Posts Tagged ‘Dalston Superstore’

Tusk Turns Three!

This February sees an important anniversary of one of our favourite parties, Tusk! Promoters Ant C, James Baillie and Chris Camplin have been bringing over some of Europe’s most impressive underground electronic music talent to our lazer basement for three years now! With previous guests including Andrew Weatherall, Craig Richards and Doc Sleep, we can’t wait to see what they have planned for 2018. They’re kicking it all off with Ostgut Ton legend and Dalston Superstore favourite Prosumer! We caught up with the boys to chat past highlights, favourite club nights and 

You guys have been throwing your TUSK night at Superstore for three years now! That’s awesome, happy anniversary! How did the three of you meet and start promoting together? 

Ant C (AC): Thanks! Time sure has flown. It’s been a lot of fun. Thanks for having us! I’ve known the boys socially for years from out an about around London.

Chris Camplin (CC): Yeah, we would bump into each other at our favourite dance floors – in fact I think I met both James & Ant at Horse Meat Disco initially. I know James came back to my place for a post-HMD afterparty one bank holiday Monday.

James Baillie (JB): It became obvious we all had a love for music, so I took the idea to Chris and Ant about us doing our own night and TUSK developed from there…

For those that have never been to your party before – tell them what it’s about (and what they’re missing out on!)

CC: Amazing music, great DJ lineups, stellar crowd, lasers and that awesome DSS basement sound system.

AC: Yep, that pretty much sums it up. We just want people to have as much fun as we’re having. I do love me some lasers! We bring in some extra lasers for TUSK and the boys have started calling me Laser Minelli. I kinda like it!

If you had to sum up the TUSK sound in one track, what would it be?

CC: For me it would be – Tiga – Love Don’t Dance Here Anymore (C2 Remix 1)

AC: Tough question – I think it would have to be Markus Gibb – Tohl (Original mix) – Always seems to go off, plus I tend to layer it up with a vocal loop from Voodoo Ray, which fits nicely.

JB: For me it would be Shake It by Fantastic Twins.

Who have been some of your favourite guests over the years?

AC: We try to keep things fresh by working with people who have something individual to bring. Doc Sleep was awesome – she really worked us out. Ewan Pearson for his musicality. A Love From Outer Space (Andrew Weatherall and Sean Johnston) when they took over the basement all night for our Pride Special in 2016. Ketiov was great too and a world exclusive for us!

CC: Ketiov, Doc Sleep & Nail have been some of my faves.

JB: A Love From Outer Space, Craig Richards and Doc Sleep.

Has there been an overall highlight for you?

CC: Being able to book some of my favourite DJs and producers at one of my top clubs.

AC: As Chris says, being able to work with some of the people we have admired for years. Everybody has been super nice and its been interesting to hang out and chat with them about their experiences and get their advice and input.

Your special birthday guest is Prosumer – why did you choose him to ring in your fourth year?

CC: I think Prosumer has a special place in all our hearts and we’ve been discussing booking him for some time now and everything just landed into place!

AC: Yeah – absolutely. I met him at Glastonbury a few years ago and we got chatting and stayed in touch. I think he liked what we were trying to do with TUSK and seems much more open to working with people on that basis, rather than just going for the huge shows. I tried to make it happen during 2017, but we couldn’t make the dates line up – so the third birthday party seemed the perfect choice to have him with us!

What are some of your favourite club nights in London at the moment?

CC: Of course at our sisters Discosodoma and Homodrop at Superstore are up there along with the legendary Horse Meat Disco.

AC: All of the above. I’m also enjoying the residency programs that XOYO and Phonox are running – its interesting to get somebody else’s take on who to put together to make a cohesive night of music.

JB: Similar really – A Love From Outer Space, Chapter 10, Discosodoma and Horse Meat Disco.

Any DJs that you would love to work with in the future?

CC: Sure, we have a big list forming. The Honey Soundsystem guys, Midland, The Black Madonna, Octo Octa.

JB: Felix Dickinson, Black Merlin, Job Jobse, Superpitcher, Massimilliano Pagliara.

AC: The list goes on – Jennifer Cardini, Justin Robertson, Optimo, Mike Servito, Marcel Vogel, Derrick Carter – who knows? Watch this space…

Are you pulling out any special surprises for your birthday that you can let us in on?

AC: Now that would be telling…

JB: I’ve got a good few head melting tracks that are not coming out until Spring…

CC: You’ll have to wait and see!    


Catch Tusk at their Third Birthday Bash on Saturday 24 February from 9pm-5am at Dalston Superstore!

Patsy’s Sex Tape! An Interview and Sensual Compilation by Protopapa and Whitney Weiss

by PATSY


For our love-soaked February edition of PATSY, we’re welcoming back international dreamboats Protopapa and Whitney Weiss. To build your anticipation, we’ve asked them to make you a sensual mixtape and talk to us about music for romantic occasions. Read on to get yourself in the mood. 

Hi Protopapa! Hi Whitney! How are you both doing?

Protopapa: Hey CIAO! I’m feeling great, answering you from my second home, NYC.

Whitney Weiss: I’m good, I’m in Paris getting ready to DJ with Kiddy Smile later tonight!

