Dance The Drop – August / September

Peter O'Rourke
Peter O'Rourke

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I’ve been listening to some old music lately. No, not returning to the same tried and true trance classics that Godskitchen or Ministry of Sound seem to release in a 3-CD special every three years (do we really need another copy of Tiësto’s ‘Suburban Train’?), but to older mixes that I’ve never heard before – some of the Global Underground sessions, or Fabric mix CDs. There are tracks that might have been played a bit the year they came out, but they were never really anthems, just good tunes. And I know that every era has its music of massive build-ups and big drops, that’s not just a recent thing, but wow, music from 15 year ago was CHILLED.

As a DJ and producer, it’s really started to inform my sets, and my production. Having hypnotic, trippy music that you can get lost in and just sort of bubbles away is truly awesome (I guess it was called trance for a reason). If only we could return to some of that…

And then, I look at the number one selling tune on Beatport, and it’s not an EDM banger or techno weapon or remixed bassline house track – but a 27-year-old tune, Age of Love’s ‘Age of Love’, revamped by progressive techno DJ Solomun. It’s pretty similar to the original, now with a beefier bassline, and some trippy acid trance sounds – but basically the same song reproduced for a modern sound system. No build-up, no real drop, it just grooves away. What does this mean? Is that it, has dance music run out of ideas?

No, I reckon the complete opposite. I reckon this is an attempt to bring it back to basics, bring it back to the actual trance on the dance floor. And I think DJs are relishing in it, excited to not only rehear a classic, but to torch the ground of what festival EDM created – remove the hype, and boil it down to a repetitive monotonous beat. Well, I guess we’ll see…

Speaking of repetitive beats (see what I did there?), Bambounou (Paris, France) is coming to play some spacey, trippy techno at Mr Wolf on Friday 18 August – a seriously cool booking, go check it out!

Thursday August 24, The Basement has a charity gig with Sorry Mum, I’m Going Out And I May Be Some Time – expect reggae, house and assorted beats. On Friday August 25, Dom Dolla and Torren Foot come to Academy to spin some house.

My crew Department of Late Nights has a few events coming up over the next couple of months. First up on Saturday September 2, Late Night Studies returns to the ANU pop-up venue, with Dragonfruit’s Jay Berry & Kyle Burchill coming down from Brisbane – tickets available online – while Friday September 15 has a new techno and house night, Agency, at Kyte. This one features Melbourne’s Steve Ward, which should be a treat! The night before, Kyte has a truly (bass) heavy booking with Israeli dubstep firestarter, Borgore on Thursday September 14 – tickets are selling fast, so get in quick. Cube has done some renovations too, so why not check it out at Hard Envy on Sunday September 24 with Sydney’s Khemist on headline duty. As always, more stuff is always popping up – keep your ears to the underground!

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