Dispatches from the Golden Isle
Maybe it was because this time I didn’t have the sounds of Sonar at Night’s Surgeon or Silent Servant still ringing in my ears but this, my second trip to Ibiza this summer, was nothing short of one of the best parties I’ve attended this year. Despite the massive We Love Space @ Space lineup of Claude Von Stroke, 2ManyDjs, James Zabiela and Groove Armada, my personal highlight was found witnessing Steffi. She is a DJ that rarely disappoints, from Sunday mornings in Panorama Bar to intimate Glasgow clubs; even here in Ibiza, the polar opposite to Berlin clubbing, her warmer tech-house take on the Ostgut Ton sound translated nicely to the Red Box room. I never like to deviate too far from the small club vibe and the Red Box provides an atmosphere intimate enough that it is almost possible to forget you are in a massive venue. Following an excellent set by Ryan O’Gorman the biggest crowd reactions came from Steffi’s own productions such as ‘Yours’ which had everyone in the room suitably enthused. The remainder of the evening was spent migrating between the smaller rooms and this remains one of the most perfect things about Space, dancing to different music across many rooms, enjoying the unique vibe in each.
The following night inevitably brought Cocoon @ Amnesia. I really love Amnesia and the larger than life Cocoon productions always seem to fit the venue, with the dancers and the visuals providing a dark backdrop to the signature music of the label. In the main room Nina Kraviz, perhaps better known for her moody and seductive productions than her mixing abilities, was on warming up duty and her track selection was disharmonious, jolting from relentless beat to relentless beat without any of the warming subtlety of her work. Naysayers often dismiss Sven Vath and his rolling empire in the electronic musicscape but his style suits the big-room clubbing environment which is also quintessentially fitting to Amnesia. Unfortunately Kraviz’s opening set the tone for relentless bpms which Vath continued upon and ultimately there was something special lacking from the occasion. Similarly the sounds of Seth Troxler and Loco Dice on the Terrace didn’t vary much from what the main room was offering. Ibiza goers love Cocoon, the brand, the DJs and the music and on my visit in June I was nothing short of blown away by Jamie Jones and Richie Hawtin on a night that reinvigorated my enthusiasm for the Minus label boss. This night, however, was unable to live with my expectations by comparison.
Despite the disappointment there’s something about Ibiza that still gets me every time I visit and the idea of an island that revolves around clubbing is too tempting to resist. It is increasingly the case that you really can find something for everyone here, from small rooms, intimate sets to the big, major rooms, world famous labels to resident DJs, Tiesto to Cassy: it’s all here.