The year is 2018 and it is being claimed that like it or not, we are all accelerationists. For those unfamiliar with the term, consider it “the idea that the prevailing system of capitalism, or certain technosocial processes that have historically characterised it, should be expanded, repurposed, or accelerated in order to generate radical social change.” This, sadly, is the plainest way to put it, yet in the context of Futureshock, an experimental club experience developed by young collective EditedArts and designed to explore this idea, accelerationism’s applications become not just apparent, but exciting.
Not immediately, though. The first live set is running 30 minutes behind, and attendees resort to entertaining themselves with New River Studios’ pizza menu, a renegade VR headset being passed around the bar area, and a DJ set in the same room courtesy of Giedre Juzenaite. Her selections shrug off genre with a roll of the eyes as she chooses instead to limit herself only to music from Japan. Working within this confine makes for a fascinating blend, unsettling in its eclecticism. My turn with the VR headset arrives at the same time as the news that the performances are about to begin.
Enter Joel McMordie.