Digital Society May 2009: Reviewed
Reported by Adam Symbiosis
Submitted 20-05-09 16:46
With a continuing string of successful parties and collaborations, Leeds’ own Digital Society have really made their mark on the clubbing map. Armed with that map - marked with a big red X of course - HarderFaster Editor Adam Symbiosis rounded up a crew and set off on a mission to check out the MyHouse dancefloor.
The main room dancefloor
It’s been well over a year since my last foray up the M1 to top trance night Digital Society. Since then they’ve brought more class DJs to Leeds then you’ve probably had hot dinners, all while getting their residents known on the scene and producing albums and podcasts for their dedicated followers to lap up. It was high time we got ourselves back, so after a quick foray into London to check out the launch party for Paul van Dyk’s Volume, we filled up the car and got on the road.
The line up was looking mighty tasty with the presence of Solarstone, Alex MORPH (watch out for an interview coming soon) vs Woody van Eyden, Jon O’Bir and Greg Downey just in the main room and so on the way up we listened to Solarstone’s awesome Electronic Architecture album to get us in the mood. Just as well really as with such a stellar line up that had to be fitted in somehow we completely missed Solarstone’s early set!
Woody van Eyden and Alex MORPH
Still making our way into the nicely proportioned main room we caught the opening bars to Alex and Woody’s stand out remix of Tears In The Rain, an amazing track and one that got everyone dancing - me included. With a packed room it was almost a struggle to get through to the back courtyard where the cloakroom was located along with lots of comfortable chairs and a bar, but there was no hard feelings as we pushed our way though – a fantastic atmosphere permeated this crowd, just like last time I came.
Outside people were smoking and talking and while it wasn’t balmy it was certainly dry and just about warm enough to plot for a bit and get sorted. Despite only having been in the club for about 10 minutes I was already having a conversation with a chap about cameras and photography. Who knows just how much music I would be able to listen to if the conversations continued to flow, but then who’d care when there was so many cool people to get along with!
I had to take my co-clubbers on a little tour of the club though before I got into any real in depth blathering, so off we went through the main room with crowd going absolutely crazy to MORPH and Eyden and up we went. MyHouse has four floors, and three dancefloors (the basement being the toilet area). In the central floor, co-promotion Blank! was serving up a slice of minimal tech, but unfortunately for them there was practically nobody in the room and each time I looked in there it was pretty much the same thing. I was surprised by this until we ventured to the top room. Last time I was at DS, the top room had been a completely separate party but, as I was told later, this was now a fully fledged part of the Society – the By Invitation room - where up and coming DJs could come and show if they could produce the goods and by all accounts the next DJs we saw could.
Already gaining a following with his “SWAPcasts” – Swapnil Garg better known as SWAP – was partnering Tom Green and with their very first track – Communication – they let the packed room know there was no reason for resting. After running ourselves ragged for a god knows how long (and this sounds weird even as I write it down) we made our way down to the main floor for a chill out. To think that the third room DJs took and held people away from the main room is a credit to just how good a set SWAP and Green played. Make sure you check them out soon.
Is that you Agent 99?
To add to the crazy nature of the night bizarrely someone had either brought a discoball into the club or it had fallen off the ceiling but as it moved around the room from person to person at some points it was an oversized spangly football; at other points a minted clubbers lunch sack as they hi-ho’ed off to dance all night; someone else then started riding it like a crazy space hopper belonging to Brooklyn Beckham. Earlier on I’d seen someone wandering around the club with a shopping basket, someone else had brought a car windscreen wiper and towards the end of the night I thought I saw Agent 86. Weird maybe doesn’t cover it. Cool does however as people took those everyday items and turned them into objects of fun.
