Bloody Beetroots get the hands in the air at Wrongbar.
Fri, Oct 3
Like electro-house remix kings Crookers, the Bloody Beetroots also hail from Italy and crank out the kind of grinding disco metal we've been hearing so much of in the last few years. They're not quite as well known as Crookers, but their Toronto debut at Wrongbar was hotly anticipated. The house was packed despite minimal promotion.
Opening the night were local duo Mansion, who, in their very short career as a DJ/production team, have already enjoyed good buzz. Thunderheist MC Isis prowled the stage acting as hype woman for the pair, who played a set made up entirely of their own tracks. Though they have no official releases yet, crowd reaction suggests that'll change soon.
Highlight of their set was closing track Gasaida, for which guest vocalist Syf took the mic from Isis to serenade the crowd. The soulful classic-house-inspired number feels like a bona fide anthem; if the crowd is singing along to the only track the producers have managed to keep off the blogs, something is going on.
The Bloody Beetroots segued surprisingly well from the melodic house into their post-rave barrage of acid screeches and bangin' beats. Their faces obscured by masks, the duo had the crowd going off in a major way from the moment they hit the stage. The vibe was like Crookers' sweat-soaked destruction of Wrongbar earlier this year, or maybe a notch or two lower on the energy level. A very strong appearance nevertheless - don't miss them next time if you're feeling this vibe.
Remember earlier this year when the police made a big show of busting up legal after-hours clubs like the Comfort Zone and the now-defunct Blak, and then shortly afterwards made moves on the less than legal boozecans and warehouse spots? As we predicted, the show of force was mostly just that, a show, and over the past few months the late-night scene has quietly found new homes all over the city.
Last week we counted at least five after-hours parties that we knew of on Saturday night (including the one we DJed), and this week saw more of the same. Caught a bunch of unknown up-and-comers (DJ Brake, Ben Fresh and Rilly Guilty ) DJing hip-hop-infused electro at a west-end garage, which ended up being surprisingly busy despite of the lack of name-brand guests. Whether the city wants to admit it or not, people want to dance all night, and they will find spots to do so.
Sat, Oct 4
Had every intention of hitting up one of the Nuit Blanche-affiliated club events, or even one of the loosely inspired non-official parties, but it was hard to justify heading indoors and missing out on the street party vibe of the actual festival. Thankfully, there were at least two renegade mobile raves travelling the city that livened things up with some random beats and a surprising number of non-ironic ravers following the party.
The first sighting was of a pedal-powered party parade heading west on Bloor. A few hundred partiers followed the pounding beats, blocking traffic but moving quickly enough not to cause too much chaos. A few hours later we stumbled on another mobile party at Grange Park, where they'd decided to stop the truck and settle down into a more stationary mode. The crowd was fairly substantial by that point, but it seems they'd succeeded in making it look like a sanctioned event and avoided attracting police attention.