Archive for September 2011
London is probably now recognised as one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world and the same could be said for its clubbing scene, a wealth of nations represented on its dancefloors, at its events & even within the industry itself, not one corner of the globe left out of the picture. However, following the lead that the so called “Spanish Armada” invasion of club brands created with the likes of La Troya, Matinee, SuperMartXe & WE, it seemed inevitable that another major Latin nation would want to get its say on the London scene, the Brazilians being quite strongly represented as clubbers on the capital’s circuit making the introduction of one of its biggest brands, The Week, a foregone conclusion. Yet while the first outing was exceptional, moving it to a different venue, in this case The Coronet, lost its London identity somewhat, the comparisons to WE party clearly apparent, which, in itself, was to see the emergence of a home-grown Brazilian brand attempt to make its mark on the capitals clubbing circuit.
With Casa Latina the product of a burgeoning Brazilian influence on the scene here in London, our initial scepticism of its intentions were soon apparent, although having been away in the sunny climbs of South Africa for the launch back in March, we were not on hand to witness the muted response by the capitals clubbers for ourselves, perhaps choosing to launch it within days of The Week’s return to London not the best of timings. But with Casa’s return in July boosted by the involvement of ex SuperMartXe lynch pin Mauricio Ortiz, the “Super Car Wash” event proved a spectacular success, Fire’s main room a roadblock, the stage shows simply superb and the collective of D.J.’s across the two rooms all proving a huge hit with party heads that packed out both dancefloors. So, with the Casa Latina standard & stool very much set by this scintillating second showing, there was much to look forward to for Casa’s third throw of the capital clubbing dice, not least in the Brazilian credentials of promoters Thiago Drewry & Mauricio Ortiz combined, as well as D.J. stars Leandro Kloppel, DouGuim & most notably new boy Junior Moura, making “Sugar Daddy” a very tempting prospect which we were not going to turn down.
So, having drawn a bit of a warm-up blank at Kazbar, a quick dive into Barcode Vauxhall having made up for the situation, we were set fair to make the hop, skip & jump across to Fire and for Casa Latina’s “Sugar Daddy” event, safe in the knowledge that liaisons with the likes of Tom Marchant, Steve Thomas, Steven Artis & Mattias Dabo had made up for the earlier disappoint in Clapham and that we were ready to rub shoulders with some of the best of the Brazilian bunch down Casa way. And it couldn’t have got off to a better start, the warming welcomes by guestlist guy JJ Clark & “Sugar Daddy” hostess Elektra Paris making us feel right back where we belonged, in the thick of this Casa clubbing cavorting in the capital, our efficient entry seeing us released into the awaiting action. But with just a handful of hedonists having chosen the midnight arrival that we had, it was clear this latest third Latina turn would take a while to get going, the planned opening of three rooms an optimistic prospect, not least given the negative vibes floating around about the venue that would surely be a factor in deterring some from showing their faces.
Having quickly surveyed the territory and armed ourselves with refreshments, we found a spot close to the extended stage in Fire’s main room, catching up first with Altina Ha & the Chris Ho, our live reviewing tweeting already in full flow as we exclaimed “…just waiting for Tom He & we have a full house…”, while opener D.J., Brazilian Ale Ameral making a marked impression with a succession of superb sounds, the mix of uplifting & funky tones with tribal & Brazilian-esque beats hitting home heavenly, while the crowd continued to build slowly. And looking at the extended stage itself, it was clear the team had gone to town with the production a huge throne the centre-piece, while the flanks of giant lollypops which were, admittedly a little WE “Candy” like, as well as two supersized dollar signs, all certainly shouted a statement of what to expect from the impeding stage shows. Then, with a host of familiar faces making their appearance, not least the delectable Dorin, masterminding the already impressive lighting, effects & pyrotechnics to his usual high standard, then the adorable Andrea, very much full of beans & ready to party hard, we could feel us finding our Casa stride, the event itself taking on a dynamic direction with more & more gorgeous guys & girls filling out Fire.
With outstanding opener Ale Ameral handing the main room decks to the more experienced & accomplished D’Johnny and the other J, in this case, Jonny M playing out in the Latina lounge, we tossed our devotion coin as to where who & where to dedicate our dancing devotions, jumping between the two the outcome of decision making. With Mr M attracting with a ton of terrific tunes including “Enjoy the Ride” & “You’ve Got The Love” which were too tempting to resist, D’Johnny’s more euro-style euphoria, tech tones & progressive pronunciations were going down an absolute treat with the now pretty packed Casa main room, although with “Sugar Daddy” now close to its third hour of operation, the empty stage became all too apparent, both Mauricio & Thiago coming & going as much as the drop dead gorgeous dancers were, the anticipation of the stage show, not to mention the appearance of PA Tara McDonald too much to take. However, like all the good things that come to those that wait, our wait was well worth it, as with no less than 10 dancers adopting their individual positions on the stage & the lights dimming to create the maximum effect, a flash of spots, an explosion of ticker tape & a blast from the CO2 cannons heralded a hive of amazing activity in front of our eyes, our position right next to the stage paying immediate dividends, not least with the muscular men touting their taut torso’s in our direction.
Now this Casa Latina party was in full swing, even if the throne was occupied by more of a “Sugar Baby” than a daddy, the dancers flirting with the flock in front of them fabulously and D’Johnny well into his superb sound spinning stride, serving up a set that had us not only incredibly impressed but amazingly absorbed, the cavorting crowd lapping up every tasty morsel of his magnificent music. And with a glance in our direction as well as a welcoming hug by an arriving Zach Burns making us feel even more at home & comfortable with our lot, it would be Brazilian beaut Giuseppe that would further ferment our frolicking in fire, his playful antics not going unnoticed by the crowd around us which now included D.J. DouGuim, we now just hopeful of the arrival of fellow Brazilian Junior Moura to complete our tremendous trio. But with our eyes on incumbent guest D.J., Spaniard Leo Blanco, it was actually Tara McDonald’s appearance that was to attract more of our attention, she taking to the stage and sharing a selection of tunes from her classics cupboard, first “Delirious”, then “A Little Closer” while predictable inclusions, were played out perfectly, “Elevated” & then her new track completing a prolific performance and leaving the Casa crowd suitably energised & ready to dance deliriously just like her opener had hinted.
Then, with Leo Blanco taking charge and selecting a set of Spanish inspired sounds that were definitely drawing a deluge of devotees, the drop dead gorgeous dancers continuing to display their wonderful wears, with Zach Burns assuming the Latina lounge decks, we decided this would be the spot where we would see out the remainder of our Casa cavorting, we being joined by both Andrea & Giuseppe, as well as a whole host of others who were keen to give this cute yet capable D.J. the support he deserved, this marking his first appearance at Fire and surely one that looks set to repeated, not just for the Brazilian brand but for other parties under the Orange Group umbrella. And Mr Burns certainly entertained exceptionally, a selecting of sounds seeing us spin on our adopted spot, his terrific take on one of our all-time favourite tunes, “Upside Down”, just one of a mound of magical musical moments that ended up sending us on our wonderfully way to a battery re-charge ahead of Beyond’s “10th Birthday” bash which was already beginning to consume our thoughts. So, leaving behind a still packed out main room which was to see both Leandro Kloppel & DouGuim share the final playing plaudits, we wended our way home to reflect of a Casa Latina “Sugar Daddy” event that certainly set the benchmark for this Brazilian brand’s future frolicking at Fire.
So, what did we think of this latest home-grown Brazilian brand showing? And do we think it has the legs to survive in the tough climate the capitals clubbing scene currently finds itself? Well to best answer those two questions, lets combine our conclusion into one, by say that, despite a slow start, Casa Latina “Sugar daddy” certainly pulled in a considerable crowd, a good looking one at that, not the stunners of SuperMartXe for sure, but a bunch of Brazilians & plenty of others that certainly knew how to party and make magnificent merriment to mounds of majestic music. And with outstanding performances from D’Johnny, Zach Burns & newcomer Ale Ameral, there was much to celebrate on the musical front, while the succession of superb stage showings by the gorgeous gathering of gogo’s framed a P.A. performance for Tara McDonald that gave “Sugar Daddy” an added dimension over the last Casa outing. Add into the mix Casa’s prolific production, its exceptional effects & its amazing atmosphere, ingredients that made an incredible impression back in July & did again this weekend, and we can definitely see the crowds swarming back for the next event. And we would go further by saying that, despite having thoughts to the contrary at the time, reflecting on this third outing, it is clear Casa’s whole team combine really well & give it a fabulously friendly feel, which on top of everything else it displays delightfully, is all you could want from a truly terrific time out on the town. (DISCO MATT)
If you happened to miss out on this Casa Latina party, then fear not as Chris Geary has put together a video capturing elements of “Sugar Daddy” superbly, hostess Elektra Paris’s snapshot interviews to the backdrop of brilliant beats & stage shows, all gives you a real feel of just how prolific the party was, this fabulous film available at http://chrisgeary.co.uk/london/2011/CasaLatina/.
With September slipping away before our very eyes, we thought it high time we delivered to on our promise to put out another music newsletter, in fact one of two this month that aim to pick up on those D.J.’s/producers that have been busy in the recording studio either pressing podcasts or serving up singles and in the process, covering those established stars along with more fresh faced talent that we feel deserve our devotions. But as we often ask you to do, we will also be including those disc spinners who have gone to the trouble to plaster our social networking walls with their productions and thus giving them an equal bite at the cherry pickings of our now notorious newsletters.
