WHAT IS FLEE ?
FLEE is a cultural engineering platform dedicated to the documentation and enhancement of hybrid cultures. Functioning as a record label, publishing house and exhibition organizer, it was founded by Alan Marzo, Olivier Duport and Carl Åhnebrink. For each issue, FLEE will release a vinyl record along with a printed magazine helping its audience to fully grasp the essence of the movements highlighted.
Today more than ever, the public is considering social objects, such as trends, movements and musical genres in a way which often leaves behind the essence of these objects in favour of a more superficial approach. But by following the frenzied consumerist mentality of our Zeitgeist, we risk missing out an entire dimension of the reality behind what we watch, taste, feel or listen to.
Therefore it has become increasingly important to look beyond a particular trend or genre and understand the socio-economical context in which it emerged, as well as the political views and struggles orbiting it. In doing so, the consumer is susceptible to be transformed into an amateur (from the verb “amare”, to love), capable of genuinely appreciating a social movement or trend for what it is and represents, as opposed to what it appears to be.
This is particularly pertinent when it comes to music. While it is true that music was more overtly socially and politically engaged (and engaging) in the past, it shouldn’t stop us from trying to gain analytical insights into the socio-political dimension of a musical genre. Ultimately we believe in the idea that “the ear can be educated” and that analysing the context in which particular music genres have emerged can only enrich one’s appreciation of their own universe. Inspired by this realisation, we decided to create an initiative that seeks to link the different yet complementary spheres and reconcile the “auditive output” with the original “contextual input”. It is this idea which gave birth to the FLEE project, an initiative articulated around three pillars:
Firstly, a dive into what we see as unfairly forgotten musical phenomena through significant documentation and research, with the ambition to shed light on the history and evolution of a particular genre, the genealogy of its political essence, as well as its past and present position in the global socio-economic landscape.
Secondly, with FLEE, we aim to demystify particular sub-cultures and the spirit of the time characterising their “microcosm”by speaking to the artists, the producers and their audience.
Finally, by asking contemporary artists to revisit songs from various periods and genres, we hope to transcend the trend of unproductive nostalgia, which purely romanticises the past. In addition to gaining and giving insights into what we feel are both rich and important subjects, we also see FLEE as an opportunity to initiate a broader audience to little known cultural phenomena, by inviting them to join an exciting journey through timeframes and spaces of different nature.