Posts Tagged ‘disco’

HOMODROP TURNS 4!!

Our favourite happy-go-lucky homodisco HOMODROP is turning four this weekend and celebrating with an extra special party with headliner SONJA. We had a little chat with promoter Florian about the birth of HOMODROP, his musical inspirations and more..

    homodrop at dalston superstore           homodrop at dalston superstore

Hi Florian, for those of us that don’t know you as a promoter, can you tell us a little about what you do?   

For HOMODROP I’m taking care of programming, building a line up, contacting DJs , agency, booking them and also taking care of all visuals . It’s is really important for me to have good music and good posters. Both are linked.

How did Homodrop come into the world? Was she an easy birth? A long, painful out labour of love?

 Very fast actually, no pain hahaha! The party came out of the closet 4 years ago, in a Stoke Newington basement, on a sunny summer Sunday afternoon. For the first one there were only 2 DJs- STATHIS from DISCOSODOMA and myself. 

                          homodrop at dalston superstore

If you could sum up these last four years of Homodrop in one track what would it be?

That’s a hard one! I think I’d choose a track form MASSIMILIANO PAGLIARA who played last year for us, called I AM DISCO .

If you could pick any guest, dead or alive, to headline one of your parties, who would it be?

The late, great Frankie Knuckles.

Can you tell us a little bit more about SONJA, your headliner for this edition?

We met playing together in Lisbon where she’s been really shaking up the underground electro scene in the last year. She has her own label called Labareda, a resident for LUX and hosts a monthly radio show on the famous Radio Quantica. On top of that impressive CV she is very funny!

What were your earliest musical inspirations?

Electronic wise i started to play minimal, techno minimal, electro minimal and electro clash about 12 years ago.

                       homodrop at dalston superstore 

You’ve got all international of late, Homodropping  in Canada, France and Portugal, where you now live, what’s that been like??

I’ve recently moved to Lisbon. It’s a really nice city and I’ve discovered a very underground scene, even more underground than Berlin. It’s proper underground, in all aspect, venues, posters of party, equipment, people ….

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If you could be any animal crossed with another animal, what would you be an why?

I can imagine myself a mix between a bee and a stingray.

What track would you use to describe this creature??

HAPPA – DRAG

Have you got any exciting ideas for the future of Homodrop at DSS?

Stay tuned – but we have a mega party coming up for DSS 10TH ANNIVERSARY :)


 

Catch Homodrop’s bday shenanagins from 9pm-4am this Saturday 3rd of November!

Les Poppeurs

Holy hell, we wish our first year of life was neeearly as exciting as it has been for our fave lil Italo Hi NRG disco party Les Poppeurs! Between serving up a smorgasbord of supercute guests from Protopapa to Rory Phillips, Pjotr to Kiddy Smile, it’s been an absolutely crazy, sequin-clad, chiffon twirling, liquid gold rollercoaster! Ahead of their first birthday bash featuring none-other-than Comeme superstar Christian S, we sat down with promoters Whitney Weiss and Rachael to reflect on the past year, and work ourselves up into a bit of a tizz over what the next party has in store!


Congratulations on an incredible first year of Les Poppeurs! Can you tell us the story behind that incredible name?

WHITNEY: Aw thank you! Two summers ago I was on a beach in southern Italy with Protopapa (who DJed our first party) and a bunch of his adorable friends, who were all in summer debauchery mode. I was earnestly studying French verbs to better communicate with the person I was seeing at the time when someone handed me a bottle of what I think was Blue Boy. Naturally, I took a big whiff. Just then, Rachael texted to ask what I was up to, so I told her. She immediately responded “les poppeurs” and we both agreed that it was THE perfect name for a party. Or at least I think that’s how it happened…I was a bit light-headed. 

How have the Les Poppeurs parties brought to life your vision as promoters? 

RACHAEL: Working at Superstore really showed me what works there and what doesn’t. I waited a long time before actually throwing a party there, as I knew I wanted all the elements to be just right. From a partner in crime, to music policy, to the friends and friends of friends we invite to play, even down to our amazing posters (done by Martin Wollerstam, who does all the artwork for WetYourself over at Fabric too). 

WHITNEY: I just wanted to do something that was sincere but perhaps not super-polished or high-profile, where DJs could come and make use of their secret encyclopaedic knowledge of disco or Italo or whatever. My main party-throwing experience was in warehouses or parks in South America, and when I DJed at Superstore the first time, I immediately felt at home because there was a similar vibe. It’s such a great place.

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If you had to sum up Les Poppeurs in three words, what would they be? 

WHITNEY: Spangly. Frisky. Chiffon. 

What has been your proudest moment? 

RACHAEL: At the party in December, Loki Star was going for this laid back Christmas party hangover vibe upstairs, but when I went downstairs Betty was at the decks and Kiddy Smile was surrounded by everyone and they were all voguing and it was SO MUCH FUN. I had a huge grin spread across my face and I felt so proud and happy. 

WHITNEY: Personally, it was throwing on Somebody Else’s Guy in the middle of a very upbeat stretch and watching everyone squeal with delight. That and accurately sussing out who in our audience is French with Etienne Daho songs.  