Okay so I’m gonna ask you about some songs so we can build a sensual PATSY Valentine’s Day mixtape together. What’s the song you want played for the first dance at your wedding, if you’re into subverting traditional marriage? 

P: Marcel Vogel – Body to Body (rework of Shades of Love – Keep in Touch) to set the right sensual mood. Even my 70 year old auntie could feel the sex vibes.

WW: Without taking into consideration the musical tastes of the person I’d be marrying, Sade’s The Sweetest Taboo or The Boss by Diana Ross.

Hey Protopapa, what is a song that you put on in Italy that consistently makes people on the dance floor hook up with each other? 

Matia Bazar’s Ti Sento. They sing and dance and make out to it, it’s like an orgy of mouths and tongues.

Whitney, you’re really into the song Horny. Can you tell us a little bit about how it makes you feel and what version you prefer? 

It makes me feel joyful and unashamed. On special occasions, I like to take people by surprise with the extended mix, which has like 2 and a half minutes of the popping bubbles noise before you figure out what’s going on.

Patsy thinks that nothing is sexier than Prince. What is your favorite Prince song?

P: C O N T R O V E R S Y !

WW: In terms of pure sexiness, Darling Nikki or International Lover.

What’s the last song you played on repeat when you had a crush on someone? 

P: Elbee Bad – Just Don’t Stop <3

WW: Radio Dept’s Pulling Our Weight.

If you were both making a mixtape for a romantic interest, what is one song you would definitely include? 

P: Kiss You All Over (Whitney Weiss ’til the night edit). I lost three teeth saying this.

WW: Ahahahaha grazie amore. There’s an edit of Abel’s I Gotta Woman that I’d need to include 😉

If a romantic interest were going to serenade you with a song, what song could they choose that would make you have a moment and cry?

P: Oliver Koletzki – Hypnotized. But it should be a ukulele version.

WW: I’m going to say Modigliani (Lost In Your Eyes) by Book of Love just because answering with another Prince song seems like A LOT of Prince.

What song makes you feel sexiest when you play it out while DJing?

P: Moscoman – Rerotica

WW: Prince – Erotic City

Protopapa, you’re closing one of your Eurocrash parties in Milan and want to play something tender that will make everyone hug and feel connected. What song do you choose? 

P: Lucio Battisi – Ancora Tu.

Whitney, what is the most romantic song we can expect you to play at the next PATSY?

WW: L’Amour – Let’s Make Love Tonight.

Here’s the extra-special Valentine’s Day Mixtape Protopapa and Whitney Weiss made for us:


Catch Whitney Weiss and Protopapa at Patsy on Friday 16 February from 9pm-4am at Dalston Superstore

Mozhgan’s Top Tips For Successful Raving

We can’t wait for notorious rave institution DISCOSODOMA to return to the mothership with an almighty bang this February, as they welcome Iranian-born San Franciscan party maestro Mozhgan to the lazer basement! As the DJ and promoter behind We Are Monsters, she has seen a meteoric rise to success, with sets at Honey Soundsystem and Sunset Sound System catapulting her to play at Berlin’s Panorama Bar, NYC’s Output, Burning Man’s Disco Knights and beyond. The Discosodoma crew caught up to quiz her on her top tips for successful raving ahead of Saturday’s Discosodoma Loves We Are Monsters.

1. Drink water! Hydration is key.

 

2. Wear comfortable shoes.

 

3. Pace yourself. Slow and steady wins the race… 

4.  Deodorant, chap-stick, mints or toothbrush and toothpaste can rejuvenate you when you’re feeling not so fresh. 

5.  Snacks 

6.  No parking on the dance floor

7.  Put your phone away

8.  Sharing is caring

9.  Sunglasses – you never know what time you’re going to leave the party, these can be essential when facing the outside world.

10. Have a good rave buddy – someone that will have your back in case things get a little bit too wild…

 

Catch Mozhgan at Discosodoma this Saturday 10 February from 9pm-4am at Dalston Superstore!

 

Sonikku

By Pavliné


With his music soaked in tropical sounds and releases on labels such as Balearic dream curators Distant Hawaii Sonikku and SWEAT look like a match made in heaven. Headlining this takeaway edition alongside Al Zanders, the Lobster Theremin affiliate talks pop music classics, video game soundtracks and time travel!

Hey Tony, we can’t wait to have you back! You’ve played at Dalston Superstore several times and also at Chapter 10.  For those who might not know you, could you tell us a bit about yourself and your Sonikku moniker?

 SONIKKU is a musical hybrid of Sonic the Hedgehog and Madonna.

Listening to your tracks (in particular Dilemma), it’s obvious your music is widely influenced by pop music. Could you give us  a few examples of the perfect pop album according to you?

First Album – Madonna 

Body Talk – Robyn

Bad Girls – Donna Summer
 

Any pop song you think works especially good on a dance floor?

I love the Instrumental of Katy Perry’s California Gurls, and more recently I’ve been playing ‘I Don’t Want It At All’ by Kim Petras

 Seeing as you described your sound as a musical hybrid of Sonic the Hedgehog and Madonna, any particular video game soundtracks you would recommend to our readers?