Back to the music though and the mighty crossover track that is Panjoo with its lush piano riff was reverberating around the main room as the lights and lasers picked out the slowly thinning crowd (no doubt many of them upstairs now) but we shared one of those classic clubbing moments as the chaps dropped Armin’s Shivers and the crowd outsung the track! Forget having any DJs, you could have just left us to provide the music – trance karaoke anyone?! With a set that ranged from uplifting to tough and driving MORPH and Eyden showed why they are in such demand and the appreciative crowd showed them they were loving it too.
The Elusive DJs
After a brief hiatus down in the main room we found ourselves upstairs again listening to the Elusive DJs. In a bit of synergy with the forums, I seemed to be fielding a lot of questions on photography. One guy asked me why his flash wasn’t working, another talked about the use of SLRs in general, weird but great none the less.
One thing I found tonight was that despite the heavyweight lineup in the main room, the guys in the top room absolutely rocked it for me and while many people went off to watch Aly & Fila in the main room they missed out on a treat. I couldn’t even start to tell you most of what the Elusive DJs played but their enthusiastic, infectious trance, including a massive remix of You’re Not Alone, was keeping me very entertained, as was some of the conversation with randoms! Ashley Bonsall kept things going admirably with Toca Me and It Ain’t Over but I was already thinking of finally making it downstairs to hear Greg Downey, decisions, decisions.
Hi ho, hi ho, it's off to dance we go!
Decision made and we made a move to hear the Irish master at work. I really enjoy Greg’s work as a producer and as a DJ he didn’t disappoint either playing his remix of Paul van Dyk’s New York City; funny as one of my partners in crime mentioned he played a very PvD style set. Towards the end of his hour he really layered on the effects with sweeps, phasers and delays and really whipped the crowd up into a frenzy.
With heavy legs we listened to a few of Jon O’Bir’s tracks and while I was sad as there was still DS resident Paul Pearson to go with a three hour drive ahead of us it really was time to call it a night. Lucky us then picking up a CD of Paul’s latest podcast to listen to in the car on the way back. A nice touch considering we missed out on hearing him in the club.
This time round I had a great night at Digital Society, as always the conversation was fun, friendly and occasionally quite random - you shouldn’t be afraid to go to this party by yourself as you’ll be welcomed by the clubbers with open arms – but it was the music in the By Invitation room that really made it for me this month. It just goes to show that some of the younger DJs can really give you an exciting, fresh and imaginative sound – something that hasn’t been lost on the DS promoters as they’re upgrading the By Invitation room to the main floor for one party in July. With the June event round the corner and a line up that features the likes of Cosmic Gate, John Askew and Activa, maybe I should start packing my bags now – you should too!
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Photos courtesy of the HarderFaster archive. Not to be reproduced without permission.
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Other Features By Adam Symbiosis:
Godskitchen Xmas Party: Reviewed
The Big Chill: Reviewed
Tiësto at Victoria Park: Reviewed
Lilly Allen: Reviewed
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The views and opinions expressed in this review are strictly those of the author only for which HarderFaster will not be held responsible or liable.
| From: Alan-Banks on 21st May 2009 15:43.22|
yes yes SWAP is a great DJ. Be good to see him enter London soon......
Digital Soceity = Win
From: DSociety on 21st May 2009 20:00.06
Thankyou for a great review!
From: Frani Heyns on 27th May 2009 17:30.00
Digital Society is definitely the best trance party in the UK at the moment! I've been there quite a few times now, and the excellent atmosphere, great DJs and fantastic music make the trip from London to Leeds on a Friday night definitely worth it. Keep them coming guys - we love it!
From: Mat Lock on 30th May 2009 12:15.46
I've always liked the DS parties - crowd, dj's and venue.
London is crap compared to Leeds !!
From: Mat Lock on 30th May 2009 12:17.20
Oh and the cheap hotel about 100m from the club is a god send.
From: *Swap* on 15th Jun 2009 00:04.30
thank you for them wicked comments, really appreciate it, DS is defo a night to be visted, great atmosphere and great music.
Alan - thanks a lot pal, would love to grace the london decks soon :o)