If you could trace your love for italo, hi NRG and disco back to one record, what would it be? 

WHITNEY: Man 2 Man’s Male Stripper, which I have played to death but am somehow not sick of yet.

RACHAEL: That’s a tough one! I think Q – Voice Of Q is the first Italo record I bought, which is wonderfully cosmic. 


What has been the craziest moment on the Les Poppeurs dancefloor? Is there a track that takes you back? 

WHITNEY:  I was very impressed when Rory Philips played Carole King to great success and fanfare. Debbie Upper pulled out some Taylor Dayne at just the right moment once. And I’ve seen some wonderful things happen during “Erotic City.” 

RACHAEL: Rory playing Carole King was SUPERB. I was in the toilets when I heard that. I ran straight to the DJ booth and then Rory and me were playing air piano. 

Another one that came out of the blue was Protopapa playing Wamdue Project’s King Of My Castle. I was blown away that anyone was managing to play that in the Superstore basement, and really just blown away that anyone remembered it. I had it on CD single when I was 14…! 


Record that has lit up the lazer basement? 

RACHAEL:  For me personally, I have lovely memories of playing Dharma – Plastic Doll and the whole basement jumping along. 


Best Les Poppeurs last song? 

WHITNEY: Sade – The Sweetest Taboo is the one I’m giving away. There’s another one that is pure euphoric sleaze but I won’t tell you the name; you’ll just have to come hear us play it sometime. 

RACHAEL: For a different type of last song, I closed our last NTS radio show with Teena Marie – Behind This Groove and Trevor Jackson told me it was the first record he ever bought and that I sounded v. professional.  


You have the incredible Christian S of Comeme as a guest for your first birthday party – what do you love about him as a DJ and producer? 

WHITNEY WEISS: I am beside myself with joy to have Christian S at our one year birthday because he is just so great. He understands the art of a warm-up set but also I’ve seen him turn people out at the height of the evening. And every time I hear him play, I fall hard for at least three tracks I’ve never heard before. Production-wise, what he does with percussion is just lovely. 

RACHAEL: I am excited to see him play for the FIRST time! I’ve watched his Boiler Room to death and I know he’s gonna kill it in the Superstore basement. 


After such a bumper first year, what do you have in store for the next year of Poppeurs? 

WHITNEY: Bigger hair! Foggier fog machines! Bespoke poppers! Actually, we just want to bring a bunch of other DJs we really like and admire to DJ at Superstore while introducing London to friends from Berlin and Paris and Buenos Aires and beyond who haven’t played a ton outside of their home cities yet. 

RACHAEL: We’ve already planned out most of the year! Expect some familiar faces, some surprising faces, some European faces (obvs), some Parisian lesbian faces and of course the usual smattering of Poppeurs friends and family <3

Catch Rachael & Whitney Weiss with Christian S and special guests at Les Poppeurs on Saturday 6 February from 9pm-4am at Dalston Superstore!

Last Resort: Last songs

The 2 Girls 1 Cub collective are here in the shape of Chaka Khan’t (Disco Spritz), Fannar (Meat) and Ann Rollerskates (Disco Spritz), with new monthly party Last Resort. They promise to transport to where you’d rather be – namely poolside at a Vegas motel, Piña Colada in hand and disco hits spinning. They command you to whack another coat of mascara on over last night’s lashes and hit the dancefloor! We caught up with them to listen to some of their favourite songs to end the weekend to. 

FANNAR:

Carly Simon – Why.
I usually tend to end with this one due to that fact that I’m still single and crying inside.

Joy Division – Transmission
If I’m like hyper then this classic is good as I would like to throw my pint on the floor and just dance, dance, dance!

Kool A. D. – Hickory
It’s full of love.  

ANN ROLLERSKATES:

Paul McCartney & Wings – Goodnight Tonight 
With it’s opening jangly guitar and signature “thumbs up Paul optimism”, this song is guaranteed to make your friends stop their babbling mid sentence to turn and say “Paul McCartney?! Really??”

Steely Dan – Do It Again
So smooth. So seventies. Everyone’s favourite Dad band deliver their masterpiece over slinky percussion and sitar. The intro with that wooden stick instrument that always used to be in the music box at school just makes your friends want to get back up and dance again. This time – sexy. 

Fleetwood Mac – Everywhere
A classic and a classic for a reason. This funky sparse McVie penned number about the flushes of early love brings everyone together for that soaring chorus no matter what kinda night it’s played at. 


CHAKA KHAN’T 

Unknown Mortal Orchestra – Can’t Keep Checking My Phone
This is a fairly new one, and it’s always a surprise hit as a last song. Its jangly riffs and banging baseline are perfect to give your weekend a gentle , funky little send-off.

Drizabone – Real Love 
That nineties sax. I needn’t say more. 


Thelma Houston – I’m Here Again
This one is a rare beast – a grower, and a show-er!

Catch Two Girls One Cub with Nic Fisher at Last Resort this Sunday, 23 August at Dalston Superstore from 4pm! 

