In addition to our comprehensive Ibiza microsite, once again this year we'll be bringing you a weekly dose of news, reviews and assorted tomfoolery from the island. RA's Chandler Shortlidge begins things with a run-down of the opening weekend.
With a slew of opening parties and the 5th annual International Music Summit (IMS) on tap, the Ibiza 2012 clubbing season officially kicked off last week. Taking place at the luxurious Ibiza Gran Hotel in Ibiza Town, IMS has become the official preview to the season, with a bit of business before the parties get underway. There were plenty of panels and PowerPoint presentations on everything from female empowerment in electronic music to how artists can best take advantage of social media. The major themes, however, were the burgeoning scene in America and the new generation of superstars on the island.
The latter was touched on when Danny Tenaglia explained his recent exit from international touring via video chat. Many well-established artists are pushing 50 years old, though few others seem to be ready to slow down. At the end of Wednesday, he said that though he no longer wants to deal with the hassles of international flying anymore, he'll still play in the States and parts of Canada.
The recent explosion of dance music in America was another major topic of discussion. Among those taking advantage of the gold rush is James Barton, founder of Cream, who recently sold his company to Live Nation and became president of Live Nation Electronic Music. He spoke at IMS about the transition, the old days at Cream in Liverpool, his nights at Amnesia and his optimism about the brand's continued success. From there, it was time to head out to the clubs. Photos: IMS 2012
Friday evening, the IMS Grand Finale took place at Dalt Vila, a hilltop fort with views of the sea and surrounding Ibiza Town. Among the newer acts showcased were Disclosure and Azari & III. The former—18 and 21-year-old brothers from Croydon—grooved out their brand of soulful, bass-heavy, upbeat garage using live bass, laptops and cowbells. The duo finished with Jessie Ware's track, "Running," which they remixed earlier this year, inviting her on stage to perform the vocals. Wearing neon spandex pants, Azari & III kept the vibe fun and relaxed, with choreographed dance moves, passionate vocals and funky '80s electro riffs, pumping out tracks like "Hungry For The Power" and "Reckless (With Your Love)," and even jumped into the audience at one point in the show. Photos: IMS Grand Finale
Sunday was the Space opening party, and the main event was Orbital performing live. They began with deep and trippy grooves, then headed into Top 40 mash-ups, the crowd in the outdoor Flight Club stage mostly talking and bobbing along. But when the duo launched into acid and house, things picked up nicely. By nightfall, the huge audience had taken on a festival-like vibe, with people climbing on shoulders, hands in the air, the massive speakers pumping out Carl Cox's dark, hard techno as the intense visuals blazed behind him. The highlight came when Cox cut the music, and Space owner Pepe Rosello came on stage to sing Cox happy birthday. Photos: Space Ibiza Opening Fiesta
On Monday, Circoloco opened its doors for the season at DC-10, with a new Loud Professional sound system in the garden and main room. The party sold out by nightfall, and the absolutely rammed club kicked off with standout performances by some of the more infrequent guests like Dixon and Zip. Other highlights included a back-to-back set by Dan Ghenacia, Shonky and Dyed Soundorom, as well as Andrew Grant's set in the terrace, which kept the room packed until close. Photos: Circoloco Opening at DC-10