Wednesday, June 17, 2009

london: dozzy-style

last year during dozzy's legendary labyrinth set he dropped one of my all time favourite records, and one that i had never heard out before: 'consumed' by plastikman. on friday night, donato did it again. this time it was 'upekah' by son.sine. it is moments like this that you feel the full force of techno. everything else fades away, life is momentarily in balance, all you can hear and feel is the music. moments like these are so rare and beautiful that each one should be treasured and remembered. i now owe donato for providing two of these two me. this is why dozzy is - as far as i am concerned - pretty much the best dj about at the moment. he is someone who deeply cares about the music and wants to share that feeling, and this comes across in the way he plays.

the night started off with donato warming the place up with ambient sounds. while the records were lovely, it wasn't quite working - the volume levels were too low and people talking were way too noticeable. ambient is often most powerful when up loud. just because it is ambient, this should not be an invitation to keep the volume down. the sound guy definitely made a mistake on this one. shame, it prevented an excellent idea (donato opening the party slowly) form working properly. at some point early on i found myself in a conversation with derrick may, who happened to be in london and came down to check out the party. i must admit, i did not have too much time for his opinions on politics which he decided to share with me, as my full-time occupation is to research and write about politics i am not a fan of being told 'how it is' when it comes to politics... saying that, i was impressed that still after all these years someone like may would come out to a party he was not playing at just to check things out. also, he was very interested and impressed with dozzy, despite it is being quite different from the sounds may would normally spin. it often seems that the detroiters themselves are much more open-minded than their sycophants...

after about 90 minutes or thereabouts, the volume got turned up to an appropriate level and things got going. i should also add that corsica studios is a great little venue with a lovely funktion one system and a bit of a warehouse vibe to it. definitely a good environment for headfuck techno, which is exactly what donato was serving up. dozzy's set was exactly what we have come to expect - deep, tripping techno that puts your mind in a blender. by the last hour he had control of the crowd and used another monsterous track from emmanuel top (i think it was him) to tear the place apart. by the time he finished at 2am, i don't think anyone wanted him to stop, he could have easily played a couple more hours, something i would have been very happy with.

it was time for omar s to step up, however, so donato handed things over. i should also say, i had a brief chat with omar earlier on in the night and my take is that he is a cool guy - friendly, relaxed and very helpful when i asked him for some suggestions for future ssg mixes. anyway, he began his set with either 'french kiss' or 'how's your evening so far' - i dont know, i was outside in the smoking area before i could find out. i needed to recover a bit from all the dozzy-ness. after a while chatting with people i decided i should go check omar. he was playing quality house sounds and the crowd seemed to be loving it. unfortunately my mind was still in headfuck techno land. i just couldnt get into omar's sounds. it had nothing to do with him - his set was definitely very good from what i could tell - but i was not able to shift from donato to omar. it was too big a leap for me to make, despite repeated efforts to have a dance to omar. in the end i spent the rest of the night talking shit with donato and other people i had met, which was most enjoyable.

i think the pairing of donato and omar was a brave one and had mixed results. both delivered high quality performances that were enjoyed by a full (but still comfortable) dancefloor throughout the night. still, they play very different styles and i am not sure how easy it is to transit from one to the other. for me, at least, the distance was too far. this could have been my failing, however. regardless, what i would say is that the bleep43 crew put on an impressive party. to date, i have had (putting it mildly) very mixed experiences going out in london. this was by far the best i have been to - top notch music, excellent venue, quality sound system, a warm friendly crowd, and a great vibe throughout the night. these guys really care and it shows. big thanks to bleep43 for doing it right.

i'd also like to say a big 'thanks' and 'hello' to all the people i met during the night. it really was overwhelming all the positive feedback i received about mnml ssgs. myself and the other ssgs really appreciate it. it is things like friday night that give me great motivation and energy to keep going with ssgs, pushing deeper and further. thanks so much for the support and encouragement. and, of course, much respect to donato for delivering the goods again. dozzy-style =


  1. shed has coined quite the catchphrase, huh.

    sounds like an amazing time, but it's a shame about the ambient opening. people seem to think that ambient implies that nothing is going on, or that the ambient part of a set is a time for people to chat and relax. i find that the ambient parts of a good dj set can sometime be more intense than a huge techno track. too bad that the effect donato was trying to make was lost...

  2. tracklist please)
    mix is a great)

  3. "it often seems that the detroiters themselves are much more open-minded than their sycophants..."

    which is interesting since the Detroit techno and house fans are pretty much unquestionably the most musically open motherfuckers out there. my guess is you don't know what you're talking about again.

  4. also, you realise that Alex and Derrick are friends, right? i doubt he would just be going out randomly to check things out. and in the interview i did with Alex for RA he talked about liking Dozzy. you make my head hurt.

  5. i know alex and donato are friends. given that i met alex when he was going off to dinner with derrick, i presumed they were friends too. but then alex went home, and derrick was at the club a couple of hours before alex got there. so yes, i do realise and i think my observation stands.

    detroit fans are the most openminded out there? you got to me kidding me... i suppose you are the prototype in that regard? again i stand my comments.