Final Fantasy VIII, Killer 7, Ghost in the Shell (PS1), Sonic 3

2018 is very nearly with us. What does the new year have in store for you musically??

 I have three EP’s scheduled for 2018 and I’m currently working with a pop star I really admire.

 What can we expect from your set at Superstore?

 I haven’t played much of my tropical music for a while, I’m looking forward to revisiting those sounds for SWEAT!

Can you think of a track that would fit the tropical and hedonistic aesthetic of SWEAT?

Holiday – Madonna 

And finally, the classic Dalston Superstore question: if we had a time machine ready to take you to any dance floor, past present or future, where would you like to go and why?

Probably Tokyo in the year 3017 or something – and also London 2007 in the Plastic People days – Wish I was old enough to have experienced that period.


Catch Sonikku alongside Al Zanders at SWEAT this Friday 5th January from 9pm-3am at Dalston Superstore!

 

Al Zanders

At the heart of winter, the SWEAT crew is bringing the heat to Dalston Superstore with a sun-drenched double bill! Headlining this takeaway edition alongside Sonikku, the Wolf Music and Phonica Records affiliate, Al Zanders, will be serving disco and trippy house in the laser basement. Sweat head honcho Pavliné caught up with him for a tequila sunrise, and to find out what to expect from him at his Superstore debut!

Hey Alex! First of all and for those who might not know you, could you tell us a bit about yourself and your DJ career?

I’m no salesman, but I make funky, deep and sometimes ethereal house music, as well as edits, all designed to be enjoyable on a dance floor. I tend to DJ a variety and don’t like to stick to one genre or style, so you might hear anything from techno to broken beat.

You’ve recently moved from Sheffield to London. How is the music scene there compared to here in London?

I’ve actually been living here 18 months already. I’d say Sheffield is more communal because of its size – everyone knows everyone. London is a very different kettle of fish.

We are a huge fan of disco edits at SWEAT and your edit of Tangerue ‘Doin Your Own Thing’ is truly amazing. You released it under the Lodger moniker, can you tell us a bit more about that?

Thanks! I personally don’t take a lot of pride in edits, they’re just for me to DJ with. Lodger was the first alias I ever made years ago – and I’m probably not going to release under that moniker again, as I’m too focused on my own productions as AZ.



Your latest EP on Phonica Records had an impressive reception upon it’s release. What was the idea behind the tracks?

Thank you – they were inspired by DJ Shadow, the way he layers samples together from vastly different areas of music into one song, creating an interesting blend. Like that beef custard Joey eats in Friends – wrong but somehow still works…

What does 2018 have in store for you musically??

An EP with one of my biggest musical heroes, the first release on his label in 16 years, plus some fun edits and a track I’m working on with a singer that I’m very excited about. So a lot!

What can we expect from your set at Superstore?

Depends what you guys seem to like, but I’ve been enjoying a lot of trippy techno recently so maybe some of that mixed in with my usual flavours.

Can you think of a track that you might slide into your set to fit the tropical and hedonistic aesthetic of SWEAT?

Try this!

Finally, our classic Dalston Superstore question: if we had a time machine ready to take you to any dance floor, past present or future, where would you like to go and why?

I’d maybe go to see the Co-Op guys at Plastic People, but they seem to be making a comeback now – so no need for the time machine!


Catch Al Zanders alongside Sonikku at SWEAT on Friday 5 January from 9pm-3am at Dalston Superstore!

Spencer Parker’s 2017

We are so psyched to welcome mischievous house and techno don Spencer Parker as our guest of honour at the Superstore Christmas Bash! When he’s not travelling the world gracing the stages of some of our favourite clubs and festivals, Spencer is a regular guest at Berghain, be it playing house and disco upstairs in Panorama Bar or filthy techno on the club’s main floor. We’ve been hearing whispers since September that his set at Field Maneuvers was many people’s festival highlight of the year, so we can’t wait to hear what he unleashes on the lazer basement! We caught up for a Baileys and a chat about his 2017…

Personal highlight?

I quite like my eyes… but I have a beautiful smile too – tough to pick just one if i’m being brutally honest…

Favourite release of the year? 

Mella Dee – Techno Disco Tool on Warehouse Music

Craziest gig? 

Playing Hi Tech Jazz on a roof this summer, as the sun came up over beautiful Monopoli, southern Italy, for the amazing Apart party gang.

Favourite film? 

MOONLIGHT !!!!

Best festival story of the year?

Ryan Elliott‘s set at Field Maneuvres, but its not a story – it was REAL (and great)!

Favourite Christmas guilty pleasure?

I love a Baileys! (Shout out to Terry’s Chocolate Orange too though!)

2017 Lowlight?

Complete, utter, devastating and total heartbreak.

Worst meal?

It was that “breakfast” at Glasgow airport a couple weeks back. I know, I know… It’s my own fault…

Best tour destination?

I think that it has to be, and shall always remain, TOKYO! (But after travelling there a little recently, I’m also beginning to fall in love with LA, I have to say.)

Best rave moment? 

