Last Saturday Pixelate presented a party called Seduce at Una Mas, featuring a mixture of deep techno and deep house.
The two-floor layout suited the night better than previous Pixelate events, since it allowed the two sounds to define their own spaces.
Todd Sines previewed a bunch of unreleased material, and judging from the quality of the CDR he passed me, we'll soon be hearing a lot more from him. He's been working hard at finding a middle ground between minimal techno and quirky house and has settled into a sound that's accessible but forward-thinking at the same time.
Toronto expat Algorithm rocked the basement dance floor with his trademark heavily layered funky minimal techno. Not many DJs sound like him, and fewer still can consistently match harmonies and melodies while mixing. Richard Brooks of RNB promotions confessed that although he doesn't listen to much techno, he was impressed by Algorithm's set and surprised at how close he came to a house music vibe.
they're not telling
Most parties these days market themselves around specific sounds and rely on the drawing power of big-name DJs in order to get crowds out.
A Night Without A Name took the opposite approach Saturday at Volume, listing only "a DJ and another DJ" who'd be hitting a wide variety of styles from deep house to soul to techno. Their identities were kept secret even at the actual event by pasting translucent plastic around the DJ booth.
The music was good, and not as scattered-sounding as their approach might suggest. There was a decent turnout of curiosity-seekers, but a packed dance floor wasn't in the cards for an event at this low-key lounge. Definitely worth checking out if they decide to do a sequel.
San Francisco deep house DJ David Harness was definitely having a good time in the booth at Solid Garage's party Saturday at Jai Bar.
Dancing around, smiling and cheerfully talking to anyone who stepped up to greet him, Harness was the opposite of the introverted DJ stereotype. He played a lot of fun, upbeat R&B-influenced vocal house, including the new bootleg of Nelly's It's Getting Hot In Here that had many laughing as they danced.
Solid Garage's move from Roxy Blu to Jai has worked out well. Although the space isn't as big, the sound's clearer and more powerful, and the room still feels earthy and warm enough to suit the music's vibe.
Can't say I was surprised to see that Roxy Blu wasn't completely packed for Garage 416's presentation of François K. last Friday.
The main room did fill up by the time he took over the decks, but the deep house and garage scene seems to have shrunk quite a bit from its peak a couple of years ago.
François K. was deeply enamoured of his effects unit, sending waves of dubby echoes and washes of reverb over the Afro-Latin-influenced house he played. Undecided whether to play soft and mellow or harder and funkier, he oscillated between the two extremes most of the night.
The high point was Barbara Mendes's singing over the instrumental versions of her collaborations with Kevorkian. She's a strong performer with a good set of lungs and an engaging stage presence.