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by You Know Who

Its already been almost three weeks, but I am still under the trance induced by this year's edition of Teknival. Three days in nature, surrounded by music, all day, all night, no rules and no constraints, but the ones of survival, co-operation and community.

Before the Teknival, I knew little about the DIY / non-corporate techno scene. Like most common mortals, in my opinion, raves are events like Cream and Celebration, for which I would have to fork a full week of salary for the entrance, and after which I wouldn't be able to work for a full week. True, a few years ago, I had friends going to secret warehouse raves; but I haven't heard of one of those in Montreal for a while now.

So I rightfully assumed that techno is now a game for the big players. Yop, I would now need a few hundred bucks to buy a raver "costume" and another few hundred to get me a rave ticket. Now, if the people that get my money cause of my futile attempts to follow a "rebellious" movement are not big players, then I really don't know what they are.

I guess I was wrong, and I am damn happy that I was wrong. I discovered that techno is not all about big ass parties, which make the logistics of a Metallica show look like a joke. A small group of people in Toronto, known as FreeTekno, are all about free DIY parties. It's hard to describe what FreeTekno really is. The best way for you to get in on the action would be to check out their (very DIY) web site. Just a short quote would be good though: "(FreeTekno is a) number of unaffiliated individuals, committed to throwing free parties with diverse music and a DIY attitude".

So for three day, July 16-18, smack in the middle of the Ontarian forest, I joined a tribe, and lived in nature, dancing (when I had energy) to very tribal beats. People bathing naked in the nearby river, girls mud wrestling, naked again, neighbours helping you with fire and food. There was a definite feeling of going back to our roots as animals, symbiotically and directly dependant on nature and its caprices. Definitely not the same kind of feeling as going to a party at the Bell Center, and waiting ten minutes for water or the washrooms.

But the oddest feeling was that return to my primal roots was facilitated and accompanied by a music which was synthetic, computer generated, a pure product of modernism.

I will surely revisit this hidden world next year. Hopefully get involved and drag along a larger Montreal-Clubs tribe too.





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