Films exploring Black roots of electronic music curated by dweller for Criterion channel

Films exploring Black roots of electronic music curated by dweller for Criterion channel

Film streaming service The Criterion Channel has linked up with New York festival dweller to spotlight a collection of films that celebrate the Black roots of electronic music.

Among the 13 films picked out by dweller for streaming via The Criterion Channel through February is the 1996 documentary, The Last Angel Of History, which explores the origins and significance of the concept of Afrofuturism in music, writing and other disciplines.

Another film, 2003’s Maestro, explores the origins of house music via Black figures such as Larry Levan and Frankie Knuckles, while 2004’s Exhibitionist presents a live turntable-based mix from Jeff Mills.

2018 film Shakedown, which presents the story of a Black-lesbian strip club based in Los Angeles, and 2020’s Bring Down The Walls, which frames the US prison industrial complex through the lens of house music and nightlife, round out the selection of feature-length films curated by dweller for The Criterion Channel.

There is also a selection of short films set to be included in the playlist: Songs For Earth & Folk (2013), I Held The Truth In My Hands (2020), Pivot (2020), Lunar New Year (2021), MOSQUITO: The Movie (2022), Hyperfate (2023), Pacific Club (2023) and Trial Period (2023).

Access the films via a subscription with The Criterion Channel from the start of February and throughout that month.

dweller has also released early tickets for its series of February events, marking the festival and online platform’s fifth year. You can access those tickets here, and their release comes ahead of the announcement of the line-up for this year’s festival, which is due soon.

Based in Brooklyn and launched in 2019, dweller is an annual celebration of electronic music’s Black roots, celebrating the underground local scene and the work of artists from further afield.

After bringing an all-Black line-up to Berghain and Panorama Bar in 2023 for an international edition, the team behind dweller this week revealed that they have decided to skip hosting such an event in Berlin in 2024.

“We made this decision a while ago due to the way German institutions were treating those opposing the current genocide in Palestine,” the team wrote in a statement shared on social media. “It’s now reached an absurd level of control.”

dweller also referenced the Strike Germany movement in its post revealing that it will not head to Berlin in 2024. The movement calls on the international creative community to stop working with German cultural institutions over the Government’s crackdown on pro-Palestine support.

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