I met up with some pals for lunch today and conversation turned to the Dublin Electronic Arts Festival. A few months back I met Eamonn Doyle on the streets of Dublin and quizzed him on the content of the 2007 festival. Apparently the theme of the 2007 festival will be Asian electronic art – offering audiences the opportunity to sample the work of Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Indian and other Asian artists, but also "the chance to witness Irish artists engaging with other musical and artistic traditions in an explorative and open-ended creative process".
That's all well and good says I, but will that latter bit consist of Billy Scurry eating some Szechuan Chicken behind a set of Technics turntables? In all seriousness, I'm not very sure what constitutes Irish artists engaging with other musical traditions. Anyhow, says I to Eamonn, 'Will you be getting the Japanese dub reggae band Dry and Heavy over?' 'Who are they' says he? Ignorance is a wonderful thing.
Other Asian (particularly Japanese) artists then sprang to mind during the course of the day. Cornelius who has just released a new album called 'Sensuous'. What about 'Asa Chang and Junray' for a bit of electronic freakiness? Fuck it. Get Pizzicato Five or Fantastic Plastic Machine over for a bit of poptastic madness. If there is anyone with any other suggestions they'd be more than welcome. I'll then be able to put a flea in the ear of the organisers.
Rather than end on a sour note I should big up all the folks behind the DEAF festival who took a very brave step back in 2002. It takes visionaries and passionate people from all walks of life to make these things come together. Big up the DEAF crew; Eamonn, Rob, Karen, James and the others who make this thing happen every year. As a token of my appreciation here's a tune for you guys by The Vapors.