Charles Jeffrey (and accompanying outfit) dancing on a speaker to Hannah Holland playing classic Tenaglia featuring Liz Torres on vocals while standing next to our beloved Dan Beaumont in his safe space™ at Chapter 10.


Catch Spencer Parker at our Superstore Christmas Bash on Saturday 16 December from 9pm-4am at Dalston Superstore!

 

Amateurboyz’s Top Tips for Successful Raving

Our favourite Grecian power rave returns this Saturday 2 December for their final party of the year, and they’re pulling out all the stops to make sure it’s a special one! Their guests of honour are fellow Athenian tastemakers, previous guests and ‘sodoma soul sisters Amateurboyz! Having raved a long summer’s day away with the Discosodoma crew as well as rave royalty Discodromo at their A THREESOME ON ACID party during Athens Pride earlier this year, they are well-placed to provide us with their expert top tips for successful raving ahead of Saturday! 

1. Cubicles that take six people x2 

2. Never ending booze

3. A disco nap area / special K discovery room

4. A lock in

 

5. An after party

6. Glory holes

7. Track pants

8. Vegan bumps ( or Organic Chanel) 

9. Fag hags

10. Smoking wherever you like

11. And bonus: No lights!


Catch Amateurboyz at Discosodoma this Saturday 2 December from 9pm-4am at Dalston Superstore

Omnii

Our monthly Thursday night queer rave happening Happy Endings has quickly gained cult status for their notorious toilet rave, abstract dress up themes and genre-defying bookings, and the latest edition Movembra is sure to be no exception. They have invited South London front-running female sound engineers, DJs and producers Omnii as their special guests. The collective run a range of initiative to encourage female and non-binary people into the music industry, as well as curating an interview series on Medium featuring female and non-binary audio pioneers. We caught up with them to chat challenging stereotypes, fighting misogyny and the future of a more equal electronic music scene!

Hi Omnii! We can’t wait to welcome you soon for your Dalston Superstore debut at Happy Endings! Can you tell us a bit about yourselves for those who might not know you? 

We are a group that aim to encourage women and non-binary sound-enthusiasts into technical areas of music including production, live and studio engineering. 

We run workshops teaching technical skills to improve people’s confidence in a highly male dominated area substantially lacking in female role models. Other than supplementing technical knowledge, our workshops help to build a community of like-minded individuals. We also have an ongoing feature series interviewing female producers and engineers about their work. These interviews have a strong technical focus, centered around music gear and recording processes. Also, we are now expanding our output to include gigs, events and as two of us also DJ, we’ve started doing this under the Omnii name as well.  

How did you initially meet, and what inspired you to start the collective?

Omnii just turned one! Naomi and Fran met at university, but decided to start the collective when they were both working as live sound technicians at the Student’s Union. Fran was also doing a lot of studio work alongside this. We noticed very quickly that we weren’t seeing a lot of other women or non-binary people working in tech, and having had to teach ourselves a lot of it in the first place, we decided we wanted to build a community of encouragement to change that. Joy was also working at the SU in events at the time, and started doing live sound too. It’s been the three of us since September. 

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How do you work to network and foster community with other female and non binary DJs, producers and sound engineers?

The interview series has been really great for this, as it allows us to reach out to people we wouldn’t normally run into in person. Also recently, we have been really fortunate to be invited to talk at various events, such as Girls On Film and WITCiH (Women In Technology Creative Industries Hub), where we’ve met some incredible people and built connections that way. We’ve also run workshops for Red Bull Studios, and because they have a big pull in the industry and a huge network, we were really fortunate to meet lots of like-minded people and awesome producers, engineers and DJs there. Other than that, we’ve been getting an increasing amount of emails from really cool individuals in varying practices reaching out for contacts and meet-ups, so that’s really helped!

Can you tell us a bit about the interview series that you run on Medium? 

Yeah! So we run interviews with a variety of women and non-binary producers, with the main focus being on their gear and production. We felt like so many interviews (particularly with women) are focussed around their songwriting and personal experiences, and very few focus on how they make music. This adds to the perception that women don’t know as much as men about the technical side. We’ve also run longer features with studio engineers, such as Steph Marziano, which have proved to be really interesting and offer great perspective and advice to people aspiring to get into the industry. 

 

omnii at dalston superstore

There are some incredible female and non-binary DJ collectives really changing the face of electronic music at the moment – have you experienced a shift in attitude from the wider music community since you got started?

Yes and no. We get a lot more people reaching out to us for collaborations and recommendations now, and we think people are becoming more aware of female groups working towards changing the demographic of the industries. The DJ collectives are amazing and we’ve been lucky to be on panels with collectives like Girls Can’t DJ. It does feel like a change in London and we’re getting there step by step but there are still a lot of perceptions that need changing.

There seems to be a real sea change occurring in the DJ world – moving from cis men ruling the roost and guarding their knowledge closely to diverse collectives who aim to encourage marginalised groups to get involved! What are your final goals for changing the face of the electronic music scene?  

