A Music Residency program.
We sat down with Moon Duo & Emmanuel Biard to chat about their Samarbeta residency so far and what to expect from the PREMIERE of newly commissioned AV performance Stardust Highway at the NIAMOS in Hulme on Friday 26th April. The event also marks the WORLD PREMIERE of songs from the new Moon Duo album (not released until September 2019) performed live for the first time.
SBR: Tell us what you have been up to during the residency?
MOON DUO: We’ve spent the first week rehearsing new music at the NIAMOS while Emmanuel has been building a set with projectors and sheer screens in a warehouse behind Islington Mill. We’ve been checking in on each other throughout the process. This coming week, we’re bringing it all together. Anticipation has been building, so we’re all very excited.
SBR: Can you give us some insight into what people can expect from the Stardust Highway performance at NIAMOS on Friday?
MOON DUO: A massive, visual head trip accompanied by some groovy, electronic-hybrid rock-n-roll.
SBR: Tell us about the new album and how does it compare with past work?
MOON DUO:The new album was somewhat influenced by disco - not just the music but the physical space of a disco as a place of free expression, and a space where a person can have an experience that is both personal and collective at the same time. Someone can engage in individual expression through dancing while also disappearing into a larger group of bodies and energy. In making the music, we played with elements of presence and absence, of sounds being both distinct and absorbed in the larger body of the song. We wanted each song to be like a little environment unto itself but for them all to also hang together. It’s all set against a backdrop of beats and baselines meant for moving the body, and the sounds definitely have more sunshine and lush sparkle than our previous work.
SBR: How has Moon Duo’s new album inspired the visual concept for Stardust Highway?
MOON DUO: From our perspective he has built a physical structure that will occupy the stage but also envelope the audience. Because of the screens, we will see a lot of what the audience sees, and will, ourselves, sometimes appear only as silhouettes (or double silhouettes). The structure plays with ideas of the presence and/or absence of individuals in a shared space and collective experience - in that sense it is in conversation with the ideas that fed the music.
Emmanuel Biard: The Visual show, much like the development of the music itself, is an attempt to build on what we have presented before whilst trying to reach somewhere new. Producing it has been an iterative process of paring down what was simply too big and enlarging what was too small. We have been travelling and working together for some time now, have been walking the same highway, so to speak, and so we’ve arrived in a similar place together And we’re excited to show people what we’ve found.