I was going to see Paul van Dyk but I wasn’t planning on reviewing the show — I want to keep these reviews focused on local DJs. I wasn’t even going to show up until eleven or midnight. But then I heard that Aurean had snagged the opening set at 9pm so I had to be there.
Aurean is a duo: Nick and Jake. They were both part of Tortoise and the Snare so I never reviewed them to avoid any semblance of conflict of interest even though they’ve been a growing presence in DC. About time I did that, then.
I got to Echostage just as the doors were opening so I caught their whole set — only an hour, but it was great. Solid trance, which was exactly what I wanted. The early audience was a little thin of course but they were enjoying it. A random person even asked if I knew who they were because she wanted to follow up on them, so I was glad to fill her in.
Here’s the sample playlist, chock full of low-hit tracks that deserve some love:
After having my appetite for trance whetted so well, the rest of the night was unfortunately disappointing. Things turned over into what will probably be hot on the festival circuit this summer and while there’s nothing wrong with that… I felt like it was a bit of bait-and-switch. Even when Paul van Dyk finally came on, he stuck to a pretty hard-edged version of trance and didn’t play any of his classic tracks. All I got was a few heavily remixed bars of “Time of our Lives.”
So I left well reminded of why I only go to Echostage a few times a year. That, and my bar tab. Yikes.
Thursday nights start early at Flash with Preview on the rooftop — I always want to shout out to those because the happy hour specials are good and the food has been great. It was perfect weather for the rooftop, too.
On the main floor, Jandro opened with a two hour set that started out deep and comfy to ease us all into the night. The pace and the audience picked up smoothly until we were all moving on the dance floor, which is exactly what Jandro excels at doing. Such a seamless transition that you never quite remember when you started dancing.
Stimming took over for his live set at about 1am and the easy groove continued. A perfect Flash audience was out that night, not too crowded, good energy, and before I knew it closing time was upon us. Since it was a live set, Shazam had some trouble catching tracks but I was glad to get three of my favorites for the playlist:
Wow! Almost lost for words after last Saturday’s Kowli & Midnight Project presents Eddie C and Joe Claussell in Baltimore! Definitely up there amongst the best parties I’ve been to in recent memory. Everyone was on form, and the vibes were thick. Things got off to a great start with Hot Coffee and Joe L going back to back, starting things off with just the right vibe and providing the perfect lead in to Eddie C‘s set, which really took things to the next level. By the time Joe Claussell took over for his epic six hour set, the place was really jumping, and boy did Joe take us places with a spiritual journey through house, techno, funk, soul, disco and beyond. As always, the crowd was on point, dancing as one until sunrise. House legend Ron Trent even showed up at one point, coming tantalizingly close to joining Joe behind the decks. Upstairs in the second room, Jus Nowhere & DJ Nav brought the garage heat, making it real hard to decide between rooms. An amazing night that I won’t soon forget. Kudos to Kowli & Midnight Project for making it all happen! On Sunday I had the honor of warming up the floor for Detroit’s Ob Ignitt for Sundays Rooftop at Eighteenth Street Lounge. It was great to see so many familiar faces from Midnight Project closing out their Sunday with us at ESL, the music was on point all night. Here’s the recording of my set from Sundays Rooftop, the latest edition of the DC House Grooves Meet the Locals Podcast: an all vinyl two hour journey, heavily inspired by my Midnight Project experience, featuring tracks from the likes of Crackazat, Lord of the Isles, Blake Baxter, Sub-Culture featuring Marcus, Lil Louis, DJ Wild, Mateo & Matos, Romanthony, Janeret, DJ Aakmael, Oshana, Glenn Underground, Ion Ludwig,Terrence Parker and more.
OK, looking ahead to next weekend, on May 6, Prescription and Sticky Fingers Collection present Be What You Feel with Youandewan, Fred Everything & Reggie Dokes, with support from residents Team Zapata and HOT COFFEE at a secret warehouse location. DC House Grooves has a pair of tickets to give away to one lucky winner. Just click through and fill out the form below for a chance to win. Please make sure you enter your real name and a valid email address. We’ll need your email to let you know you’ve won, and you’ll need to show your ID to claim your prize. We’ll pick the lucky winner at 5pm on the day of the event.
Next weekend also sees the first Soundwaves Boat Party of the season, with Jubilee & Taiga at the controls as you cruise down the Potomac with a likeminded crowd of heads. Early bird tickets sold out within hours of the party being announced, so I recommend you move fast to grab $20 first release tix while you still can.
Moving on to this weekend, and yet again Thursday through Sunday are packed with goodness. The big news for this weekend is this year’s first edition of ROAM x TNX with DJ Lisa Frank, Chris Nitti, Tommy Cornelis, Bil Todd & Baronhawk. Proper afternoon vibes at an expertly curated location; the perfect way to spend a spring Saturday afternoon! Advanced tickets are available on RA for $15, more on the door.
The other big news this weekend is the Sunday Love: LLS Fundraiser at Flash on Sunday, featuring local heavyweights Juan Zapata, Chris Nitti, Rosenberg & Heather Femia. The event is free, but for a donation of $20 or more you will receive a drink ticket, Also, a donation of the bar proceeds with be donated to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. A great way to have a good time while also raising money for a great cause. If you’d like to make an additional donation for LLS, you can do so here: www.sherthelove.com. Kudos to everyone involved for organized such a great event for a worthy cause.
Here are the full listings for this weekend Thursday through Sunday, including all my DC House Grooves Top Picks. Every one a winner! Have an amazing time on the dance floor, and if you can’t be good, be careful. See you back here, same time, same place next week details of all the best underground house and electronic music events in and around DC next weekend.
Thursday April 27
NightFlight 1 Year Anniversary Party with Oamr, DJ Heather Femia, Zamkov and Wade Hammes at Cafe Saint Ex
Deep Tech Brunch continues to evolve: this month, they adjusted the sound system, covered the windows to create a clubbier atmosphere, and invited DC Creators to offer body painting. If you haven’t been to Old Engine 12 yet, it’s a restaurant in a converted firehouse on North Capitol. The upstairs space is lovely, roomy, and has both plenty of dance floor and plenty of seating. Deep Tech Brunch runs all afternoon and into the evening, but not too late for those of us who have to work on Monday morning.
I arrived in time for the headliner, Nick Jannite, who laid down an interesting mix of tracks with a sultry groove. That kept the dance floor moving as the beat gradually grew heavier. DJ Swink took over and kept the pace up. Some body paint began to show up on the dance floor and a round of free shots came through as well. The dancers began to thin out as they went in search of dinner — their loss, since Pershan was next up to keep things rolling. I heard both Pershan and Swink at the USB party at Flash a few weeks ago and they both know their business. Our party host Mr. Wright ended the evening on a strong note.
Look for this monthly Brunch on Sundays through the summer — it’s your air-conditioned, sunburn-free alternative to the usual rooftop parties!