Mayhem At The Zoo

For some particular reason I had avoided making the trip to what was once a fully functioning zoo for the infamous Zoo Project in all the years I had been visiting the White Isle. However this summer it was firmly on the list and I am delighted to say it was a resounding HIT!

Situated on the grounds of Gala Night Park in an old abandoned in the hills of Benimussa, Ibiza the party has steadily grown in momentum over the past few years offering the islands crowds an entirely different experience to anything else available. This is a more fun side to Ibiza, nobody is taking themselves too seriously and enjoying yourself is the end goal, as the sign says ‘In this House, we laugh a lot, we get silly, we show respect, we love hugs, we feed the djs, we are family! The paint, the performers and the atmosphere all lend themselves to a hell of a party and this reviewer got the feeling that some of the original fun of Ibiza has been brought back with this adventurous party.

One of the most interesting aspects of the Zoo Project has been the effortless blend of underground talent with more well known names to create a diverse melting pot of music that is unrivalled in Ibiza. The careful selection of underground talents also makes the Zoo the perfect place to spot the up and coming performers who may be moving on to bigger things in the future. For those who love to constantly claim to their friends that they ‘knew about DJ Wizzles before anyone else’ this is a definite boon.

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On the evening in question we were greeted by one of the tastiest lineups of the season which included George Fitzgerald, Dana Ruh, A Guy Called Gerald and Federico Grazzini as well as a host of well respected talent. Our earbuds were buzzing from the word go as we enjoyed a stellar set from the legend that is A Guy Called Gerald and the eclectic grooves of Berlin based Dana Ruh. The main events were about to unfold however as we were treated to a pair of very special sets from George Fitz and in the seal pit, Zoo favourite Federico Grazzini. Mr Fitzgerald was on point with his bouncy tribal tinged house satisfying the masses at the main outdoor stage. Running through a number of well selected tech numbers there was an undeniable buzz in the air as the animals of the zoo came to life. Tracks like Ben Teufels tech release Gran Cassa and the thumping Guestlist from JMP, DJ Freespirit and DJ Tim fueled an already buzzing crowd and lifted them to an almost hedonistic level.

It was then time for a move back to the seal pit to see the ever impressive Federico Grazzini. The Italian spinner is well ensconced as a resident of the zoo and knows exactly how to operate surrounded by the madness of animal dancers, swimmers and general mayhem makers. His careful blend of house and techno ensures the crowd are always at peak level as they surround the seal pit. The madness reached its peak with Federico dropping his very own ‘The Next Level’ to devastating effect with a few short minutes to go till close of business. From there the only way was up and he closed the night out with a little Donna Summer as everyone made their way back to their respective homes (or on to greater conquests) in empowered form. For When We Dip it was confirmed, Zoo project is an unmissable part of Ibiza which needs to be experienced before you can say you’ve seen all the hotspots of Ibiza. WWD recommended!

P.S Make sure to get the paint! You won’t regret it.

Diynamic Hit The Spot At Cova Santa

There was something incredibly alluring about the prospective of an open air party hosted by the crew from Diynamic. For starters their open brand of house & techno lends itself perfectly to the wide expanse of the great outdoors. They’re also renowned for their party throwing abilities (think Sankeys the last two summers before this and numerously well received label showcases) and finally they posses one of the hottest talents in dance music as their fearless leader in Solomun. So its fair to say we didn’t need much of an arm twist to get us up that hill to the delightfully placed Cova Santa venue which is in the hands of the Amnesia owners at the moment.

It was a rather different question altogether though as to whether the party could live up to its undeniable promise. So with bated breath we made the journey from San Antonio on a balmy Thursday evening. WWD favourites NTFO were first up to the plate and they duly delivered. Showcasing that punchy house sound which has made them a favourite with Diynamic’s loyal followers, they rocked through a succession of their own tracks while also throwing in some subtle groovers for those who had arrived early. By the time they stepped to the side there was a small buzz growing on the mountain but it was undoubtedly H.O.S.H who made the moves to set the place ablaze.

The ‘Captain’ as he is fondly known is enjoying a summer to remember in Ibiza and farther afield thanks to some stellar productions this year and a boatparty which justifies his moniker and has been going down very well. He stepped things up a level with the likes of Captain and Solomun collaboration Sonnenbrand while also throwing in one or two ID’s which sounded suspiciously like Adriatique. Although it was just approaching the hour of 8, you sensed the party was about to take off before a much needed respite was provided by the incredibly talented Stimming who’s live set brought a different dimension to proceedings, cooling things off slightly after the uptempo efforts of H.O.S.H while introducing some more melodic elements. Towards the end of his set the Hamburg native raised the tempo with a few tech groovers to lift the mood and leave things perfectly placed for what was to follow.

