This was my first time at Berlin Atonal Festival and it was totally impressive. Unfortunately I have missed it last year. I was a little bit frustrated because the line up from last year was very good (for example artists like Miles, Vessel, Roly Porter and Tim Hecker). But this year I don’t miss it!
I would like to start my short review with a quick overview about the organisation and location. First, organisation: In front of the main building there was a nice area to hang out and taste all the different kind of street food offers. There were more than 6 different stations. I have tried the gorilla burger and it tasted very good. It was no problem to stood outside because it was a late summer day in august. Next up, the location: In the past years I’m attended to many concerts and visited different locations, but this one was totally outstanding. From the outside this old heating plant doesn’t looks very special. It’s just a big industrial concrete building. It is much more impressive if you go into it. There were 3 different areas: the main stage, the stage null and the schaltzentrale. If you go into it you can see at first a few spotlights and an old projector with different screenings at the first floor. The whole decoration was very minimalistic and simple.
In this case it makes totally sense because the atmosphere is very special and unique. If you go up to the second floor you can reach the schaltzentrale and the main stage. The schaltzentrale is a small factory control room with a bank of modular synths stationed. It was used for intimacy live sessions. Very unique!
And than, the main stage. From there you can see how big this location actually is. There is nothing else besides the bar on the left side and the stage in front of the building with the large projector. But now, my concert impressions: The doors opened at 8 pm with Ryo Marukami an minimal techno artist. I don’t know him before, but his performance was not bad. Maybe I should give that kind of music another try in the future. After that I also give me a short break until my favourite artist Alessandro Cortini started his set at 10 pm.
His set was impressive as expected! He presented one of his previous records “Sonno” live. And yes, it was fantastic. The combination between the tracks and the screenplay works perfectly together. It was also nice to hear how the tracks works live. Up next was Sheckleton, but at this moment I feel my legs the first time. It was no fun to stood more than 2 hours on concrete. And yes I’m not more in the 20s! Shackleton’s show was more beats oriented. More effects and no screenplay. I knew a few tracks of him and there were also not bad live.
The last one I have seen was Berlin DJ and producer Rene Pawlowitz alias Shed. The first time I have listened to Shed was in 2010. At that time he has released “The traveller”. The approach from Shed was totally different to Shackleton. The set was heavy bass oriented and also minimalistic in light effects. It was definitely nice to look at. At the end of his set it was round about 2 am in the night and I was totally exhausted because I feel my painful legs and feets again, so I have decided to end up here. Berlin Atonal was definitely a great experience because you can not compete it to any other festival. I’m looking forward to the next year…