Monday, November 30, 2009

Laurent Garnier with live band & Stereosonic among other things

Weekend is at close here in Sydney with the relatively new festival, Stereosonic, kicking off its nation wide tour.

While many opinions of the festival have already been thrown around(mostly through facebook comments it seems) it was an interesting mix of fairly 'big-sounding/big-name' DJs, think Deadmau5, Fedde Le Grand, as well as big electro DJs, Crookes, with a dash of techno heavy weights thrown in for good measure.

Sneakerpeeps stage, what perhaps was 'techno-central', headlined Umek, alter-ego, Marco Carola and Laurent Garnier's live band gracing the stage along side respected Sydney locals Ben Korbel, Simon Caldwell (check the recent RA podcast) and young guns Mattt and Tomas. While the stage worked well for most of the day with stand-out set from Mr Korbel, near to the end, when Marco Carola and Laurent Gariner started to play, the pull of the more advertised headliners definitely took away quite a few punters from the stage which, was a pity for two acts like these. However in my opinion this was always going happen in a festival that seemed to try and dip its fingers into too many pots at once, and in doing so 'scaring' away perhaps some of the core fans of the two latter artists.

That said, there were still a large amount of fans that came and witnessed the awesomeness that is Laurent Garnier and his live band.

Honestly it is easily one of the most impressive live acts I have ever seen. Effortlessly switching between pulsating industrial techno, to dubstep, jazz-styled drum and bass as well as blues, it was more a true jazz improvisation session mixed in with the stylings and sounds of Laurent Garnier.

His band set-up consists of a Saxophone player, apparently one of the best in the world, Trumpet player, synth keyboardist and a main keyboard and guitar player of which Garnier can be seen as the 'conductor' often coming in and out from behind his mixing desk to direct each member. For example at one pinnacle point in the performance his keyboardist was told to drop some blues after a rather heavy techno song from before. Taking on a blues riff and improvising Laurent comes in after a little bit and tells him to repeat once specific chord, then going over to the saxophone player he brings him in with a similar style directing what he wants with some vocal cues and hand gestures, along with the trumpet and secondary keyboard player. As I said before Garnier is quite like the conductor guiding each member in a way he sees fit. After letting the improvised melody sit for a little while with all members Garnier, out of no where, drops this Jazz-infused drum and bass styled bass and beats to which the watching crowd erupts into a frenzy of hands-in-the-air and dancing action.

I think perhaps the most astounding element is seeing how well true instrumental improvisation goes with live 'techno' or electronic styles and the raw energy that flows from it. And for that matter how well true instruments, or real instruments go with techno. An element that is still seriously lacking. One only has to look at his famous Man with the Red Face in which the lead sax takes the song and perfectly complements the pulsating techno drums, synths and bass.

When Man with the Red Face was finally dropped closer to the end of their performance you could really feel the energy that each band member seems to contribute to the overall product, which for techno and dance music often being a one man affair, is a rare thing. Laurent Garnier and his live band are truly an innovative and original performance that is executed exceptionally well. It has, without a doubt, progressed the definitions of live electronic music performance and set the bar to a completely new level. If you are lucky enough to have the chance to witness it you would be nuts not too!

I'm putting the call out there, Laurent Garnier and his live band should perform in the concert hall of the Sydney Opera House, a world renowned artists for an equally world renowned venue. Please add a comment if you think so too!

Update: I'm trying to secure an interview with the man himself so stay tuned for upcoming article. If you have something you would like to ask him please also forward it to the email.

Laurent Garnier with live band at Matter in London, exact same set up and band members as in Sydney

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Gig Guide (27th-29th)

Gig guide is upon us with this weekends massive Stereosonic hitting town.

Friday sees a raft of local night Sidways with DJ Schwa touching in from Europe as well as House Inspection at the refurbished LadyLux. Saturday sees Nick Curly slam it out in the cave for what will be undoubtedly and great gig as well as Jamie Jones at the civic underground and then again at Spice after...

Remember to send your event info to the address below. Its free and its great promo for local nights.

House Inspection ft. Garry Todd, Alex Caminer, Nic Scali - Lady Lux

HAHA ft. Tim Sweeny - Civic Underground

Sideways ft. Schwa - Bunker Bar - Sideways return with label boss Schwa and locals, Dave Stuart, Combe and Jorden Deck

Void ft. Truth - Phoenix Bar - Syds premier Dubstep night feat. Truth from NZ

System - Club 77 - The Weekly fri techno night continues at Club 77

Stereosonic with Laurent Garnier live with band, Marco Carola, Umek, Alter Ego & many more - Moore Park

Reckless Republic ft. Jamie Jones, Shades of Grey, Murat Kilic & Robbie Lowe
- Civic Underground - Big line-up for what will undoubtedly be a big night!