Disco Bloodbath Record Bag

Ahead of this Saturday’s mr intl records showcase, we caught up with our old pals Disco Bloodbath, who return to Dalston Superstore once more for a top floor takeover! For the uninitiated, Disco Bloodbath was and is an East London institution, throwing disco ragers in Passions, a basement club below a Dalston restaurant, developing into a record label and generally being record collecting badasses. With that in mind, we caught up with the duo, comprised of Ben Pistor and Damon Martin, to have a rummage through their record bags…

A record that is forever Disco Bloodbath

Ben: Fern Kinney – Love Me Tonight. Damon would play it towards the end of the night, it starts off all twinkly then when the vocals kick in everyone sings along either hands in the air or hugging.

A record that is too sad to listen to

Ben: Magic FM fave, Odyssey – If You’re Looking For A Way Out is deeply moving in the back of a cab at 5am.

A record that never leaves your bag

Damon: Cappuccino – Hell Dance With Me

A record that you’ve always wanted to play but it’s never quite happened

Ben: I’ve always wanted to hear Bruce Springsteen – I’m On Fire played to a heaving dance floor. 

A record that sounds like it’s from a spangly disco future

Damon: Donna Summer – I Feel Love definitely fits the bill but a big favourite of mine is My Mine – Hypnotic Tango. A record that’s over 30 years old but still sounds massively futuristic to me. It’s also well spangly.

A record that transports you back to a spangly disco past

Ben: The Three Degrees – Giving Up Giving In. A huge mirrorball moment from the past that builds and builds and builds and explodes in to pure spangle.

Fave Andy Butler/Hercules & Love Affair/Mr Intl track

Ben: Obviously Blind is incredible but I really love Roar which is on the first H&LA 12”.

A record that always sounded brilliant in the basement of Passion

Damon: The Chaplin Band – Il Veliero

The one record you’d save if your house was on fire

Damon: I would probably spend too long trying to decide and burn to death. Although, apparently in house fires it’s the smoke inhalation that gets you first. Either way it would be a huge tragedy.

A record in your collection that’s TOO MUCH of a guilty pleasure to ever play out

Damon: I’m not sure such a record exists. I’ll pretty much play anything after a few shandies.

Join Ben & Damon this Saturday 16th May for mr intl at Dalston Superstore from 9pm -3am.

 

Weird Disco

The guys and gals of Disco Stew present to you their top seven bizarre disco video moments…

It was the perfect combination of unashamed and unabashed fun, glamour and sass, teamed with unforgettable dance hits and questionable substances that made this era in music and fashion what it was: PURE JOY AND SEQUINS. However, a party that big always attracts a few weirdos, and lord knows D-I-S-C-O had its fair share. Here are some of our fave freaks doing inexplicable things and wearing wonderfully weird get up on camera for your amusement. Enjoy.

Dennis Edwards – Don’t Look Any Further (ft. Siedah Garrett)

Cocaine, ladies and gentlemen.

Is this a music video or an anti-drug campaign? We’re just not sure. Dude spends the first 10 seconds of the video making intense eye-contact and gurning ferociously. He is then joined by the equally frightening Seidah Garrett in a disco-trainwreck of a dance-off that is impossible to look away from. You’ve been warned. Proceed with caution.

La Bionda – I Wanna Be Your Lover

This video gets a special mention for literally every single element. No introduction necessary.

Tobacco – VHS Knife

If someone was to ask me to produce a parody of the ’80s, this would be my exact response. There are leotards. There is a wind machine. There are green-screen visuals. And those gloves at 0:15? Feathered, fluorescent perfection.

Carly Simon – Why

‘Why?’ you ask, Carly. Excellent question my dear – and I have a few for you. Why the bizarre two-stepping down the street? Why the very average-looking extras who are very clearly just people on the street who have been roped in? So many questions, and so very few answers. But this is raw ’80s production at its very finest. Enjoy.

Sylvester – You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)

Prepare to bow down. Sylvester is an opulent-disco-androgyne-god/dess. There are so many looks in this video, each of them fiercer than the last. You try strolling into a club wearing an all-white tuxedo, fanning yourself effortlessly and somehow making it work. Alas, for us mere mortals such things are the stuff of dreams.

Glowing Palms – Ask Me After Midnite

This video is like an acid trip gone horribly awry. The dancers are terrifying, the visuals are terrifying and I would kind of like to forget that this even exists.

Will Powers – Adventures in Success

Will Powers, you are ridiculous. This song is basically someone reading a self-help guide over some funky synth. Why does it work? I DON’T KNOW. But it somehow does. Having said that, I genuinely feel both better and worse every time I watch this. That doesn’t sound possible until you try it for yourself.

Join Disco Stew every second and last Tuesday of the month (including TONIGHT). 

Man Power

This Saturday we welcome the enigmatic producer and DJ Man Power to Dalston Superstore’s laser basement for the last Bust Yo Nut! Championed by the likes of Sean Johnston and Test Pressing, but still keeping his identity a mystery, Man Power has been steadily remixing and releasing records whilst only playing a handful of DJ sets around Europe. We managed to send a few questions over email to find out what we could about him…

TOB PODCAST 024: Man Power by Throne Of Blood

This is only your second gig in England, how do you intend to maintain your air of mystery, especially DJing here in London?

I like to cover my face when I play. I think I will do this at Dalston Superstore.

