Stopped by 56 Kensington last Saturday for the monthly Peroxide party. When we opened the door to the basement bar, we were hit by a wall of heat and steam. Once inside, we could see that the packed dance floor explained the extreme temperatures, as a diverse group of partiers shook their asses to Will Munro's mix of spacey disco, electro and punk-influenced dance music.
This night has evolved over the past few months into something fairly unique for Toronto. There aren't really any other local parties where House Of Jealous Lovers by NYC disco punks the Rapture gets played alongside tracks by proto-techno gods Kraftwerk.
The club itself is still pretty sketchy, and it could really use a few industrial-sized fans to help cool it off.
But despite the venue's shortcomings, it suits the party's vibe nicely. This music sounds better in a dirty little dive than it would in a shiny high-end dance club. The crowd is a unique mixture of dykes and fags, art brats and indie rockers, clubbers and techno heads.
For those curious about the electro revival and related movements, this is definitely the night to check out.
volume tones it down
The venue formerly known as Area 51 has undergone some renovations and a name change recently. Now known as Volume, it's cast off its hard techno past to reinvent itself as a chilled-out lounge and gallery.
Friday night featured DJ Dam spinning ambient and downtempo to a small crowd. While his mellow selections suited the venue's new vibe, ambient on a Friday night might not be the best way to pull in the partiers.
It'll be interesting to see how Volume evolves over the next few months. The vibe is comfortable and the drinks are reasonably priced, but whether or not there's a market for a chill-out lounge remains to be seen.
Last Friday I checked out Something Deeper, a free house music party at Cream. Featuring locals Rez and Reason, Kurt Lewis, Bryce Walker and Mark Edwards, the main floor and patio focused on funky disco-tech while the upstairs featured soulful vocals.
There was a good turnout and good vibes. Cream is a perfect venue for smaller parties like this -- there's just enough room to make it feel like a real party without being to hard to fill, and just enough sound to raise it above the level of a lounge.
The patio was the place to be and actually felt hotter than inside, because of all the dancing bodies. The huge projection outside looked great, and the stripped-down decor is simple but effective.
Toronto's techno scene was out in full force at Andries's rooftop party Saturday night for a casual semi-private shindig high above Queen W. Secret Mission, as the event was dubbed, featured Adam Marshall, Daniel Lui, Tyler Kerr and many more local techno and electro DJs. It carried on the vibe of the now defunct Mission weekly that Andries used to help promote.
Considering how successful the night was, it's probably just a matter of time until Andries gets back into promoting on a regular basis.