There is still a lot of work to do, but it shouldn’t have to only come from collectives like ours pushing to get talented women on DJ and festival line ups; it’s the promoters, labels and venues that need to recognise us and create a safe space. It’s easy living in London surrounded by a supportive scene of so many women and non-binary people in music and feel like cis men aren’t controlling the knowledge, but in reality they often do. We want to encourage marginalised groups to learn to be confident in the technical aspects of music when we are so often made to feel intimidated. Engineering and production can be very technical and hands-on in terms of hardware, and it would be great for this to more accessible. Something that would help is moving away from stereotypes in education from a young age. A huge general goal is to eventually have every aspect of the industry from the bottom up having equal representation. That is when we will see real change.

Who are some of your favourite DJs and producers right now?

At the moment we’re listening to Fatima Al Qadiri, Toxe, Umfang and Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith amongst others. These ladies are all killing it right now. 

Fave track of 2017?

It’s so hard to choose but Alkahaf by Fatima Al Qadiri is a great tune. 

What does 2018 hold for Omnii?

We’re looking to expand into more events, and have some exciting collaborations coming up so stay tuned! We also want to expand the interview series to include videos of performances and rig breakdowns with women and non-binary producers – hopefully to include gear tutorials (there’s only so many men talking about gear you can sit through on YouTube, to be honest!)

And finally, what are you planning to unleash at Happy Endings? 

We try and play at least 50% by female / non-binary producers and DJs. We’ll be bringing some fierce techno to the dancefloor. 


Catch Omnii at Happy Endings this Thursday 16 November from 9pm-2:30am at Dalston Superstore!

Fèmmme Fraîche second birthday!

We can’t believe it’s been two whole years since East London’s hottest lez fest Fèmmme Fraîche first sauntered through our doorway with a flick of her hair and a twinkle in her eye! She’s now racked up 12 riotous ladies nights at the mothership, with the likes of Honey Dijon, DJ Heather and Joyce Muniz at the helm. To ring in this very special occasion, promoters Michelle Manetti and Sandra Le have planned a whole night of  giveaways a-plenty, goodie bags up for grabs for our party-goers and cute AF merchandise with their resident DJs running riot the whole night long! We caught up with the girls to reflect, reminisce, and get excited for this Saturday’s birthday bash!

Hey Michelle and Sandra! Happy birthday to your baby Fèmmme Fraîche! How have the last two years of parties been for you?

SL: Thank you, guys! I can’t believe it’s been two years already! The last two years of parties have been… exhausting! Haha, no seriously though, we’ve had so, so much fun. We’ve met incredible artists, and working with the DSS crew is a real delight.

MM: Yep, it’s been a wonderful whirlwind of deliciousness, all pleasure no pain (except the day after each party, which always feels a little delicate!)

If you had to pick one song to represent Fèmmme Fraîche, what would it be?

SL: I’d say U & Me Electricity from Kim Ann Foxman, it’s my favourite track at the moment! It brings me back to my youth, it’s classic, it’s catchy and it’s acidy! Kim Ann is one of our favourite DJs and a good peep, so hard not to go with that one.

MM: For me, I’m gonna say Skwerl – All Woman (K2’s Deepah 1ne Dub). The track is 10 years old now, and I love dipping into my old skool tunes for FF, it’s bouncy as hell, ravey and as the title says, it’s all woman, just like Fèmmme Fraîche!

What has been your highlight of the last two years?

SL: That’s a tough one. Each night has its own flavour and all our headliners have been phenomenal. If I had to pick one though I’d have to say our night with Honey Dijon was pure madness! 

MM: Yep, I have to agree. They’ve all been amazing, but the Honey Dijon party had some crazy electricity, so much energy and love that night, even the walls were dripping with sweat, it was such a crazy, sexy, cool party!

femmme fraiche at dalston superstore

Why do you think it’s important to foster spaces for queer women to party?

SL: Well, it may sound cliché but there aren’t many places anymore where queer women can meet other queer women, play, and have fun whilst feeling they can do so safely. So, yes, it is important to foster these safe spaces and cater for a diverse crowd of queers with all sort of tastes.

MM: Exactly, it’s so important we nurture these safe spaces and continue to provide places, and parties where girls can go out, feel comfortable and confident that they won’t feel discriminated or objectified unwillingly so they can concentrate on just having fun and enjoying their night.

What does your queer utopia look like?

SL: Ultimately a world where nobody gives a fuck about who you are, how you identify or who you love.

MM: Second that!

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Can you tell us a bit about what to expect at your birthday party?

The finest Fèmmme Fraîchetastic music, sexy dance moves, general sexiness, sweat and big smiles all round! And of course as, we’re celebrating our second birthday, there’ll be decorations, party poppers and fun things… plus we have some goodies to giveaway – we’re giving two lucky winners  free entry for them and their pal, free drinks on entry, free merch and two £20 vouchers for Sh! Women’s Erotic Emporium. Enter here! Are you excited yet? we are!!!!

Who are some of your favourite DJs and producers at the moment?

SL: All the DJs we booked in the past two years, our homies, and right now, Peggy Gou!

MM: Yeah, all our headliners have been booked pretty much because they’re our faves, but also The Black Madonna, Tama Sumo, Steffi, Virginia, Heidi, Helena Hauff deserve special shouts for being fabulous DJs and repping the girls.