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When the time came for the final showcase the attendance had increased considerably as had the tempo, everybody properly prepped for the double act of Solomun b2b Adriatique. Upping things with crowd favourites like the Manuel Tur remix of Dance, Release and Adriatique’s Rolling Stone the pair intertwined beautifully and it was clear a real party was in swing. Later as the crowd favourites rang out accross the ibizan hills it was clear that this had been an inspired move from the Diynamic boys and one that adds to their considerable reputation on the island. Track of the night might just have been the new one from Stan Ritch – World Gate on Sintope Digital which we covered earlier in the week. The sound typyefies that Diynamic groove and there is a magical build which heightens the desire to loose your shit.

If you want a taste of Ibiza that is utterly different to what else is on offer than this is the one for you. WWD recommended.

WWD Podcast 007 – Gavin Francis

For this week’s podcast it is our pleasure to bring you the musings of the talented Irishman that is Gavin Francis. Having earned a reputation as a dedicated dj and clever producer the Dublin is someone we have been striving to lock down for a special When We Dip mix. The budding talent relocated to Berlin recently where he has stepped up his efforts in the studio and polished his notable sound. The mix is a blend of the deep organic sounds with techy drums giving it a uniqueness which we 100% approve of. It also features once of Gavin’s own productions, a sublime remix of the Nina Simone classic ‘Strange Fruit’ which is sure to cause a stir this summer and beyond.

We caught up with Gavin recently to discuss all things Berlin and find out how things are progressing for him.

Gavin Francis – When We Dip 007 by When We Dip on Mixcloud

1) New name, new home, new departure. It’s been a big few months. Talk us through the switch to a new moniker in Gavin Francis and of course the big decision to move to Berlin. How has everything been going? Why Berlin, apart from some of the more obvious reasons?

Well my middle name is Francis, taken after my late Grandad. His name was Francis Gavin. Iv always wanted to change my name to something different for anything associated with music. So once It came into my head to change my second name to Francis it really appealed to me. I think it’s a nice change. Everything in Berlin has been going pretty well, it’s been an amazing summer so far. Full of meeting new people, spending time with a lot of friends and working on some new music. Berlin really has so much to offer, it’s a creative hub full of inspiration everywhere you look. It’s hard not to fall in love with the city. Once we came here in February for a weekend we all knew straight away that we needed to live here for a few months and see what we can take from it.

2) How have you adjusted so far, has it been easy to build a community for yourself? Are you in touch with any other irish producers over there?

It took me a few weeks to adjust to the city living over here, especially because we were struggling to find an apartment for the first 2 weeks. But once we found a nice place to live then we could relax and really start to explore Berlin and what it has to offer. At the moment I’m living with 3 of my friends, Mitzi, Conor Hanson & Breen. All of whom have been working on some amazing tracks over the last few months. Also Iv been in touch with the Dublin duo Terrierz, they’re making some beautiful deep electronic music at the moment and they have a new EP just about to be released on the Irish label called Major Problems.

3) Has the nightlife impacted on you? We imagine its not hard to stumble across some pretty inspirational moments on a regular basis in a city that seems to breathe dance music.

The nightlife over here has definitely had an impact on my music at the moment. Seeing artists play 4-10 hour sets every weekend really shows how high the standard of DJ’ing is over here. It’s a huge inspiration. I saw Rodhad play a 10.5 hour set a few weeks ago in Berghain.. that was crazy.

4) Your productions have certainly taken a step up in recent months. What’s your setup over there, is it a full time occupation now?

Thanks I appreciate that. Yeah it has been full time for the last few months, usually I work on music everyday that I can for 4-8 hours. I think thats important, if you really want to keep progressing and see an improvement in your productions to then you need to be working full time making music. My setup at the moment is simple enough, I’m using Logic as my DAW. Then I have a Maschine MKII, a Korg Volca Keys & Bass and a midi keyboard. I’m planning on investing in more analog gear once I return back to dublin.

5) Last month we were treated to the subtle groover that was Sansula My Love, what was the thinking behind the track and what was the reaction like to it?

Well I got the Sansula as a gift for my birthday this year. I always loved the sound that it makes from the first time I heard it being played. It has such a nice dreamy tone. So once I had it, I just set up my recording equipment at my home studio and I basically jammed over a click track a few times. Then once I chose which melodies I was happy to use I just built a groove around that. Iv gotten some pretty nice feedback from it so I’m happy with how it was received.

6) A little treat for our readers comes in the form of your new remix of Nina Simone which is part of your podcast. How do you go about remixing a legend like that and a difficult song in Strange Fruit (we love the track by the way!).

Thanks, glad you like it. I really love the original track by Nina, It’s so beautiful and powerful. My first thought was actually just to sample the piano, but once I was getting into it I decided to keep some of the vocals in because they worked pretty nicely. I just wanted to make something with a deep & techy vibe with some nice melodies. I’m happy with the result & feedback iv been getting of people.

7) Talk us through the mix you’ve sent us, we were impressed by the consistency and track selection, how do you go about putting together your mixes?

For this podcast the track selection is definitely influenced from the music that has been inspiring me while living in Berlin.. I wanted to capture what musical inspirations & sounds that took hold of me this summer. Hopefully I did it some justice!