So with this first of two September servings let’s get off to a superb start and in the hands of one Brent Nicholls we couldn’t have chosen better, as hardly a month goes by without something quite special bouncing out of the Brent blender, this one being no different and reflective of the fact that he tends to appear in our newsletters with repeated regularity. However, being pretty busy out on the scene keeps this amiable antipodeans’ hand in, regular slots for Profile & Lo-Profile, Rupert St & Hard On! recent features, while with clubbing brand Lovechild having taken a summer siesta, its return for its “Super Love” event this last Sunday saw a trio of turnouts for Mr Nicholls over the weekend, the filling in the sandwich being Hard On!, a club which Brent has been part & parcel with since its launch back in 2003. Indeed, his associations with the club has seen him travel with the brand to exploits in Manchester & over in Gran Canaria this year alone, while a further trip Spanish isle in November looks on the cards, as Hard On! will be part of the “Black & Blue” fetish weekend there, while spin off Hotwired returns to the capital next month, Brent in the thick of the action.
So, Mr Nicholls links with Hard On! go without saying and in recognition of this fabulous fetish club celebrating 8 years in erotic operation, Brent gathered together sixteen towering tunes from across its history, plugging them together into a prolific podcast that is true memory lane majesty. And from the off, especially for those of you who, like us, were around in 2003, the opener does bring those magical memories flooding back, although with tracks “The World Is Mine”, “Put Your Hands Up For Detroit”, “Enjoy The Silence”, “So Strong” & “Downpipe” this is more than just a celebration of the Hard On! sound Brent style, but a journey through some of the most iconic tracks to hit our dancefloors in these last eight years. But the Brent blender has extended to a mini-mix marking the return of Hotwired too, but the intentions of this composition are much more direct, as the combination of electro, progressive, tech, tribal & trance set the scene for this all out orgy of a club happening, the music very much matching the macho feel of this fetish frolic, one track summing it up beautifully, “Fucking House Musik” speaking all the volumes for us, as well as being a damn fine track as well. So, whether your persuasion leans towards fetish or you simply crave a terrific tune, then in “Hard On! 8” 7 “Hotwired” you have two worthy contenders for your collection, both available via multi download options including iTunes, Dropbox, Speedyshare, Mediafire, although all just a click away at http://djbrentnicholls.com/web/.
Now onto our first mini mention which goes to D.J. Luiggi who, it would be fair to say, came in for a bit of stick from us in our Brava review, although in fairness to this Barcelona born Spaniard, we were a bit distracted by the construction site we found both him & ourselves within. However, putting the record straight and from the feedback we got, his performance was much better than we had painted at the time and when you consider the appearances he has made across Europe, Rome’s Muccassassina, Antwerp’s Red & Blue, Lyon’s Le-Bloc & brand Deice, while regular slots in his adopted home city of Valencia remain a feature of his hectic schedule. So, having gone to press on a podcast celebrating the sunset of summer, we thought it highly appropriate that he be included in our “Indian Summer” inspired choices, Luiggi’s compilation, in his own words, sharing “…the best remixes of the greatest artists…” he adding of the mix that it is “…original & energetic…”, a claim we completely agree with, meaning we reckon that his creation is well worth a listen by going to either his podcast page at http://djluiggi.podomatic.com/ or his soundcloud site, http://soundcloud.com/dj-luiggi-1, the latter including previous sets stretching back to 2010.
Right, we head back towards familiar territory with our next inclusion, Hifi Sean a dynamic D.J. that has been cutting a significant stride on the capitals clubbing scene for a while now, residencies having included Juicy, Hard On!, Barcode, & Beyond, while appearances at a long list of events mean that hardly a weekend would go by when he wasn’t spinning somewhere across London, not least having also been included in the illustrious Orange RAW team that plays out to a packed room of party people each & every Monday morning. Add to this his claim to fame a real one, in that he was part of Glasgow based group, The Soup Dragons and you soon realise that Sean’s credentials in the music world are considerable. However, like us, you would be forgiven for thinking that he has fallen off the radar across the summer, although none of it, as whilst it would be true that married life & family commitments have taken up a fair amount of his time, he has been out on the wider scene too, wider in terms of gigs in Amsterdam, Brussels & Madrid, while at this very moment he is savouring the sights & sounds on San Francisco in what has become a yearly homage for the world’s best known bear gathering, “Folsom”.
So San Francisco neatly moves us to Sean’s selections, his continuing series of “Psychedelic House Music” podcasts including to devotions to the city & its music, Hifi having been in the thick of the action for the annual Pride main event, an attraction that makes London’s celebrations look like a village street party and thus meaning Sean’s inclusion in this world renowned gathering shouts significantly for his skills & in demand services. So the first of two mixes simply entitled “San Francisco 2011 – Main Event”, he explaining of his music choices, “…the focus is setting the groove and building the energy…”, something we have seen him perform on many an occasion on Beyond’s main room, while the second on his San Fran sets, “The Afterparty” is very much more akin to his prolific performances in Beyond’s chapel space where, like in this magnificent mix, he “…takes the groove deeper…”. But the Hifi inclusions don’t stop that these two, as his devotion to Amsterdam’s pride event is noteworthy too and is one of our favourites (dare we have one!) as it does exactly what it say’s on the tin, includes “…some old classics remixes, some new future classics & some of my own exclusive remixes too…”. So to grab your slice of Sean stateside & to go dutch with Hifi, simply click on http://hifiseandj.podomatic.com/ and download to your absolute joy.
Our next min mention goes to D.J. Minx, our original foxy lady that impressed us so much when we heard her play for the first time at The Box in Covent Garden, that we labelled her as the female Brent Nicholls, such were the similarities to musical tastes between us three. And while we miss those fantastic Friday’s in the hands of our foxy lady, slotting into a twice monthly residency at Rupert St certainly makes up for that loss, Minx having also played out for The Shadow Lounge on opposing weekends. But her appearances don’t stop there, as a residency for hero hangout Nob in the smart set of socialising splendour that is Mayfair continues to play a part in her out there performances, while a new gig in trendy Camden Lock kicks in from this week and a new project Sam (that’s her real name) is truly excited about. So having seen her in action just this last Friday at Rupert St reminded us to push Mix’s latest mix, “Rise 2011” crammed with uplifting & happy house that rapturously represents Sam’s superb sound style and one we absolutely adore, as we are sure you will too when you go to http://djminx.podomatic.com/, while it’s well worth checking out her “Work It Out” mix which aims squarely at summer and had us clinging onto the sunshine from the start, both making our collection and helping spin rounds those London roads full of rapture.
Now let’s take a look at another main inclusion and a D.J./Producer that has been making a marked impression on the clubbing scene for many a year, Nick Tcherniak having been involved in the music industry since the tender age of 19, his introduction to D.J.’ing soon seeing him land residencies for iconic clubs Fiction, DTPM & Discotec, while he is inextricably linked to the mother of all clubbing brands, Trade, having been labelled as “The Face Of Trade” in its earlier years, while the transformation from front of house to behind the decks fro Laurence Malice’s legendary club was always on the cards and Nick now finds himself as one of their big stars, having played out for Trade for well over a decade. But the big hitters on Nick’s C.V. don’t stop there as he has featured large for Matinee, has been welcomed as a guest for Monday morning magnificence Orange on numerous occasions, while he remains a firm favourite for followers of all things SuperMartXe, having once again wowed the crowds at the clubs “Blackout” party a couple of Saturday’s ago, the afterhours element in his club calendar also extending to A:M, Nick headlining the D.J. line-up just last weekend.
But this is only half of the terrific Tcherniak turnout, as Nick is feverishly busy in the studio when he isn’t playing out live on the scene, his regular podcast pressings backing up an impressive list of track releases, many mixed & produced with recording partner & fellow Trade D.J. resident Steve Thomas, recent triumphs including “My People”, “Deep Water” & “The Answer”, all having charted high in download charts both here & stateside. So, given the success of these tracks & the partnership with Steve, a further release was very much on the cards, “Day & Night” their latest smash and one that looks set to soar at least as high as its three predecessors and is an absolute corker, already charting well on Beatport & available for download at http://beatport.com/track/day-and-night-original-mix/2423834. Tracks aside and Nick’s podcasts never fail to hit our heavenly mark, his latest release straight out of the Tcherniak top draw and crammed full of towering deep house, tech & progressive beats that shouts out his sound style superbly, the title inspiration taken straight from his “Day & Night” tune with naturally features within this 64 minute marvel and a compilation that went straight into our collection as soon as we, just like the first track suggests, checked it out, so one we think you want to check out too by going to http://nicktcherniak.podomatic.com/.
To another mini mention and an Italian D.J. that has made London his home, although travels back to his motherland as often as he is able, while back here in the capital he continues to experiment with a selection of sounds that range from ambient dance through to tough techno & the smoother more progressive beats that fit neatly between the two, his productions in this style very much taking you on a joyous journey. And with his latest release, “Techno Ambient Sex Mix”, Mr Bruno doesn’t disappoint, the 70 minute mix sending you immediately floating as though on a far away island and one that, for us, is right up there with the best chill-out compilations in our collection. With is skilful use of cool cuts & tougher twists, it is a mesmeric journey that will leave you both rejuvenated & fulfilled and one definitely for escaping the ravages of a hectic lifestyle, at least for the few masterful minutes. So, to track down this tremendous Tony triumph, go now to http://soundcloud.com/tonybruno/techno-ambient-sexy-mix-by and soak up the splendour of this silkiest of selections.
