well ya but when you talk like that to vinyl collectors its just as much a push towards fragmentation as it is when a vinyl purist claims the "genuine" label - that way is bad, do it this way instead
AwesomesauceWish i had rocked up earlier for Omar S, because i got caught in the unmoving line around 12:30 too. Cops schmops, this is the second Mansion party i've been to with a bit of a shady vibe re line-up/coat-check/lack of water after 2am/etc, but i already bitched about that in the KiNK revew, so on to Omar S.
I've managed to go out to gigs for over 15 years without ever seeing a DJ from Detroit, primarily because the word on the street has always been that they tend to play a lot of classics and have a very mashed-up style, which has never been something i'm interested in. But Omar is one of my bestie's favorites so i tagged along for the first time. His set was exactly what i expected it would be - the kind of thing i would love to hear in my lounge room but fairly uninspiring for me on the dancefloor. Every now and then a track would start with a great jacking beat and then turn out to be some 80s freestyle or house or something. The odd techno track he played tended to either be mellow Detroit lounge style or classics that are kinda over for me. But the nice thing about the venue was being able to go up on the mezzanine and have a bit more space to enjoy the show without getting frustrated on the dancefloor, so that's what i did. Spent about 2-3 hours on the balcony watching the crowd and the light show, dancing to a track here, half a track there, then back to the balcony again. Usually if i can't stay dancing for more than a track at a time i just throw my hands in the air and leave the party, but Saturday i persevered, and at the end of it i felt unexpectedly satisified anyway. I only heard one track i thought was amazing, and because it was tossed in amongst the other stuff it was just a flash of excitement rather than a real climactic moment of the night, but it was nice to hear a bunch of music i wouldn't normally hear at a party.
What wasn't nice was fucking records. They sucked in the 90s when it was the only thing available, they sucked even more in the 2000s when CDJs became the norm, and now it's just a big wank. It's the 21st century, man, i'm listening to music on a pristine sound system (best i've heard in Toronto), and i have to listen to hiss and crackle? Give me a break. And then to add insult to injury, the fucking needle skips all night most likely because promoters don't know how to set up turntables properly any more (and why should they have to?) I get that vinyl is visually appealing. I get that people enjoy the hands-on feel and the sense of owning something physical. That's awesome. Play it in your bedroom. But to me a party is supposed to be a something bigger than that, and the experience shouldn't be marred by antiquated media. The fortunate thing about Omar S was that because of the style he was playing it didn't bother me as much as it would've if i'd actually been really sucked into the dancefloor journey.
All in all it was kind of a nice throwback event. After the first half hour or so when i was getting a bit annoyed at the mish-mash style i kinda settled into what he was doing and enjoyed it for what it was. It made me smile to see a DJ pull out records again, blast through tunes one after the other instead of playing 9 minute tracks and standing around doing nothing for 6 minutes. It was cool to see a great mix of old heads dancing around to their classics and young kids who loved it just as much for their own reasons. And it was a breath of fresh air to see a headline DJ actually get given a decent length set instead of a shitty 1.5 hour block amongst a bunch of other people we could see any other weekend of the year.
Best track was one i don't know that he played right after a loungy Detroit number that had a relentless polyrhythmic synth hit coming in every 3/16ths. No lyrics. No melody. No bullshit. He also played one of his own tracks i can't remember the name of toward the end of the night that was just cool weird sounds (before Claude VonStroke - The Whistler). And whoever was before him who i only caught 10 minutes of seriously kicked ass. Definitely gonna try see them again and catch their whole set.
So yeah, just bitching because that's how i do, at the end of the night i went home with a smile and just as inspired as i was after Peter van Hoesen, albeit in a very different way.
Will call is just your name on a list, not an actual physical ticket. I'd still show up not much later than 12 to ensure a speedy entry, especially since Stott is ready to sell out and the issues with the Cops last week. Showing up at 12:30 -1:00 is just asking for trouble.A question for people who have been to any of the previous Foundry events. I am going to Stott - bought web tickets, to be picked up at will call. If I show up at 12:30 or 1 a.m., am I screwed?
If so, if I pick them up right at 10, then leave and come back at 1ish, will they let ticket holders in right away, even is there is a big line?
Crotchety old dude time:
- The breakandenter crew literally saved the night from disaster on multiple fronts, none of which I intend to explain in detail. I will comment that I saw the BNE crew literally throwing their bodies into harms way, as well as attending to the shifting moods of the talent, while I didn't see the Mansion crew much at all.
- On the other hand, I totally agree with praktik that Prosumer and Move D (both all vinyl sets) were two of my favourite events in recent history, and the Prosumer event had plenty of skipping records. Nobody complained, and the DJ never stopped.
Coat check was a disaster. I went to try and beat the line as I'd heard about previous issues, and even with just 20 people in it they had one girl back there who was completely lost, using her phone as a flashlight. It was taking her 5 to 10 minutes - PER JACKET. People were hoping the table and then trying to find their own coats, which is crazy. It took me about 40 minutes to get our coats, and that was while Andy Stott was still playing. I fully expected there might be a coat check riot later but we left...
It's awesome how they are working with old guard promoters too and learning from each other. It would appear with how well the Foundry series and the events leading up to it this year that Mansion has arrived and with them a new era of events in Toronto. The quality of the bookings is forward looking (Martyn), hip (Bicep), challenging (Stott) and still has a foot in the best of the past (Atkins, Omar S). I haven't experienced nights like this in Toronto, and I would say the closest comparison in terms of vision and quality are the I Love Neon parties from the mid 2000's and the Piknic Electonique series, both in Monteral. It's still no Mutek, but then again what is?Hopefully they listen to the constructive criticism about event logistics, because it sounds like they're on their way to doing big things
Talking about the event, he said, "Lots of people here are wondering why they haven't been going to parties like this for years."