If you live in the UK or happening to be traveling through London this weekend and enjoy exceptionally fine music in a stunningly beautiful area – it would appear the fates have smiled upon you.
This Saturday, August 2nd, Eastern Electrics unleashes 30 of the biggest names in electronic music for a one-day festival that is bound to be one of the highlights of the summer. Bringing together over 10,000 fans in front of 7 unique stages, EE continues to grow from its warehouse roots and is now set against the backdrop of Hatfield House – a British country estate “splendidly decorated for entertaining the royal court” just north of London which EE has managed to secure for the plebeians for some daytime debauchery (which is I’m sure is exactly what it’s founders had in mind when they built it).
Some of the big kids coming out to play are Mano Le Tough, Steve Lawler, Art Department, Kerri Chandler, Ellen Allien, Agoria, Daniel Avery, and Derrick Carter to name a few; and since this is a one-day only event (with exceptional scheduling) you’ll be able to see them all without missing a beat. Or many deep, heavy, rolling beats.
Let’s start with Steve Lawler. Or let’s end with Steve Lawler. In fact, do we even need to mention anything else besides his name? Steve has been in the game for 18 years now and is one of the masters of the his craft, performing with ridiculous amounts of energy each time he takes the stage. He never has to prove anything, having the sense to drop the mood and tempo of his music without letting that energy – both his and that of the crowd – do the same. Steve will be holding down the fort after Maxxi Sondsystem at the main stage at 1pm.
Ireland’s Niall Mannion aka Mano Le Tough will be flying straight from Barcelona’s HYTE after what is sure to be one hell of warm-up set with Tale Of Us. Mano is known amongst his peers for his ability to choreograph a set that is hard to label as one particular style of music – melodic and energetic at times, atmospheric and flowing at others. Easiest statement to make here is that Mano Le Tough will be one you won’t want to miss. Catch him at 2pm at the Switchyard, an outdoor area encompassed by old, forgotten shipping containers – doesn’t particularly sound like posh British estate to me, but is anyone really complaining?
After you’ve wandered from stage to stage checking out the other epic setups the organizers have put together, do make sure to find your way back to the main stage for the latest instalment of the renowned Canadian duo Art Department. Since coming together in 2009, Kenny Glasgow and Johnny White have been storming the deep-techno scene by force and are exceptional at putting together a very complete set from start to finish. After bearing witness to them and their rolling beat of destruction a few times at Digital Dreams in Toronto, let me be the one to say this: be there at 6, and don’t you dare budge.
Taking us home for the night will be Derrick Carter, a true pioneer of the Chicago house scene with a beat that will punch you right in the face if you aren’t paying attention. He may be mixing 80’s nu-disco vibes or pushing out floor-trembling bass notes, but one thing is guaranteed – this guy will get you going. When the Spanish newspaper El Pais caught up with Derrick last week and asked him where he thought the future of electronic music was going, he responded “I am a DJ not a prophet. I don't really spot trends or worry about the future. I do a serious "right now" and try to make the most of every moment.” That, ladies and gentleman, are wise words from the man who is here to make your night completely unforgettable. Let him.
Not to be out done are Waifs and Strays, some local talent who over the course of a few years have managed to play with virtually all of the biggest names in dance music and are now touring the world with a dirty, raw sound that deserves some attention at Eastern Electrics, closing the Star of EE Pub stage on Saturday.