The Detroit maestro introduces a new talent you need to hear.
Until Friday, Parrish hadn't played a London club the size of Five Miles since 2014. Seeing him in a confined space brought back memories of Plastic People, the Shoreditch club where, before it shut in 2015, he held one of the all-time great club residencies. Those nights left an indelible mark on a small corner of London's music community. Floating Points, Four Tet and Josey Rebelle are just some of the DJs who cite Parrish's sets as an inspiration.
Given the sense of occasion, and with the room already buzzing after Misha's excellent warm-up, expectations were high. Parrish delivered emphatically. Five Miles, a small dance floor with minimal lighting, is the kind of environment he thrives in. His set, in my mind, was comparable to those classic sessions at Plastic People or his celebrated Music Gallery events in Detroit. It wasn't that he was doing anything especially unusual. More, it was a confluence of external factors—the size of the room, a critical mass of Detroit house nerds, space to dance—that brought the night together.
Throughout the night, Parrish used sharp contrasts to keep the energy high. One example: he mixed Outkast's "SpottieOttieDopaliscious," a smoked-out hip-hop joint, into a gnarly, jacking house cut, causing the vibe in the room to instantly change. These flips in genre and switches in mood are key to what makes Parrish tick. Towards the end of the night, Misha joined him for a back-to-back that brought the party home in style. The young DJ matched the veteran at every beat, peaking with the breakneck disco of Phreek's "I'm A Big Freak." London's club landscape has changed immensely in recent years. The loss of small spaces such as Plastic People and Dance Tunnel were huge blows for the scene. But spots like Five Miles, Rye Wax and Giant Steps—all located far from the clubbing centres of Shoreditch and Dalston—show that great music played in intimate spaces is still a thing in London. Long may that continue.