Liquified pres. Luke Fair 06.25.2005
by Parker Stephens
As I strolled down Crescent Avenue, having parked farther away than normal for sake of construction, I noticed something different, or rather missing, in the air that normally hangs around these streets on Saturday night. It was unusually quiet, I had assumed that Pride weekend would have added an extra ingredient to the usually bustling and boisterous area. On the contrary, perhaps due to Wired in Athens or the construction blocking 14th St. and Crescent Ave the club district had a lingering stillness.
I entered Eleven50 around 10pm hoping I would arrive early enough to catch all of DJ Numinous' set. However, after walking up the steps into the club I was quickly herded into Eden to be detained until the inside area was fit to dance in. As I attempted a peek into the club's main area I noticed Numinous had already began playing and I was struck by the absurdity of the scene: me, a dance-hungry patron being kept at bay from a superb dj playing to a more than accommodating (but completely empty) dance floor, hmm. Slightly frustrated, I sauntered over to Eden's bar and helped myself to a drink. The weather was nice and the drink strong, so for the time I just allowed Kevin O to provide the soundtrack for my somewhat buzzed people watching.
When the main area was finally opened (about 11pm) the Eden populace begin to slowly drift into the club, most to the bar, but some, slowly but surely, to the dance floor. Now completely audible, I was thoroughly enjoying DJ Numinous' set. The music was perfect for stirring the aural appetite. Joakim's "Come into my Kitchen" had me dancing early in the night and helped some of the more sluggish get to the dance floor. A remix of D2 and Dan Diamond's "Therapy" also helped the energy rise; lyrics from the track would echo in my mind throughout the night..."not going for the fire that's comin' out of the walls...".
I had hoped that Luke Fair's set would fall in line with Numinous' opener A longer version of his opening set for Digweed two months ago would have been perfect. But tonight, perhaps in line with the sparse and fickle crowd in attendance, he played an all out grab bag of tunes that ranged from hard-hitting brushes with techno to atmospheric flourishes of progressive to funky house. The energy in the room started off slow, however, I don't attribute this to Luke, his mixing was on point all night (threatened by a tipsy blonde who almost climbed atop a CDJ to whisper sweet nothings), the club was just lacking people. He was controlling his set like a finicky manual six-speed, some of the shifts were smooth and had me following right along in the genre leap, but others left me confused and motionless; restart your engine. Somewhere around 1:30am the club had finally gathered enough people to give it a hint of Saturday night. The most crowded part of the night was also the funkiest musically and highlighted Luke's musical direction (and many others) as a Dj. This spike in crowd electricity managed to last until around 2:15am, but it quickly and continually subsided after that. Many attendees appeared to be intent on leaving the club before 2:30 and as closing time neared the only ones thinking encore were the few I recognized from early in the evening.
All in all, it was a good night of music. The night's main flaw was its lack of moving bodies, which Wired and Pride activities no doubt gobbled up. Luke's spectrum of musical genre seemed fair (get it?!) due to the number of people in attendance. Eleven50 needs make sure they have their dance area opened earlier, Djs like Numinous are too talented to play to empty rooms.
Luke Fair is still adjusting himself to the role of international headliner, but he is no doubt part of a new generation of DJ superstars. Miles away from Canada, where people still try and correct my spelling of Guvernment, I did not expect Luke's reception to be anymore enthusiastic than it was. But, it won't be long before the good word spreads South. Along with Dean Coleman, Desyn Masiello and Steve Porter, Luke Fair is one of the young and crowd-conscious purveyors of funky and progressive house destined to take the dance music world by storm.
Luke Fair - Original Series OS.0_3
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