(edited by) Bart van der Heide – Techno Globalization Pandemic


Hatje Cantz, ISBN 978-3775751667, Italian, 212 pages, 2021, Germany

This small-format book was published to accompany the TECHNO exhibition at Museion in Bolzano and is edited by Bart van der Heide, who is also the director of Museion. It is the first in a three-part series on ‘Techno Humanities’, and has clear links to the sociological writings on techno during its explosion, especially in Germany, in the late nineties. The latter unpacked the meaning of a large following, the diversification of styles, important events such as Berlin’s famous Love Parade, and of course, the raves. In Techno Globalization Pandemic, van der Heide notes that ‘the techno experience […] adapted to the demands of the freelance workers of the post-industrial era’, while Matthew Collin does a good job of describing the socio-economic ecosystem of techno and its evolution from disco. Anna Greenspan creates an inspiring chronicle of the intertwining of techno and technology in China during the pandemic, including the Plague Raves and the unsuspected relationships between electricity and traditional culture, while Matthew Herbert captures the unique DIY and global liberation spirit of the techno scene. In the post-pandemic context, with the weight of both physical and ongoing digitally-induced isolation, the liberation of such music with its collective rituals has been recast here with new depth and meaning.