In that respect, local promoter Subversive's decision to book Eddie Richards was a brave one. The pioneer of UK house is not nearly as popular in North America as he is in Europe. To make matter worse, although the party was originally planned to take place at Open Studios, the owners pulled out at the last minute and the venue was changed to The Korean Cultural Centre. It wasn't exactly the ideal situation: As the speakers and equipment were being set up, the crew found bags of rotting meat from the night before, and the decor was akin to a Korean classroom.
Despite this (and the rain outside), enough people came out to make the dance floor feel full. And, all told, the acoustics were actually better than Open Studios. TJ Hooker warmed the crowd up with a decent blend of progressive house, even if the songs he played weren't good enough to justify $8 Jagerbombs that were made with a Red Bull knock-off. Eddie Richards took to the decks at about 2 AM, and the quality of music was instantly raised. He stuck to a few themes over the course of the night: Staggered hi-hats at the beginning of transitions were a staple.
His set was bass-driven, with quirky melodies and strange vocals ala the ones found in D Diggler's "Young Love." Though things veered toward the modern, it was interesting to hear Richards work the decks. There was a subtle difference in how he built his set, finding a balance between minimal techno and the house that he became famous for pioneering. Only a veteran such as Richards could pull it (while playing a party with such an odd last-minute venue) off. Credit is due to Subversive for allowing him the space to do so.