If you could change anything about London’s LGBT nightlife, what would it be?

SL: We need more of it, and more diversity.

We’ve heard whispers that you have some exciting things in the pipeline for Fèmmme Fraîche in 2018! Can you let us in on any plans?

We’re growing Fèmmme Fraîche into something more than just a club night, continuing to support female, female-identifying and non binary DJs and throwing damn fun Fèmmme Fraîche parties, but just adding some extra dimensions and extra features for it to become a little more interactive. Our plan is to create a platform and a space where queer women can showcase their creative skills across numerous artistic disciplines, as well as offering opportunities to learn new skills. We’ve got some fun stuff up our sleeves, so stay tuned!

And finally, what are you planning to unleash on the laser basement at your birthday party?

SL:  The demons of house music!

MM: Yep definitely the beasts with the dirtiest, filthiest basement beats. We want bras spinning, booty shakin’ and hand’s-in-the-air action!


Catch Michelle Manetti and Sandra Le at the Fèmmme Fraîche Second Birthday Bash, this Saturday 11 November at Dalston Superstore!

Hugo LX

By Fabien Marini


SWEAT is your party for queer house heads and their friends! For the latest edition, the SWEAT crew is bringing you the prodigy of the new Parisian house scene: Hugo LX (Serving la Mona/ My Love Is Underground) for a jazzy and soulful house masterclass! Hugo LX is a true music enthusiast who has been making some serious waves in the new Parisian house music scene. Although his better known production could be classified as classic or old school house, his musical journey was not as straightforward. Pavliné catches up with him ahead his gig for SWEAT w/ Hugo LX!

Hey Hugo, first of all and for those who might not know you, could you tell us a bit about yourself and your DJ career?

I’ve been in and out of this music thing for the more than a decade, producing music in a wide array of styles and tempos, from jazzy hip hop to contemporary dance music, through ambient and organic house.

These trips through styles and BPMs also express part of my nomadic reality, cruising between many places and countries. Growing up unrooted also allows me not to feel boundaries too much when it comes to genres, categories and even social layers.

Though everything and everyone is unique, we can nearly always find common grounds. As I’ve been back to DJing extensively for the last three years, I try to express all of this through my selections and mixes (nothing’s more lovely than when two songs play well together!)

You had a few releases on high profile music labels lately. Which one of these was a the real breakthrough track for you?

Though the label was newly born, I think Drifting Away on Nick V’s Mona Musique label made a special and significant impact, and I’m happy DJs play it worldwide, including some of my favourite selectors. It’s definitely humbling!

We had Nick V playing at SWEAT a few months back, which was sooo much fun! I believe he played a role in introducing you in the new Parisian house scene. Could you tell us more about that?

Nick V is an uncle to most of Paris’ latest wave DJs, and he played a special role connecting us to well-established and successful music structures, labels and clubs.

I remember nearly stopping music in the summer 2014, discouraged by label politics and projects being unreleased or poorly promoted. But he kept asking me for some house or broken beat demos, and the first batch were immediately published on the now defunct 22track playlist, allowing me to gain some attention by renowned label heads and DJ’s.

I read you also have a strong connection with Japan, and Kyoto in particular. You said you like Japanese Urban Soul, 80s electro and ambient. Do you also like Japanese house (because I do!) and if so, could you give us a track or a DJ you like in particular?

I’ve been into Japanese house for a long time, and have befriended several DJs there over the years. One of these friendships recently materialised in myself remixing the master Satoshi Tomiie on his latest offering. Also I’m an avid fan of Mr YT aka MissingSoul, and the master Kuniyuki (Rain of Ocean is one of my favourite Japanese house tracks ever, and it’s barely house!) who I expect to work with in the near future…

Last but not least, salute to my friends Hiroaki OBA, Tomoki Tamura, Stereociti, Kez YM, Takecha and Yutaka Yonenaga!

What can we expect from your set at Dalston Superstore?

Turning the event into a comfortable and intimate party! That’s what it’s all about!

You have a strong relation with vinyl. When did you start collecting records and what do you find so compelling with that format?

I started collecting at age eight. I like the generosity of the format – it’s a circle, it’s colourful, comes in various shapes and sizes, and credits on the labels, give food for thought, knowledge. Giving a vinyl is transmitting a legacy!

Finally, can you think of a track that would fit the tropical and hedonistic aesthetic of SWEAT?

Let’s go back to basics… maybe something from the Nott Us labels..

I-Aye-Bye-You by Billy Robinson probably. It has a very sweet layering and comfortable feeling, but it’s actually a real burner!

 


Catch Hugo LX at SWEAT on Friday 3 November from 9pm-3am at Dalston Superstore!

sweat at dalston superstore

 

Benedikt Rugar

This November we ring in the third birthday of our favourite happy-go-lucky queer rave, Homodrop! Over the last three years, the Homodrop crew have cemented their place in East London queer nightlife, with a strong emphasis on the visual element of their identity. Their resident graphic designer for the past year has been Benedikt Rugar, whose lurid, cheeky and abstractly sexual work has been turning many heads in the venue! Having worked with iconic clubs and brand from Berghain and Cocktail D’Amore to Beam Club Bangkok, his artwork is now synonymous in London with Homodrop’s colourful, mad aesthetic. We caught up with him to chat childhood inspiration, mosaics and, of course, gay nightlife!

homodrop at dalston superstore

Hi Benedikt! We absolutely ADORE your kinky, abstract Homodrop artwork! Where do you get your inspiration?

