2010: shows of the year
We could subtitle this one: “oh god, Berlin”, really.
Sub:stance Two Year, Berghain / Panorama.
Did you see that lineup? No, look again. Did you see that lineup? Appleblim might be my favorite DJ of the last two years, Mount Kimbie have a boring live show but make beautiful music, Mala killed it, and Monolake played jacking, jerking metallic techdubstepsocano on two laptops in six point surround on Berghain’s immaculate soundsystem, followed by Scuba himself bringing the depth…but by then I was upstairs sweating it out to the end MJ Cole’s perfectly shameless set, which closed with my first experience of the Panorama Bar curtains. An amazing night.
James Holden & Margot, Watergate
I must big up mr. Hrdvsion for getting me into this shuffletech freakout. Margot did their massive, massive live thing, then Jimmy got on the decks for three hours and blew my mind inside and out using a prototype of the Traktor controller he’s been working on. The important lesson to learn from Holden is restraint: you don’t have to kill it all the time, especially not from 0400 to 0700.
Nick Hoeppner, Dan Wang, DJ Harvey, Panorama Bar
And then this was the day I went to bed, woke up and walked through Treptow, then went to Panorama at 0900. Caught the last 15 minutes of Alex Under’s neotrance set, and then got lost in the amazingly varied deepness of Nick Hoeppner, who played maybe the best single DJ set of the year, laughed and boogied at Dan Wang’s old disco, and stood and nodded for an hour and a quarter of DJ Harvey’s long-term planning. Then I left at 1515 and went to flea markets for the rest of afternoon. Oh, Berlin.
Honorable mentions to the Wagon Repair record release birthday party on a train, Hybrid Live in Budapest, and countless nights at Badeschiff, Der Visionaere, Farbfernseher, and Kleinereise. (Special bonus mention to the mojitos at Kleinereise, to the Irish girl who I accidentially offended, and to Mano, Mark, Dara, and Paul for being wonderful to me in general.)