Actress [Field Day, London] A live lesson in tension and release by the Werk boss on peerless form at Field Day.
Actress likes headgear: sportswear tops, Vietnamese straw hats and, today, a black pointed hood that provided a striking silhouette against the deep-blue tarpaulin of the Blogger’s Delight / Lanzarote tent. Not that it was easy to find him. If you were standing face on, it would appear that the grinding, disorientating techno emanating from the stage was manifesting in thin air, as he’d set up to the right of the stage, behind a block of speakers. Hiddenness is a re-occurring theme in Actress’s art, which, fittingly, Maze might yet still be the most perfect example of. As it began to filter through, a young couple dancing in front of me visibly stretched forward. The girl turned to the boy: “What is this song, again?” I couldn’t help leaning in: “Maze, it’s Maze.” They both turned and smiled, their shoulders saying Of course it is. Then the tempo dropped, rockets and phasers appeared to screech through the sky and an angelic voice called beneath a belching rumble: Something is coming, something is crumbling, the siren seemed to be signalling. At this point the tent was at fever pitch, bodies pressed against one another, all hot skin and smokey breath. It felt close, very close. The final closer – an Actress remix of Raw Milk coming up on Numbers – was a dubby tune with a bubbling voice saying over and over, “And you roll and you roll and you roll and you roll”. It released some of the heavy pressure he’d built. The effect was instant and surprising: the tall, hooded man started robot dancing, rolling his arms in a wave-form pattern as the crowd wooped and clapped.