So a few weekends ago I was off in London for my birthday, running around, meeting lots of 'virtual' friends and checking out tons of music.
A great weekend was had so it is hard to leave but I know I'll be back again soon.
Got in around mid afternoon on Friday and to my delight saw a Krispy Kreme donut shop at the train station. The indulgence began with a Strawberry and Kreme donut which was yum. From there I had to buy new headphones as my Bose ones broke. Needless to say that wasn't a happy moment. Thankfully I got a good pair of WESC headphones for a great price so back in business.
From there it was off to meet Adam from Unusual & Electric and Orsii for a few beers. Also randomly bumped into Illum Sphere outside the pub! Then, back to drop the bag off and out we went.
I got to meet Jez from Innersounds and John from Horse Latitudes. After talking via email, blog comments, etc. for 3 years of so it was great to meet them. Unfortunately I didn't get to stay for long enough to chat as we were running late. My apologies guys.
After that it was off to the Beat Dimensions release party at Plastic People. I'd been to Plastic the last time I was in London (about 10 years ago now) so it was good to see that it was still running. Its always had such a good reputation with musical styles varying but staying consistently good. Of course having a reputation for one of the best sound systems in London helps.
Got to meet twitter buddies 8Bitch and Beatnick so that was cool.
The Beat Dimesions party was fun and a good turn out for the night. I can truly say that I have never had my body shook so much by basslines. Of course, I was sitting right by the stack so that was part of it.. I felt my throat wobble when Cinnaman from Amsterdam came on. Now, that probably doesn't sound like fun but I can assure you it was. :) Massive dubstep sounds blasting for the night and the crowd delighted in it. While dubstep, has in my mind, a darkness to it I was well chuffed to hear sounds that were uplifting and fun along with some of the heavier elements we associate with this style. Great fun.
The highlight I reckon was Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs who laid down his bass heavy glitchy sounds to the delight of the crowd. He played in the Bloggers Delight tent which was definitely the place to be for the day (for me). Apart from a weirdly placed act, The XX, everything else was pretty much party sounds. 'Move It' are a female DJ duo who delighted the crowd with old school hip hop and breaks. Such fun and they put on a great show, dancing together, etc. as they went through their set. I have heard good things about some of their shows since then also so hopefully will get to see them again. Definitely check out their night if you get a chance.
I had read about the live show from Drums of Death (check out his massive refix of escort's 'starlight' here) so of course was excited to check out the spookily made up act as the heavy beats and torrents of sound screamed from the stacks. Again, in the Bloggers Delight tent Drums of Death had the crowd going wild, going into the audience and getting them into his own frenzy. Rusko was up next but running late so Drums of Death played some dubstep and ended with his rockin' out closing tune. Rusko rushed in to take over from a stand in DJ (apologies, don't know who you were) who had played brilliant old reggae which definitely kept us all happy. Needless to say Rusko had everyone eating out of his hands. Place went pretty much apeshit. Happy campers raving away.
Went from there to catch the last 3 or so songs from Santigold. The sound was pretty bad and the crowd was disassociated from her for the most part. Pity, as I've seen her before and really enjoy her show.I vaguely recall her doing a cover of a Cure song which was pretty good.
Found out on Friday night that Theo Parrish was playing on Saturday in Plastic People. Apparently he has a monthly residency there now but its hardly promoted, just a mention on the website.
Needless to say I was delighted to have a chance to see him. Had never seen him and had always heard of the legendary sets that he plays. Went straight to Plastic from Victoria Park after Skream (who's set was cut short to make way for Mogwai). Plastic didn't open until around 11.30 pm (if my hazy memory serves me correctly). We were some of the first people there and as we walked down the stairs the killer sound system was suspiciously quiet. 'This is kinda weird' we said wondering if this was a new way to warm up a crowd. Silence. About 15-20 people were milling around, grabbing a beer. Slowly and lowly the sounds of jazz started to ease its way into our ears, barely noticeable to be honest but then it got a little louder. I turned around after 2 songs and realized it was Theo Parrish playing. Pretty impressive entrance to be honest and then it seemed to click with everyone so we moved into the main room. He started playing some amazing soul with a wonderful house beat. No idea what it was but sounded like an edit of some sorts (this is where someone leaves a comment and tells me Theo never uses edits or whatnot). Anyhow, I had to tell him how much I love the tune so up I went and said 'ace tune mate'. I received a gruff look in response as if to say 'They're all ace.....mate!'. Haha.
The set continued to take us on a journey, a trip as it were, seamlessly moving from genre to genre with the sounds blended so effortlessly. Truly impressive to see him at work. I think we left around 4am and the crowd had started to thin but he was still going. Highly recommend you check him out. I know I'll be doing so again.
Got to bed around 6am on Sunday morning after about 14 hours on the beer. Was shattered so slept through to 2pm and woke up to sunshine which just makes life easier. It was Orsii's birthday so had breakfast at the Breakfast Club in Hoxton. Great food, cool place with great decor. Check out the bathrooms......
After that it was off to Korsan for the R2, cookout. Time for the 'hair of the dog' and we sat outside indulging in a nice cold beer while listening to baleric sounds to ease the still slightly present hangover headache. Pretty soon we were joined by GreyMatter (who recently guest posted on cubikmusik here). Great to meet him and good to catch up. He's got a really interesting, music related, project on the go so I'll be keeping an eye on that. Then along came GuinnessDJ , followed by Rob from Soul Identity and Adam from Unusual & Electric so the night was taking shape. Thanks to Adam for this great Unusual & Electric t-shirt for my collection.
We had a great laugh, chatting verbally rather than via 140 characters on twitter. It is quite impressive that every person I met this weekend, bar two, were people I met only a short enough time ago on Twitter. Yes, originally I was a detractor of this funny service, and couldn't understand what Twitter was all about. However, when I met all these people for real and we all realized we got along very well in the real world also, I can see that this is a powerful way to communicate and connect with people.
I was shown amazing hospitality which I hope to return when any of the above visit Dublin. I am going to make every effort to make it back over there every three months or so to keep up contact, meet more peeps that I missed this weekend and to experience even more of what the music scene in London has to offer. Of course, I reckon I'll time each visit for the first Friday of the month so I can catch Theo again.
Take care LDN. Keep doing what you do.