Hi – thank you so much! It is lots of fun to work for Homodrop. I get the concept of the party from my going out in the queer/gay scene in Berlin. I think I understand what Homodrop wants. It’s queer and colourful, sexy and playful, and it doesn’t take itself too seriously. Music, fun and love are in the foreground of the experience. For the poster series, I developed absurd spatial still-lifes that played around with queer topics, without necessarily showing men. From futuristic penis-instruments to a blowjob fruit salad in a glory hole – clichés from the scene in a new packaging.

Has graphic art always been a big part of your life?

I was always a very visual person. I have trouble remembering names, but faces I never forget. My graphic awakening was quite early, at the end of my school years. University was like a forge for my visual understanding, and drawing has never left me since. Graphics and drawing are a language that can be more easily read and understand across cultures. I find this exciting – that it can breach borders.

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You’ve worked with the Homodrop crew for a year now – can you describe the party in three words?

Unicorn, kinky, adorable.

What kind of music do you listen to when you’re making work?

Very different kinds of music. Lena Platonos is super!

What is your earliest artistic memory?

As a child, I drew my own action figures on card, cut them out and made them fight with each other – like you would with actual action figures. Almost all of these card figures were muscly “male mermaids” with vampire teeth. A mash-up of the Little Mermaid, He Man and Count Dracula. They belonged in a world of their own. Sadly I lost them over time, otherwise I am sure they would be on one of my walls now. 

That’s so cute! Which other artists or designers do you most admire?

Of course there a few artists that I like. But off the top of my head, I can think of the posters from Braulio Amado, which are amazing, or I still love – and have done so for years – the graphic and comic worlds of Igor Hofbauer or Yuichi Yokoyama.

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Which work of art do you wish you created?

Ask me that again when I’m so old that I can’t hold a pen with my hand.

You were recently commissioned to create a mosaic for Bangkok-based Beam Club – what was that project like?

It was definitely something special. I was asked to design a seven-meter long mosaic wall for the Beam club in Bangkok, which had recently been finished with an interior design concept by William Russell of Pentagram. The wall lies behind the bar in the lounge, a quieter area of the club, so the owner wanted the illustration to have a dream-like feel about it, inviting guests to linger in the space.

My immediate reference were vintage illustrations from the 1960s, where families gather in front of futuristic buildings, a representation of everyday life scenarios but in an imposing environment. These were the raw materials that I used to create a window into a fictional landscape. Instead of a conventional rendering, we decided to solve this challenge by creating a huge mosaic wall in tune with the materials used throughout.

The artwork – which I had to “translate” into the language of mosaics – is made up of hundreds of 1 x 1 cm pixels: the actual black or white tiles on the wall. The technique allowed for matt and glossy finishes, which used in combination allowed me to introduce highlights. 

beammosaic

beam mosaic

You’re involved with a lot of graphic design for nightclubs – is the clubbing world a big part of your life? How does it inform your work?

It has a big influence in my work, yes. I went clubbing a lot, especially during my first years in Berlin. It’s what happens here. In Frankfurt, where I come from, I never found parties like the ones I enjoyed later in other cities.  I got to know many different kinds of people going out in Berlin, and with some I am still connected. When I first met them, I never suspected that it would lead to very nice collaborations later, like record covers and club posters. The scene is full of talented people from the creative business – and it’s not all lost on the dancefloor. Sure enough, I love dancing and going out. It’s a part of life in Berlin.

What does your queer utopia look like?

Queer utopia ? It depends from where you start. From outside: for sure, more love and tolerance. And from inside – for the scene itself: less narcissism, more activism!

Any exciting project in the pipeline you can let us in on?

My biggest project at the moment is to follow my own art, next to my regular jobs. I just had my first solo exhibition in Hamburg, which was a very nice experience, but in very busy periods like those, I miss sometimes the energy and time to work on my own stuff. And it’s from these self-initiated projects I draw the material that I use in my other work, especially in club posters which depend so much on the visual. Free artworks need their own process, and usually jobs don’t give you the time for this. So it’s important for me to be connected with myself like this too.


Check out Benedikt’s artwork for Homodrop, and join us on the next party on Saturday 4 November from 9pm-4am at Dalston Superstore!

Rodent DeCay

Photo credit: Allan Gregorio

With every Halloween at Dalston Superstore comes the cult horror smash hit Mints presents Miss Zombie Drag Queen! For the banging 2017 edition featuring Bell Towers, In Flagranti and Nadia Ksaiba, we are lucky enough to welcome East London’s very own queen of the underworld, RodentDeCay! She’s been haunting stages from The Glory to Sink the Pink, and most recently debuted new commissioned work at Birmingham’s Fierce Festival and we can’t wait to have her join us to judge the competition! We caught up with her to chat queering monstrosity, fighting real-life monsters and things that go bump in the night.


