I arrived as the rain began to fall on Grand Street. The not quite summer evening tried to bluster against my DanceSafe hoodie as I stood in line for Treetops. This blossom of an event looked healthy enough from the outside, so after being processed through Paper Box security, I grabbed a Tecate and said made my way through the thickening crowd. This was to be a different kind of party. Something with less pressure & pretentiousness. It had the feel of a throwback or anniversary event, even though it was the first of its kind. As I watched friends catch up on things without using Facebook, Pony’s deep house oozed through the main room.
Pony’s achieved the status where it doesn’t actually matter when he’s performing. Opening, closing, not a problem, there will be a dance floor. Even at bewitching hour between 11:45 & 1 AM, when every party in NYC somehow goes from empty to full. The Herald of House kept the crowd grooving, guiding their Friday night. The two room structure worked well, with DirtyDecibels pushing out some compelling dirty house while people still had room to move. After running into some more old friends and giving the dance floors a whirl, the open air space called to me.
The sets worked off each other and you could kind of still hear the main room, so going out to grab a smoke never represented too much of a threat to your groove. I wanted to take a minute to give special kudos to Duane Harriott for his incredible set. Honestly, the side room from 1-3 was going off. I don’t ever hear competent fusion between hip hop, techno & tech house, but he was making it seem effortless. The room got down to it like this was a genre of music they listened to every weekend, like brolectro or top 40. The nuance associated with this sound isn’t basic, to say the least. I spent far too much time bobbing between his & the main room where Christian Martin was reminding everyone why they need to get their dirtybird BBQ tickets. This guy is known the world over for his techy but soulful signature house, and the crowd definitely agreed. The hour was upon us. Mat.Joe in the side room with The ScumFrog laying down main room muscle. I’m not going to get into the technical mastery Scumfrog brought, or how Mat.Joe kept the other room jumping until after last call. That’s something that should be self-evident if you’ve read this far. Hit up their various social medias to review their dopeness if you need a refresher. The skill emanating from both rooms was plain to see and people were hanging around later than you could most places that evening. That’s right, because the L train was busted, The Paper Box was open until 5 just to keep the kids safe until the trains started running again. As I made my way to the door, I gave the room a once over and saw one of the producers doing what the best producers do. Crosschecking, roving, making sure everyone had a great time. We sure did man, can’t wait for the next one. In case you need further proof, check out this video shot by Jane Says Photography. That FOMO kick in yet? This is Terry Gotham, see you on the dance floor.
(Photos care of Jane Says Photography)
(While my Attend feature is still your best place for the events you just can’t miss, I wanted to take a moment to showcase people starting something new. Starting a new party or dropping a new concept on Gotham is always difficult. So, a new column focused on the events taking their first steps. Ladies & Gentlemen, I give you, the New Hotness.)Treetops is good for NYC. In a wholesome, quenching kind of way. The kind of relaxed vibe that these producers are going for is exact opposite of the mega-plumage that litters NYC scene. Run by two savvy luminaries, they’re bringing some whimsy & relaxed appreciation to the dance music scene here in NYC. To that end, they’re bringing a pile of talent, and telling you to wear your comfy shoes. Comfy everything in fact, as it’s about enjoying yourself with cool people & not popping bottlez while Instagramming your clubbe, bro. The Scumfrog has earned a reputation for excellence in the NYC House music community. I think I’ve seen him at 4, maybe 5 different venues? Each time it’s dope. This guy is a master at work, and I’ve listened to sets of his in Brooklyn, Baltimore, and flying over Bratislava. His April mix is a fantastic example of the smooth perfection of The Scumfrog. The dirtybird BBQ is a legend in its own right, and we were blessed to have one last summer. Christian Martin‘s posse showed up properly and the tech house, techno, dirty bass & minimal, almost acid vibe kicked off like you’d expect for a day party in Brooklyn with this level of talent. Listen to that set if you need a little more persuasion. You know the tech house, deep house & techno is serious when there’s talent in from Berlin. They’re bringing Mat.Joe out from Deutcheland to add their soulful stylings to the roster. I’m a big fan of the sound Mat.Joe works in, a fusion of techno & hip hop essentially. There’s a lot of hit or miss work involving progressive & future bass melding with hip hop. This stuff definitely hits the mark. There’s a nice groove to the dance floor that I can’t wait to see when these two take control. PONY, what more can I say about the man. The Caliph of Crushing It is making this thing happen so I have a feeling his set is going to be quite interesting. If you’re a fan of his sets at I Feel or Evolve Thursdays @ Macao, definitely show up and compare. I bet he’ll save a couple of musical inside jokes just for you. I am really digging this progressive tech house & hip hop vibe that Treetops is bringing to Brooklyn and showcasing Duane Harriott is a great choice. Dirty Decibels provides additional deep house related support, with some catchy, butt-shaking that still manages to stay surprisingly synthy at times. Bryan Cosgrove‘s grooves were a touch tough to find, but I found an eclectic set from a couple of years ago that I’m throwing in for free because I love you people.
With visuals by Levitation Theory and a Paper Box location, I think this event has all ticked all the right boxes. #Treetops has wings & you’re gonna want in on the ground floor. Get tickets here and show up on Facebook here. This is going to be a good night, and you’ll see me on the dance floor. Maybe I’ll see you.