When I ask anyone to describe Sven Vath, their universal response to me is "Techno legend." The man has been around dance music since before some clubbers were born, and he continues to rock (in both DJ and party respects) harder than most anyone. His Cocoon concept started as a Monday night party in Ibiza, but has become a brand that incorporates his label. a mix compilation series, various global parties, and a way of being.
The unfortunate result of all Sven's international success is that he rarely can find time to play in the United States. However, New York's own Robots have persuaded him for two years in row to play their party at BED in Miami during WMC and then brought him up to NYC for a party the following weekend. I think this also goes to the new global reach of the Robots crew. They have expanded past their Friday night residency at Cafe Deville in New York to a weekly radio show on Thursdays (www.eastvillageradio.com), special events at Cielo and Canal Room, plus they have a double disc mix CD and record label upcoming (not to mention their booking at the RA party at WMC last Tuesday!). Nick AC, Bill Patrick, and Dennis Rogers are really starting to grab the right people's attention- and deservedly so.
I got over to Pacha around midnight and got in quickly. When I entered the main room the head Robot, Nick AC, had the crowd getting into the groove. His tech-infused tunes had people moving, but he kept the reigns tight as a proper opener would.
Pacha ohad a smart idea early on as they roped off many of the sections in the club to keep the crowd concentrated. I would not say that attendance was sparse, but having everyone in on the main floor worked well. It also made sense for everyone's listening pleasure as the sound is really good if you stand in the middle of the dance floor and gets somewhat distorted if you stand in the corners. However, given the layout of the club it must be a sound engineers nightmare to get things right!
Sven came on around 1 am and started things off well. He took the tempo up a few notches, which was a good thing as I was knackered from WMC. It had been a few years since I heard Sven, and I felt it somewhat refreshing that he had not gone all minimal. His set even sounded trancey at times- pleasing many in the crowd.
After Sven locked the crowd in, I went down to the basement area to catch a bit of Dennis Roger's set. I hear that they are redoing the area downstairs, but they have a long way to go! It is too bright and the "bar" area looks ghetto-fabulous. However, Dennis was doing his thing and he provided a good contrast to what Sven's set in the main room.
I made it through a few more hours until my body told me that the night was over. I had a few friends in town and their response also reflected my view of the night. "I was really impressed with their [Nick AC's] opening set. Sven played a really interesting mix of what I expected - techy stuff sometimes bordering on this nu-trance feeling that's sweeping the nation. (aka what Luciano was rinsing out last DEMF)."
I commend both Pacha and the Robots on putting this night together. With all the raids on New York clubs last Friday I can only hope that the good people in this industry can keep nightlife alive. Only time will tell.
(Note: An extra special thanks to the hardest working/most exhausted gal at WMC and New York for getting the list together. Thanks BK!)