The bass was impressive, so I was having trouble hearing what the Resolute staff member was saying. I had asked how much the price at the door was again, as I didn’t believe I’d heard it correctly the first time. There was no VIP at this event and I’d not gotten wind of it until right before, so I didn’t have time to get advance tickets (mandatory for the budget-conscious partier). He repeated himself, and I realized that yes, I was waiting on a line to eventually hand someone $40+ to stand in a room. A big room, with a huge skylight, and 3 stories of exposed brick, a room with nice speakers and bar, but still just a room. I had plenty of time to let this sink in, as the line didn’t really maintain any pretense of moving.
With the line soon poking out the door like nakedness in ill-fitting bathing clothes, I made it to the front, saw a somewhat maudlin door-girl casually request two weeks of metrocard rides, and haphazardly apply my wrist-band. The inertia of being away from the packed rectangle of stasis kicked on and I swung over to the token-based bar for a stiff drink. Or, a token, such that I could go wait on another line for said stiff drink. The “bread line” construct drifted through my mind as I meandered from the front of one line to the back of another, twice.
Modelo in hand, I parked myself in a corner out of the way of the older, polite but packed crowd. The space was toying with new and creative definitions of the word “capacity,” and while the bartenders and other staff were earnest and dedicated, there was only so much motivation could do. When you’ve been throwing parties for longer than Obama has been in office, you tend to generate a decently sized following, especially if the music is some of the most competently curated deep, euro and minimal techno on this side of the pond. People had been excited for event for weeks, if not months. And Resolute did not disappoint.
I had always had an inkling that the techno & minimal techno scene had never gone away in Gotham, but I wasn’t in the know as to where, when or how for quite some time. Basic NYC does a great job of bringing in talent from elsewhere, but since I’d spent some time living in Baltimore in the early oughts, I lost connection with the local crowd. Francis Harris, the DJ that was spinning by the time I got my drink and into a place of (relative comfort) in the space, has managed to keep that minimal yet very danceable sound alive for years in Brooklyn. Resolute is dedicated to putting the spotlight on local talent and tonight was no exception. The DJs I’d missed were also local. Connie & her live band Jaded Lover hailed from Queens, and Lauren Ritter is another Brooklyn stalwart in the techno scene. I would’ve been able to speak more to their performances, but, again, the line.
Francis Harris’ punk-flavored parentage was clearly evident as his set began to take shape after 1:30 AM. The funky but dark, techno but punk, flavorful but minimal beat that the warehouse was throbbing with gave the attendees a very pleasurable distraction from the packed dance floor and the odyssey required for drink purchase. My friend arrived and we stumbled into some others he knew, so we claimed ownership of a small patch of floor space, grooving to the beat and marveling at the HD projection work that filled the 3 story wall behind the DJ booth. Fluid textures, amazing color changes and a seamless through beautiful images and animations. I’ve seen varying levels of competence when it comes to projection work, but I have to say, this definitely stood a head and shoulders above anything I’ve ever seen, including the stuff that was done at Ultra Music Festival, Electric Zoo and Sensation.
After being lost in the music, the pretty lights and the third (fourth?) Modelo Especiale, The Martinez Brothers took the decks, and when I saw them in the room before they got up there, I was kind of stunned they let under-21s into the space. The duo, 18 & 21 years old, hail from the Bronx and have been racking up gigs at some of the best venues in NYC. When Josh Wink, Dubfire and a dozen other Techno institutions are playing your tracks and having you open for them while half of your group can’t legally drink/enter the spaces you’re playing at, you’re doing something right. And the crowd agreed.
The space rocked hard as The Martinez Brothers were going at full speed by 4 AM. The space was still packed, but people had consumed enough drink to not care anymore. People remarked about how much they were enjoying the old school, dirty, gritty deep vibes from the space and the speakers. Which, I think speaks even more highly of the headliners, as they were teething when some of the parties that the attendees were reminiscing about occurred. The event was to continue for probably 4-5 hours more, but these old bones were getting cold so my companion and I headed out soon after the Martinez Brothers settled in for a long night of phat beats, chill people and the art/projection work that reminded us just how long Resolute has been working to be the last name in Techno here in Gotham City. Just sell a couple fewer tickets next time guys.
This is Terry Gotham, see you on the dance floor.