This was my first night at The o2 Academy, Brixton. I can safely say it won’t be my last. As is often the case with a house night in Brixton, the crowd, music and general vibe was all of the highest order.
Homegrown talent wAFF set the ball rolling with a lively first set of the evening. Tobi Neuman followed and really got the party going as he got deep with some good old minimal tech. Argentine master of the live sets Guti stepped up at 12.30am and the crowd quickly filled the dance floor of the main room. With a darker lighting, Guti brought it down a notch (for about 10 minutes…), playing a mix of old and new releases. There were some unexpected gems including a live version of Guti’s huge hit ‘Hope’ (DEFECTED) which was an obvious crowd pleaser. As an open admirer of Loco dice, Guti seemed to relish the honour of playing just before the main man.
Loco tormented the crowd like nothing I’ve heard or seen before. Loco’s stage presence was unmissable (in case the beautifully lit red diamond wasn’t enough!). After a gentle build up, Loco soon tore the roof off! Loco Dice showed flashes of brilliance throughout his two hour set as he always does. One drop that jumped out at me was his mix of the hip hop classic, ‘Step into a world’ by KRS. The way in which such a classic from a totally different genre could be so well represented in this environment emphasised Loco’s monster talent. The only criticism I have of Loco Dices set is that it wasn’t 6 hours!
Frenchman Paul Ritch (live) had the pleasure of stepping up to a wild crowd. With a shorter hour set, Paul’s set was a crowd pleasing, baseline fuelled performance. People seemed reluctant to leave the dance floor as the main room gradually filled with a sweaty, smokey mist. As Monsieur Ritch gave way to yet another German legend of techno, Chris Liebing, the night took an even darker, minimalistic approach. With another unique and clearly definitive sound, I would like to think this won’t be the last time I see Chris strut his stuff. One of Chris’ better known songs, ‘Auf und Ab’ was an utter delight even for those struggling to keep up as the night came to a close.
Used + Abused is exactly how everybody in attendance must have felt as they left this show (if not then most definitely on Monday!). This was one hell of a night and if it is to ever return to London or even the UK for that matter, it’s a must!
words | Max