Hi Rodent DeCay! We can’t wait to have you join us for Miss Zombie Drag Queen 2017! How has your year been so far?

I finished my Masters in the back end of 2016 so most of 2017 has been trying to be a RealLifeHuman™. But it’s also been a year of a lot of experimentation and growth, creatively, largely in retaliation to the way the world seems to be closing in on itself. It’s been a very interesting year so far for the Rat Queen.

 You were recently involved in the incredible Fierce Festival in Birmingham, what was that like?

So throughout the end of 2016 and up until this week I was involved with the Fierce FWD development programme for emerging artists in and from the West Midlands. Through the programme I started exploring more sound design elements in my creative practice and presented my first solo work, HOMECOMING:  a 20-minute piece scored by my own original compositions, sound design and text that looked to weaponise the ugly emotions we brew in adolescence as isolated queers into a tour de force of destruction against the systems and structures that separated us. It’s been an amazing experience and I’m hugely grateful to the whole Fierce team for their support and for commissioning me!

We were absolutely GAGGED by your recent Aileen Wuornos lipsync at Cybil’s House! How did that idea develop?

I’ve been exploring monstrosity as a queer metaphor in a lot of my work recently and so stumbled upon Aileen’s story through that investigation. Aileen was a woman who was abused constantly throughout her life, suffering numerous toxic relationships and mental health abuses. She’s infamous as one of America’s most prolific female serial killers, murdering johns that she alleged abused her. Throughout her arrest, trial, incarceration and ultimately her execution, her life was used as a toy and bargaining chip by religious and political bodies: largely all men. I wanted to bring this “monster” back into our consciousness and use her final interview as a way to skewer abuses of power that are levelled against women, queers and those of us with mental health problems while also offering some kind of vindication.

 What is your process like when developing a show?

Usually I start with a nugget of an idea, a mental image or a piece of spoken word or audio that resonates with me. I magpie lots of bits and pieces from all over the Internet or in real life and make Frankenstein composites to try and weave new narratives. With my Sweet Dreams, Aileen act I found Aileen’s final interview with Nick Broomfield and overlayed this with an instrumental track of Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This). I thought the merging of Aileen’s narrative as an abused queer woman and the image or Annie Lennox as a powerful androgynous woman had some really powerful potential, especially with the pounding “Some of them want to use you… some of them want to abuse you” lines.

Where do you find inspiration?

At the moment, monsters, both real and fictional, but I’ve always been inspired by things that exist on the fringes of culture or society. As a queer non-binary person these modes of existence really resonate with me so I try to revel in otherness, difference and defiance. I’m really obsessed with the power of horror to shock and jar people from complacency and the ordinary, which is why my work plays with images like witches, werewolves and feral children.

rodent decay at dalston superstore

Photo Credit: Graeme Braidwood

We love your dark aesthetic.. how has it developed from when you first started out doing drag? 

It’s really bloomed over the past year now that I’m full out of education. My drag was always a little bit on the dark side, but was quite juvenile to begin with, mostly because I don’t think I initially had the confidence to celebrate a lot of the things that make me tick at the time. Coming into my own with my gender has definitely had a major impact in wanting to present something more liminal. I’ve evolved from being a MySpace emo princess, to an alabaster vamp, to a ferocious witch to now start pushing my drag in a direction that makes it more genderless and inhuman altogether.

If you could change anything about London’s LGBTQ+ scene, what would it be?

More celebration of and visibility for non-white and non-masculine bodies. The link between sexualities and bodies is inevitable in club culture but I’d like to see more room for discussions and challenges that take queerness away from the physical and the meat of us. I’d like to see a celebration of sexuality and queerness that doesn’t anchor itself to one singular kind of queer subject that is predominantly cis, white and male. I think a lot of people talk about these kinds of changes but I think our community has a very real problem with taking ideas off of Facebook and applying them in the real world.

rodent decay at dalston superstore

Photo credit: Phillip Prokopiou 

What does your queer utopia look like?

An intersectional equalisation of power, abolishing class, gender and racial barriers and fully automated luxury queer monster communism.

You were the winner of The Glory’s cult drag competition LipSync1000, and Miss STP a few years ago… what’s the next step in world domination for Rodent DeCay?

Rising like Surtsey out of the oceans to take over everyone’s minds and hearts with cold, nihilistic beauty. Seriously though, more of the same. Keeping my momentum up and putting out more unique and original content and trying to be more disruptive, political and vocal.

And now for the upcoming Halloweekend!! What are you looking for in Miss Zombie Drag Queen 2017, and what advice would you give any wannabe drag zombies readying their lewks?

 I wanna see some hilarious causes of death. A fully intact fresh from the grave zombo is all well and good, but I’m really hear for chunks missing, implements in eye sockets, zombie experiments gone wrong and radioactive super zombies. Top tip: twisting your head around 360 degrees successfully, without severing any major nerve or spinal system, is a definite winning move.


Catch Rodent DeCay at Mints Miss Zombie Drag Queen 2017 on Friday 27 October from 9pm-4am at Dalston Superstore!