Right, back we head to our main contenders list and to one of the scene’s legends who has been cutting it with the best in the business for a plum period, Gonzalo Rivas having emerged playing for heavy weight brands Salvation & Trade, he proving one of the latter’s great stars in the Turnmills days when either a post Tony De Vit set or a pre Pete Wardman showing would have the place well & truly rocking. Yet, such has been the demand & diversity of this truly towering talent, that he has played at virtually every top ranking club on the capitals circuit, Mr Rivas being behind the Orange RAW room, a key player for Beyond in both its era’s, and A:M ingredient for most if not all of its history, these just a handful of a long list of bars, clubs & events that have benefitted from Gonzalo’s brilliant beats over the years. And having been around for much of his time playing out to the London scene, he never fails to disappoint us with his performances, those halcyon days of Trade living in the memory, as do our awkward encounters of Escape, to the storming sets at Beyond, a place that is as special for him as it is for us.
So when it comes to his podcast productions, it is no surprise that some of these major clubs are not very far away, Gonzalo continuing to draw inspiration from his regular appearances for the RAW room at Orange, along with the indelibly marked music memories from Trade, his latest offering “Cums Deeper & Penetrating” very much a blend of the two and reflective of the style of deep house music that Mr Rivas revels in. That said, we only have to look back a couple of months to find a session mixed live at Beyond for the clubs weekly showing on Gaydar Radio, showing a slightly different side to this majestic mixer’s music, those deep & funky beats still there but revved up a little to suit the Sunday morning vibe which unmistakably from this awesome afterhours. So, in these latest two podcast pressings you have two fine examples of the Rivas rhythms that continue to rocks the dancefloors across the capital, both worthy additions to your compilation collection by going to http://gonzalorivas.podomatic.com/, while his studio works also extend to the odd track here & there, meaning a visit to http://soundcloud.com/gonzalo-rivas would not a amiss either.
To our next mini mention and one for a D.J. talent who continues to float on our radar surface as well as on the capitals clubbing scene, having played out at Matinee on a couple of occasions and more recently for Bear Necessity. But it is his devotion to new brand “Furrvert” that gets our attention, Michel Mizrahi part of the package when the club launched a couple of weeks ago, he laying down a compilation mix to mark the occasion and one that is crammed full of big room beats, euro-style sounds & plenty of funk that make for a superbly sexy soundtrack that reflects the clubs image impressively. We particularly like his choice of an electro tainted remix of the club hit “Pressure” which neatly moves into an dub version what is surely a 2011 chart topper, the wonderful “You’ve Got The Love”, while there are plenty more main room monsters on this 72 minute mix which you can grab now by going to http://michelmizrahi.podomatic.com/.
So to our final big hitter and one that impressed us so much when he cone over to London and played out in Beyond’s main room for the London Global Dance Festival back in May last year, that we have continued to cover his studio works ever since, even if we haven’t had the chance to see him play live. Therefore, including Barcelona based Ivan Gomez here was an easy choice for us, not least as he shares the exact same philosophy as us when he says that “…Music Is The Answer…” and his continuous creations very much echo that sentiment, as does his appearances across a host of club happenings both at home & abroad, the long list extending to the likes of Cockpit & Heroes in Cologne, Odarko & Strong in Madrid, Gay Village & Gorgeous I Am in Rome, Bubu Lounge in Sao Paulo and Fascination & Venial in Valencia, to mention just a few. However, whilst he remains pretty active out on the scene, it is Ivan’s studio productions that stand him out from the crowd, not least being an intrinsic part of the recording label Guareber, while his works often appear on Twisted & Sorry Shoes. The list of releases is so long that we would need to devote a whole post to Mr Gomez, just to include them all, although such are his achievements the topping of the prestigious US Billboard chart with his remix of Yoko Ono’s “Move On Fast” has to ranks as a major highlight in a host of other amazing accolades.
So, let’s take a moment to pick out some of those highlights and point you to Ivan’s latest creations that deserve more than a little attention, the first being his track “You Drive Me Crazy” which got its official release earlier this month, the original cut bridging genres of progressive, tribal & tech and has already been given the remix treatment by three other artists, this being no surprise as its credentials are considerable & very much represent a style of sound that is currently cutting a significant stride across the dancefloors of Europe. That said, Ivan never rests on his laurels, as a further two tracks are already in the pipeline, sneak previews of “Your Love” & “Get Well” very much from the same stable as the former and look like following it its footsteps, racing up the download charts come release day. However for us, there is no better way to sink into the magical musical world of Mr Gomez than checking out his monthly podcast productions, September’s a scorcher and truly evocative of that progressive tech & tribal blend that has Ivan’s name written all over it, so one we cannot recommend enough by going to http://soundcloud.com/ivangomezmusic & picking it out, among a host of tracks & compilations which should surely need adding to your collection.
Well, we are virtually there with our choices, wrapping up with the fifth mini mention which goes to another Spaniard, this time Rafha Madrid who starred at the Cafe Ole party at Fire last weekend, he being one of the brands main residents back in Ibiza. Finding himself in the melting pot of D.J.’s in Barcelona, Rafha certainly rubs shoulders with some of the best in the business, his style of sound not too dissimilar as it intersects genres tech, tribal & progressive that seem to emanate from this part of the word and rate highly with Spanish clubbers along with their European counterparts, if not quite so here in London. That said, we are impressed enough with his compilation release “Summer Heat” to include it here, plenty of vocal injections to back up those tribal, tech & progressive beats having kept us engaged throughout the 63 minutes of this mix and one we think you will like to, by going to http://soundcloud.com/rafhamadrid/rafha-madrid-summer-heat.
Right, that’s just about it for this latest newsletter, although one that hasn’t included any of our track choices, a feature that will return in our next offering “Protégé Producers & Players” which is hot on the heels of this, one which will see coverage of stars including Danny Verde, Javier Medina & Guy Scheiman, along with recent rookies Zack Burns, Junior Moura & Norbert M. However, in the meantime we hope you like our choices here, leaving us to simply say, “sit back, select those sounds, turn up the volume and let them play, as music IS the answer”. (DISCO MATT)
There can be no doubt that the Latin influence has been washing on the shores of London’s landscape for a few years now, the Spanish armada that included Space, La Troya, Matinee & SuperMartXe spearheading a wave of other nationals that have tried to crack the capital’s clubbing circuit nut, some succeeding more than others, an Italian mini invasion pretty much short loved, while the Brazilian’s have made a much bigger impression, not just packing out the dancefloors, but in brilliant brand The Week, shining as bright as the sun does in its home city of Sao Paulo. Yet, as great as The Week was when it landed in London, with the amount its country folk floating around in the capital, it was only a matter of time until a home(ish) grown Brazilian roots brand was created, Casa Latina launching within a hairs breath of The Week’s second showing and as a result getting a muted response. However, the case was quite different when Casa’s second bite at the cherry, “Car Wash” rolled into town, as the difference was remarkable, the turnout terrific & the event exceptional, the clubs original promoter Thiago Drewery joining forces with Mauricio Ortiz to create the best Brazilian promoter combination you could wish for.
So, given the success of its second coming, Casa Latina has certainly earned a place on the clubbing calendar and has chosen the irregular route to keep the brand fresh & its followers sufficiently enticed, a majestic move that should see its return this Saturday (24th Sept) prove just as popular as the last outing. With the team continuing with the winning recipe although shifting the theme with their “Sugar Daddy” event, billed by its promotions team as “…an even more audacious & exotic event…”, it looks like being another superb smash, well on paper at least, they promising that this latest outing will be “…even more pumped up with oversized decor, supersized props and tongue in cheek stage shows from the sexiest gogos in London, incredible special effects and custom visuals, transforming Fire’s refurbished main room in a spectacular stage-show production…”. And we have no reason to doubt any of their claims, especially after being so impressed with “Car Wash”, the joint efforts by both Thiago & Mauricio evident for all to see, Mr Ortiz’s influence bringing a SuperMasrtXe style feel to the event which we fully expect to be repeated come Saturday, not least as given the success of the last outing, the Casa crew have pushed the boat out further this time, as the inclusion of P.A. Tara McDonald is a mjor coup for the brand and will add an extra dimension to this already exceptional event.
As for the music, well it seems to team have pulled out all the stops, bringing together a mix of Brazilian home-grown talent & some of London’s top stars, not to mention the injection of some Latin from a different quarter as one Leo Blanco (not to be confused with the famous piano composer), who flies in for an exclusive performance direct from Ibiza. And he brings with him plenty of Balearic beats to mix in with the Brazilian ones that will surely be on display, Leo’s production capabilities pretty prominent, as he has teamed up with SuperMartXe’s Hugo Sanchez on a few projects, more latterly on their remix of Macy Gray’s “I Heart You” which has been officially released on the clubs label, while his latest podcast, simply titled “D.J. Mix Sept 2011” is well worth a listen as it will give you a good idea of what to expect from his headlining set in “Sugar Daddy’s” main room, one which you can check out via http://soundcloud.com/leo-blanco/leo-blanco-promo-summer-11. But the Brazilian influence on the main floor will come from Leandro Kloppel who has himself laid down a new podcast very much devoted to this “Sugar Daddy” event well worth some attention and one that is very reflective of his tech come tribal come progressive come Eurobeat style, (catch it at http://leandrokloppel.podomatic.com/entry/2011-09-09T07_47_31-07_00) so perhaps a reason, apart from his Brazilian connections, why he has been chosen to play at Casa alongside Leo and the other main room star, Berlin based D’Johnny.
