Richie Hawtin and Loco Dice are considered to be some of the most prolific and forward-thinking DJs of our time. This fall, they embarked on a North American tour stopping at college campuses to lecture by day, and music venues to DJ by night. The tour’s timing couldn’t be more perfect; with the over-saturation of pop-centric house and electro taking over the club and festival circuits, audiophiles anxious to explore the next chapter of this thriving revolution are finding themselves seeking out the pastures of the next big thing. Read on to see how Hawtin and Dice brought together old school fans and newcomers on the same dance floor at New York’s Webster Hall.
With New York’s lecture portion of the tour canceled due to Hurricane Sandy (we caught DC’s instead), the educating was to be done on the dance floor. First up to bat was Germany’s techno star, Tini. The Desolat queen favors the deeper paths of techno and house, and played a great warm-up comprised of one unidentifiable track after another — but set the stage perfectly for Loco Dice to follow. One of the tracks we made out was Shlomi Aber’s “We Don’t Fit” — offering a telling sign of what her set was like: just enough groove to get Webster Hall going.
Shlomi Aber – We Don’t Fit (Original Mix)
For the second time this year, Richie Hawtin and Loco Dice reunited on the same stage to play the techno music they have been pioneering all around the world. Back in late Spring, when EDC New York was in town, Hawtin hosted his Enter stage with the likes of Loco Dice, Dubfire, the Hot Natured duo, and many more. Their Webster Hall show brought them from a festival environment to the confines of a dark room, where production was on the low end, and music was the main attraction of the night. Shiny lights were unnecessary — the masters of their craft were present, and with the advantage of daylights saving time on our side, an extended night of music was to ensue.
A Made Up Sound – Hang Up (Original Mix)
Loco Dice was delegated warm-up duty, and played to it marvelously. As the head of the prestigious Desolat imprint, he is always a class act to follow and a pleasure to see live. Dropping songs like A Made Up Sound’s “Hang Up” was a proper minimal cut to prime the avid crowd. Hawtin’s headlining spot allowed him to display all his abilities — starting slow and finishing the late night hours with bona fide peak-time tracks. A++’ “Upon You” played to his softer side and the minimal techno bomb that is Ambivalent’s “Snowblind,” was heard towards the later segment of his set when he really kicked things into the next gear.
A++ – Upon You (Original Mix)
Ambivalent – Snowblind (Original Mix)
The Bottom Line
You have to admit, the success of a tour of this magnitude would never have been possible if the movement towards electronic music as a culture and lifestyle in America wasn’t a more widespread thing. At Webster Hall last weekend, there was a clear distinction between newcomers peeking into the underground and veterans there for another night out. This trend will continue to grow and people with a genuine interest in electronic music will continue to seek out its different aspects. In the end, CNTRL’s message is clear: this world is more vast than you think; step back and learn about its roots and where it’s headed. Even an electronic music architect like Richie Hawtin — who has been DJing longer than some of you have been alive — can still continue his legacy of broadening minds and opening horizons, one DJ set at a time.