That is, if it is really me who turns up to play. I’m not trying to be deliberately mysterious, but I honestly feel that my face is not essential for someone to enjoy listening to my music. I wish people would look at the DJ less, and look at each other more, when they go out to dance.

If you had a manly super power, what would it be and how would you use that power for good?

I like the anonymous part of being invisible. This holds many naughty possibilities. Not sure that I want to use it for good though.

Where does Man Power originate from? Your Soundcloud says Tokelau, your RA page says France, rumour has it as Eastern Europe somewhere… if Man Power has no fixed geographical origin, where does the concept of Man Power come from?

I like the idea that music can be something that exists outside of physical geography. Genres and influences will always be present, but everything is shared so freely now that the idea of national identity is becoming less meaningful.

The concept of Man Power is something that is unfixed. There are certain sounds and feelings that I return to, but they are dictated by machinery and feeling rather than a place.

Arpeggios feature heavily in a lot of my music, which lends a feeling of time. There is something very 1977 about an analogue arpeggio, which is one of the things that lead to the Man Power imagery. The name is supposed to be a slight homage to the producers of disco and electro like Cowley and Parrish etc.

What’s the latest release or remix due out you can tell us about…?

Next record out should be my remix for an amazing Mexican Live act called Zombies In Miami. It’s due out on Jennifer Cardini’s Correspondant Label, which is among my favourite labels in the world right now. I loved the dark new wave sensibility of the original, so I wanted to stay true to its feel. I have added a bit extra disco stomp to it, with a ridiculously overblown hair-rock guitar line, which hopefully gives my version an over-the-top appeal.

You’ve recently been working with former Dalston Superstore special guests Sean Johnston of A Love From Outer Space and Last Waltz amongst others. Who would you most like to work with that fits the Man Power sound?

Sean has made an amazing remix of one of my songs. I have also been very lucky and Raudive has also remixed one of my upcoming tracks. I love his blend of discordant techno. It’s very spacious and powerful. I think we both have a love for dark synthesisers too.

I also love the beauty and melody that the Hivern artists display, particularly Marc Pinol, Pional and John Talabot. Hivern is another label I am fortunate enough to be releasing my music on, and I hope people will think I am a good fit for their sound.

I am a very big fan also of a lot of Japanese artists right now, and would love to work someone like Cos/Mes or KZA in the future.

You’ve previously cited Patrick Cowley as an influence- does this extend beyond his music and into the films he soundtracked such as School Daze? Is film scoring an avenue you’d like to pursue under the Man Power moniker?

I love Patrick Cowley. His remix of Donna Summer will forever be the greatest piece of dance music ever made. I also love his soundtrack work, as well as that of artists like Vangelis, Moroder and Tangerine Dream.

Donna Summer – I Feel Love (Patrick Cowley Remix) by patrickcowley

I would love to work on soundtracks. I have a fascination with the connection between sight and sound, and I think enhancing a piece of cinematic art with your idea of how it should sound, would be a very rewarding experience.

You’re clearly a lover of homoerotic imagery. What, in your opinion, was a better decade for manly men, the ’50s or ’70s?

The imagery was chosen because it is provocative. Depending on your outlook the images I use can be viewed as homoerotic or as naive and innocent. They can also be viewed as either arousing, repulsive, amusing or passé, depending on the viewers particular prejudices.

I am drawn to using the images from the ‘50s, as I find that conceptually these are the more decadent due to the attitudes that were present when they were taken. They often have a butch quality which was distilled somewhat by the ‘70s.

What outside of music (and pictures of men) influences the music you make?

This sounds pretentious, but I am never consciously aware of anything that influences what the music I make sounds like. The music is normally an edit of some form of experiment that I have attempted without any clear objective at the start.

When I finally start pulling the separate parts together in to some type of music, then certain aspects of genre and style start to reveal themselves, but I’ve never knowingly put them in there and I am never sure how they’ve actually come to be there.

Your album is due out this autumn- what is it called, what label will it be out on, and what’s one highlight from it that you can share or tell us about

The current working title is (Sh)E.D.M., which is an exclusive for this interview and will probably get me in trouble with the very beautiful and talented Jennifer Cardini who runs the Correspondant label, who are releasing the record.

Correspondant is a label that I am in love with, and Jennifer and Noura from the label have been wonderfully supportive and full of advice for the music I am making in general. They have truly allowed me to make the album I want to create. 

I wanted to make something that was more than a collection of dance music 12 inches, and they have been 100% behind this decision. I think I am more excited about this album than anything I have ever done before.

If you had a time machine, what dancefloor anywhere/anywhen would you like to visit?

Without a doubt that would be the original Cosmic club in Italy in the late ‘70s. The experiments that Daniele Baldelli and Mozart did still sound absolutely mind blowing when listened to today. I was lucky enough to hear Baldelli again this summer, when I played at Unknown Festival in Croatia last September. He held an entire audience under a spell for the entire time he played and was still incredibly masterful. Very inspirational from a DJing point of view.

Join Man Power this Saturday 8th February for Bust Yo Nut at Dalston Superstore from 9pm – 3am.