However, the list doesn’t stop there as some of the capitals bi hitters are included in the line-up too, Jamie Head, a man on truly terrific form at the moment is there, as is Paul Heron, or is he?, as it seems this man can be in two places at once, playing here in London for Casa, as well as in Paris for Beyond & D.J. Ben Manson’s birthday bash, so the jury is out as to where Paul will actually be. Those two apart, no Casa Latina would be the some without the dynamic Brazilian duo of DouGuim & Junior Moura (or do we call him Celso?), Mr Moura having also laid down a new compilation which will get some more microscopic attention in a forthcoming music newsletter, although is well worth a listen now at http://djjuniorspodcast.podomatic.com/entry/2011-09-16T09_31_53-07_00, while the line-up is completed by rising star, the cute yet considerably capable Zach Burns & relative unknown Ale Aamaral, making this one of the strongest Casa line-up’s to date and injecting plenty of young blood to bring some vivacious variety to the party.
So what about the all important detail?, well Casa Latina’s “Sugar Daddy” event takes place this coming Saturday (24th Sept) at Fire in Vauxhall, doors opening at 11 p.m. and the club running through to a planned 7 a.m. finish. Advance tickets have been on sale for a while now, although it seems that the early bird £10 ticket offer remains in force online at http://orangenation.clubtickets.com/gb/2011-09/24/casa-latina-sugar-daddy, where there is also an option to purchase a joint £20 ticket which gains entry to Beyond’s “10th Birthday” party as well. Otherwise, you can grab a £10 (plus booking fee) advance ticket for “Sugar Daddy” at the usual Soho outlets, Prowler, Clone Zone & 50, while entry is available on the door, but expect to pay more. And, as if you need any further persuasion to make it down to Fire on Saturday, the official “Sugar Daddy” video should definitely seal the deal and is a must view by going to http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=2379031198886, while we will be there, no doubt fighting of the naughty pranks of a certain scene favourite D.J., while nibble size review tweeting our way through the whole event. So if you see us, come say hi, but to be seen on the scene this Saturday, make sure you “Go There! Be There! (DISCO MATT)
Having taken our tender steps onto the capital’s clubbing circuit some twenty or so years ago, we can count ourselves pretty lucky to have encountered some truly tremendous times in the hands of some of the biggest & best brands along the way, from Action to DTPM, Factor 25 to FIST, Matinee to SuperMartXe & Lovechild to Later, all making their significant mark in our memories. And whilst the list could go on & on, these are our handful of happenings that have reached the elite in our echelons and rank as those that have influenced our clubbing lives more than many others, but if we were to pin down the brands that have made the biggest impression on us, it comes down to just three, the first being Trade, no list ever being complete without the mother of all clubs which completely dominated the scene in the 90’s and still continues to this day, although admittedly a minnow of its former spectacular self. Then there is Crash, a club that heralded the underground movement & put Vauxhall onto the London clubbing map and a club that, without doubt, had as much, if not more of an influence on our lives than Trade, as it was at Crash that we formed some of our greatest & longest lasting friendships, many that survive & thrive to this very day.
But what the colossus that was Crash did more than anything else is create a Sunday morning afterhours phenomenon that has excelled all others before it, rising to the top of our clubbing pile and in so doing, beating off all potential rivals for our fondest affection. And it couldn’t be any other club than Beyond, a club and brand that started as a simple follow on for Crash customers, but has become a worldwide symbol for everything that is ecstatic & exemplary of club eventing, a brand that has dominated the capitals clubbing circuit for a huge slice of its existence, toppling Trade from its proud pedestal to become THE place to be & be seen clubbing on a Sunday morning. So, as Beyond prepares to mark ten years since making its first impression on the London clubbing landscape, we couldn’t let the moment pass without taking you back through some of its historical highlights, sharing some of the magical music & the prolific people that the club have served up to the scene and then delving into the detail of how the current team at the clubs helm plan to mark this landmark in its lifetime.
So where & when did the brilliance that is Beyond today begin?, well we have to look back to 2nd June 2001 when the concept for an Sunday morning afterhours was born out of what was initially an after party for the Purple In the Park, host venue, The Coliseum proving to be the clubs home for the first part of its heavenly history, although its first faltering year in operation saw Beyond play second fiddle to the Saturday superstars on the scene, Crash, Action & Heaven still proving the hard hitters, while Trade’s pedestal was proving a tough cookie to topple. But enter stage left the man behind other Vauxhall afterhours brands A: M & Orange, one Craig Elder and Beyond was to take on a whole new identity and impact, the joining of forces with Crash’s Wayne Shires proving a explosive collaborative cocktail and one that would see the brand propelled into the eyes of the clubbing community virtually instantaneously, becoming the talk of town & very much walking the walk, seeing off the Sunday morning competition that was Trade.
With Beyond under a full head of steam, the Colosseum days were to prove very special for us, not least that many of the resident D.J.’s from Crash would play out at this awesome afterhours too, the likes of Alan X, David Jiminez, Severino & Steve Pitron performing virtually week in week out, well when Beyond was given away to Crash’s own “Afterhours” party, while the iconic VIP room was where one of the best known & longest running D.J. back-to-back partnerships were formed, Brent Nicholls & Paul Heron playing line astern, this leading on to a playing partnership that saw soiree splendour Industri rule the Thursday waves for much of its own time in clubland. But with so many stars of the scene clamouring to play the Beyond decks and the now weekly parties very much roadblock affairs, what was originally a two room party was stretched to three a “Therapy” & then an “Elemental” themed space introducing the likes of Malcolm Duffy, Paul Martin & Red and Blue, while Beyond’s main room sported stars The Sharp Boys, Hugh Stevenson & Stevie B, mixing it up with the clubs originals, Mr Pitron still part & parcel of the clubs prolific package. And appropriately, Steve has just this month released a podcast from those halcyon days of Beyond, from April 2004 in fact, the magical musical memoires that he made back then coming flooding back before our eyes & ears and one that is an absolute must for all Beyond & Pitron fans as well as those who fancy a terrific trip down memory lane, one which you can grab by going to http://stevepitronsessions.podomatic.com/.
But while 2006 dawned with one of the clubs biggest parties to date, the early part of the year seeing the offer extend to a new concept called “B4 Beyond”, the might of Crash & Orange uniting in what was seen as the continuing & harmonious collaboration between the two camps. However, under the surface the lines were being drawn in the sand, as new club venue Area was in the cusp of being launched, the team behind Crash throwing their might & money behind this amazing arrival, one which was to see Beyond hit the back burner midway through the year. And with Beyond out of play, this new custom built venue stepped into the spotlight, its own afterhours outing “Ultra” becoming the darling of the Sunday morning clubbing market, attracting Crash stars that included Mikey D, Jamie Head, Brent Nicholls and, naturally, Steve Pitron among a host of others that had played Beyond in the Coliseum days and who play for the brand to this day, Paul Heron included in that elite list. But this part of the Beyond picture would never be complete without a massive mention for one other, as the hostess with the mostest, now known as Hrh Minty, but then simply as Minty, was the fabulous face of Beyond from its early days at Coliseum, very much providing continuity within the calamity that had seen our favourite afterhours disappear off our dance diary.
So, to pick up the Beyond story we need to fast forward some two years, to 2nd May 2008 to be exact, this marking the return of the brand to its regular slot in our schedule, an attempt to re-launch the club earlier in the year at the inauspicious Sunday evening timing falling on immediate rocky ground. But with Area now in the hands of Craig Elder & his Orange Group, Beyond was to see its most successful years ahead, not only cementing itself as the best afterhours outing on the clubbing circuit, but establishing itself as the leading brand in the eyes of the clubbing community & press, scooping award after award, not least the prestigious SeenQueen club poll, one of the most respected & robust opinion orators around. That said, the awards came on the back on the brilliance of the brand, not least with the dynamic D.J.’s that Beyond employed, Steve Pitron very much in the mix, while his old Crash pals Mikey D & Jamie Head became regular features too, the likes of Alan K, Hifi Sean, D’Johnny, Paul Christian & The Oli the new blood, joining the Colosseum company of David Jiminez, Gonzalo Rivas & The Sharp Boys. And many of these stars have laid down recordings in reverence of Beyond, Alan’s compilations considerable, Sean’s mixes magical, D’Johnny’s devotions delightful & Oli’s podcasts pumping, all worth checking out at http://djalank.podomatic.com, http://hifiseandj.podomatic.com/, http://djohnny.podomatic.com/ & http://theoli.podomatic.com/.
