nick of timenick of time
Most house DJs have at least one Nick Holder record in their crate. He makes the kind of records that DJs find useful -- from the soft and jazzy to the tight and hard. The prolific Toronto-based producer soon celebrates his 100th release on his DNH label.
Headlining the Solid Garage party last Friday at Roxy Blu, he played a smooth set of organic, deep jazzy house, heavy on the Caribbean and Latin flavours. The crowd was appreciative, although some were expecting more vocals at a Solid Garage party.
kool redesignkool redesign
Hive Projects and Junior Palmer teamed up Saturday to bring Chicago's Mark Grant to Kool Haus. Kudos to Hive Projects for dramatically redesigning the notoriously cavernous Kool Haus (formerly known as the Warehouse) into an intimate, otherworldly environment. They constructed an amorphous maze of smaller rooms by suspending enormous fabric curtains throughout the immense space.
This, combined with the sculptures of giant hands and video projectors, made it one of the more interesting space designs T.O.'s seen for quite some time.
Grant stepped up to the decks relatively late, after a moving, crowd-pleasing set by local tag team Joe Rizla and Trini. Starting off with some deep jazzy vocal house, he delivered some abstract, dubby Latin house and touched on some minimal tech house. Tending toward somewhat obscure, heavily syncopated, dubbed-out rootsy house, Grant is one of the more technically gifted DJs in house.
mas actionmas action
New York's Metro Area performed their peculiar brand of minimal 80s disco funk at Una Mas Friday on a laptop, MIDI keyboard and not much else.
Few laptop performers have attempted this kind of loose dubby warmth before, most preferring to coax glitches, clicks and burbles out of their gear.
It's hard to say exactly where they fit in. On the one hand, there's a sparse tech house feel to the arrangements, but the underlying melodies and rhythms are too playful and bouncy to fit in with most of that genre. Milk managed to pull a good-sized crowd, and the residents Felix and Gani played a quirky set of funky house that complemented Metro Area nicely.
king cuts itking cuts it
Now that the heat wave is over, it's time to get back to the patios before summer ends.
King Curtis spins Saturdays at the Apothecary, one of the only no-cover weekend patio parties in the area. He offers an eclectic blend of jazz funk, classic disco, soulful house, reggae and whatever else he's feeling that night. His transitions might not always be the tightest, but with so many pre-drum-machine songs, that's to be expected.
His style is more about the song selection and mixer-tweaking anyway, and he expresses his love of the music well. Check it out.