Saturday, May 9, 2009

FreeNRG: Notes From the Edge of the Dance Floor

"FreeNRG is a collection of frontline communiques on technotribes, contemporary musical practices and events transpiring on the fringes of Australian dance culture throughout the nineties. The anthology's 13 essays are written by specialists and affiliates of a spectrum of youth phenomena found at the edge of the dance floor."

Edited by Graham St John (Common Ground, Altona 2001), the anthology examines DiY culture, a networked youth movement committed to voluntarism, ecological sustainability, social justice and human rights. FreeNRG people subscribe to an economy of mutual-aid and co-operation, are committed to the non-commodification of art and embrace freedoms of experience and expression. Artists and activists, their cultural output is a product of novel mixtures of pleasure and politics. Technicians and esotericists, they pirate technologies in the pursuit of re-enchantment and liberated space.

Foreword by Ken Gelder

Introduction: Techno Inferno 

I: Post Rave Australia 
Doof! Australian Post Rave Culture, Graham St John.
Propagating Abominable Knowledge: Tekno Zine Culture, Kathleen Williamson.

II: Sound Systems and Systems Sound
Sound Systems and Australian DiY Culture: Folk Music for the Dot Com Generation, Enda Murray. Doofstory: Sydney Park to the Desert, Peter Strong
Tuning Technology to Ecology: Labrats Sola Powered Sound System, Monkey Marc and Izzy Brown.
Techno Terra-ism: Feral Systems and Sound Futures, Graham St John.

III: Techno-Ascension
Mutoid Waste Recycledelia and Earthdream, Robin Cooke. 
Psychic Sonics: Tribadelic Dance Trance-formation, Eugene ENRG (DJ Krusty) interviews Ray Castle.
Chaos Engines: Doofs, Psychedelics and Religious Experience, Des Tramacchi.
Directions to the Game: Barrelfull of Monkeys, Rak Razam.

IV: Reclaiming Space
Practice Random Acts: Reclaiming the Streets of Australia, Susan Luckman.
Carnival at Crown Casino: S11as Party and Protest, Kurt Iveson and Sean Scalmer.
Appropriating the Means of Production: Dance Music Industries and Contested Digital Space, Chris Gibson.
FreeNRG: Notes From the Edge of the Dance Floor (eBook hosted by Undergrowth)
- or order it at CGPublisher.

Another project by Graham 'GMAN' St John is Technomad: Global Raving Countercultures in which he will publish a detailed exposition of the pleasurable and activist trajectories of post-rave. A publication I am looking forward to, because it will basically describe my way of creating a temporary autonomous zone and it's history. Eager to buy this print.  

"The book documents an emerging network of techno-tribes, investigating their pleasure principles and cultural politics. Attending to sound system culture, electro-humanitarianism, secret sonic societies, teknivals and other gatherings of the techno-tribes, intentional parties, revitalisation movements and counter-colonial interventions, Technomad explores how the dance party has been harnessed for transgressive and progressive ends, for manifold freedoms. Seeking freedom from moral prohibitions and standards, pleasure in rebellion, refuge from sexual and gender prejudice, exile from oppression, rupturing aesthetic boundaries, re-enchanting the world, reclaiming space, fighting for "the right to party", and responding to a host of critical concerns, electronic dance music cultures are multivalent sites of resistance."

"Drawing on extensive ethnographic, netogaphic and documentary research, Technomad charts the post-rave trajectory through various local sites and global scenes, with each chapter attending to important developments in the techno counterculture: e.g. Spiral Tribe, teknivals, psytrance, Burning Man, Reclaim the Streets, Earthdream. The book offers a nuanced theory of resistance to assist understanding of these developments. Written in an accessible style, this cultural history of hitherto uncharted territory will be of interest to students of cultural, performance, music, media, and new social movement studies, along with enthusiasts of dance culture and popular politics."

Quoted from Edgecentral

Technomad: Global Raving Countercultures
I: The Rave-olution?
II: Sound System Exodus: Tekno-Anarchy in the UK and Beyond
III: Secret Sonic Societies and Other Renegades of Sound
IV: New Tribal Gathering: Vibe-Tribes and Mega-Raves
V: The Technoccult, Psytrance and the Millennium
VI: Rebel Sounds and Dance Activism: Rave and the Carnival of Protest
VII: Outback Vibes: Dancing up Country
VIII: Hardcore, You Know the Score

The chapter outlines by GMAN can be found here