Nancy’s

Nancy’s, a new Friday night of disco, pop, house and party bumps at Dalston Superstore featuring our new rotating cast of familiar fabulous residents!

Yes, it’s time to bring back the residents, those trusted DJs that can deliver the goods every week and know every inch of the club and the crowd like their own underpants. So we’re shaking things up at Superstore on Friday nights with new top deck disco Nancy’s, and welcoming back our favourite DJs to play week in, week out in the top deck disco. It’s going to be family vibes all the way as trusted DJs like The Lovely Jonjo, Jeffery Hinton, Martyn Fitzgerald, Grizzle (John Sizzle and A Man To Pet), HiFi Sean, Luke Howard, Johnny Kalifornia and Mikki Most play on rotation along with different hosts every week. 

Nancy’s launches on Friday 31st January with an extra special line-up consisting of the legendary HiFi Sean, Johnny Kalifornia and Trailer Trash’s very own Mikki Most!

Start as you mean to go on we say. Coming up this month we have…

Friday 7th Feb: Grizzle crash-land into Nancy’s top deck disco.
Friday 14th Feb: The Lovely Jonjo and Kim Jakobsen To do a double-ender.
Friday 21st Feb: Dream-team Luke Howard and Jeffrey Hinton takeover (with special guest host DARKWAH!)
Friday 28th February: HiFi Sean and Martyn Fitzgerald show those queens how it’s done.

It starts every week at 9pm and is FREE before 11pm /  £5 after

Join the Nancy’s Facebook group here for regular updates and join the Facebook event for the launch party here.

Illustration by Ego Rodriguez: egorodriguez.com

Sasa of In Flagranti

This weekend sees cult homo disco night, Bender, back at Superstore for a January blow-out! One-half of In Flagranti, the amazing Sasa, joins us in the laser basement alongside Superstore fave The Lovely Jonjo, whilst upstairs disco queens Whitney Weiss and Fitzgerald take it to the max with edits, Hi-NRG, disco, pop and more. 

Ahead of the party we quizzed Sasa about working in record stores, living in New York, tracking down obscure records, In Flagranti edits and all things D.I.S.C.O…

You’ve spoken previously about “social networking” taking place in record stores before the onset of Facebook, now in an age that seems almost defined by online social media, what do bricks and mortar record stores offer people when they can just dig for records online and discuss in RA forums…?

Sasa: Record stores still offer the real experience. You can touch it and smell it… there is interaction… people going in and out… you may bump into people you know etc.

Disco as a genre has its roots in community (in terms of providing a safe space for LGBT people, African-Americans, Latinos, etc), what place, in your opinion, does it have now in both the mainstream and the underground?

Disco is mainstream; it kind of ruined it for me the moment there was a genre called “Nu Disco”. I lose interest in the formula… everyone starts to sound Nu. 

As someone who lived in NYC and now lives in London, how would you describe our city’s disco subculture?

To be honest I don’t know… I can describe a dive bar and pub culture.

Everything about In Flagranti has a ’70s sensibility to it, from the sound to the striking artwork aesthetic- why did you and Alex choose to mine this decade so heavily?

We both grew up in the ’70s, I guess we feel at home in that period. We communicate via that time period with each other… like two old men.

You’ve been seriously into Italo, and the more cosmic and rare end of vinyl at least a decade or more before the advent of Discogs… how did you track down extremely obscure records in the ’90s?

Actually I have never really been into Italo. When Italo was happening in the early ’80s I was listening to bands like Material and Medium Medium. But I remember a couple of times buying records in a record shop in Italy, where they had a deal… five records (didn’t know what’s in it) for the price of one. 

I bought that once and they were all Italo records! So I could mix five Italo records at home haha. I couldn’t have done it at the club where I was DJing… 

In the early ’90s in NY there were lots of flea markets where you could find great records for cheap. I was never hunting any particular record… I like surprises.

What’s the furthest length you have ever gone to in order to procure a record you really wanted?

Driven from Basel to Zurich by car to buy The Undisputed Truth – Higher Then High.

Who is your obscure disco hero?

Black Devil Disco Club. I remember the first time I heard H-Friend on a mix tape and it totally stood out from the rest. For a long time I had no idea who the artist was behind that track.

Obviously your music taste, and no doubt your extensive record collection extends way beyond disco. What’s something you think fans might be surprised to learn you’re really into?

Doom.

Can you tell us a bit more about this mixtapes of edits you made us ahead of Bender…?

I was just going through some old music folders with edits and things from back in 2003/4. Stuff I have been playing out but never really made a mix with it. It happened really quick, I started playing one then the next and suddenly I was doing an all edit mix.

As a true vinyl connoisseur, what is your favourite piece of gatefold artwork in your record collection?

Off the top of my head I would say Isaac Hayes – Black Moses.

isaac_hayes_black_moses_foldout

 Check out the mix of In Flagranti edits that Sasa made us here: dalstonsuperstore.com/features/sasas-bender-mix

Join Sasa at Bender on Saturday 25th January from 9pm – 3am at Dalston Superstore.

