I descended upon the club at around 11:30 with the intention of getting there early enough to dodge the masses. However, it seemed that the gods had conspired against me and my apparently original idea evaporated with the sight of hundreds of twitching punters awaiting entry. Every man and his dog, or at least every man and his dog who own a Digweed compilation, were present and accounted for.
When I entered Crobar, local household name James Lauer was already laying down the foundations. His set complimented Digweed’s style, serving as a stepping stone for Digweed’s big room prog sound. Usually I’m not a fan of musical overlap between the warmup and headliner, but Lauer’s choices definitely helped whet my appetite for what was to come.
The grandmaster of all things progressive wasted no time in warming up the crowd, throwing down the heavier building blocks and igniting the club with energy and mayhem. Digweed picked up the pace right away and elevated the tempo with atmospheric sounds and heavily grounded progressive beats. The track selection was definitely 4/4 prog and there wasn’t much direction change in terms of shifting between breakbeat and progressive. What surprised me was the fact that Digweed was able to create variety and uniqueness in his set without changing time signatures. He kept the thumping big room sound alive with frequent breakdowns and buildups, looping segments of tracks that he felt were stronger and drawing them out to maximum effect. One of my favorite tracks of the year, ‘1983’ by Paolo Mojo, in the limelight on Hernan Cattaneo’s latest Sequential compilation, was looped over the length of two records and then thrown down with a deep, chugging, floor-shaking bassline to create the perfect mashup.
There’s not much more to say other than Digweed lived up to his name as one of the UK’s top progressive acts. Once again the boys at Pure Future did not disappoint, and I look forward to the coming summer months with bated breath.
Top evening, top act.