what I would imagine to be best played at ‘a uprising’ or a people’s revolution! It’s upswiping and got a certain angry tanginess to it but it can clearly be felt that this comes from love, a fight against silence for freedom and Pisitakun comes out as the ultimate winner!

Pisitakun in full force! (Photo by Frank Janssens)

He himself is also fully in the moment, going in his zone which was a true delight to see. Even though all artists of the Gifgrond XL edition came from different regions they somehow had a unwritten theme going on among them; all loved what they do and truly enjoyed themselves while performing, which simply brings out the best music, visual entertainment & above all ‘uplifting and inspiring vibes’ to the party! When it was time to go home everyone could feel their energy levels updated with their new found excitement!

DJ IBRAHIM KAZOO III by Frank Janssens

This excitement could clearly be felt back into the only person who could keep this party pumping until the deep hours of the night; DJ IBRAHIM KAZOO III! This legendary deejay flip flopped his way behind the desk and kept spinning one delicious flavor into another, with humorous dedication you never knew what to expect, only that it was always unexpected and that you could truly create blisters underneath your feet from giving into the pleasure that is excessive dancing! All enthusiasm this DJ and tone fair; all that was Gifgrond 67! Truly can’t wait for the next one, so I stay intoxicated until it comes back in December!

Thank you Gifgrond for a positive experience of pure cultural exchange, a night that made me feel fully enriched with new found energies and inspirations!
You should come too if you haven’t!


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