A journey through the history of dance music in the company of the godfather of French techno.
Laurent Garnier, making his way through the crowd at Barcelona’s Sónar Festival, incognito, before moments later climbing up the stage and taking his position at the controls. Garnier on the way from the airport, thinking of what his first performance in Georgia would be like—and shortly thereafter rocking the dance floor of the Tbilisi techno temple Bassiani. Garnier arguing with the architect of his future home about the length of the record shelves: he would need 1.1 m for French pop music, 4 for funk vinyl, and so on. “It’s not simply 55,000 records,” he says.
Above all, Gabin Rivoire’s Laurent Garnier: Off the Record is a deeply personal and somewhat unique look at the history of the dance movement from the godfather of French techno, author of the book Electrochoc, and the first and only DJ to receive France’s most prestigious award, the Legion of Honor. From Manchester’s Haçienda nightclub in the late 1980s, through the Berlin Love Parade and gigs in Detroit—to the rave in front of the Tbilisi Parliament in May 2018—Laurent Garnier, with fellow DJs and music producers Carl Cox, Jeff Mills, Derrick May, The Blessed Madonna (formerly The Black Madonna), and others guide the viewer through the three decades of a cultural and social revolution, inspired by their music, which continues to encourage young people across the globe today.
Laurent Garnier: Off the Record
Dir. Gabin Rivoire
UK, 2021. 90 min. 18+