Last Friday saw Flying Circus officially open its doors for the season, completing Sankeys' seven-piece puzzle of residencies. While the Friday night graveyard slot was never going to make their debut year a walk in the park, the Audiofly boys have arrived armed with a series of enticing summer lineups, not to mention a wealth of promotional experience. However, approaching the venue near enough to 2 AM it was deserted, with little to suggest the club was even open. Stepping inside to the sounds of Carl Craig, the Basement was noticeably underpopulated, with only the immediate dancefloor showing any serious signs of life. Craig, as ever, appeared unfazed, diligently laying down cut after cut of ethereal, rolling grooves.
The crowd seemed older and more European than Sankeys' habitual dwellers, giving off a real sense that those that had made it were here for the right reasons. As Craig closed with his refix of Tom Trago's "Use Me," the audience responded with unfeigned rallies of cries and whistles. Starting later than scheduled in the LAB were dOP, who performed their ardent live show to enthusiastic, if paltry, numbers. Vocalist JAW, though sitting down for large parts of the set, was as charismatic as ever, chain-smoking between James Brown-esque catcalls, while swigging intermittently from a bottle of dark rum. Back in the basement, SIS threw down a live set of idiosyncratic ethnic beats to close, providing the ever-faithful floor with the energy they craved. Despite the poor showing, the tight, close-knit community of attendees lent the party a collective vibe that is rarely experienced on the island. Everyone that was there, was there for the music. Hopefully, word will spread.
As we approach August, typically the business end of the Ibiza season, Circoloco continues to gather momentum, repeatedly collating lineups that surprise as well as satisfy. Monday was no exception, with regulars Shonky, Dyed Soundorom and Seth Troxler rubbing shoulders with the less frequent likes of Dixon, DJ Qu and Mano Le Tough. The latter returned to the Terrace after a noteworthy performance at the opening party, rocking the bustling crowd with tough-talking tracks from Radio Slave ("R&J") and John Tejada ("Mono On Mono"). Crucially, after several ear-shattering weeks, it felt as if the volume had been turned down. This accentuated the crystal-clear thrust of the Terrace system.
Going head-to-head for the early morning peak-time slot were Tale Of Us and Dixon, two of the scene's most in-form acts. Opting for the latter to see how he would take to the Main Room, the Innervisions chief began spiritedly, taking care to keep the transition from Art Department's full-bodied fare as seamless as possible. Once he had the crowd on his terms, Dixon moved markedly deeper, lacing his selections with a darkish quiver. Using Jimmy Edgar's "Strike" to resurface, he saw out his rich 90-minute set with a medley of tougher, more dancefloor selections. With Boddika billed for his debut Circoloco show next Monday, get ready for a slew of jaw-dropping lineups once the island starts to near its sweaty capacity.
2013 marks Zoo Project's seventh year in business, a period which has seen the Ibiza-born enterprise expand from a single Saturday party to a Wednesday event, a three-day UK festival and a record label. When you attend the Zoo Project or its midweek equivalent Channel Zoo, it doesn't take long to see why they've proven such a rip-roaring success. The expansive, adventurous setting of Gala Night offers revellers a unique, colourful alternative to the rest of the island. Via a combination of strong second-tier bookings and sky-high production values, they've captured the essence of island clubbing, placing as much into the experience as into the music.
Due to unforeseen complications, headline act Session Victim remained in the US, unable to join Jimpster at the now-iconic seal pit. As a result, the Freerange boss was allotted an extended three-hour set, aligning his sound with the setting sun. Starting off with the agile brand of deep house that he and his label are famous for, he rapidly moved to duskier terrain, dropping Levon Vincent's serrated "Late Nite Jam" to dramatic effect. Accompanied by not only smoke machines and dancers, but jugglers, pandas, break-dancers and ballerinas, Jimpster found his way back to more ecstatic climes, indulging in his own remix of Osunlade's "Momma's Groove" before signing off with Lone's "Airglow Fires" on R&S.
Solomun takes it to main room during his ongoing residency at Pacha. Joining him on the night was Tensnake, who played live before joining Solomun in a back-to-back.
The main stage lights up at Ushuaia in the late hours of Saturday night. Deetron and Radio Slave played the smaller booth, before Andrea Oliva closed out with a typically spellbinding set.
Philip and Patrick M.A.N.D.Y. crack a smile at their weekly Vista Club residency on Tuesday. The pair were joined by UK duo Jaymo & Andy George, as well as Wankelmut, Nils Hoffmann and Jonas Woehl. The latter trio tag-teamed to close out the night, producing what was said to be have been one of the sets of the season.
Jamie Jones kept things fairly low-key at DC-10 on Wedneday, swapping the previous week's big-hitters for the homegrown trio of Patrick Topping, Luca C and Richy Ahmed.