Daniel Wang

(This article originally appeared in QX Magazine)

By Cliff Joannou

Tell us in one juicy sentence who Daniel Wang is…

Daniel Wang is a possibly typical California-born gay Chinese-American guy whose ten years in New York and ten years of living in Berlin have added up to a rather open-minded and musically entertaining DJ who plays mostly (but not exclusively) classic disco records – for the DJ world. Maybe not unlike what Margaret Cho is for the stand-up comedy circuit.

Well, that’s a mighty long sentence, but we’ll allow it. Now, finish this sentence: “Disco is divine because…”

Its classic incarnations from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s, truly the meeting of the genius of jazz and classical forms with the rhythmic richness of diverse African rhythms, played and often mixed down by musicians and studio engineers who knew their trade, unlike the majority of laptop-based DJ/producers today who know little about either proper music-making or sound production.

Woah, tiger! Don’t hold back. You’re also quoted as saying, “The whole of house music can be summed up in 200 pieces of vinyl.” Like, wow. Please explain…

I still feel that way: most of house can be summed up in about 200 pieces of vinyl because the rules of the genre are extremely self-limiting. House is defined overwhelmingly as a machine beat with a mechanical repetitive bassline with some samples or vocals on top. Any real guitar, string or brass section, or real live drumming would be another territory. There are almost NEVER any proper chord changes or musical ideas, only jamming over a single non-changing groove. The best and strongest house records rely on their raw power and simplicity and the natural groove in the drum machines and synthesizers, like the Roland 909 and 303. And the rest is pretty forgettable. It doesn’t have to be a hit or even memorable to be good, but as a DJ and music lover, I would say, there aren’t a fraction of house records which have truly stood the test of time the way the great disco classics have. Not that I want to play only Salsoul classics or Dan Hartman’s Relight My Fire over and over again, but…!

DANIEL WANG’S HORSE MEAT DISCO @ DALSTON SUPERSTORE TOP 10

1. MFSB – Old San Juan

I just got this CD reissue of my favourite MFSB album, their last from 1980. The album was apparently a commercial failure, this classic jazz and orchestral disco sound was no competition against Donna Summer or the Bee Gees. Because it was too beautiful and maybe too sophisticated, not suited for AM radios, more for stereophile dancing…

2. Jean Carn – My Love Don’t Come Easy

A new remix from 2011 by master Tom Moulton, reissued on CD, just found it at a  local electronics market near my home in Berlin! Actually it’s a 4 CD set, truly fantastic, 11 minute version!

3. Ben Cenak + Dream 2 Science – Dream2Science

A classic late night acid 303 track with hypnotic pads and jazz piano solo. One of a kind. Not disco. Simply gorgeous.

4. Ritchie Family, 1976 – Baby I’m On Fire

Album cut on Arabian Nights LP. I don’t like most of their songs really, too kitschy. But this one has a killer 106 BPM swinging groove and great arrangements!

5. Fancy – Slice Me Nice

Eurotrash disco 1984 just for fun! It’s a cheesy take on Passion by The Flirts. But the sound production is awesome. And the lyrics about wanting to be a piece of cake…

6. Maynard Ferguson – Invitation/ Pagliacci

Massive fusion-funk workout 1978-style with ARP synths, flute solos, and a classic jazz motif strangely reminiscent of the Theme From Star Trek.

7. Karen Carpenter – Slow Dance

That early ’80s slick production! Fat tinkly Fender Rhodes piano and a groove which is almost… danceable. Who cares when Karen’s voice is cooing so gorgeously like that…

8. Jeanne Shy – Night Dancer

Big orchestral 1978 disco 12″ clocking in at about 128 BPM, produced by Bob Esty who also did Cher’s Take Me Home among others. A bit over the top, but I love the instrumental break at the end.

9. Blaze – Can’t Win For Losing

The best of New Jersey soulful house music circa 1989. I love the instrumental version without the slightly rough vocals. This track seems a precursor to their successful later remix of Lisa Stansfield’s first club hit with Coldcut, People Hold On.

10. Ron Trent – JourneyN2U

It makes me wanna dance! I think this is from year 2005 or so? A loopy trippy pretty house music jam! Just so we don’t get stuck in a 1979 disco time warp, you understand. Say goodbye to screaming divas and say hello to the trancey hypnotic spiritual groove of contemporary electronic whatever!

Join Daniel Wang at Horse Meat East this Friday 20th December at Dalston Superstore from 9pm – 4.30am

Visit QX Magazine’s website: www.qxmagazine.com or pick up a copy here at Dalston Superstore.

Little Gay Brother

It’s the wedding of the year here at Superstore… My Big Fat Dalston Wedding, put on by the lovely Little Gay Brother Presents aka Terry Vietheer and Clayton Wright! Having put on parties at both Secret Garden Party and Bestival, these two are more then adept at pulling off the best wedding disco you’ve ever been to! They’ve roped in fellow Bestival party-starters The Wedding Crashers for the top bar and The Broken Hearts Club (Marro and Chris Camplin) for the basement!  We took Terry and Clayton for the first dance and a moment to ask them our burning questions about what’s in store for the party…

Why did you decide on a wedding theme for your party here at Dalston Superstore?

Clayton: I’m single. I’m looking for a husband. And I only have a certain amount of time before my eggs dry up.

Can we expect full wedding attire for everyone involved?

