Trilogy ends on a high

As you walk into Store Carl, the venue at DANSEhallerne where ‘BLACKOUT!’ is performed, the fragrance of a sweet-smelling incense hits your nose, and the whole place is enveloped in still, thick smoke. The performers enter silently and disappear within it. The lights fade and the performance begins.

 

It’s difficult to describe with just words a spectacle that in itself speaks with expressive dance, haunting music, and dizzying lights and smoke that twist and trick your perspective. ‘BLACKOUT!’, the last part in a trilogy about the world’s biggest illegal economies, is a story about drugs and escapism, and is everything Mute Comp promised and more. It’s pure, raw energy wrapped in engaging, unsettling  choreography and heavy tunes.

 

The topic is narcotics and Mute Comp strips them of any excitement or simple, light-hearted fun they may be associated with. Do not be fooled: it’s heavy and psychedelic and the performance leaves the audience shaken to the boot. Kasper Ravnhøj, Jakob Stage (scary!), Louise Hyun Dahl and Thomas Bentin present a brilliant show accompanied by Kristine Stubbe Telgbjærg, MC Jabber and Dodebum.

 

The choreography is absolutely magnificent. It conveys the inner struggle and effects of the drugs on the body and the soul. It shows how drugs destroy the individual and relationships. Dancers crawl and twitch, sometimes like puppets, as if they really can’t control their bodies. It sends shivers down the spine. An especially poignant scene, which shocked everyone in the audience out of their wits, and was a certain dénouement for the whole mind-bending spectacle, was a controlled waterboarding scene. Mute Comp used a couple of extras for that and the effect was amazing, though incredibly disquieting.

 

The music only enhances this feeling of unease. It’s heavy, soulful and the lyrics suggest a lack of hope, desolation and desperation. “Are you never satisfied?/There is nothing, nothing I can do/When will I sleep, where can I sleep?/When will I hear my own heartbeat?/I cannot hear my own heartbeat/Why can’t I hear my own heartbeat?” sings Kristine.

 

‘BLACKOUT!’ wraps up three years of research into unpleasant, but ever-present “touchy” issues. It’s a spectacle to behold and remember. It won’t leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy inside. No, rather than that, it will shake your very being, demanding you to at least spare a thought about the reality you’ve been shown.

 

     BLACKOUT

 

BLACKOUT! is playing until April 28. Click here for more details