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Decibel Festival 2008: A Review, A Reawakening- DAY 3

Posted in Events, Festivals, From the Front Lines (Show Reviews) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 8, 2009 by worldromper

Last year in between four straight days of partying and boarding a Tuesday morning flight to Thailand, I somehow wrote a review of the epic, amazing time I had at Seattle’s Decibel Festival.

A party like no other, Decibel is a city festival held in the clubs, bars, parks and museums of Seattle, an event for the people, by the people. I will be reposting my review from last year along with photos and links, in five parts: Intro, Day 1, Day 2….you get it.

Decibel Festival 2009 takes place September 24-27 and you can check the lineup and buy tickets here.

DAY 3:

Saturday morning started with a trip to Seatac airport to pick up my very favorite producers in all of the universe- edIT and Boreta of the Glitch Mob. Sadly I missed a lot of Decibel in the Park but I heard that Noisemaker and Manahan laid it down proper, as usual. I rolled up in style with my precious cargo around 4PM just as Jacob London was finishing up and Truckasauras were getting set up with their Americanakitsch: gold Zelda cartridge, Uncle Sam hats and all. Who wants to bet that was Maker’s Mark in that plastic cup?

edit and boretaTruckasauras was good but I live for the Glitch Mob and now my dear children, you can see why. I think I personally called every single one of my friends and told them to go to this performance or I would kill them. And over a dozen of them came up and thanked me afterwards for the mind-blowing experience. edIT and Boreta (and Kraddy and OOah, the missing mobsters) create something new with each live show; you either get it or you don’t, and something tells me the mass of people dancing their asses off for an hour and a half GOT IT. Burner breaks, glitch hop, laser bass, Crunkedouthyphyfunkadelicpsybrokenwhomphopmusicforbasssluts or whatever you want to call it; the Glitch Mob pushes through boundaries like they aren’t even there (like the spoon) and they have a hell of a time doing it.

dB in the parkGreat success! Decibel in the Park was mad fun, just like you knew it would be. The fact that the showcase was free added to the aesthetic and I know of at least one person who asserted that the Glitch Mob changed his life (me too). I hope to see more outdoor shows at Volunteer Park and of course, more freaks.

After a nap and a shower I headed over to Grey Gallery quickly to say hi to the Sweatbox and Knight Riders kids (I LOVE TECHNO) and then got myself to the Baltic Room where I made yet another exciting artist discovery at the Ghostly International Showcase: Deru, who was taking things on a dark and twisty turn there on the dance floor.

The dirty sounds got me all worked up which was just perfect because I hopped a cab up to Chop Suey where things were CRACK-EN’ in mad bottle rocket style. In the hot-as-hell side room Swank was ripping it up like a pirate and Sean Majors followed suite, keeping the energy ramped up, and over in the main room LA Riots started laying crazy on the crowd who flipping loved it.

neumosOnce again I was forced to pull myself away from the bRave New World Showcase and head to Neumos for Carl Craig; the end of Audion’s set had the people bursting in bubbles and then THE DETROIT LEGEND stepped up- and this is where I should stop writing. I danced for his entire set like a raving madwoman, like a lunatic with no lunch, like the insane devotee of the cult of dance that I am. I don’t know what tracks he played, I don’t know what he mixed in or how he did it, I don’t know his no-doubt long list of props, awards, and accolades. I was dripping, dripping with sweat; it was in my fat eyes and in my stupid smile which did not wear off all night (and is in fact still there right now).

This is what I live for. This is why I stay hours late into the night at my office writing for you, why I go out all the time in search of it, why I do what I do- so that I can have this divine experience, and it is no less than that. My brain stops working completely and the music takes me over and I experience something that I cannot find elsewhere- not from a person, not from a drug, not from anything else on earth. THIS IS WHY WE DANCE. THANK YOU CARL CRAIG. No really, I love techno.

