Found a good-sized, up-for-it crowd at the Fuck The Shock And Awe party Saturday at Klinik, though not much evidence of the event's anti-war theme.But Detroit's Stacey Pullen unleashed his own campaign of shock and awe, mercilessly pounding the sound system with hard, twisted techno.
Immediately following him was local DJ Addy, someone who's been around for years but never really gets the spotlight. His style's definitely more house-influenced than Pullen's but is also trippy and dirty, honed from years of DJing the Comfort Zone's notorious all-day Sunday after-parties.
Speaking of Devine Sundays (www.devineproductions.com), the party continued there the next day, with Pullen playing there as well, in honour of the seven-year anniversary of the rawest weekly event in town.
Tepid response to Taana
It's not often that a vocalist as legendary as Taana Gardner (tah-na, not tan-ya) performs in person, so how could I resist Friday night's Bump N' Hustle presentation of the beloved diva at Roxy Blu? Dave Campbell warmed up the crowd with a memory-jarring set of funk and disco classics, and got hands in the air on more than a few occasions.
Gardner stepped up to the mike next, and delivered a powerful but short set, showing that, if anything, her voice has improved over the years. Unfortunately, the crowd reaction was restrained in that typical Toronto way, which must have surprised Gardner. She's used to provoking a much more passionate response.
A few weeks back, a new business took over the old Record Peddler store on Queen West, once again filling the space with the smell of vinyl. Black Market Records (not to be confused with the vintage clothing store), one of the best-loved DJ vinyl stores in the UK, has decided to open a branch in Toronto to take advantage of our surprisingly strong scene.
In the UK they've been servicing the DJ community since 1984, so they bring a lot of experience to the market.
The space is big and has a very streamlined, modernist look. The back of the shop is still completely empty, but they plan to use it soon for in-store DJ appearances. Considering that the sound system is better than some nightclubs, the space is well suited to that type of thing.
Since we've already got several top-notch DJ stores with established reputations and client bases, it's hard to say whether Black Market's appearance will change the scene. On the other hand, this city has a longstanding love affair with the UK, so some DJs will definitely find something special here.