However, the story of Beyond is a continuing one, as in Area we have seen some of the best times in our own clubbing history, not one month going by without it playing a pulsating part in our prancing, so much so we find it hard to choose one or two from the wealth of wonderful weeks when the club hit our heavenly high notes, although “Tokyo” last October & “Erotica” this February rank as two huge highlights along with scores of others that received our rapturous reviewing, the brand benefitting from unparralled exposure through those reviews as well as countless recommends & reports posts, while we have sometimes courted controversy with revealing our displeasure to certain changes or directions the club has taken in recent times. That said, as amazing those halcyon days of Colosseum were, 2011 has been a purple patch Beyond year for us, our relationship with the club & many of its players reaching dizzy heights, our now much publicised “rollercoaster emotional rides & tearful floods of joy” never more apparent than when found on “our spot” in Area for Beyond, indeed that very phrase, our spot, a product of the club and one that is equally associated to us as we do it to Beyond. As for this brand, well 2011 has seen it stretch its international legs, touching the likes of Amsterdam, Ibiza, Mykonos, Paris, & Sao Paulo, while beaming out its beats on Gaydar Radio has reached audiences as far as Australia & South Africa, making Beyond as a brand a genuine global giant. Add to that it’s various incarnations, “Belief”, “Back 2″, “Midnight” & “Super Size” and if the club were a human being, it would most definitely be a man for all seasons.
Yet as the truly brilliant Beyond marks a decade since first opening its doors to droves of dancers, the club finds its very existence at threat, microscopic attention by the regulatory authorities in the last few weeks marring its magnificence, while rumours are rife of licensing & other issues that could affect its future or its home. That said, given the clubs standing on the scene together with its ability to survive & thrive where others have fallen by the wayside, come this Sunday morning (25th Sept), Beyond will be brimming with dance devotees both old & new, all coming together to celebrate what is truly one of the best clubs on the planet. And the team will be turning out the best that Beyond has to offer, with a never seen before bounty of back-to-back sets by its all-star residents, some also old while others are new, the marriage of multi mixing maestro Alan K with young gun Jamie Hammond looking electric, the playing partnerships between Hifi Sean & Severino, D’Johnny & David Jiminez set to be superb showstoppers, while the prolific pairing of Steve Pitron & Mikey D had to be a given and will surely prove stand-out among the ample helpings of this 10th birthday celebration cake topping icing impressions.
But with the devil in the detail, there is much more that this Beyond birthday bash looks like bring, not least as a further supporting cast of D.J. residents include Jamie Head, The Sharp Boys, Gonzalo Rivas, Fat Tony, The Oli & Jonny M, while we are told Elektra Paris will be heading up a team of ten dancers dressed distinctively to celebrate this landmark moment in the clubs history, the team telling us to expect “… everything from cutting edge LED gogos, to stunning couture sailors, amazonian warriors, erotic leather-bound studs, circus freaks and wonderland characters…” all on a custom built stage setting created exclusively for this event. Then add in the truly amazing Area lighting, effects, pyrotechnics & lasers, for which Beyond has become a byword and you have one colossal celebration of afterhours audacity at its brilliant best, all this hosted by the fantabulous Naomi Ruiz & Mauricio Ortiz, meaning that this is sure to be a roadblock event, thereby hinting that advance tickets are a must to avoid disappointment, these priced at a mere £10 and available online at http://clubtickets.com as well as at the usual Soho outlets. However, chancing it on the door will cost you £12 with an ad or flyer, while without will stretch you to a score (that’s £20 folks), those doors opening at 6 a.m. and the club running through to a planned 1 a.m.
Now that’s the detail, but how do we sum up this whirlwind look back at Beyond’s history & its landmark landing? Well, despite the pedantic part of us questioning its right to celebrate a 10th birthday, given that two year break in its history, it is in true fact a full (and slightly more) ten years since Beyond braved the capitals clubbing scene and during that time it has brought to us the best in music, the best in D.J.’s, the best in dancing, the best in atmosphere, the best in effects & the best in events. So, that simple word best speaks for Beyond in a nutshell and given its amazing ascendency, those halcyon days at Colosseum, the phoenix rise from the ashes at Area, the unrepentant wave crest ride it finds itself on today & everything in-between, we cannot take anything away from this colossus of a club’s moment of glory, so will hopefully be right in the thick of the action, nibble size tweeting, spinning on our spot, in a Pitron pool of tearful emotion, but moreover helping Beyond & all its prolific players celebrate this awesome afterhours anniversary. (DISCO MATT)
Having formed a fulfilling friendship back in January when Guy Scheiman visited London, playing out for both Salvation & As One, we could feel, even at this tender age in our relationship, that a special bond would develop between us, a fabulous five days in Barcelona for the Delice Dream festival in April, very much cementing what has become a bond that now feels pretty unbreakable. And like the handful of extra special relationships we have developed with D.J.’s, across the globe, Danny Verde, Leomeo Carandang, Javier Medina, & Eduardo De La Torre included, Mr Scheiman quickly found a wonderful way in our musical hearts, meaning he has joined this elite group of music makers, Zach Burns & Junior Moura also included, that have too found a place on our protégé list, while he also ranks among a wider net of stars that attract our attention with their performances & productions, people like Steve Pitron, Brent Nicholls, Mikey D, Paul Heron Nick Tcherniak, & Jamie Head, terrific talents who always impress us whenever they play or produce the kind of music which very much makes our world go round.
So Guy finds himself among some illustrious company, but quite rightly so, as from the minute we heard him play and then got to know him, we realised that like all the others, he had an incredible passion for his art. Plus, it was clear that we shared common ground in terms of musical tastes & styles, many of Guy’s studio productions hitting our mark magnificently, while having cemented that formed friendship as the year has gone on, it seemed inevitable that the musical bond between Guy & ourselves would bear some fruit. And so we decided it would be mutually beneficial to marry up our musical minds over the miles to produce a podcast, not just celebrating the sounds of summer, but showcasing a set of terrific tracks that, while chosen individually, would reflect our joint joy for the magic of music, as well as providing a useful marketing tool for Guy’s European aspirations along with our desire to share some of the brilliant beats that have been floating our boat recently.
Now collaborative compilations are not something new to us, we having gone into production with Brent Nicholls in an emerging “Dance-tastic” series that has seen three podcasts to date, the premise of these collaborations very much being that, as Brent neatly put it, “…he chooses and I mix…”, the track selections our part of the marriage, while the mixing is down to Mr Nicholls. And while Brent has put his own twist to certain selections, the result has been a set of prolific podcasts that not only reflect our similar musical tastes, but have clearly gone down well with Brent’s audiences, both “Spring Bloomers” & “Summer Scorchers” ranking high in his download figures. However, having caught the collaboration bug, with Guy the parameters on this new found podcast partnership were decidedly different, as the Scheiman influence was much more direct, in that he would be choosing the tracks as well as us and then using his considerable skills in blending them together to, in effect, create something more akin to a back-to-back set, thus fusing our similar sound styles into a seamless summer selection, the aim very much to achieve a compilation that would mirror that musical bond we had built together.
However, like the most magnificent of marriages, our venture with Guy was to encounter its own trials & tribulations, our initial selection of six tracks being sent back to the drawing board on a couple of occasions and, at times, leaving us scratching our heads as to why we had entered into what was proving an argumentative agreement between the two. But when you put two such strong willed individuals together, the sparks were always going to fly, although the electricity between us through the passion for music that we both share, was to see that music end up doing the talking and the final choice of tracks become the joint decision that it always should have been. And the result is a compilation that both represents our similar styles superbly and knits together like the best made jumper, a collection of tunes that marry our musical minds mesmerically and showcase a selection of sounds that speak summer for us both, the only decision left being what to actually call the collaboration, the title coming pretty easily and for us, representing the meshing of the miles between us and the links that this music making has moulded.
So here it is, “From Tel Aviv To London – Summer Mix 2011”, a sixteen track splendour that kicks off in superb style with a definite summer sound, Roy Davis Jnr’s “Enjoy The Ride”, perhaps more than just a hint for what you should be doing throughout this 119 minute marvel. But with remixes on tracks by Madonna & The Bee Gees, as well as disco diva track reworks, “Sweet Sensation” & “A Deeper Love”, along with artist inclusions extending to Danism, Antoine Clamaran, Filthy Rich & Tristan Garner, the compilation’s 2011 credentials are considerable, as all these artists have been cutting a significant stride this year so far. But it doesn’t stop there, as the David Jonson track “Get Down” pops up, adding a truly summery feel to the mix, while there is also a distinct Ibiza injection with the likes of Etienne Ozborne & Cambis serving up white isle inspired inclusions, the latter’s “Lift Me Up” a summer stunner.
All that said, while this is very much a collaborative compilation, the mix would have never been complete without Guy’s production influence and this threads through the podcast neatly without being overpowering, while through his nifty mixing of the tracks, it certainly leaves you guessing who chose which track, as each eight do blend beautifully (if we say so ourselves!). Plus, as we have mentioned already, with an inside knowledge as to who did actually chose what, we think that the end result makes for as close to a back-to-back set performance as we could have wished for, perhaps hinting towards something to come in the future. In the meantime, to grab your slice of our summer session with Mr Scheiman, go to direct link http://soundcloud.com/guyscheiman/from-tel-aviv-to-london-disco/ where you can either listen or download to your absolute pleasure and while we have purposefully not issued the track listing, details of inclusions are available by dropping a quick line to email@example.com, while comments & feedback are more than welcome via Guy’s soundcloud page.
