Above is a special iNSiDEaMiND performance appearance at Toronto's monthly eclectic electronic arts happening "Feast in the East" last month (November 2012). Some rare footage capturing a clip from the impressive improvised stylings of the ever evolving turntable duo. From live movie scores, theatre soundtracks, and television recordings to classical music festivals and indie rock concert halls, iNSiDEaMiND continues to stretch the creative limits and conceptual ideas about what can be accomplished with turntables and electronics.
The live show is an increasingly vital element to any musician's career. However, in the current live electronic environment we see automation, syncing and pre-recordings reducing 'in the moment' artistry and the live element can consequently drift to the background. Since today electronic music includes many varieties and ranges from experimental art music to popular forms such as electronic dance music, ideas about what constitutes a successful live show can vary. With powerful software such as Maschine and Ableton studio creation and work flow are improved dramatically, but what happens in the studio doesn't always translate live. And sometimes it's painfully obvious that those coming from a Producer rather than a DJ background lack the necessary live skills. Computers have given us a definite edge in terms of how quickly and easily we can manipulate music, but it's also made it easier to fake live skill. This being said, things seem to have evolved since the early to mid 2000's. It's no longer okay to just show up with your laptop. Audiences aren't going to embrace artists with open arms just because of a solid track selection and/or pre-recording studio skill. This is evidenced by the recent controversy surrounding big name "DJ miming". It's clear that audiences these days are quite a bit more sophisticated and knowledgeable about what is actually happening 'behind the screens'.
Having chops on your instrument isn't the only thing that will entertain audiences nor will it guarantee popular success, but whether rock band, jazz singer, or DJ there's always something positive to be said for those that can step to their gear and rock a show in any setting. This ability to play is perhaps the primary characteristic that sets the "electronic musician" apart from the Producer. As electronic music, its sub genres, and audience matures it'll be interesting to see how the reception of the live show (or lack there of) will change. The turntable was never intended to do more than play records. It was artistry, creativity, and imagination fusing with technology that gave birth to an art form. In much the same way the future of live electronic music will be dictated according to these elements.