  6. ugh! that son.sine record! mine disappeared from my crate years ago and i've yet to buy another. hell...i need to buy that entire record label. such amazing stuff.

    regarding derrick may...yes. odd duck, but a nice guy when you get to know him. he is quite vocal about his opinions, though, and that often throws him in to the "pushy asshole" crowd. that being said, he is, however, at a point where he can't go down in his career, and having a strong opinion just garners him that much more of a nod from some, but also is a pristine form of advertisement (though i can't say that bringing politics in to the fray is a good idea).

    its really no different than that omar-s article where he "didn't know the fuck ricardo willalobo is."

  7. nice summary of the night, think you hit the nail on the head. donato was unlike anything i've heard out before, superb. i just wanted him to keep going - seemed like he was in his stride when things came to a halt. enjoyed omar-s a lot, particularly hearing psychotic photosynthesis in a club from the man himself, WOW! thanks to bleep43, the djs and everyone there who were thoroughly nice. was good to meet you chris. jon

  8. Nice to meet you on Friday Chris.
    I really liked the ambient part of donato's set despite the volume. You don't get to hear that kind of stuff in a club setting very often!
    I took me a while to get into what Alex was playing after having my mind completely blown away by the italian deep techno specialist, but I think that ultimately the contrast between those two very different djs worked very well. Hats off to bleep43 for putting this great party on!

  9. It was actually Donato keeping the volume down at the start. Plant43 and I were concerned about the volume and I had a chat with Ed, the sound guy, about it. He showed me the levels and they were the same as sound check.

    Donato was, I guess, just not competing with the inevitable chatter at the start of the night. After meeting his at the afters, he does seem kind of Zen to me.

    But yeah - I wanted it louder too! And I wanted everyone to shut up! Heh heh.

  10. @ jo: thanks for the info. yes, everyone shutting up would have been the easy way to fix it! i don't understand why people would come early to see him play ambient stuff and then go ahead and talk over it! ah well, a minor complaint. much respect to bleep43 for a great party.

  11. sooo jealous Chris... sounds like a fun night out. London getting some good reviews these days. Have you been to Fabric since moving to UK?? Always used to be my favourite but I went few times and too many tourists and bad attitude Londoners kinda ruined the vibe I was used to back in the day (or was it just sign i am getting older)

  12. that upekah track you loved so much is ambient (it's on youtube) and from 2000 and boring.. and emmanuel top makes ravey-davey techno circa the same era ("acid phaze"..ugh) and those are the two tracks/artists who really moved you from dozzy's set..meanwhile you really didn't go into omar's set at all as far as describing the vibe or what he played. so i don't know if i trust you..

  13. @ previous anonymous:

    I presume you aren't familiar with the work of Emmanuel Top, his signature sound is certainly not 'ravey-davey-techno' at all. By exemplifying his work with Acid Phase (somewhat of an oddity in his catalogue), you only demonstrate your own ignorance............

  14. something tells me that the anonymous dogging that son.sine track and showing very little knowledge about emmanuel top would find much to bitch about in pc's new article on here.


    a) who gives a shit if the track is from 2000?
    b) if that's your definition of "ambient," i'd hate to hear your definition of "house."

  15. @ anonymous who mentioned my singling out of son.sine and top, to be honest i don't understand at all what you are getting at. i don't even know how to respond. and the reason why i didn't describe much about omar's set was because, as i said, i didn't see much of it. i love omar's sounds but couldn't get into them straight after dozzy. so i think the vibe and the set were good, they seemed that way when i was inside, but i just don't know beyond that impression.

  16. I assure you that Omar did NOT play "how's your evening so far". PUHLEASE.

    Also, I really don't know what to say about the open minded comment. Just because Pipey doesn't like crap doesn't make him closed minded. Geesh.

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  18. @ "discussed" anonymous:

    well, upekah isn't ambient, it's dub techno with a deep structure and in an unique way.
    it doesn't means nothing if it's on youtube or if it's from 2000.
    about emmanuel top, I have to agree totally with you as I never liked him and I feel his music something more nazi-trance oriented and unelegant, not for true techno people (never heard an emmanuel top track at tresor...).
    anyway, keep up the great work, chris :)
    and thanks.

  19. dozzy was getting perfect the last 1.30 minutes..
    funktion 1 system is excellent but unfortunately not in corsice studios since the EQ was could hear only low frequencies...
    shem that dozzy didnt play enough and even all night long!

  20. You know that son.sine track was my highlight and I am desperate for a copy. It's rich and Donato played it just at the right time. I remember a friend coming up to me and saying they were so happy during that track. Neither of us knew what it was but it just enveloped you and if it might be boring to some played at home or whatever - the context was perfect for it. We listened to it with Donato on Saturday night at the afters and it sounded just as sensual and absorbing to me tho.

    If anyone has a copy and wants to get rid, I'll have it! :)

    Been collecting the more accessible nurture stuff since then as a displacement activity.

    Thanks Chris! Nice to meet you.


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