As for future collaborations with our impressive Israeli, having taken those first few tender sweet steps with Guy, we are sure the next mix will come out of the blender sometime soon, as we are both honoured & thrilled to have joined forces with our fabulous friend, although it is just a case of watch this space. However for now, we hope you enjoy this “Tel Aviv To London – Summer 2011 Mix” leaving us to simply say “…sit back, turn up the volume & press play, as music is the answer…” (DISCO MATT)
In this day & age it is increasingly rare to find a conventional club standing the test of time, let alone one that sits squarely in the fetish market, some of the world’s biggest brands having faded from the capitals clubbing circuit long before passing the seven year itch, meaning that to still be going strong a full eight years in is an awesome achievement and one very much worth celebrating. Mind you, if we were to include its previous incarnation, then the club in question will have actually been in existence for well over twice that time, very much outstripping all of its competitors, let alone plenty of other big brands that are cutting a stride to this day. And having succumbed to its temptations in both its form as FIST and now as Hard On!, as this fetish frolic marks another year in overt operation, we will be once again polishing our boots, sliding into our rubber shorts, buckling our harness and strapping our chaps to help promoter Suzie Kruegar & her tremendous team celebrate their exceptional eight yardstick years.
So how come Hard On! has lasted so well for so long? Well, there of lots of reasons, primarily that the club has probably one of the most faithful followings that we know, many of its regulars using the club in the fullest sense of the word, i.e. a place where people meet, socialise & share common interests. And being a fetish club, we don’t need to tell you what those interests extend to, although given the clubs appeal to those dabbling in the scene as well as seasoned pros, Hard On! by its very nature has developed a broader cross section of followers than it more full on former. But the clubs longevity extends beyond just its faithful following, as, while it may have moved venues on more than one occasion, the basic & winning formula has remained pretty much unchanged, the combination of music, dance & play an irresistible combination for many, us (well cousin Crisco actually) included. Then there is promoter Suzie Kruegar, an individual that commands a huge amount of respect for what she does, both by her peers and by the wider clubbing community, very much cut of what we would term, “old school cloth”, meaning she knows her stuff and how to look after her lot.
So what about the history of Hard On! and where does it find itself celebrating its eight year?, Well, the club was very much a bi-product of the former FIST, a club that ended it’s days at the infamous Imperial gardens in Camberwell, having started life at the iconic Substation South in Brixton, this in itself deluding to that old school cloth that we mentioned just. However, Hard On!, like its promoter, followed the trend at the time, underground clubbing finding favour in the then relatively barren landscape of Vauxhall, a pretty much under-developed spot of London that proved a perfect playing ground for clubbers & followers of things more alternative & fetish, the iconic Crash providing Hard On! with its first home. But its move to Hidden just down the road was to prove a more permanent & long lasting spot for Suzie the layout & the flexibility of the venue much better suited to the clubs formula, although just earlier this year, the more compact yet perfectly formed Factory was Hard On’s! third home and one we have yet to sample, well in fetish form that is.
With the Hard On! history lesson over with, what can you expect from this 8th birthday bash?, Well naturally, the central theme of all things, leather, rubber, boots and the like, along with that classic combination of music, dance & play that the club has become famous for. But for the birthday, Hard On! is stretching (lots of that going on!) the boundaries a bit further, our friends at Fetish Pig explaining it all brilliantly when they say “… it will be one of the biggest fetish parties of the year…” adding that “…sponsored by RoB, Hard On! celebrates 8 years of getting down & dirty and this year we are making it even more pervy…”. And they are not wrong there, as the Hard On! team have planned a special competition, Fetish Pig revealing that “…you may have the talk, now walk the walk and show us just how sleazy you are…” the quest to become Mr Sleazy 2011 earning a prize worth £600 with 2nd & 5rd prizes too. Now, whilst entrant’s requests have been active for a while, we are reliably informed that you can still register for the competition by dropping your details on an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, enclosing a photo with your pervy particulars. And for those that simply choose to watch in awe of the contestants, fear not, as you too will get the chance to scoop a prize or two, as there RoB are sponsoring a free raffle on the door with prizes including leather jeans, t-shirts, aromas & RoB discount gold cards, while Hard On! will be throwing in their own gold card memberships too.
As for the music, well with the Factory format a little smaller than previous home Hidden, there is just one dancefloor, meaning that regular residents Brent Nicholls, Hugo’sland & Halo-is will be sharing disc spinning duties, each of them digging into their archives to bring you a magnificent mix of “…big sleazy beats, uplifting progressive house, fuck me harder grooves (Fetish Pig’s words not ours!) and a selection of Hard On! anthems from over the years, under an array of lasers with one of the best sphincter clenching (what do they mean!?!) sound systems in London…”. And what better way to get acquainted with what will be on offer, music wise, than delving deep into Brent Nicholls’ latest compilation created especially for this birthday bash, Mr Nicholls carefully selecting sixteen tracks (that’s two for each year) that take you on a glorious journey of the clubs musical history and certainly brings many magical memories rushing back to the fore. As Brent explains, “…for those hat may have thought Hard On! may have been all hard & all banging, that depends on what dancefloor you were on, on mine it was dirty, sexy & funky which this podcast sets out to show…”. However, Brent has also strived to represent the full eight years of Hard On!, but admits that “…listening to the mix, I realise one may never really capture the essence of the Hard On! floor with just two tracks a year…” but adds that “the challenge was which tunes would easily define the year, although I did not want them all to be obvious, so I added a few of my own personal favourites…”. And the result is quite amazing, so one definitely for Hard On! fans or otherwise, we having spun around London’s roads to it just this week, but a mix that can be enjoyed pretty much anytime, anywhere (well within reason of course!), so one you should grab at http://djbrentnicholls.com/web/2011/09/04/podcasts-hard-on-8/.
Now to the detail and Hard On!’s 8th birthday takes place this coming Saturday (17th Sept) at Factory in Vauxhall, doors opening at 10 p.m. and the club running through to a planned 5 a.m. finish. The dress code is strict, that means leather, rubber, uniform, skin or just boots, so definitely NO trainers or plain jeans, while Hard On! remains a members only club, membership available by going to http://hardonclub.co.uk, entrance charged at £15 for members & £20 for guests (members can bring up to two guests each). And it’s good to get there early, as they are offering a happy hour (well two actually) between 10 p.m. & midnight, with 2 for 1 on bottles of Becks beer, as Suzie says, “…to get you lubricated…” while the club space provides a cruise balcony, a well equipped play space & sinema, an enclosed smoking area and plenty of sleazy alcoves on top of, as Fetish Pig put it, “…a large anal arena (that’s the dancefloor before you ask) full of an up for it crowd who know what they want & how to get it…”.
So, all in all, this looks like being one of THE birthday parties of the year and we will be there to report on it all, although sadly, due to strict rules of engagement, will be unable to live nibble size review tweet our way through the night, but will be busy enough as it is. So, if you happen to spot us, remember its Crisco, not Disco but do come say hi, making sure that you “Go There! Be There! (CRISCO MATT)
We look back to the days of Soho Pride with incredible fondness, the concept which started back in the mid noughties as a result of the de-scaling of London’s main pride event and quickly established itself as the capitals premier gay festival, outstripping the former in terms of both numbers & appeal, although quickly switching from a Saturday to a Sunday which seemed to fit better with all parties concerned. However, with a change in the city’s mayor, came a change in heart & funding, in effect cutting Soho pride off in its prime and leaving the capital without its own fabulous street festival as well as a gaping hole in its outdoor event schedule. However, out of the ashes of Soho Pride came Soho Pink Sunday, a reasonable sedate affair compared to its inspiration and at a glance looking more like a money spinning project for the bars involved rather than an all out celebration of community, charity, music, song & dance, although it certainly pulled out the punters, the streets & the bars packed all afternoon & evening.
So, Soho Pink Sunday is back and whilst plans hitting our desks have been quite sketchy, we expect most of the bars to be involved and the day to look much more like a Soho Pride affair, albeit that the stages will be confined to the Compton St end of this gregarious gay village. However, what we do know is that there is on hell of a party happening at Profile & Lo-Profile, as the might of Gaydar are calling on the services of Lovechild & Logan Presents to bring you a Soho Pink Sunday special entitled “Superlovers”, a party spread across both Profile & Lo-Profile in what looks like a truly fitting end to a dynamic day. And the combination of these big brand players along with a heavenly headline act looks like a sure-fire winner, the terrific team of D.J.’s including an amorous Aussie, flying in from Sydney to star alongside some of Lovechild’s favourite residents, while there will be no shortage of drop dead gorgeous go-go’s across the two floors, many pulled from the awesome armoury that exists within the Logan presents camp.
Well that’s the bones of this exceptional event, so what about the meat?, Well, apart from those delicious dancers courtesy of Logan & his schmitzels (more on that in a mo), there will be plenty of muscle-bound meat to feast yours eyes on in the form of the Lovechild D.J.’s, not least special guest Johan Khoury who makes a more than welcome return to the capital, marking his third outing for promoter Alex Erfan’s loveable brand, Johan having made a considerable impact on the capital’s clubbers on both previous occasions. Hailing from Sydney, he is very much active on the city’s scene, having played out at all the big events including Mardi Gras & The Harbour Party, while he is inextricably linked to the brand Day Wash, as well as the down under version of Love Muscle along with a handful of others residencies under his belt. That said, Johan has also made an impression abroad, having played out in parties across The America’s & Europe, stop off’s including Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Ibiza, San Francisco, Paris & Rome, while he rates his appearances in London high amongst his list of landings, his uplifting, energetic & euphoric house music style of sound making him a popular pull. And if you haven’t managed to catch him in action behind the decks as yet, then you can always grab a slice of this handsome down under dudes dance music mastery by checking out his podcast page at http://djjohankhoury.podomatic.com/, “Pandemia” a brilliant intro to an atypical Johan set, while “Dreaming” is full of that energetic house we were talking about and what he will surely be selecting come Sunday.
