Jeff Mills’ Own Fantastic Voyage



Techno demigod Jeff Mills is playing at LPR on December 3rd.

One of techno’s founding fathers, Mills’ grisly, often unrelenting music has firmly asserted its place in the electronic music repertory. Spawned at the blurry cross section of Detroit’s industrial and techno scenes in the late ’80s, Mills’ iconic style has since grown under the influence of new genres, places, and people. All the while, the frenetic, razor-edged sound that first thrust Mills and other Detroit techno pioneers like Carl Craig and Robert Hood into prominence endures in Mills’ sound. The Detroit school’s signature style has created a cultural exchange on a massively cosmopolitan scale.

Mills explains this expansive international relationship in Bill Brewster and Frank Broughton’s Last Night a DJ Saved My Life. “We grew up wanting to go beyond the barriers of Detroit. A lot of us searched out certain things, unique things, to define ourselves.” This pursuit has led Mills as far as BerlinParis, and Barcelona; each city bears the mark of his influence as much as it has informed his music-making.

Saturday’s show prominently features new material; Richard Fleischer’s 1966 film Fantastic Voyage is the subject. While Mills is no stranger to film scoring, this venture will translate Mills’ mechanical processes into an organic context- how will industrial technique reflect the inner workings of the human body and mind? In a recent feature with FACT magazine, Mills addresses this paradox. “In creating this soundtrack, there was slight tolerance for a dominating cold technological impression. The human body, the most organic of all Mankind’s creations, far exceeds this realm. Early on in the production, it became apparent to me that what this film really needed was a sound scheme that is as unorthodox as Outer Space and as organic as the color pallet in the Seas and Oceans of our Planet Earth.” With the combined influences of the world’s techno loci, this show should be similarly out of this world.

posted by Forrest Wu