After three days of dancing of course I wanted to dance more and headed to a friend’s afterparty first; the dubstep was sticky-icky but just not what I was searching for so I trolled down to the Church of Bass once again for yet another WOW experience and discovered yet another new favorite performer of the festival: Dixon. Oh. My. God. You would think the people on his dance floor had been sleeping for a thousand years instead of going for three days of Decibel. Taimur Agha kept it bangin’ as well and I left after several more hours of epic dance trance- a very very great day in the life, right?

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The 2009 Decibel Festival takes place September 24-27 in Seattle; for tickets and more information please click here.

Photos by Sudapop of Rockit Science and Tap Tap of Tap Tap Productions.

Decibel Festival 2008: A Review, A Reawakening DAY 2

Posted in Events, Festivals, From the Front Lines (Show Reviews) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 26, 2009 by worldromper

Last year in between four straight days of partying and boarding a Tuesday morning flight to Thailand, I somehow wrote a review of the epic, amazing time I had at Seattle’s Decibel Festival.

A party like no other, Decibel is a city festival held in the clubs, bars, parks and museums of Seattle, an event for the people, by the people. I will be reposting my review from last year along with photos and links, in five parts: Intro, Day 1, Day 2….you get it.

Decibel Festival 2009 takes place September 24-27 and you can check the lineup and buy tickets here.

DAY 2:

Decibel Mascot?On Friday I was up and skulking around Cap Hill by noon (after eating breakfast with Jahcoozi a few short hours before) for the lunchtime dB Conference on (duh) music journalism where I got insights from writers from XLR8R, Resident Advisor, the Stranger and more. One striking fact of the panel for me was that in a room of about thirty artists, only two were female, myself included. Where the ladies at? Next year, how about a panel on the dearth of female artists in the electronic arts?

Making my Friday was a delicious French-toast crepe and Wasabi Bloody Mary from Grey Gallery; highly recommended if you like your hangover with pickled okra and a very, very clear head.

That night I returned to Grey to catch a little of the Kulturszene DJ lounge before heading over to Neumos for the Dirty Dancing showcase where Let’s Go Outside was tearing it up. I love this DJ for his music and for this. I wanted to stay but my heady bass-freak self propelled me all the way over to the Baltic Room for the Native State Showcase; this venue is the perfect match for the Dark Lords of Native State. Welder was keeping the crowd wobbling and soon KiloWatts (also performing at dB 2009!) was shaking the whole earth with his structured and driving brand of crunky bass- this sound pioneer gave one of the best performances of Decibel, for sure. The people were lapping it up like kittens. Evil little kittens.

It was hard to pull away but I had to head back over to Neumos for Deadmau5. I lost track of how many times during the festival I went back and forth between the Baltic and the Pike Street area; I walked it at least four times, took a cab twice, drove at least once and bummed a ride a couple of times. Once I took a hoola hoop.

DEADMAU5I really didn’t know what to think of Deadmau5- I am familiar with his music and had done some research for a pre-Decibel article but had never seen him live and really didn’t know what to think of Mr. Joel Zimmerman. Downstairs at Neumos he was chilling and connecting the mad wireage inside his now-blue Mau5head, whose ears are a lovely velour, fun to rub, and insured. He was feeling a little pain from the night before in Edmonton where he and his manager had tied one on, but there was no hint of that at all when the Mau5 took the stage, because-

Deadmau5Deadmau5 completely blew me away. His performance was my biggest surprise of the festival. Dance-floor transcendence, and you know what I mean. I tend to fall into the brainwaves of “oh, everyone in the world likes this artist, so he must really suck”- but Deadmau5 simply wrecked mad destruction; the dance floor was so freaking packed you hardly even had to dance- all the people around you just moved your body around for you, and all you had to do was give yourself to it. I really don’t think Joel knows how good he is, despite all the Beatport awards and accolades; all he cares about is getting back into his studio and making music. No really, that is all he cares about.