But Mr Khoury won’t be the only Aussie influence at “Superlovers” as Alex draws on the talents of one of his longest serving residents, Brent Nicholls having played out at the very first Lovechild in London and has been a feature at virtually every party since. And it is fair to say that this attractive Aussie continues to attract an audience wherever he plays, Mr Nicholls being no stranger to both Profile & Lo-Profile, having played out for the brands regularly, he being the inspiration behind the launch of Friday night sensation “Society”, a compilation dedicated to the club at http://djbrentnicholls.com/web/2011/04/14/minipodcast-society/, a good hint towards his nu-funk & disco groove style that will be likely to feature at “Superlovers”, while he remains as popular a pick for Mr Erfan now as he did back in the days of Salvation & PSP. Add to Brent, the musical magnificence of two of Lovechild’s mainstay residents, Tony English & Alessandro Londra, both who have represented the brand across Europe as well as here in London, while recent recruit Marco Gee will no doubt add even more dimension to this already dynamic D.J. team.
So that’s the music, what about the entertainment?, Well in true Lovechild & Logan Presents fashion, it will be right up there with any club offering around, not least that the services of two prolific P.A.’s have been called on for this “Superlovers” event, Lizzie France the first and a foxy female that has a voice to match her substantial stature together with a list of vocal hits that includes recent smash “The Answer”, while we are sure that at least one of her new track releases, produced in collaboration with Nick Tcherniak & Tom Marchant will get an airing on Sunday. But Alex & Logan have also managed to secure the one & only Alexis Houston and, yes, she is the sister of her more famous sister Whitney and looking at Alexis you can see the resemblance too, we being told her voice is every bit as good, while having been delighting audiences from an the tender age of six, she has been both performing and producing music, rubbing shoulders with the likes of Justin Timberlake & Christina Aquilera, while her phenomenal voice embodies the soul of Aretha Franklin, so is sure to go down a treat at “Superlovers” and will no doubt be a heavenly highlight of the happening.
Add to that the injection of those drop dead gorgeous dancers we deluded to and in the very capable hands of Logan Schmitz, you can pretty much guarantee the crème de la crème, not least as the man’s own dance pedigree & resultant contacts within the field pretty much speaks for itself. Having spent a fair amount of the summer travelling, Ibiza & mainland Spain featuring in his tours, Logan has touted some really gorgeous muscle hunks to add to his already considerable stable of London based boys & girls and if you happened to be at SuperMartXe’s “Blackout” event last Saturday (shame on you if you weren’t) then you would have seen some of them in audacious action. So, come Sunday, you can expect only the best in terms of beauty & brawn, the dancers topping the Lo-Profile podiums from the off and surely mingling with the masses upstairs in Profile too. Plus a quick mention has to go to Gaydar, who are throwing their sponsorship weight behind Logan & his terrific team, we are told supplying plenty of giveaways for the night, so best you get up close & personal with one of Mr Schmitz’s schmitzels to score your surprise.
Now to the detail and “Superlovers” takes place this coming Sunday (18th Sept) at both Profile & Lo-Profile, kicking off from 10 p.m. with tickets available on the door at a price of £10, while if you grab a flyer then it’s just £5. However, if you are around Soho for the Pink Sunday festival, then keep your eyes peeled for the “Superlovers” hunks who will be handing out discount wristbands all day, while we are told advance tickets will be available from behind the bar at Profile too, while more info on this exceptional event can be found by going to either, http://alexerfan.com or http://loganpresents.com.
Sadly however, it seems that an individual from a certain organisation (we won’t mention names) has been seeking to derail this “Superlovers” event with a surreptitious message he is spreading in which he has said “…Be careful about buying any tickets for any party’s run by Alex Erfan from Love Child as he is going bust and may keep the money and not do the party. Tell anyone who might buy one…”, one that is founded on nothing else but pure fiction & malicious intention. Having spoken with Alex personally on the issue and also speaking out in his behalf, we cannot condemn this message enough and with the whole of the “Superlovers” team also doing the same, not least major sponsors & supporters, Gaydar, we want to assure you that ANY tickets bought for this or ANY event run by Alex are sold with the upmost of integrity & honesty and that the ONY care you need to take, is not to get sucked in by this despicable message & its intentions.
So, let’s end on a high by wishing you a very happy & safe Soho Pink Sunday and cannot think of a better way of rounding off your partying by joining Alex Erfan, Logan Schmitz, Gaydar and the whole of the Profile & Lo-Profile team for “Superlovers”. We will be there to live nibble size review tweet & report on it all, so if you see us come say hi, but make sure you “Go There! Be There!” (DISCO MATT)
We can definitely count ourselves lucky to be in the thick of one of the world most diverse & prolific clubbing scenes, many other cities & their citizens looking at London with a great deal of envy, not least that we sport some of the biggest & best brands in the business. However, you would be forgiven for thinking, well recently at least, that the outstanding offer the capital always used to boost, has gotten a little flat, not least that some of those big players we were intimating towards, have either taken a rest for a while or have simply gone completely to ground. And when we delve a little deeper into the dilemma that seems to be facing our superb scene, it is Saturday’s in particular that have taken a big hit, so many successful parties have fallen by the wayside, while others hardly seem able to brave the beat without the fear of being crushed by the competition. So, when we heard of the return of one superb Saturday smash, we were anxious to see exactly what it would have to offer and what the crushing competition would make of it all.
Now it would be fair to say that Spanish brand SuperMartXe has had it fair share of success, virtually from the moment it launched, capturing the imagination of the capitals clubbing circuit and attracting one of the best looking crowds in town. However, more recent times have seen mixed fortunes for the brand here in London, promoter Logan Schmitz having been plagued by a series of setbacks, not least having lost original home to his beloved brand, The Coronet, in effect to the highest bidder, competitor Spaniard showstopper WE Party having muscled in on the action. And while the Debut affair has clearly left considerable scars on SuperMartXe, in new home Pulse, it seems to be finding its feet once again, a succession of parties putting the brand back on the capitals clubbing map, albeit that for some of the faithful followers, not quite the same as old. However, having given the competition a free reign over the last bank holiday, Logan & his schmitzels were very much back with a bang with their “Blackout” event, a welcome return indeed, but did this prove the bounce back that had been hoped for?, or did SuperMartXe once again suffer from sinister spoiling tactics?
Well, having somehow missed out on the last four servings of this Spanish brand brilliance here in the capital, we were determined to make SuperMartXe’s “Blackout” event, having thrown our weight behind the party in a rapturous recommends report, although just like Logan had endured for many months, we were targeted by a ferocious attack, having spoken out on a certain issue, the threat of an injunction on our website & a law suit saw us bow to this bully like pressure and withdrawing our comments. Yet while this was never going to derail our appearance, it was last minute work commitments that put the spanner in our SuperMartXe works, meaning that we were resigned to sitting it out while our “secret squirrel” filled our boots and reported back on it all, giving us sufficient food for thought to put his words into print as follows.
“…Arriving at Pulse early to avoid any potential queues, it was clear that this latest SuperMartXe outing was going to take a while to get out of its starting blocks, although with the main space filling quite quickly before our eyes, Nick Tcherniak the D.J. in charge of firing up the fervent in the followers of this “Blackout” bash. And from what our SS reported, he went about the task with gusto, even a comedic moment when a cold air blast from the C)2 canons hit him square in the face, although this far from put him off from his stroke, a masterful performance full of tech fuelled tunes & uplifting beats that had an ever increasingly busy main room lifting the atmosphere with lots of hands in the air dancing. As for headline SuperMartXe star Salva Di Nobles, well, it seemed clear he was used to playing to an audience, as his set was crafted cunningly to do just that, a blend of euro-style beats with upfront house making for a prolific performance that matched that of pop princess Therese, whose “Blackout” billing lived up to all expectations & more, the whole show quite spectacular & true to the SuperMartXe style. Plus it seemed that porn star Damien Crosse also made a substantial splash, a catch of the climax by our SS remarking that the day glow green cum moment was a first. And that pretty much went for the exceptional effects too, a laser beam bounty of Matrix magnificence that cast columns of light across the main room, blacking out the rest, while leaving the cavorting clubbers dazzled by the dynamism of the displays. Then to round of the rapturous SuperMartXe return, Tony English took to the main room decks delighting his adorning audience with a superb sequence of sounds that continued that hands in the air audacity that had been so much a trademark of the “Blackout” bash, his rendition of Danny Verde’s Lady Gaga remix smash a huge highlight among a mass of other musical masterpieces that rounded of this enjoyable event…”
Clearly we were hugely disappointed to once again miss out on SuperMartXe’s showing at Pulse, a venue we still have yet to see in full operation, yet one that is proving a stickier wicket for Logan & his team to tout for the kind of numbers they used to enjoy at former home The Coronet. And judging by the comments we gathered from a few sources, while the main room was packed for most of the night, the club as a whole didn’t feel quite busy enough, how did our SS put it, “…the party had a good percentage of hot men but they really needed to have brought their clones too…”. So, it seems that the damage inflicted by Debut continues to exist, while there is no doubt that competitor crushing also had a big part to play in SuperMartXe’s success this time round, as Beyond, despite earlier rumours to the contrary, extended its opening hours, offering free entry & pulling in the services of headline Spanish D.J. Juanjo Martin in a clear attempt to deflect dancers & steal the spotlight, the promotions team behind this amazing afterhours seemingly unwilling to let an long lamented feud die. That said, it seemed that many rejoiced the return of this Spanish brand splendour and we are sure that we speak for many more in saying that we hope the Logan & his lot are here to stay. (DISCO MATT)
If you are a follower of our reviews & recommends posts, you will no doubt have gathered that we always do our best to spread the love across the rich diversity that is the capitals clubbing scene, although some of our harshest critics would probably say that we favour a certain set of clubs and one brand in particular. And whilst it may be true that Beyond gets a huge amount of our attention, we make no bones over the fact that it has won a special place in our hearts, not just in recent months, but stretching back to its beginnings in 2001. That said, the club has also had its fair share of our criticism (constructively of course), certain directions it has pointed itself in & decisions that have been made, finding fault rather than favour, this coming weekend being no exception. That said, despite certain reservations over some decisions, Beyond still remains top of our pile of choice clubs and itself remaining THE place to be & be seen on the clubbing scene on a Sunday morning.