Terry: Yes, including myself. This will be the third time in 34 years I have worn a dress.

Why did you both decide to set up Little Gay Brother?

Clayton: We are approached by Bearded Kitten and The Secret Garden Party to create SGP’s first gay bar. It was too much fun to only do as a one off so here we are. 

You’re playing a disco set upstairs at Superstore- what’s the cheesiest wedding disco classic you think you’ll be able to get away with?

Terry: I’m keeping clear of cheese… kind of. I want to see the brides and grooms getting down and filthy. These will definitely be getting a spin though…

 Prince – Cream

Tina Turner – Private Dancer

Billy Ocean – Carribean Queen

What kind of music can we expect downstairs though?

Terry: With Marro coming over from Berlin, followed by Chris Camplin, who always nails it every time with his track selection, the beats will be deep and erotic.

Clayton: It’s music you can fuck to.

Terry, you’re originally from Sydney- what made you make the move to London?

Terry: Love

(Clayton laughs) 

What are your fave nights and venues in London to go out to?

Clayton: The Bussey Building in Peckham, Netil House in Hackney and The Eagle in Vauxhall. In terms of parties… Gutterslut at East Bloc, Dirtbox at Vogue Fabric and Room Service at Miabella.

Why do you think Little Gay Brother and your guests The Wedding Crashers both work well in a festival environment?

Clayton: I have been working with The Wedding Crashers for seven years at festivals across the UK. The guys from Wales know how to throw an amazing party! We still joke over marrying Jake Shears to himself in a mirror at Glastonbury. 

Clayton and co at a festival

Who is your host Dave The Unicorn?

Terry: The biggest dickhead I have ever met and fast becoming the love of my life.

Clayton: Of course he is. He has a 13 inch horn.

And finally, what other tricks do you have up your sleeve for the party?

Terry: I’m currently in the workshop with a tone of glitter and 100 cocks. Good times. 

Join Terry and Clayton from Little Gay Brother on Saturday 17th November here at Dalston Superstore for My Big Fat Dalston Wedding from 9pm – 3am.

John Renaud

Texan born, now Berlin based, John Renaud is a multi-media artist, fashion designer and DJ. Working closely with controversial electronic musician Peaches, he’s also designed for Cazwell, Cyndi Lauper, Amanda Lepore and Margaret Cho amongst others, meaning you’ve probably seen his work before. As a DJ, he’s known for employing a plethora of genres to get the crowd going, be it disco, electro, hip-hop, deep-house, dance-punk or indie-pop. We caught up with the young artist ahead of his set this Friday right here at Dalston Superstore for Club Lesley

Your musical tastes span pop, deep-house, electro, tech-house and more. Can we expect a thematic set from you at Club Lesley or will you just go all out “trans-genre”?

You know, I have been playing a lot of house lately, but I still am a big fan of playing a varied mix and I always will mix in some nu-disco or indie dance pop. When you go to those mega clubs where they have “house only” DJs or “electro only” DJs, that’s great, but I always see my friends and other club goers get tired after the third hour or so of the same beat (even if they are on a bunch of ecstasy). I think it’s a real skill if you can mix some disco into some deep house into an electro “punch-you-in-the-face” track, all the while keeping the crowd moving. I’ve watched some really inspiring DJs who believe in the trans-genre approach play recently and it is one of my favorite types of sets to watch.

Who is your favorite recent dance music discovery?

He’s not new by any means, but I was really late to jump on the Boy 8-Bit bandwagon, but thank god I did. Seriously, his music and his remixes are beyond. He did a Florence and the Machine remix of Drumming Song that is so sick. He is one of those rare geniuses who can serve the music geeks with his skills and technical knowledge while at the same time making the general club crowd go insane on the dance floor. I really respect him so much.

We hear your parents met in a ’70s cover band? We NEED to know more about this! What band were they a tribute to? What did they wear? Are there pictures? 

Haha, yes there are pictures. I think there is a poster in my parents’ house in Austin. My parents were semi dirty hippie flower children. They were a cover band called the Tulanians at Tulane University in New Orleans. It was a group of students that covered the hits of the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, like Van Morison and Janis Joplin. That type of stuff. They did a USO tour too. They continued in a similar style band with their friends in Texas called the Pulsations, all while my brother and I were growing up. It was really embarrassing during adolescence but now that they aren’t together any more it’s kind of sad.

What influence does your Texan roots have on your work?

In my designs, I love western style yokes on shirts and making big statements. Haha. I’d say in DJing I love trying to squeeze in some country with Dolly Parton every now and then, but she can sort of kill the BPM so its only good at the end of a night or if you are playing for the gays. The gays love Dolly. Dolly loves the gays.

Why did you chose to settle in Berlin over any other major European city?

My friends were here. It’s affordable. I am actually getting to work on writing music and making art for the first time in my adult life, which was something there just was no time for in NYC. I had to work so many design jobs just to scrape by.

What ethos do you live your life by?

Try everything twice, maybe three times. I literally try and always give everyone and everything a second or third chance. There are foods I would have never liked had I just gone by the first experience, there is music I would have never learned to like, and I guess the same goes for some relationships. People are very selfish today in our generation. We forget life is about compromise with the environment, people, animals, things, etc. Facebook has made us all so narcissistic, and I am so guilty of it. I can’t believe what I write sometimes. You are not the most important thing on the planet. Give everyone and everything a second or third chance.