Off the Beat ft. Simon Caldwell and guests - Melt Bar - Every Sat for deep disco, house and funk

Musik Matters - Favela - Dedicated to the true house sounds of Sydney

Club Club ft. Nick Curly - Chinese Laundry


Spice - Kings Cross Hotel (4am)

The Bunker - From 4:30am Bunker Bar

bSide - Beresford Hotel - The new night hosted by fbi presenter Lorna Clarkson with an eclectic mix of local DJs

Apres @ Tilbury Hotel - Sydney Record Label Future Classic arfternoon sessions

Sunday Sessions ft. Ben Morris, Robbie Lowe, Culbert, and Tim Jirgenson - The Deck, Luna Park - From 3pm an afternoon by the harbour

Final Gig Guide up Thursdays.
Send your event info to

Back! & Will Saul live at Apres, Sydney

So, with a slight blog hiatus over the past few weeks and with work out of the way I have returned with many a article and interview trailing behind...

To kick things off Future Classic have been running their Sunday Afternoon sessions, Apres, here in Sydney for close to 3 years often with internationals guests, and often completely unannounced.

Will Saul is one such example who recently toured Aus launching his latest Balance 15 Compilation. After playing in the Cave at Chinese Laundry the night before Will popped in to play an encore set of chilled deep house, deep-disco and Balearic sounds. A great accompaniment to the Sydney Summer and a set I thought in need of spreading!

Will Saul live at Apres, Tilbury Hotel Sydney

Every week for close to 3 years Future Classic has been hosting a laidback Sunday afternoon event at the Tilbury Hotel in Woolloomooloo, Sydney. A BBQ, friendly bar staff & balcony in the sunshine have set the scene for these under-the-radar sessions with that give our local and international guests the chance to play more diverse sets than they would in the club.

Previous guests have included Brennan Green, Joakim, Mock & Toof, Lovefingers, Aeroplane, Canyons, Jamie Lloyd, Padded Cell, Idjut Boys, Foolish Felix, Todd Terje, Sidwho?, Loin Brothers, Jazzanova, Karsten John, Jimi Polar, Marcus Worgull, The Revenge, Yam Who?, Peret Mako, Arto Mwambé, Move D, Roland Appel, Dave Aju, Trus' Me, Jacques Renault, Will Saul & Woolfy to name a few, along with fc residents Nathan McLay & Chad Gillard.

This Sunday 22nd November we launch the 4th and final installment of our Aprés vinyl series featuring music by Lithuania's Mario Basanov and remixes by Arithmatix!, Downtown party Network, 6th Borough Project & Newfoundland and the final piece of artwork in the series by Gemma Smith, whose spacious geometric abstraction portrays the balearic contents of the music.

Gemma has exhibited in curated and solo exhibitions in Australia and overseas. She was in this years Primavera at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney as well as Contemporary Australia: Optimism, at the Gallery of Modern Art, Queensland Art Gallery, in Brisbane. She is currently doing a residency in Paris.

Come along on Sunday to get a complimentary Aprés sampler with music from the whole series and some exclusives.

Listen to Apres 4 on fc soundcloud page here

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Gig Guide ( 6th-8th)

Its the Gig Guide and this weekend its FULL of stuff. No surprise Steve Bug headlines another Pulse Radio yacht party to usher in the start of summer but if your searching for something more local, then the Shipfaced Boat ft. Matt Rowan and the HoppedScotch DJs party will definitely entice. Both are on Saturday. Both are on the Harbour.

Friday sees the Deep House Project take over the Civic Underground while Sunday sees a new sunday arvo party kick off, Sunday Sessions on the Deck right on Sydney harbour with some of the best DJs in Syd/Aus on offer.

Till next time.

(PS: yes there ARE more articles coming your way. Exam time for us Uni students atm!)

Deep House Project ft. Mike acetate, Telefunken, Trinity & Venuto @ Shurg - Civic Underground - DHP of Tokyo, San Fran and Sydney will be the feature for this Shrug Instalment. Deeeepness

Symmetry ft. Bruno, Drew Waterhouse - Cave (Chinese Laundry)

System ft. Mark Craven - Club 77 - The Weekly fri techno night continues at Club 77

Agwa/Pulse Radio Yacht Club ft. Steve Bug - Starship Sydney - The famous harbour cruise hits town again! This time with Mr Bug at the helm.

Steve Bug (Pulse Radio Afterparty) - LadyLux

Shipfaced ft. Matt Rowan - Harbour Cruise - New blog Hoppedscotch presents their first party with some great locals aboard.

Midi In The City - 202 Broadway - One of the few nights dedicated to live electronica in all forms. Always a treat.

Club Club ft. Boy8 Bit - Chinese Laundry


Spice - Kings Cross Hotel (4am)

The Bunker - From 4:30am Bunker Bar

Bedlam- 202 - From 2pm, a chilled session of new music from a range of established and new locals - FREE

bSide - Beresford Hotel - The new night hosted by fbi presenter Lorna Clarkson

Apres @ Tilbury Hotel - Syd Record Label Future Classic arfternoon sessions

Sunday Sessions ft. Ben Morris, Robbie Lowe, Culbert, and Tim Jirgenson - The Deck, Luna Park - From 3pm an afternoon by the harbour

Final Gig Guide up Thursday.
Send your event info to