So, what decisions have we been deluding to that have created those reservations? And how does it affect this weekend’s event?, Well, we have always revered Beyond as an afterhours club, its position as the premier Sunday morning clubbing experience rising it quickly to the top of the tree, virtually from the week of its launch ten years ago challenging & then knocking the then queen of the afterhours scene, Trade, off its pedestal. And, despite the short break in its transmission between 2006 & 2008, Beyond came back with a bang, effectively rising like a phoenix from the ashes in its new home Area, once again proving that is was streets ahead of the competition, very much the afterhours adoration that it had always been and very much at the top of the clubbing game, not just in the Sunday morning market, but across the scene as a whole.
Now, for us, that was all it needed to prove here in the capital, although with increasing regularity, the team behind this brilliant brand have seen it fit to extend the offer to concepts “Belief”, “Midnight” & “Super Size”, the central theme to these events being extended trading hours, “Midnight” especially changing the whole complexion of the club, in effect making it a Saturday night as well as a Sunday morning outfit. Yet, while there is no doubt the brand is strong enough to attract its faithful following, we will always see Beyond as an after rather than a regular hours club, so much so, that even on these extended events, we often don’t make our appearance until 5 or 6 a.m., when, generally, the club finds its full head of steam with the three roomed operation that we have all come to love, swinging into action. That said, on weekends when there is not much else on offer, the extended Beyond’s provided a much needed fill to the gap left by others, while we would question its intentions when there is plenty more action out on this dynamically diverse scene we find ourselves within.
So, looking at this weekend we see that beyond have once again chosen to roll out a combination of its “Midnight” & “Super Size” concepts, calling on the services of a top international D.J. to headline it’s all star resident team, the promise of more prolific pyrotechnics, exceptional effects, majestic music & luminous lighting for which both beyond & its host venue Area have become renowned. However, whilst the promotion paints a very pretty picture, following some detailed research & journalistic investigation, certain facts have come to light which put a much more realistic slant of this “Super Size” event, not least that the brand seems to have given way to another event which is taking place at Area tonight (Saturday 10th Sept), Logo looking like taking up both the main room & the chapel space from 10 p.m., while Beyond, which kicks off at midnight, will according to its promoter, start its operation in The Terrace Room and then expand into the other three spaces as Logic finishes. In addition, headline D.J. act Juanjo Martin has published his set times on his Facebook page, the so called extended set taking place between 7 & 9 a.m., his two hour turn not quite the extended offer many may have been expecting.
All that said, Beyond is offering a lot for this weekend, not least for those in search of a bargain, as the team have dug their hands deep into their pockets to offer free entry for the first hour, with entrance offers extending right through till 5 a.m. And in their headline D.J. act Juanjo Martin, they have a man that has been scooped awards including, best Spanish D.J. in Ibiza, best Spanish Producer & best production for “I Believe In Dreams”, among a host of others. Plus having been one of SuperMartXe’s top residents for well over four years, while ties have as recently as this week been severed, he has much to bring to the party and will mean that come 7 a.m., the place to be will be Beyond’s main room when he takes to the decks. Add to that, a team of D.J.’s on duty that will include Mikey D, Gonzalo Rivas, Fat Tony, The Sharp Boys, Paul Christian, D’Johnny, The Oli, Jonny M and, rumour has it, Alan K, who seems to have made a triumphant return to weekly sessions, have played out for the last three. Add to that all those dancers, effects, lasers & pyrotechnics which are sure to make this yet another brilliant Beyond and there is much to celebrate about “Super Size” even if it will probably end up resembling more of a regular style showing.
Right, what’s the detail on the latest Beyond bash?, Well, as we have said, into a pseudo “Midnight” come “Super Size” event, Beyond opens its doors at 12 a.m. Sunday morning (that’s effectively midnight), the club running through until a planned midday Sunday finish. Advance tickets are still available both online at http://clubtickets.com and at Soho outlets Prowler, Clone Zone & 50, as well as watering holes The Yard & Ku Bar (both), priced at just £10 (booking fees extra), while entry on the door is an option, those of you deciding on the early start benefitting from that free entry between midnight & 1 a.m., while its just £10 before 2 a.m., rising to £12 until 5 a.m. and then £20 thereafter. And with new promoter Mauricio Ortiz having gotten his feet right under the proverbial table, you can expect a prolific party, the promise of “…extra gogo’s, supersize visuals, & super hot LED costumes..” more than likely a reality, while you can be assured of a warm welcome, as well as an efficient entry, masterminded by Tom Fuller & his terrific team.
So, it goes without saying that Beyond “Super Size” carries our recommendation and, given the latest news, it looks like heading down from 5 a.m. onwards will see it in full flow, while Juanjo’s set at 7 a.m. simply cannot be missed. All this means that Beyond will be the place to be & be seen on the scene tomorrow morning, but while we wont’t be there to nibble size review tweet our way through it all, we are sure you will be rejoicing in the regular routine that will surely rule. (DISCO MATT)
Having firmly established itself as a Friday favourite & having recently celebrated its 2nd birthday, it seems that Onyx continues to ride a wave crest that shows no signs of coming into shore, new(ish) promoter Verity Meyes, having grasped what was already a winning formula and adding her own fabulous & feminine touch to the club which seems to have further broadened its appeal. And having witnessed the club for ourselves over the birthday weekend(s), the subtle changes both to the club & the crowd are actually quite noticeable, Verity’s presence very much felt at every single event. So, with a hugely successful bank holiday weekend behind the club, which played out to audiences in London & Manchester, its back to business as usual this week, although with an exciting twist, as The Orange Group’s association with Gary Henshaw’s Ku-Bar/Klub extends to Onyx, with an injection of D.J. talent from the Ku camp & a Ku themed pop room.
So, what can you expect from this “Ku Takeover” event?, Well, three room of fun for a start, as the Onyx residents will be joining forces with Ku’s established & rising stars in a marriage of musical minds that will deliver the delectable diversity that the club has become renowned. So, main room wise, its young stallions Jc Christopher & Lee Harris that take up the rhythmic reigns, charging the electrified atmosphere with upfront & uplifting house, while in the terrace its more about tech tones, as Lisa German & Ariel turbo charge the tunes, the handful or more of Balearic beats added into the mix, along with the artistic percussionist additions from Donald that give the room its own unique feel & following.
But it’s the pop room that sees Gary’s gang gather, Verity explaining that “…we welcome to the decks the gorgeous and super-talented winner Thanos Sak and runner up Norbert M of the Ku Bar DJ Quest. It’s a Ku Takeover as the most talked about additions to the London DJ circuit play together for the first time as DJs in their own right at a gay clubnight…”. Now, whist we haven’t heard much at all about the winner Thomas, to beat Norbert M into second place seems to indicate that he is a considerable talent, Norbert having already made a splash on the scene with gigs at Rupert St, A:M & Heaven, his podcasts very much hinting towards this emerging talents mighty mixing & & superb sound spotting qualities, his latest creation, “D.I.S.CO.” definitely worth a listen at http://norbertmik.podomatic.com/entry/2011-08-18T13_38_05-07_00. But the Ku takeover doesn’t stop there, as regular residents The Very Miss Dusty O & Lady Lloyd perform an exclusive back-to-back set that is sure to be crammed with pop paraphernalia and add that third dimension to the whole affair.
So, with the music pretty much tied up, what about the detail?, well Onyx “the Ku Takeover” kicks off tonight (Friday 9th Sept) from 10 p.m. at Area, the club running through to a planned 5 a.m, with advance tickets on sale online at http://clubtickets.com priced at just £5, while if you get your skates on & arrive before 11.30 p.m., its free. Entry after that is £6, while to get on the Onyx guestlist, simply pay a visit to http://gayguestlists.com/onyx. So, far from burning a hole in your pocket, Onyx is a great deal to start your weekend, not least as the fabulous drinks deals kick in from the off, shots at just £1 each & special prices on spirits, beers & alcopops. Plus, with Thiago Drewery’s drop dead gorgeous dancers, the simply gorgeous Chrissy Darling hosting the door & party, and as Verity rightly say’s “…you have London’s best destination Friday night party, so come & play!…”.
So, if its dynamic dancing, magical music, amazing atmospherics, prolific pyrotechnics, & exceptional effects, Onyx is definitely THE place to be & be seen in Vauxhall this Friday night, so make sure you “Go There! Be There! (DISCO MATT)