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Swedish techno icon Adam Beyer makes Pacha NYC debut (event review)

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It’s hard to believe that it took Pacha NYC this long to bring the Swedish techno icon Adam Beyer to their storied dancing facility. For almost two decades, the man has been pioneering a relentless spree of banging tech house and techno, using his Drumcode label as the driving force behind his quest to showcase the works of legends and rising stars alike. Last Saturday he graced the decks of the West 46th street location with a marathon set that lasted into the early hours of the morning. Read past the break to hear how it all went down.

On a night like Adam Beyer’s headlining debut, the fans and the DJ share the same mentality. I know first hand what it’s like to be a fan eagerly awaiting the booking of Beyer’s caliber, but can only imagine the anticipation of being a DJ playing the fabled venue. New York is a dance music stronghold, and the DJs that come to play here know what to expect out of the usually savvy crowd. I arrived a little past 1:00 a.m. to an appropriate warm up set and forbearingly awaited the Drumcode chief to get down to business. At 2:00 a.m. the six-hour marathon began, and from first bar to last, Beyer held nothing back.

As is the case at most techno shows, identifying tracks was no easy feat. But given Beyer’s competence in staying relevant through the oversaturated electronic music world, some tracks were distinguishable enough to know. His collaboration with Ida Engberg on “Lovecraft” was an easy crowd pleaser, and Alan Fitzpatrick’s “Skeksis” was a straightforward peak-time banger. At around 5:00 a.m., dreamier progressive techno like Gary Beck’s “I Read About You” reared its head and brought the riled crowd to order.

Adam Beyer & Ida Engberg – Lovecraft (Original Mix)

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Alan Fitzpatrick – Skeksis (Original Mix)

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Gary Beck – I Read About You (Original Mix)

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From his storybook podcasts to esteemed live sets, I expected a certain night of music from Beyer. My expectations were both met, and then some. With five to six hours on his hands, he tested the boundaries and ranged from the softer and harder pastures of his legendary song catalogue. His mentality has always been producing and releasing music that fit the mold of his DJ sets. It’s especially apparent with his label, because every Drumcode release is a bonafide hit. His philosophies were depicted in a pristine way — playing the perfect composition of tech music to an enthusiastic and committed crowd. Other late-night tracks that defined the entirety of his set were Goran Geto’s “Rezonator,” and Sante’s remix to Ramon Tapia’s “411.”

Goran Geto – Rezonator (Original Mix)

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Ramon Tapia – 411 (Sante Remix)

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The Bottom Line

Beyer seasoned his set with hard-hitting techno, bouncy tech house, and progressive cuts, making up a veritable dance music showcase for the Pacha crowd. The veteran DJ worked flawlessly around a minor hiccup or two, having to deal with what we suspected to be either a corrupted file on his USB or a faulty CDJ. It was great to see a DJ navigate effortlessly from track to track, making mistakes seem like they were purposeful. With the rising interest of tech-oriented dance music in New York and all around America, we hope to see more quality bookings like this one. If you’re craving an additional techno fix, Nicole Moudaber and Alan Fitzpatrick are at Pacha tonight and will most definatly be embarking on a marathon of their own. Nicole and Alan both have Drumcode releases under their belts, so we’re guessing the night ends up just as promising.

Photo Credit: Yulia Skya

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