Arriving early by South Beach standards, we walked into Shine and were welcomed by Sebastian C playing ‘Who’s Afraid of Detroit?’ And even though we heard it all through Winter Music Conference, the song took on a whole different meaning. Tonight would more then likely be the last time we would all be together before many of us ditch Miami for the Detroit Electronic Music Festival. (And some of the lucky sons of b*tches would be preparing for Sonar!)
Sebastian kept it close to home with his own blend of techno and house and set us up for a most delightful night. More cute girls and boys continued to file into the venue as Conway got behind the decks. Conway is the alter ego of the man that brought us a great week of events during WMC including the Get Physical, One+One, and Crosstown Rebels parties. Being exposed to so many great artists must have affected this guy (in a most positive way) because I still haven’t been able to figure out how to verbally describe his sound.
Suddenly it seemed as if music junkies galore came out of the woodwork. I don’t think I’ve seen that many members of the South Florida nightlife community at one event outside of WMC. Contrary to what some believe, there are a decent amount of local patrons who are willing to show up and support a DJ who doesn’t reflect the typical Miami sound. And as the evening went on, most of them proved they are willing to have a wonderful time doing it. Supposedly there were a few that “ran” for the doors as soon as they heard a different style of music then they are used to (not giving it enough time to give it a fair chance in my opinion). I equate it to how roaches scatter when the lights turn on. Besides, more room to allow entry for those who actually want to be there.
Clubbers that came out to hear proper breaks from the acclaimed “nu skool” pioneer were in for a big surprise. Surprisingly, Adam Freeland’s contract reportedly stipulates that none of the supporting talent play breaks. Using Serato Scratch Live on a MacBook Pro with a Pioneer EFX 1000 and a rotary knob mixer, the man of the hour took us through what I can only explain as mostly industrial sounds including techno, breaks, house, progressive, and rock. There was also room for his classic and well-received remix of ‘Teen Spirit’ during which it felt as the vibe of the party hit its peak. Add a few dashes of Evil Nine (‘Towards the Sun’, ‘Lovers, Not Fighters’, and a remix of Alex Dolby’s ‘Hazy Way’). Now people are all over the place, dancing, and just being silly! Even Adam himself appeared to be having a grand old time - like every good DJ should. And later Adam’s ‘We Want Your Soul’ transitioned into Soulwax’s ‘Another Excuse’. As if we needed another excuse to have fun? Please! The theme of the evening appeared to be exactly that - fun.
As Adam prepared to gather his gear in order to take off for the rest of his crazy tour, his colleague Jonathon Cowan took over. Well, we were in Jon’s house and he was the mastermind behind the evening. Some remember Jon as the musical director and resident DJ at the once legendary Miami Beach club “groovejet”, and others will remember him for bringing us down to earth this particular evening with some classic progressive sounds. Great times!
After reviewing the track list for ‘GU32:Mexico’, which is pretty different to what I heard live, I couldn’t help but wonder if Adam Freeland played it a little “safe” because he was in Miami? Or maybe he needed a longer set time in order to stretch his wings and serve it proper? Maybe that’s why his GU32 is a double CD release. Four DJs in a venue that is mandated to close at 5 AM may have been a bit of a stretch. Adam’s set was extremely enjoyable, but I think some of us were expecting a little bit more. A little more edge, a little more craziness, a little more music that you aren’t sure if you are supposed to bounce-up-and-down or bang-your-head to; or better yet, both! I think we could have handled it. Regardless, holding back or not, time constraints and all, we should give up automatic respect for any artist that not only makes a conscious effort to defy genre categorization but who can keep people on the dance floor as well as their toes.
Thu / 31 May 2007