Roy Davis Jr. does his best to make up for Moodymann’s absence Sunday at Mod Club.
Sat, Oct 11
During last week's interview with Morgan Geist, the NYC producer expressed frustration at the current state of the music industry and the difficulties of running an independent record label in an era when many listeners don't buy CDs or vinyl any more. He had to admit that if he were 20 years old right now, he probably wouldn't buy much music either, and that the file-sharing culture expands the reach of his music, which gives him better gig options.
However, he's less interested in DJing live gigs than in hiding in the studio writing music, which is understandable given the odd disconnect between the music he DJs live and the expectations of his audience. Back when his Metro Area project was a fixture on DJ playlists, partiers were often surprised that he didn't play much techno or contemporary house, and were occasionally confused by the obscure disco and offbeat club classics he favours live. It's much the same story when he plays for the indie dance crowds that have recently discovered him. This was clearly evident on the dance floor at Wrongbar this week.
This isn't to say that no one was dancing to his oddball selections - there was a healthy amount of ass-shaking going on. But it was apparent that many people still aren't sure what to expect when it comes to Geist's club environment. This could change the next time he's in town. There's a Metro Area DJ mix coming out on Fabric soon, and that should paint a clearer picture of his vision and better prepare audiences for the strange musical trips he explores in the live arena.
Sun, Oct 12
Walking into the Mod Club to catch reclusive Detroit legend Moodymann, we were greeted by the unfortunate news that he'd been stopped at the border and wouldn't make it into town. Considering how rarely he plays here and how dedicated his fan base is, this was a major letdown.
The promoters managed to make some last-minute arrangements and got Chicago house DJ/producer Roy Davis Jr. to fill in, but that did little to make up for the absence of the man we'd all come to hear. Not that Davis hasn't produced some quality anthems over the years.
But let's face it, Moodymann has a very different take on house's possibilities and is much less conservative when it comes to expressing that vision.
Local mainstays Felix & Gani did their best to satisfy the crowd's hunger for dirty downtempo Detroit sounds by playing a shitload of Moodymann productions, likely more than the man himself would have dropped. Unfortunately, setting that kind of deep and dark vibe early on, made Davis's set seem even fluffier.
Hopefully, the border problems can be resolved to make way for a proper makeup gig. It'll be mighty disappointing if he's been barred indefinitely by some overzealous customs official.