So what is MUTEK all about you may ask? MUTEK is a new art forms festival that started in 2000 in Montreal. It is devoted to experimental electronic music and transmedial art. Mutek pushes artists that are picking up on the fertile musical no-person’s land between the post-rave music lover and the armchair academic, the dancefloor and the bong. Mutek is about exploring the relation between music, technology and visual composition, with many artists featuring video-visual work as a part of their performance. Mutek is also distinctly Canadian as the North American answer to Spain’s Sonar festival in Barcelona.
Our two guests acts are core mebers of MUTEK and we're very excited to have them here as part of a MUTEK West tour.
For almost a decade, Vincent Lemieux has played an integral role in Montreal’s internationally acclaimed dance-music community. Lemieux is man who wears many different hats: curator, label owner, DJ, producer, taste-maker… this is a man who has done it all and inflected every project in his association with an indelible personal style.
Internationally, Vince is probably best known as one of the curators behind Montreal’s MUTEK Festival. Since 2000, he has helped shape his hometown conception of progressive electronic music through the acts he brings to town. When not programming the festival, Lemieux hosts two of the most cutting-edge techno weeklies in the city. His long-running Tuesday night at Salon Daomé, where he DJ’s alongside world-class talent, has become a staple in Montreal’s nightlife. Claude Von Stroke, Ricardo Villalobos, Luciano, Zip, Sammy D, they’ve all graced the decks at Daomé courtesy of Vince.
As label owner of Musique Risquée, which he started with Akufen’s Marc Leclair, Lemieux is also responsible for fostering local and international talent. The label has released work by Atom TM, Akufen, Bruno Pronsatto, The Mole, Jichael Mackson, Guillaume & the Coutu-Dumonts, Philippe Cam, and others. Musique Risquée tracks have been featured on compilations by Crosstown Rebels, Tigersushi, Fabric, and Freud Am Tanzen. Vince has also spawned the city’s Soirée Risquée nights, now with over 30 incarnations, showcasing the label’s fine roster to enthusiastic fans.
Yet it is his work as a DJ that has caught the ears of the most listeners. Lemieux has toured the world as an ambassador for Montreal’s distinctive brand of micro-house. As the official MUTEK DJ, his sets have been a staple of festival showcase from China to Paris to Berlin and back. His DJing skills have found fervent followers all over the world, at events in Spain (Sonar), Mexico (MUTEK_MX), Chile (MUTEK_CL), and Argentina (MUTEK_AR).
Since 2005, Lemieux has been expanding into music production through collaborations with Guillaume Coutu-Dumont (as Flabbergast) and Stephen Beaupré (as Brandy Snifter). Currently he’s mixing first mix album of Musique Risquée greatest hits, which is due in 2008. In the next year, focus will shift increasingly to recording music and moving into the one domain of electronic music he has yet to conquer.
GUILLAUME & THE COUTU DUMONTS
Ever an energetic actor in the electronic music scene, Montreal based artist Guillaume Coutu Dumont maintains numerous collaborative projects, performing regularly in his hometown and around the world. Driven by his passion for hybrid forms of musical expression, Guillaume continues on his quest for the ultimate ham bone funk recipe with his solo project: Guillaume & the Coutu Dumonts a special blend of funk, house, techno, gospel, swing and afro-beat. His first album FACE À L'EST was released on November 5th on Musique Risquée. So far, his solo outputs are available on MUTEK_rec, Musique Risquée, Hartchef Discos, Floppy Funk, OSLO, Raum Musik and on French labels Circus company and Karat.
Guillaume’s initial musical forays were as a percussionist in a funk band, after which he studied Latin and classical percussions in college before discovering electro-acoustic composition, which he pursued further at university. It was during this period that he joined [iks], a contemporary jazz formation with whom he recorded two albums and toured for several months in Senegal. Upon his return to Montreal, Guillaume decided to focus his efforts on composition.
Influenced as much by concrete music as by techno, which he discovered one night in the midst of a lightning storm, Guillaume founded Egg (MUTEK_rec, Karat, Floppy Funk), Luci (MUTEK_rec, Morris Audio), Chic Miniature (Raummusik, Musique Risquée), Flabbergast (MUTEK_rec), as well as the artistic collective Racam. He has toured with one or another of these projects in north/south America, Europe and Asia.
Since January 2007, Guillaume has reached European soil. Like many other, he chose Berlin as his new home base. Traveling all around the block, he’s always looking to get the dance floors grinning with guilty pleasure.