In Residence moves on to Barcelona, with a visit to a tiny club with a big personality.
In 2016, RA's In Residence series is celebrating club culture by throwing a month of parties at 12 of the world's best clubs. Clubs are the beating heart of dance music, and these are the venues that keep their local scenes thriving. Week-in, week-out, they open their doors to play the music we love.
As we settle in for a month at each of the clubs we'll be running features that, through a combination of different media, aim to provide lasting documents of these iconic spaces.
In Residence hits Barcelona in August, with four all-night DJ sets planned at one of the smallest spots in dance music, Macarena Club. Situated in the heart of the Gothic Quarter, the 81-capacity club is a slice of local history. Macarena has kept the same name since the 1920s, when it first opened for business as a flamenco tablao. These days, it's one of the most unique places to party on the planet, with a great soundsystem and an atmosphere as intimate and exhilarating as any club out there.
Aug 03 RA In Residence, Macarena Club, Barcelona feat. Joey Anderson
Aug 10 RA In Residence, Macarena Club, Barcelona feat. Midland
Aug 17 RA In Residence, Macarena Club, Barcelona feat. Vera
Aug 31 RA In Residence, Macarena Club, Barcelona feat. tINI
- 01AddressCarrer Nou De Sant Francesc 5, 08002, Barcelona
- 02Building completed1900
- 03Club opened2001
- 06Resident DJsIdriss D, Cipy, ISAbella, Guim Lebowski, Anika Kunst, Kristina, Kanedo, Haiku575, Patrick Zigon, Pablo Bolivar, Funk D'Void, System Of Survival, Nomada Groove
- 07Music policyMusic is the key
In a club as small as Macarena, the overall experience depends greatly on the quality of the soundsystem. Gustavo Ferrer gets this, so when he took over the club in 2007, the first thing he did was call a meeting with his business partner (and one of Macarena's original founders) Gabi Sacomani. They decided then and there to buy and install the best soundsystem available at the time. The pair got in touch with Pro Audio Ibiza, the company that counts the world-renowned Space nightclub among its clients. When Funktion-One emerged as a candidate, Ferrer and Sacomani went down to Las Ramblas club Boulevard Culture Club, where one of brand's new models was being trialled. Within a month, Macarena had its own system fitted. "I always say that we were the first club in Barcelona to own a Funktion-One," Ferrer told me. "We were the pioneers."
Macarena currently uses two Funktion-One Resolution 2 speakers, suspended diagonally across the dance floor from one another. Because of the club's size, one of the speakers also serves as the booth monitor, which apparently takes some getting used to. On the floor, the sound is sharp and rich, with a nice even spread across the space. It's also not too loud. (The club urges DJs to stay out of the red so as not to trigger the limiter.) Overall, it feels like the right fit for the room, a system that delivers without dominating. "It's not too low, not too strong, it's just enough," said Idriss D. "Good DJs, who mix properly, who EQ properly, who don't let their tracks get distorted, will really love it. Remember, it's a small club. The DJ needs to respect that."
"This is what a typical opening set sounds like at Technologica at Macarena: dub techno from Rotterdam, followed by a sharp shift upwards in BPM. This is the usual trajectory I take when I play. From Parisian techno by the likes of Polar Inertia, to Surgeon and his dance floor weapons. Flickers of acid pepper the mix, which also features electro by DMX Krew and some more European techno courtesy of Kirk Degiorgio. The crowd asks for it so I give it to them. Every time I DJ there it's unique, and every time I enjoy myself immensely."
Conforce - Dark Days
Hidhawk - Alpagain (Eduardo De La Calle Dub Remix)
Deep'a & Biri - 1406 Days
Round Three feat. Paul St.Hilsire - Acting Crazy (Instrumental)
Fred P- Unbroken Circle
Surgeon - Search
Dimi Angelis - IceBridge
Svida - Hectic (Daniel Troberg's Rytm Workout Remix)
Fred P - Slow Euphoria
Levon Vincent, Marcel Dettmann - Vengeance
DMX Krew - Dark Rider
XOX Crew - 606 Outburst
Johannes Heil - By Night (Part_Four)
Polar Inertia - Sonic Outlaws
Drew C. Mance - T4URGF
Kristina - Cosmos Bipinnatus
Kirk Degiorgio - Time Spin
"My weekly Monday night residency, Memento XS, is more about the music than the lineup. The bookings team select purist DJs and producers who are passionate about house and techno, the kind of artists who will play for little money, just for the love. Once a month, I play all night long, and this mix was recorded live on Monday, August 1st. It's only one hour of six, but it should give you an idea of the mood I was going for. Quality trumps everything. It doesn't matter if it's minimal, deep house, Chicago—it's gotta be good and it's gotta tell a story. We're not just putting on a playlist."
Arapu - Pitfall
Unbroken Dub - Winter Deepness
Funk E - Wu Wei
Ron Trent - Kids At Play
Franco Cinelli - Soar Up
Linee & Geffen - Bx 19
Fabio Monesi - Blaxter Activity
Einzelkind - Jump N Run
Boo Williams - End Of Days
The Nighttripper - Phuture (Kevin Saunderson Remix)
Marieu - Corona
Blue Mondays - Ghost Track 2
"My sets are usually driving, though that depends on the time and the mood. I've tried to capture the vibe of one of our Macarena parties, especially the freedom and satisfaction that comes with following your heart and having the crowd respond warmly. I've gone with various shades of techno, as well as hints of acid, breaks and house. It's all focussed on the dance floor, given that 99% of the Macarena crowd comes to dance."
FLUG - Mental Trip (Voice version)
Juho Kahilainen - Xemx
Dubspeeka - Northtarget
Woo York - I'm Against
Etapp Kyle - Continuum
HD Substance - Ode To Nothing (Korben Nice remix)
Deepbass - Nova (Repart remix)
Luis Flores - Negative Pressure
Fixon - Mental Planning
Heiko Laux - Fernweh (Luis Flores remix)
Markus Suckut - Untitled 1
Go Hiyama - Geometrical (Surgeon remix)