Holy fucking shit, the Swedes delivered what was easily by far the best party at the U so far this year.
Got there about 1 am, Joel Mull had just started his set. His set as a whole exemplified what good DJ sets are all about: perfect track selection, perfect programming, perfect mixing. It was stunning how ever so gradually he built the set from a rather slow, almost housey yet driving techno to the more banging style, all with absolute high quality tracks, no fillers whatsoever. A real treat.
At 3 the live act came on. One part of the duo, Hardcell (aka Nils Danielsson), is fairly established and well known in the techno world, whereas I have to admit I had never heard of Pär Grindvik before. That turned out to be a mistake, as they delivered an extraordinary, high-energy, fast moving live set, weaving countless tracks into the set at high frequency, of course flawlessly mixed. This set sent the crowd into a frenzy, screaming for more. That didn't come in the form of an encore, but in the form of Mr. Drumcode himself, Adam Beyer.
Well, what can I say. Adam proved beyond any doubt why he is by far my favorite techno DJ. Some of you have seen Chris Liebing live and found it awesome, but Beyer just takes it to a completely different level. He has just so much more variety than Liebing, at times even introducing melody and Flächen (a German expression for synths, but encompassing a certain quality that isn't conveyed by just 'synths'). This was an absolutely brilliant set, Beyer at his ultimate best. I was in heaven (ask Metro about those text messages...). The tracks he threw down were right to the core of my techno taste. The wizardry on the mixer unsurpassed. PvD last weekend was fantastic, but this is a different universe. Proof to the variety he his capable of, he closed his set with these two tracks, I just couldn't believe it: James Holden – A Break in the Clouds (original) followed by Underworld – Born Slippy (remix?). You clearly don't expect these tracks in a hard techno set "sweden schranz" style, yet it was so well prepared and executed, it sounded like the logical thing to do. Fantastic. The encore was a brand new track by Hendrik B., to be released as the next truesoul release, which sounded like the epitome of summer-Ibiza-beach-music. Wow.
As you can tell, I am still kind of in shock as to how amazing this was, musically. The one weird thing to note, though, was that the U was empty, yet again. By 3 am it was acceptable, but a far cry from the wall-to-wall crowds such a line up would have drawn a year ago. Everybody is at a loss to explain what's happening. The thin crowd did feature some celebrity, though, in form of Chris Liebing himself, using a gig-free weekend to party himself for a change. Was good to see him there.
Overall rating: 9.5. " />
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