TMDP’s Gavin Rough (left) and Jeffery Addison rock out at Wrongbar Saturday night.
Fri, Oct 31
After an evening of giving out candy to costumed kiddies, we made our way to the Promise Halloween bash at a west-end ballet studio. The space was lovingly decorated and already quite busy early in the evening.
There were two rooms of music, one focused on downtempo sounds, the other on dance-floor-friendly beats, a handy way to keep a mixed audience happy. Caught some smooth house sounds from Mike Ryan in the main room and a bit of Ill Gates's electro-infused breaks before realizing we should probably head out to the next party if we wanted to actually get in.
Found the lineup over at the Shared Loft party pretty intense, as for previous events in this space. For those keeping track, this was billed as the final event here, but we've heard that before. Regardless, we finally made it in to find a hot and sweaty party going off to eclectic sounds provided by a ton of local DJs. Thoroughly enjoyed the set by Alphonse Alixander Lanza III (formerly known as Dirty 30), who leaped through some classic disco and house oddities before getting into some spacey sleazed-out beats.
Though Halloween is one of the biggest party nights of the year, as on New Year's Eve it's often easier to have a good time by avoiding the clubs, which can get swamped with idiots trying too hard to make up for lost time. If you can't find a casual house party, an off-the-radar warehouse do is usually your best bet.
Sat, Nov 1
Caught wind last minute of a gig by Toronto laptops-and-synths duo TMDP at Wrongbar, which in the wake of an epic Halloween party night seemed much more appealing than the large-scale bashes happening elsewhere in the city.
Mansion's DJ Barletta was playing a warm-up set when we arrived, favouring a chunkier, more aggressive side than when he performs
with the duo. The Mansion tracks he did play got great reactions from the crowd, which augurs well for their future once the material starts getting released beyond the blogs.
TMDP crammed a lot of gear into a small section of the stage for their set, unlike the majority of laptop-based live electronic sets. Their gear lust may be what allows them to come up with some new variations on the electro indie dance formula when too many in the scene use the same software plug-ins to endlessly imitate each other.
Their sound has some similarities to that chainsaw synth-riff electro you hear everywhere these days, but they're also drawing heavily from the mellower sounds of cozmic disco, a candidate for next big thing in hipster circles. They're smart to tread the middle ground when the current gulf between the two vibes is too large to manoeuvre easily. The kinds of tunes these guys are working on could serve as a handy segue for DJs hoping to branch out of the Ed Banger sound into something slightly more mature.