Cazwell in John Renaud

What are you currently reading/listening to/watching?

Reading? German Level one. Haha. Listening to a ton of missed episodes of “Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me” (an NPR quiz show from the states) and several episodes of Radiolab. I am watching 30 Rock and Breaking Bad if I watch anything, I don’t own a TV so it’s internet streams for me.

You have a pretty illustrious list of people who’ve worn your clothes- who was the biggest dream come true?

Well there wasn’t one in particular; they all have been dreams I’d say. Margaret Cho was probably one of the nicest and easiest clients I have ever had. She was very gracious and trusted me. Super sweet. Cyndi Lauper was a total freak out moment, and she is great. Peaches has become one of my dearest closest friends since I started working with her so any time we work together it is an ideal situation. It’s one of the only real interactions I get to have because she can be blunt and I can be blunt. It’s like a mix of Cunty and Blunty when we discuss or fit. We can get pretty heated about the way something is supposed to hang or fit, and then ten minutes later be laughing and smoking a joint together. It’s really nice because I don’t have to hold back, and she doesn’t either.

Margaret Cho in John Renaud

And who would you love to design for that you haven’t already?

Oh man. Grace Jones. You are in England, Right?  * COUGH * TOP SHOP! * COUGH * TOP SHOP * COUGH * CAPSULE COLLECTION * COUGH *

Your womenswear especially seems to have a strong futuristic, almost sci-fi element to it- what’s been your biggest inspirations?

Oh my inspirations are always so un-sexy. Emotion, but not in the pretty way. The messy 13 year old emo girl kind of snotty nosed first break up emotions. I always end up thinking about movies like Mars Attacks, Mad Max, The Birds, and Barbarella and while I don’t pull direct silhouettes from there the feelings of vintage future/elegant/form seem to shine through.

Who would you say has had the biggest impact on your career?

Peaches for sure. She has really been a big JR advocate in all my doings. She has pushed my fashion work. She encouraged me to DJ. Recently she has been a big pusher for me to start writing music just to see what happens. She is a really positive force in my life and she only seems to push me to do things that there is some potential in doing. She’s the really creative positive Jewish rebel sister I never had.

Peaches in John Renaud

And finally what is your favourite end-of-the-night track?

Too Insistent (Trentemøller Remix) by The Dø. I think it’s such a sweet song and, like my design work, I always like to make my DJ sets a little moody (but danceable).  I think it’s great when you need to let people know its time to go home and if they didn’t find the love of their life, us loners can have a good dance and cry together. Haha. And think about the one that we just can’t get out of our heads. Something like that. I am not sure what the song was written about, but that’s what I interpret it as. There is nothing wrong with ending the night on a somber note, as long as you do it with style.

 

Pity (House) Party Mix by Johnrenaud on Mixcloud

 

 John Renaud joins us us for Club Lesley on Friday 16th November from 9pm – 3am with Bisoux, Maxx DMX and MDMX.

Cosmic Kids At Say Yes

A few weeks ago we had the immense pleasure of welcoming Dan Terndrup of L.A. duo Cosmic Kids to the Superstore basement for Say Yes with Nadia Ksaiba and Rory Phillips.

He played such an amazing set full of disco gems and house pumpers that we’ve decided to share it as a Tuesday treat. What better way to get through a drizzly day than with a mix taking you from Shalamar to Bicep to Boddika & Joy Orbison all the way through to the likes of Suzy Q and Patrice Rushen.

TRACKLISTING

1. 6th Borough Project – Just a Memory 
2. Shalamar – There It Is (Honom Edit) 
3. Michael Jackson – Baby Be Mine 
4. Joakim – Nothing Gold (Todd Terje Remix) 
5. France Joli – Gonna Get Over You (Das Moth Edit) 
6. Rayko – Rayko’s Doo Doo 
7. Motor City Drum Ensemble – Raw Cuts #2 
8. Metro Area – RMM Special Dub 
9. Willie Graf & Tuccillo – Set Me Free 
10. Weekend Express – 2 the Rhythm 
11. Hot Chip – How Do You Do (Todd Terje Remix) 
12. The 2 Bears – Work (Oliver $ Remix) 
13. Stimming – Funkworm 
14. Russ Yallop – Rock Me 
15. Cosmic Kids – Reginald’s Groove (Classixx Remix) 
16. Bicep – $tripper 
17. Prince Club – I Know 
18. Adonis – No Way Back 
19. Boddika & Joy Orbison – Swims 
20. Moodymanc -Joy 
21. In Flagranti – Physical Maturity 
22. Liquid Liquid – Optimo 
23. Locussolus – I Want It (Lindstrom & Prins Thomas Remix) 
24. Patrice Rushen – Haven’t You Heard 
25. Suzy Q – I Can’t Give You More 
26. Stephanie Mills – What Cha Gonna Do With My Lovin’ 
27. Bob James – Take Me to the Mardi Gras 
28. Tammi Terrell – All I Do Is Think About You