8) Are the artists included in the mix some of those you are looking up to? Are you still in touch with anyone from your time in Ibiza?

Some artists in the mix like Efdemin & Makam would be people who I have been listening to a lot of. But apart from that it’s mostly just made up of tracks & sounds that I’m really into at the moment. I have been in touch with a few friends on Ibiza this year.. It seems just as crazy as ever. But unfortunately I won’t be able to make a visit there this summer. Maybe next year!

9) A parting question, what does the future hold? Will we see you strutting your stuff in Berghain anytime soon ?

Who knows what the future holds! At the moment I’m just focusing on the present and getting my music to where I want it be.. Then we will see what the future has in store!

Thanks guys.

Cocoon at Amnesia 18.08.14 [Review]

This time last week we were preparing ourselves for the mother of all lineups at Amnesia Ibiza. Every Monday throughout the season Sven Vath hosts his Cocoon parties with substantial and stellar lineups. Last week however, week 12, it was something special. It was the invitation extended to Richie Hawtin who joins Papa Sven on that infamous terrace once a year. As if that wasn’t enough, the main room was to be manned by Drumcode chief Adam Beyer and the masterful Mathias 10509545_10152604126021041_3593512024157662623_nKaden. So yes, a very big lineup indeed!

We arrived around 3am, relatively late considering Papa Sven was opening, but that being said there was still a good 6 hours of life left in the party (and what a party it was). Although we’re big fans of the Kaden back catalog who loved his 2014 Fin release on Watergate, and had heard great things about his early season appearances at Cocoon, we made a bold call and sacrificed catching his last hour for the sake of Sven (We’ve since heard Mathias went for it big time!).

We stood bang center on top of the terrace’s first podium, prime position to watch Sven boss that terrace like a duck takes to water. Effortlessly in control. In his element. With that system punching loud and crisp as ever, the tunes were only delightful. Not too hard, not too soft and plenty of melodies. Exactly what the doctor ordered. It was about 4am when Sven took things up a notch as he waved a record in the air and gave the Dj Koze remix of Moderat’s ‘Bad Kingdom’ a spin. To say it was well received would be an understatement! Sven had his arms outstretched and was joining the throngs of people in dance. What ensued was about 30 mins of the highest aural pleasure before he wound it down for Mr. Hawtin do his thing.

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At this stage the terrace was packed to the rafters, the atmosphere electric and after a delayed changeover the anticipation was rife. Hawtin got his techy touch rolling and having started out noticeable harder than Sven had finished, he gradually progressed further, layering more tracks into the set up and adding those drum patterns he loves to build and tease us with. He had the place bouncing and there was definitely a sense of unity among the crowd, the element often missing in so many clubs, not Amnesia.

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After an hour or so of Hawtin the ti10603505_10152606266176041_7535719064899909684_nme had come to check out the savage swede Adam Beyer. The Drumcode boss had been on our hit list for sometime so there is literally no better place to have crossed him off than the main room in Amnesia, the loudest room on earth! Setting up camp at the the back of the room we heard the distinct sound of Jel Ford’s ‘Grand Union’ being mixed in. No better track to get a man (or woman!) in the mood for techno. The track opens Drumcode’s ‘A Sides Vol II Part 2′ compilation and it’s a groovy techno beast. If you can’t dance to it, there’s no other way of putting it than there’s actually something wrong with you! Notch after notch Beyer went and he was destroying that main room bit by bit with the sultry sound of Drumcode.

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We couldn’t leave without another trip out to the terrace. With the dancers taking to their podiums every half hour and the production in full flow, it really was a sight to behold. The Co2 blasts were welcomed by all as the foot stomping took it’s toll. But then every so often an absolute monster of a tune would add even more energy into the crowd.  None more aptly chosen by Hawtin than Recondite’s ‘Fiery’. A track of mammoth proportions which to no surprise, sent the crowd into euphoria. Epic scenes. As the light filtered through the skylights, it was our queue to head for the hills (soft, we know!). But there was a lot of life left in that party, a lot. Even time for Superman to make an appearance!

And hey, maybe Richie threw a CDJ into the crowd again this year when he eventually wrapped things up at 9.30..

We say, roll on next year’s instalment with Richie and long live Cocoon!

Kobhi returns with ‘We Are One’

We brought you a quality Inner City rework from this man a few short months ago and tipped him for a big 2014. Well, the follow-up has arrived and it’s safe to say he’s well on course. Making his debut on new UK label Subterraneo Records (also home to DJ PP & Peter Brown), Kobhi has staked his claim in the domain that is deep tech with another groovy beast in the form of ‘We Are One’.

You’ll find the signature hats and melodic stabs present & correct alongside a thumping kick, which drives the track forward. It’s a genuine bopper. In addition, the production quality is as impressive as ever with great depth to the tune.

US boys Martin Accorsi & Brett Sylvia have been brought in to look after the remix, taking things a little deeper with wobbling bassline and a fresh drum pattern. A very nice take on the track, it must be said.

Follow Kobhi : Facebook // Soundcloud