Blast Theory, Rider Spoke

Review in Issue 20-3 | Autumn 2008

Blast Theory use a lot of technology but that’s not what it’s about. Riding around Brighton on a bike, with a small computer screen on your handlebars, with a voice eerily speaking into your headphones, answering questions at locations you choose, and listening to others, if you choose. It’s not even about location or exploring a town, although you select the places you stop at and cycle through. This was an invitation to ride off very much on your own in a crowded metropolis, and then meditate, follow instructions, and talk about odd off-kilter questions (‘Find a place and leave a message for your father’; ‘Who do you feel safe with?’).

The lack of contact with anybody except the disembodied questioner and the answers that others had left made it feel like I was completely outside of the city I was in – a curious feeling. At first it was engaging and exciting, using your touch screen to open doors that led to other peoples’ revelations, then it began to feel oddly disconnected. The questions felt almost random. Near the end I was asked, after a short confessional from the voice, to tell my experience of seeing something I shouldn’t of; then on the final ride back, summoned by the voice, I was asked to make a promise out loud. But I didn’t feel that voice had earned it – a strangely complicated reaction in itself. Great to have been on another Blast Theory experience, but I couldn’t make the ends meet up.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Festival
Date Seen
  1. May 2008

This article in the magazine

Issue 20-3
p. 31