Machines On The Grid

Flynn passes through the digital red light district in the movie Tron
Scenes from the grid

Rolling vectors spill across the shimmering surface of the game grid, your vessel moves silently over the face of the waters. Lost in the slipstream of Tron 1982, new wave post-disco Radio Clash bizzness mashed into Mtume's Green Light. Plant life blooms between the cracks in the bassline of Veridis Quo, prefiguring Daft Punk's return to the grid a quarter century later, once everything had changed. At the time, 12:51 seemed an anomaly; in retrospect it looks an awful lot like a warning shot from a sub-generation dwelling in the shadows.

It's a long way back to the wilderness years, sidewalking in the nineties to sounds old and new, rearranged in parallel and both imbuing each other with a layer of meaning beyond the literal. Kleeer 's neon-lit boogie, cruising like a light cycle through the corridors of your mind, while DJ Quik picks up the echo of Tonight/Tonite and the possibilities refract into endlessness. Zapp's Computer Love seems to stop time in its tracks. Squares light up and back out again on the grid of the dancefloor, shifting in time to the music, the bassbins seem to trigger their state beneath the feet of the dancing people.

Solar Sailer soars lonely into the night sky, and Carl Craig's Landcruising casts a long sprawling shadow out across its path. The Mind Of A Machine thinking a quarter century ahead in mere moments, forecasting the future like some sort of chrome-eyed oracle rattling binary figures off into the ether. The Infoworld sprawls out in every direction, vectors stretch like frail fingers to link it all up to the mainframe. You are the computer. Like DJ Rashad, Feelin' the city lights like circuitry spread out beneath a silicon sky... the color of television, tuned to a dead channel.

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