However I did convince him to head over to the Church of Bass for the Subsequence afterhours and arrived just in time for the very last of Kris Moon’s set and then proceeded to get sticky with Phidelity whose psychedelic robotty-bass grooved perfectly with the dark dance church, all decked out for the festival with sweet black light art. We then got a second dose of Brendan Angelides aka Welder who performed this time as Eskmo, who is a dreamy poet of electronic intensity- I don’t know what world he comes from, but I want to buy a ticket.

Tune in next time for the Day 3 installment of Decibel Festival 2008: A Review, A Reawakening!

All photos by superfreak Matt Matsuda.

Decibel Festival 2008: A Review, A Reawakening DAY 1

Posted in Festivals, From the Front Lines (Show Reviews) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 20, 2009 by worldromper

Last year in between four straight days of partying and boarding a Tuesday morning flight to Thailand, I somehow wrote a review of the epic, amazing time I had at Seattle’s Decibel Festival.

A party like no other, Decibel is a city festival held in the clubs, bars, parks and museums of Seattle, an event for the people, by the people. I will be reposting my review from last year along with photos and links, in five parts: Intro, Day 1, Day 2….you get it.

Decibel Festival 2009 takes place September 24-27 and you can check the lineup and buy tickets here.

DAY 1:

My 2008 Decibel Festival began officially at Grey Gallery on Thursday night where the Oi Vay boys were warming up the lounge with their sexy beats; Struggle was up top spinning and Eddie was dancing around like the lovable soul he is. This was not to be the last time I ran into this Seattle legend shaking his ass during the weekend- that boy gets down, for real.

I hung out at Sole Repair for a bit where Team Peloton was tearing it up; I tried bouncing back and forth into Neumos but the opening acts were all a bit too slow for me/not my cup of tea/kill me now and I kept finding myself back across the street at Sole Repair where the dancing was goo-od mmm mmm. Those boys know how to make the people DANCE!

I like being able to see the DJ and so hung out upstairs which had more room for the freaky dancers with flailing arms, like me. Around 1AM when INCITE! aka Sean Horton aka Decibel Festival Director went on we all donned mustaches to wish him a happy birthday. I am a big fan of Sean’s new moniker and hope to see more of his more aggressive and visceral style soon in the future. I really enjoyed Stewart Walker as well, he was sweating and dancing to his beats almost as much as the wild crowd was.

Sasha gets downThen I RAN back over to Neumos where Jahcoozi was running slightly late but noshing on snacks downtstairs in great spirits; I have been a big fan of theirs for a while and this was one of the acts I was really stoked about experiencing. Sasha and Oren took the stage and proceeded to turn the club on its head- what started as a half-full room of looky-loos ended in an all-out dance brawl. MC and rapper Sasha kept jumping down into the crowd and we all gathered around her like we were third-graders on a playground and she was the cool girl, dancing in a circle and getting down and getting dirty. She WAS the cool girl, and with her I-don’t-give-a-shit dance moves, heavy crowd interaction, sharp lyrics and mad trumpet skills she won over everyone there as did Oren, backing her up with his keen beats and electric bass.

sasha and oren rock Jahcoozi’s performance was definitely one of the highlights of the festival for me and I have heard the same from several people. After their show we all went and kicked it in the Green Room where we talked to them about their trip up the West Coast (Seattle was their favorite show, ahem), Berlin (the scene there is as great as you think it is) and tried on Sasha’s sweet fur hat. I made the bands.tv guys and my coworker Cedric wait until about 3AM for the live streamed interview, but finally Jahcoozi was ready and we had a quick chat for the camera before all heading off to Sean’s birthday party in the loft above Grey Gallery which was rockin’ and hot and sweaty, just like a good afterhours should be.

Then we left with Jahcoozi and partied all night until breakfast hour back at the Best Western Executive Inn. The food sucked.

Photos by Matt Matsuda.