June 27, 2013  |  Warm Up
Warm Up 2013 Is Here!
Warm Up 2012. Photo: Loren Wohl

Warm Up 2012. Photo: Loren Wohl

For those in attendance at MoMA PS1’s 2012 events, there was one palpable difference from years past: more people. 

On two occasions, the adjoining courtyards, under the misty gaze of Wendy, hit sold-out capacity. Those events that weren’t packed to the gills still saw tremendous populations of partygoers, both veterans of Warm Up and new recruits to the Long Island City rave-up.

It was with good reason the summer of 2012 stretched MoMA PS1’s attendance records. From top to bottom, the event line-ups represented an inviting diversity, encouraged by the institution and insisted upon by MoMA PS1 assistant curator and Warm Up organizer Eliza Ryan. The Warm Up curatorial team also includes Dean Bein, head of True Panther Sounds; Kris Chen, head of XL Recordings; Jonathan Galkin, cofounder of DFA Records; Brandon Stosuy, editor for Pitchfork; and me, Matt Werth, head of RVNG Intl; aided by the invaluable Imogene Strauss, MoMA PS1 bookings and stage manager.

The room to broaden the programming brought a vivid array of artists from across the musical spectrum, and, with them, consistently different but equally spirited attendees. So many people, for such good music, that it left the same question on everyone’s mind: “Where do we go from here?” After our annual set of spring stretches to work out the winter kinks, the committee slowly but surely regained its 12 legs. As we lunged toward the raised bar, it quickly became clear that the only way to clear it was to ignore it all together. With that willful ignorance comes the bliss that is Warm Up’s 2013 schedule. 

A model example of the same diversity that drives the Warm UP experience, PAN, the record label run by visual artist, musician, and time-traveler Bill Kouligas, helps propel our June 29 opening day with a cross-section of its outstanding roster. And we threw in a Detroit techno legend for good measure.

Bill Kouligas; NHK'Koyxen; Lee Gamble; Heatsick; Juan Atkins

Clockwise, from upper left: Bill Kouligas; NHK’Koyxen; Lee Gamble; Heatsick; Juan Atkins

This Saturday’s event is part of PAN_ACT, a “multifaceted series of performances, talks, and installations exploring parallel strategies in conceptual art, underground dance, and experimental music,” curated by ISSUE Project Room’s Lawrence Kumpf and Kouligas. 

Kouligas starts the day off with what will surely be a signature DJ set of eclectic jams spanning the experimental side of electronic music through the eras. NHK’Koyxen, the nom de plume of Japanese musician Kouhei Matsunaga, performs his brand of scattershot techno and drop beats live. Heatsick’s polyrhythmic melding of Casio funk ‘n’ house follows Matsunaga, before Lee Gamble brings a fistful of burning-core techno (and hopefully some of the drum ‘n’ bass that defined his early career) to conclude the live portion of the of the day.

Navigating the late spot is Juan Atkins, the “godfather of techno,” who expanded the universe of sound through the future-electro groups Cybotron and Model 500 on his Metroplex label, and via his own timeless techno productions. It’s fitting conclusion to the day’s narrative—and to our opening event. 

We look forward to seeing you on opening day, June 29, and the rest of the summer!